I wish I could have prevented this from happening.
My daughter Emmy was diagnosed with Anorexia Nervosa last June at 14 years old.
It was a shock as there was no warning.. other than that she was being ‘healthy’ with eating and exercise. She was admitted to our local public hospital to the paediatric ward for refeeding where she stayed for 2 weeks.
I felt like a failure.
The weeks Emmy stayed with me (alternate week care) she was losing weight and when she stayed with her dad, she was gaining weight. I took this as a failure and started to feel defeated by the illness.
I chose to love and support her
Her father and I are divorced, and we both attended outpatient appointments at different times. He and I don’t communicate, and were not able to provide my daughter a ‘team’ of care.
So I decided to focus on what I could do as a mother rather than what I couldn’t.
I knew I couldn’t make the eating disorder go away. I chose to love and support my daughter and focus on our relationship rather than punishing us.
We give in daily to this illness
It’s been 18 months now, and my daughter has gained some weight and eats regularly, however still refuses to eat red meat and foods with added sugar. We still give in daily to this illness and desperately hope for a way out.
I feel anxious, and I’m terrified that I will lose my precious daughter to this insidious illness. It makes me so sad and angry that my daughter has to live her life controlled by fear of an unrealistic image.
Our family has changed. My older daughter has been traumatised by this illness… it’s been very hard on her.
Every meal in our household has changed.
Emmy was discharged from the public hospital eating disorder clinic and sees a psychologist monthly.
I’m thankful that EDFA has given me exposure to other people going through the same thing. I feel less alone. I look to the little things to help. Sunshine, and my dog make me smile.
Hope gets me through the day
Hang in there.
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