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When you are re-feeding your daughter at home; there is nothing more important than the meal in front of her. What do I mean by that?  It means everything else gets put aside, postponed or re-scheduled until she has consumed what you put in front of her.

This may sound mean but it isn’t.  What is mean is to let your daughter starve.  And I know you are not a mean parent.

Let’s focus on the concern that you are being mean if you require your child to eat what you put in front her.  When your daughter has an eating disorder there is no medicine for her except food.  No medication exists that will help her eat more and gain weight.

The only thing that will help your ill child heal is to eat more food; whether she wants to or not.  It is difficult for parents to find a way to help their child eat when she starts crying or begging not to eat.  You don’t want her to be in pain or to suffer.

Some kids will cry and beg, others will get angry and abusive, and still others may become aggressive or threaten to engage in self-harming behaviors.  All of these reactions are the eating disorder trying to get you, her parents to back off and not make her take her medicine.

Please hear that if your child threatens self-harm or suicide you must take this seriously.  Remove any unsafe items from your home and monitor her closely.  Seek further professional help if you feel it is necessary or are unsure.

Even after these scary behaviors subside, she still has to eat.  There is no way around it.  She eventually needs to see that no matter what happens she will still have to eat. It is the only thing that will help her get well from this illness.

You will understand this way before she does; her medicine is food.  She needs you to understand this so ED doesn’t win.  One meal at a time, one bite at a time; you will have victory over ED.

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This information is not a substitute for consultation with health care professionals.  Each child’s health issues should be evaluated by a qualified professional.  Never read one article and try to implement what you read without much research and help; either from a coach or therapist.

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Do you want to learn more about eating disorders?

If so, download my free e-book “Eating Disorder Basics for Parents” here http://www.why-my-daughter.com/edb.html.

Lynn Moore educates, coaches, and consults parents on how to help theiradolescent with eating disorder behavior. She will help you figure out what kind of help you need and what you can do to help your child.

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