|Presentation by the Mother of a Daughter Who Died From Anorexia Nervosa
"But first I would like to say that living with a person with an eating
disorder is Hell in capital letters. As a mother of a young woman who lost
the battle, I can only say that sometimes you wish you could die, but you
must be there for your daughter. When you try to be understanding, it
doesn't work, because in doing so you are really feeding and nourishing the
You suggest, you plead, you nag, you threaten, and you try to be
insensitive while your heart is breaking. Nothing works. Finally your
nerves snap and you explode, saying things you do not mean.
What has happened to her hearty laugh that you could always hear above
her friends? She seldom even smiles now. She does seem to feel better
following her weekly appointments with the psychiatrist, sometimes even
sitting down to play her beloved piano, but that high lasts for only a couple
Tomorrow she is going to take a fresh start and do better, but when
tomorrow comes she is depressed because "I blew it again".
Each week begins with a new routine. This week she is to stay out of the
kitchen and you are to refrain from mentioning food in either a direct or
indirect manner. Mealtimes that once were pleasant times discussing the
day's events while enjoying a good meal have now become times of strain and
She pushes her food around on her plate until it drives you crazy.
Taking a few tiny nibbles on the end of her fork then leaving the table to go
"brush her teeth".
Waves of nausea envelop you and you sit and cry. You have called her
psychiatrist many times to find out what you should be doing and what you
should not be doing, but he does not return your calls. He refuses to talk
with you, as does her gastroenterologist.
Daily you see your daughter's health deteriorating and you attempt to
discuss the situation with her, but she "brushes you off". By this time your
mind has become fragmented as that of your daughters.
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