"OK, so let's do yesterday's points, Ben. First, I'm deducting 4 points for unacceptable behaviour last night. Also, I paid £10 for a pizza you didn't eat so I'm afraid that will have to come out of your points, too, because - as you know - the contract points are about moving us forwards and I believe last night was a step backwards." "No, it was nothing to do with anorexia," insisted Ben...
"I genuinely thought there wasn't enough topping: 4 prawns, a few mushrooms, a couple of pieces of pepper... if it was the anorexia I'd have complained there was TOO much! Then the manager came over and it all started getting out of hand. On one hand there was me saying I didn't have ENOUGH toppings and on the other, there was the manager insisting I'd been given the 'correct portion' for each topping. Result, total confusion. Were the toppings too mean or was I being greedy wanting more? I was confused. I couldn't handle it so I walked out."
"Aha, so it WAS about the eating disorder, then," I responded to which he complained we hadn't backed him up in complaining and surely we "could have seen the toppings were on the mean side?"
"The point is," I said, "that we were there to celebrate Fathers' Day and to give dad an enjoyable and relaxed evening. The reverse happened. The way you behaved simply wasn't the way a mature 17 year old should have behaved, especially on Fathers' Day. Most people would have bitten the bullet and pretended everything was fine, even if, in your opinion, the pizza wasn't ideal. Basically it was selfish and unacceptable behaviour, do you not agree? The GOOD side of it all was that you DID go on to have all your calories once you were back home."
"And 100 over," he interrupted.
Anyway, I'd made my point and had that conversation.
It was ED-induced confusion. And people with eating disorders get confused about stuff that other people don't. But eating disorders are notoriously self-focused and remove the ability to see the bigger picture. You have the double whammy of teenagers being inherently selfish coupled with the extreme self-centeredness of the eating disorder.