A friend share this link on Facebook last night. I read it and - wow! - its sheer force hit me like an avalanche. I'm still thinking about it today. What this amazing written-straight-from-the-heart article does is to get across exactly how an eating disorder brings havoc and destruction to a family. Everyone in the family - from the sufferer to the parents. And if anyone wants to know what it's really, really like to have an eating disorder like anorexia or bulimia in the family, simply read this article. It gets it across perfectly.
Like so many parents, mom Ann Contrucci (who is also an MD) refers to the eating disorder as a 'demon'. If you've read my book Please eat...: A mother's struggle to free her teenage son from anorexia you'll know that I refer to my son's eating disorder as a 'demon' throughout. Because this is what it's like. And we're not talking about superstition or Biblical / medieval-style devils or anything like that.
To see your child taken over by an eating disorder is, indeed, to see your child 'possessed' and taken over. Totally and utterly consumed.
Because, as this article so aptly describes, a child in the throes of an eating disorder changes completely.
Curiously the only negative review I have had about my book (on Amazon) from someone who claims to have an "extensive insight into the world of eating disorders" says "Not only did it reinforce stereotypes about eating disorders (calling anorexia 'the demon', it seemed that the mother (the author) was overly invested in the eating disorder and took it upon herself to make it her sole mission to 'destroy' this evil presence."
I would say that NO WAY does this individual have an "extensive insight into the world of eating disorders" because, if they did, then they would know that it is indeed like a demon.
Oh, and while I'm on the subject of that review... Yes, I - as the mother - did take it upon myself to make it my sole mission to 'destroy' this 'evil presence'.
But what was I supposed to do?
Allow my son to get worse? Allow him to die?
PS: Two lovely readers rushed in with counter-arguments which you can see here. This comment sums it up: "In a family's eyes when a family member or loved one is extremely ill with anorexia, there is nothing that they would consider 'too much' or 'overly melodramatic' when it comes to saving a life."