Thursday 17 August 2017

"Does my son have an eating disorder?" Yes, I was asking myself that same question back in 2009...

"Is my son developing an eating disorder?" "Does my son have an eating disorder?" It's the question that many parents of boys ask themselves as they notice unusual behaviours in their son's eating habits, attitude towards food and, perhaps, an increased focus on exercise.

Many people don't expect their sons to develop an eating disorder. Many people still think that eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia are a 'girl thing'. But the fact is that more and more males are being diagnosed and treated for eating disorders. Yes boys do get eating disorders - and my son was one of them (now thankfully recovered).

A few months ago I did a talk about eating disorders in boys in Edinburgh and the following bullet points are from my presentation - typical signs that a boy may be developing an eating disorder:

  • Intense exercise without pleasure
  • Dieting / avoiding widening range of foods
  • New interest in 'healthy eating'
  • Obsession with nutritional labels
  • Eliminating fats / carbs from diet
  • Increased interest in cooking
  • Ritualistic eating
  • Belief that 'getting fat'
  • Social withdrawal
  • Losing weight

Unfortunately our GP failed to recognise my son's symptoms as 'text-book signs' of a male developing an eating disorder. It wasn't helped by my son sitting there in the surgery denying that anything was wrong. I got 'that look' from the GP - the 'look' that says 'overprotective, fussy mother'...

You can download a PDF of the slides from my Edinburgh here...

You can read a transcription of my presentation here...

And here's a post on the subject Could my son have an eating disorder / what should I do if I think my son has an eating disorder which I wrote back in 2011.

No comments:

Post a Comment