Here at Fairwinds Treatment Center we know that one patient's eating disorder has devastating implications for their whole family. There is nothing more frustrating than the sense of helplessness that comes from watching a loved one deprive their body of the nutrients it needs to survive.
That's one reason that we offer family therapy as part of our unique dual diagnosis methodology, which we use to treat the eating disorder itself, as well as any underlying psychological, mental and emotional issues that may have triggered or worsened the condition. Anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder and/or post traumatic stress disorder often exacerbate anorexia and bulimia, and treating the latter without also addressing the former is doomed to failure. Furthermore, it is the firm belief of our world-renowned eating disorder expert, Dr. Pauline Powers, that recovery must be achieved within the wider social context of the family unit in order for it to be sustainable.
If you are a parent, sibling or spouse of someone with an eating disorder, remember that you too have suffered severe emotional trauma at the hands of this disease. In order to fully heal and move forward, it's important that family members acknowledge their experiences. We recently discovered one mother who is doing just that, sharing her story in an effort to offer hope for other parents of eating disorder sufferers. The woman, who writes anonymously under the pen name "Grace" to protect her family's privacy, recently published a book called "Anna Be Gone" about her daughter Summer's battle with anorexia. The story covers Summer's diagnosis, hospitalization and homecoming, in the hope of offering support and encouragement to other families in similar situations.
If your loved one is struggling with an eating disorder, know that you are not alone. Fairwinds, one of the top eating disorder treatment centers in the world, can help your entire family find healing and start down the road toward a lasting recovery.