Anorexia: what can parents do to fight anorexia?
As a parent, you're often at a loss at how to deal with this illness.
"Parents often aren't the best placed for taking action. They musn't feel guilty though, even though it might be useful to do some soul-searching and raise some questions," explains Ada Picard.
More often than not, excessive control is not the solution. Meal times can result in extra levels of anxiety for anorexics and forcing them to sit at the table can only increase their anxiety.
There's one key thing you can do: listen, especially when your child becomes dejected.
Ask them why they're doing this and try and find out what the main problem is through gentle conversation. Your child should feel listened to, not judged.
For Emily, paying attention to all the signals that children send out is a starting point: a teenager who thinks they're fat or worthless, or who feels regularly put down by their friends... and also, being "wary of children who say that everything is absolutely fine."
If you feel that you're unable to do much to help, don't hesitate to contact a health professional.