Thursday, January 29, 2009


N is still struggling with the term change. I've had to take back control over his breakfasts. He was either restricting or just not taking care of himself. I'm certain that he is still growing like crazy, but his weight has been static for two months now. Either way, I'm seeing his self-consciousness (and temper) increase.

I'm also seeing increased concern with exercise or wanting to have a sport. He's decided that he wants to run track. Boy -- that's a potential problem. Do I let him try and watch him carefully? The boys at this age are so defined by what sport they participate in. I get that N feels like a "nerd" because he doesn't do sports. Is it possible for a boy who has anorexia to do a sport at a reasonable level?

We've got a winter campout coming up. N is resisting anything "puffy." We've told him that if he won't wear the appropriate equipment, including coat, snowpants and boots, that he can't go. I find myself just wanting to keep him home and protect him from the weather and the other boys. Boys at this age are so mean to each other.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Check Up

N and T met with Dr. R. last night. It was a positive visit and in fact, they didn't even stay for the whole hour because "they ran out of things to talk about." Our next appointment isn't for another four months. The topic of discussion was long term recovery.

N just started a new term at school. He has been significantly more self-conscious (even to the point of calling himself "fat") because of new kids, expectations and teachers. I think some of the anorexic feelings have increased because of the change, but I also see N dealing with it better than he has previously. Hopefully, each time he experiences change, he'll get even better at dealing with it - until it's just not an issue anymore. Dr. R told him to address the self-consciousness and any OCD stuff before it ever became about eating.

N also made an interesting confession. He said that he eats in order to avoid his homework. Wow. I'm pleased that N is honest about his motives. So they also talked about avoidance (everyone does it) and to stop and really find out why he doesn't want to do his homework. At some level I don't know how much these things really have to do with the anorexia -- but it was good for him to discuss them.

Monday, January 5, 2009


N is now 12 1/2 years old. When he first got anorexia, he was barely 11. At the beginning of his treatment, his therapist stated that it was good that N didn't also have bulimia -- that the characteristics N was demonstrating at the time were evidence that we would have a long, long road ahead if N's illness led him toward purging. Because of this concern, we've watched him carefully for signs of purging, kept the research books hidden (with mixed success), and haven't really talked in depth about bulimia. I assumed that N didn't really know what bulimia was and that to talk about it was to also put ideas in his head.

I briefly talked to N after our visit with his Great Grandmother (last post) and wondered whether it made him uncomfortable. You can imagine my surprise, though, when he shifted subjects and started talking about the girl with bulimia, confessing that he had "thought about it" (throwing up), but couldn't stand the idea of making his throat burn. I looked at my husband, who was also processing the comment in shock.

I'm not sure what to do with this information now. I think it was naive of me to think that by not talking about bulimia it could prevent N from purging. It leaves me wondering if we should have (or should be) engaging that topic more directly. Thankfully, though, I really believe him when he said that he has never done it.