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Resources for families

Posts Tagged ‘Family’

Resources for Families

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Episode 45: An Eating Disorder’s Impact on Siblings with Jaeden Luke & Kianna Garmanian

Jaeden Luke & Kianna Garmanian

Episode description:

Jaeden Luke is a singer-songwriter who wrote the single “Beautiful” for his older sister Kianna, who experienced and fully recovered from an eating disorder. Kianna is a graduate of St. Martin’s University, a young adult group ministry leader, and the author of a forthcoming book about her healing journey, The Cross That Set Me Free.

Jaeden and Kianna join us in this Peace Meal episode to explore the sibling experience of eating disorders. The brother and sister pair recall how Kianna’s eating disorder impacted their relationship as well as how their relationship—and “Beautiful”—helped her heal.

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5 Languages of Eating Disorder Support

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The support of family and friends is key to the process of eating disorder recovery. It is an antidote to the isolation and secrecy of the illness, as well as a powerful, necessary reminder to our loved ones that they aren’t alone in their pain and struggle. 

But it can be hard to know just how to support someone affected by eating disorders. These are complicated, confusing conditions that aren’t “fixed” with simple logic. “Just eat,” “just eat less,” or “just stop doing that” are unhelpful suggestions, as are guilt trips and ultimatums.

What else is there to say or do? Considering your loved one’s love language is a place to start.

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Holiday Conversation Topics That Aren’t Food, Diets, or Weight

A family sitting around a holiday meal

Navigating holiday conversations can be challenging in even the best of years. In a year of a pandemic that has dominated our lives and interactions with others, it may feel even more so.

What is there to talk about with family, friends, and acquaintances this year? How can we meaningfully engage in yet another video call, or make new conversation among our small, in-house pods?

When the goal is connection—and it often is, especially for those struggling with the isolation of an eating disorder—the topics of conversation ought to be thoughtful and appropriate.

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Eating Disorder Support For Your Teen Over The Holidays

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This year’s holidays may not be like the ones we used to know. Amid pandemic restrictions on travel and in-person gatherings, more caution and creativity will be the key to safe plans.

Not only can we make our holiday plans more COVID-friendly, we can also make them friendlier to those with eating disorders. For people experiencing these illnesses, anxiety related to holiday eating, socializing, and changes in routine often make this season the most challenging time of the year.

The best gift we can give our children and other loved ones affected by eating disorders is genuine, informed support. Consider these suggestions to help your teenager with an eating disorder navigate the holidays ahead.

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How Do Eating Disorders Affect Relationships?

A young couple

Eating disorders are fierce, all-consuming illnesses. They develop gradually and insidiously, but once formed, impact more than a person’s relationship with food. They damage social relationships as well, affecting far more than the person experiencing the illness firsthand. Parents, siblings, friends, and partners are also subject to the toll of an eating disorder, their relationships with their loved one often strained in its presence. 

Given the secrecy and isolation common to these illnesses, eating disorders are particularly at odds with healthy intimate relationships. These relationships require vulnerability, honesty, and open communication, all qualities that are incompatible with an active eating disorder. The more consumed by disordered behaviors a person is, the more physically and emotionally distant from their partner they often are in turn. In situations where this distance or other relationship distress precipitated the development of the illness, the eating disorder only exacerbates it.

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