Register Calendar Latest Topics
 
 
 


Reply
  Author   Comment   Page 1 of 2      1   2   Next
compmom123

Avatar / Picture

High Bronze Member
Registered:
Posts: 31
Reply with quote  #1 
Hey so I'm looking for a little advice on this one. Dd14 is not fat- she weighs 103 lbs and is almost 5"3. She has a bmi of 18.6 However I believe that the 'all dancers must be sticks' idea is getting to her. She has started eating less, and has stopped wearing a sports bra to dance, exercising like crazy, and is always checking calories before she eats anything. A lot of the girls on her dance team are stick thin. Any mom advice on how to stop this before it gets unhealthy/ tell her she isn't fat. Thanks!
0
dancemonkey

Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 1,025
Reply with quote  #2 
Get to a counselor NOW!
0
tendumom

Avatar / Picture

High Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 4,054
Reply with quote  #3 

Unfortunately, this sounds classic. Checking ingredients is one thing, checking calories on everything is another, along with exercising like crazy and eating less. If it were that she is eating healthy and cutting out junk, I might be less concerned. What you've written is actually very concerning. 

I do think a visit to a health professional with experience in eating disorders is in order. You can start with the pediatrician. Give the pediatrician a heads up in advance. Let them know exactly what you've said here.  Do not expect truthful answers from your dd to the pediatrician. I am sure your dd is a smart kid and would know what to say and what not to say when questioned about this.

Unfortunately, I watched this from the sidelines about 2 years ago. I even spoke to her mom a few times, trying to raise the red flag, even mentioning the words "eating disorder" on several occasions. It wasn't like I went up to the mom and started the conversation, but if there was an opening, I would grab it. For ex, I invited her dd to a party and wanted to make sure she had no allergies, etc before I planned the dinner fully. Mom said, "Oh she is a vegetarian" (yellow to red flag in itself!) and I said "ok, she'll be fine with pizza." Mom said, "no, she won't eat pizza anymore. Just a bite and some lettuce." Had a talk with the mom about vegetarianism in teens being a soft sign for an eating disorder. This dancer had a very rough time and was finally diagnosed this past year. Dd recently showed me this dancer's instagram account. Dd specifically showed me the various "pro-ana" (pro-anorexia for those unfamiliar) accounts this dancer was following as well as accounts of girls allegedly in recovery (trust me, those accounts did not sound like people who had recovered or who wanted to recover). <And for people who say one shouldn't necessarily check out what your kids are doing on social media, this is a clear cut example of why one should be at least somewhat aware. Yeah, sure, kids can hide things, but this was right out in the open if you looked!>

I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to nip this in the bud if it hasn't already progressed to an actual eating disorder. She is still at an age where her body is changing. It's a very scary thing to be restricting calories below a healthy amount and to be "exercising like crazy" at any time, but especially while the body is still developing. The changes can be permanent- life long effects on things like bone density and the reproductive system (from a hormonal standpoint). One of dd's former ballet teachers blames her own lack of height on the eating disorder she developed in her early teens, living in this crazy dance world. 

Good luck!! I am hoping for the best and wishing you the best with this!

0
jwsqrdplus2

Avatar / Picture

Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 1,890
Reply with quote  #4 
Another one who says contact a medical professional ASAP.  tendumom gave you some excellent advice with a very relevant example.

We were in NYC not too long ago, and thanks to the rush, we had 3rd row seats to see Chicago.  We were close enough to the stage to not only see snags in tights and frayed hems on costumes, but we could also see every exposed inch of the dancers/performers bodies.  And with the costuming of Chicago, there is very little left to the imagination!  All of the ladies in the cast looked very healthy: in shape, strong, curvy, beautiful.  Not a single "stick" in the cast.  It struck me enough to even comment to Ash's DTs how healthy the dancers looked.

I will say that Ash does watch what she eats, but more along the lines of eating healthy and cutting junk while providing the fuel her body needs to pursue her passion.  And I have watched my 5'9", 135 lb dancer out eat my 6'1", 225 lb husband at many a meal!!

0
melissa745

Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 1,439
Reply with quote  #5 
I am dealing with this with my 10 year old DD. She is already thin, and her BMI is dropping. We just went to her annual checkup, and the doctor gave us the name of a nutritionist that specializes with kids with eating disorders. but I'm worried that will make her hyperfocus and that perhaps a psychiatrist is better.

Anyone on the other side of this have any advice?

Oh, and my DD was a vegetarian for a year until I made her quit. She still won't eat meat often. :/

I wanted to add that our dance school doesn't emphasize thinness. Most of our teens are strong, but not super thin. I'm not sure where she's getting this from.
0
tappinmom

Avatar / Picture

Double Diamond Member
Registered:
Posts: 13,214
Reply with quote  #6 
I have a friend whose daughter is currently in recovery from anorexia.  They had no idea how bad it was until her heart pretty much stopped working.  Looking back she was limiting severely and exercising excessively.  She spent 4 months in our children's hospital and is still under doctors care trying to get her body back in shape.  She has permanent heart damage as well as other organs.  Take your daughter to the doctor immediately before she ends up really ill.
0
compmom123

Avatar / Picture

High Bronze Member
Registered:
Posts: 31
Reply with quote  #7 
Dd was a vegetarian for 6 months until I made her quit. She will only eat grilled chicken very very rarely now. I didn't realize that this was a sign for concern.
0
Psmom

Avatar / Picture

Diamond Member
Registered:
Posts: 5,790
Reply with quote  #8 


This video is about the life of my dd's sweet friend Katherine who died the Tuesday before Thanksgiving 2013. Nothing will bring her back but her friends made this video to try to help save others.
0
emmymom

Avatar / Picture

High Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 3,489
Reply with quote  #9 

Psmom...I'm so sorry for the loss of your DD's friend.  What a beautiful, tragic and haunting video.  It's lovely, just lovely that her friends made this to share her story with the world.  Thanks so much for sharing this important and amazing video.

OP...please seek help now for your DD!  I too lost a friend back in my freshman year in college to anorexia.  We didn't really have any idea what was happening to her.  This was in the early 80's and we didn't have the knowledge or know the warning signs like today. 

In addition, I have a dear friend who I've known all my life who is now deaf from years and years of purging in her teens and twenties.  Years and years of making herself vomit multiple times a day was so traumatic on her body, that she did permanent damage to her ears and lost her hearing in both of her ears in her late twenties.

Please get your DD the help she needs now before it's too late...

0
rdsmom

High Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 3,473
Reply with quote  #10 
Quote:
Originally Posted by melissa745
I am dealing with this with my 10 year old DD. She is already thin, and her BMI is dropping. We just went to her annual checkup, and the doctor gave us the name of a nutritionist that specializes with kids with eating disorders. but I'm worried that will make her hyperfocus and that perhaps a psychiatrist is better.

Anyone on the other side of this have any advice?

Oh, and my DD was a vegetarian for a year until I made her quit. She still won't eat meat often. :/

I wanted to add that our dance school doesn't emphasize thinness. Most of our teens are strong, but not super thin. I'm not sure where she's getting this from.


She's already hyperfocused. A psychiatrist is a medical doctor who primarily prescribes medication for emotional or behavioral disorders. In most metro areas, there are waiting lists from 4-12 weeks to see a psychiatrist. I would recommend a nutritionist as well as a therapist/counselor with experience in teens/children with eating disorders. I hope it goes well and she can change her thinking about food!
0
FantabulouslyCherry

Avatar / Picture

Gold Member
Registered:
Posts: 339
Reply with quote  #11 
As someone who struggled with weight issues in my teen years, I commend you for taking steps to get to this early. I hope you are able to get her the help she needs!
0
mom2tappergirl

Bronze Member
Registered:
Posts: 18
Reply with quote  #12 
I can tell you, as a mother to a son that had an eating disorder around the same age, seek help immediately! As I said, my son was right about the same age as your DD when he started working out and dieting to the extreme.  He was doing P90X and Insanity at least 2 times a day and was hardly eating anything. He ended up losing about 30 pounds and was sooo extremely skinny, I can't even express how bad he looked. His dad and I have been divorced since he was very young, and he spent a lot of time at both homes (we don't live far from each other and get along). He would tell me he had eaten at his dad's and would tell his dad he had eaten at my house. I packed his lunch for school, and he had been throwing most of it away (I found this out during therapy). As the above video expresses, people with an eating disorder are very smart and learn to tell you the things you want to hear and know how to manipulate people. He got so skinny (but hid it well with baggy clothes), but also so very mean (where he was working out to the extreme, his testosterone levels sky rocked and it was making him very aggressive). We got him to see a therapist and nutritionist that specialized in eating disorders and with ALOT of work (probably close to a year working with the professionals) and prayers, he finally got through it and got to a healthy/happy weight.

My son is now 21 and is a certified personal trainer and getting his Bachelors degree in exercise science. After his experience, he decided he wanted to show people how to achieve a healthy lifestyle the right way. He has worked with my DD17 to make sure that when she started feeling unhappy with the way she looked (for no reason I might add), that he talked to her about cutting out junk and replacing it with healthy snacks and clean eating. They work out together at the gym together most days and she has lost a few pounds, but has toned up and has even more muscle definition, which she loves.

I know how scary this can be and I wish I had seen the signs sooner and gotten him the help he needed earlier than we did.
0
Suzit42

Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 1,580
Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by compmom123
Dd was a vegetarian for 6 months until I made her quit. She will only eat grilled chicken very very rarely now. I didn't realize that this was a sign for concern.


I also did not realize that becoming a vegetarian could be a sign of an eating disorder. At least four of DD16s eleven teammates are vegetarian. In two cases, the girls entire familys are also vegetarian. One girl just started a year ago. The other girl and her mother recently stopped eating meat, I'm guessing because SO is also vegetarian and this mom will do anything SO says. There is definitely peer pressure to eat healthy foods at the studio. The only thing that bugs me about that is that one of the veg moms says a lot of things that are wildly inaccurate about food. University of Google, ugh. Other girls have tried being vegetarian, they say to "be healthier". I will definitely pay more attention to this going forward.
0
ChelleB70

Avatar / Picture

High Gold Member
Registered:
Posts: 723
Reply with quote  #14 
I agree with everyone about getting her in to a professional asap.  The wait can be long for a psychiatrist but I would make that appointment then get her in with a nutritionist and/or therapist.  Sometimes if your pcp makes the call you can get in sooner so try that as well.

I never knew for a fact that teens going vegetarian was a sign of a possible eating disorder but when my niece was 13 or 14 she all of sudden wanted to be a veg.  Now this is a girl who loves her meat products....LOVES.  Noone else seemed bothered by it but I was concerned. So on her 2nd day of being a veg she was at our house for Tgiving.  I offered her turkey, which she refused saying she was now a veg.  I jokingly gasped and said "No bacon?  No filet mignon?  No venison?  No beef jerky?"  She handed me her place and said "Just give me the turkey".  I was relieved.  It just didn't seem right.  I see so many people insist they or their kids are lactose intolerant but refuse to take the lactaid caplets.  Or gluten sensitive when I know they truly aren't.  Or allergic to (fill in the blank) all of a sudden.  To me, a lot of it (not all) is like a code that they're restricting themselves (and/or their children) in order to lose weight.  When it's junk, there's nothing wrong with it but it can get out of control.  I know adults who are vegetarian, vegan or always on fad "health" diets and their children already have what looks to be disordered eating.  I took 2 of them out to dinner tonight (one vegetarian, one big into vegan but doesn't always stick to it) along w my dd and another girl whose parents don't restrict anything.  My dd and the other girl who isn't restricted ordered chicken/fries and a hot dog/fries then split them and ate enough (didn't over or under eat).  The 2 that live in the "restricted" houses ordered: pasta w butter and parm and pasta with parm w/o butter.  Both left most of their meal and it wasn't like it was a huge portion.  I could see if they left some (restaurant portions can be a bit much) but they each had only a few bites, ate a few fries and left the rest.  They do this A LOT. 
0
Mom2Girls

Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 1,603
Reply with quote  #15 
I agree with everyone that says to get her help immediately. This isn't a "wait and see" kind of issue.

I do want to say that while vegetarianism/veganism can be a sign of disordered eating, it isn't always and it's kind of sounding on this thread like, "oh, I know a vegetarian--they must be ED" (I'm exaggerating) when in reality there are many reasons to consider vegetarianism or at least eating less meat and being more selective--health, animal welfare, environment, etc. I definitely eat some meat, but as a former vegan and then vegetarian, I always have to try to ignore what I know in order to do so. :/ Vegetarianism is kind of getting lumped in with fad diets on here...


Quote:
Originally Posted by ChelleB70
The 2 that live in the "restricted" houses ordered: pasta w butter and parm and pasta with parm w/o butter.  Both left most of their meal and it wasn't like it was a huge portion.  I could see if they left some (restaurant portions can be a bit much) but they each had only a few bites, ate a few fries and left the rest.  They do this A LOT. 


I just wanted to mention that eating out as a vegetarian is hard--you really are left with pasta or French fries a lot of the time. I used to hate eating out because at home I could make myself a really full, rounded meal, but going out I was left to choose salad, pasta, or fries. I'm not saying the girls you are talking about have perfectly healthy relationships with food, but I am saying that I used to go out and order fries or pasta, eat only a bit (more to be social than that I wanted it) and then go home and make myself real food. This may or may not be relevant, but it is something to consider. [smile]
0
ChelleB70

Avatar / Picture

High Gold Member
Registered:
Posts: 723
Reply with quote  #16 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mom2Girls
I agree with everyone that says to get her help immediately. This isn't a "wait and see" kind of issue. I do want to say that while vegetarianism/veganism can be a sign of disordered eating, it isn't always and it's kind of sounding on this thread like, "oh, I know a vegetarian--they must be ED" (I'm exaggerating) when in reality there are many reasons to consider vegetarianism or at least eating less meat and being more selective--health, animal welfare, environment, etc. I definitely eat some meat, but as a former vegan and then vegetarian, I always have to try to ignore what I know in order to do so. :/ Vegetarianism is kind of getting lumped in with fad diets on here...
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChelleB70
The 2 that live in the "restricted" houses ordered: pasta w butter and parm and pasta with parm w/o butter.  Both left most of their meal and it wasn't like it was a huge portion.  I could see if they left some (restaurant portions can be a bit much) but they each had only a few bites, ate a few fries and left the rest.  They do this A LOT. 
I just wanted to mention that eating out as a vegetarian is hard--you really are left with pasta or French fries a lot of the time. I used to hate eating out because at home I could make myself a really full, rounded meal, but going out I was left to choose salad, pasta, or fries. I'm not saying the girls you are talking about have perfectly healthy relationships with food, but I am saying that I used to go out and order fries or pasta, eat only a bit (more to be social than that I wanted it) and then go home and make myself real food. This may or may not be relevant, but it is something to consider. [smile]


I'm def not saying that all (or even most or a majority) of vegan or veg eaters have eating disorders. I know that's not true.  However, I do see an extreme amount of picky eating among these kids that I know. It's not just when we're out. Besides the kids do sometimes eat mean and we always go to restaurants with a lot of options anyway.  They just don't like anything.  We're talking plain pasta (no sauce), grilled cheese sandwiches and french fries.  Then they barely eat any of it.  And my friends who are always on the fad "health" diets have kids who hide or flush their food down the toilet (which is exactly what I would do if I was forced to eat only raw fruit and veggies for breakfast. LOL)  IMO (and my unprofessional opinion at that) is that in these cases it can be attributed to extremes and/or how much it's discussed and made a "thing" of.  When it's all that's ever talked about, or things become too restrictive or obsessive it's just not healthy.
0
Becca

Avatar / Picture

High Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 2,732
Reply with quote  #17 

If you as a parent are worried, if you can feel it in your gut that something is "off", get her help. It might not be an eating disorder yet but these things can quickly spiral out of control. A nutritionist is a wonderful place to start to help educate both of you on what she needs to be able to thrive and train. I would also suggest a therapist if she is resistant to the idea of changing any off putting habits.

Personally what has me so worried about this thread is all the arm chair quarterbacking about children besides the OP's DD. If a child is a vegetarian it can be a sign of a problem. It can also be a sign of someone with a very strong belief system about food and animals (ex. my own DD having a break down at the Coral Reef at Disney World due to people eating fish in front of other fish when she was seven). And sometimes, sometimes, a child that has lost weight can have a medical issues unrelated to restricting food. Too many people weighing in about a child and their body in that case can actually trigger an ED.

I think the OP has some real concerns related to her child and I think it is wonderful that so many are willing to share advice but can we not turn into "those moms" that comment about this child is too thin, too fat, too whatever and instead just support each other.

0
tendumom

Avatar / Picture

High Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 4,054
Reply with quote  #18 
I personally never meant to imply that a child or anyone else becoming a vegetarian means they have an eating disorder. It is considered a "soft sign," which mean it CAN indicate something is amiss, but it does't necessarily. Obviously a kid who feels strongly about animals is a different story. It's the same for someone trying to follow this diet for health reasons. But, while the association between vegetarianism, especially in teens, and eating disorders is known in the medical field, I think it is not well known outside of that. There are well done studies that clearly illustrate this connection. That said, it is important to look at the whole picture. In the OP, there's more than just becoming a vegetarian. It's part of a constellation of possible signs which added together give reason for concern. 
0
ChelleB70

Avatar / Picture

High Gold Member
Registered:
Posts: 723
Reply with quote  #19 
I stated more than once that I don't think veg is an end all, be all of signs of an ED.  However, I found it interesting that my concern with my niece wasn't unfounded.  I've also noted through the years that kids with parents (who I know personally) who obsess over food, even in the name of health, have odd eating habits even as they get older.  I'm not saying it to the parents, or the kids....just noting what I've seen through the years.  I certainly don't mean any harm in it and apologize if it came off that way.
0
Becca

Avatar / Picture

High Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 2,732
Reply with quote  #20 
I apologize if I seemed to attack anyone. I understand that in a lot of ways vegetarian can turn into an ED or restricted eating. I am very sensitive about this subject because my own DD has a medical condition that does affect her weight. The amount of grown adults talking about her body nearly caused a problem. I just caution adults that kids that hear gossips and whispers that so and so lost weight or so and so is looking a bit chubby can be deeply impacted by them.
0
ChelleB70

Avatar / Picture

High Gold Member
Registered:
Posts: 723
Reply with quote  #21 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Becca
I apologize if I seemed to attack anyone. I understand that in a lot of ways vegetarian can turn into an ED or restricted eating. I am very sensitive about this subject because my own DD has a medical condition that does affect her weight. The amount of grown adults talking about her body nearly caused a problem. I just caution adults that kids that hear gossips and whispers that so and so lost weight or so and so is looking a bit chubby can be deeply impacted by them.


People actually said something to your dd about her weight?!  That is awful.  I would never, ever, ever say anything to any child about their weight.  Kids are super skinny through overweight and sometimes it's not even permanent.  My 12 yo dd went through a "chubby" period and my mother in law said something to her.  I did damage control, sent my dd out of the room and set my mil straight that I didn't want to hear one more word about her weight again....ever.

What happened with your child is what I would lump into being "obsessed", "overly concerned", whatever people want to call it.  Constantly talking about weight and food just isn't healthy.  Maybe it's just where I live but it seems like the vast majority of people are obsessed with vegetarian, vegan, paleo, raw, g-free (when there's no celiac), low carb/high protein, no carb, no dairy (when there's sensitivity or allergy),  Shakeology, cleanses, detoxes etc etc etc etc etc.  It's pervasive in every conversation, every Facebook post, every everything.  If you're going to do something to be healthy, that's great.  Just DO it.  You don't have to discuss it ad nauseum, esp in front of your kids.
0
ballerinamom13

Avatar / Picture

Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 1,732
Reply with quote  #22 
So - my dd is 20 now and not really a kid anymore.  Yesterday was her 1 year anniversary of eating strictly vegan.  I cannot control what she eats anymore, but I can still be concerned.  She has always hated meat, (anything with bones in it especially) and used to love sushi, but now won't eat fish, butter, milk, etc.  However, she researches endlessly about healthy ways to eat vegan and stay strong, and she is one of the strongest kids I know.  She's on summer break right now (the OBT SI starts Monday, so she will take maintenance classes in the mornings), and while she's been off, she has been taking sculpt, mat and reformer Pilates (many days all 3 classes on the same day).  In fact, the owner of the Pilates studio is talking to her about getting certified.

My point is, for younger kids, it can get out of control and with my dd, I think it did for a time.  I had a friend's 13 year old daughter tell my friend that she was afraid DD had an eating disorder after looking at her photos on FB and Insta.  Her former Company did address it and made her keep a food journal (which I know for a fact, she was not keeping accurately).  She looks a little better now after lots of talks about not getting injured when her career is just starting.  I would urge the OP to go with your gut.  Kids really don't know how to eat correctly these days and at 14, she is still growing so it's so important to get the right foods. I would get a POSITIVE dialog going now with her about protein being so important at this stage of the game, and different ways of getting healthy protein.  There are endless blogs about how to eat healthy and many of them are funny and informative.  Do research!! DD actually met a new friend, not in dance, though her Instagram (they both post photos of the food they make constantly and finally met in person). I think it's possible to turn the food obsession thing into a positive, without letting it get out of control, but it takes work.   

DD's main ballet teacher told her she was fat pretty often and in reality, she was far from fat, but being tall, she probably did need to drop a few pounds right after she hit puberty, which for her was almost 17.  We always talked about it and she decided she was going to get into even better shape. That's when the research started and first "clean eating" for a year and a half and then vegan.  The pressure on girls and weight in dance is so crazy as they get older, especially when they hit puberty.  It's definitely real in the ballet world - I think not quite as much for Broadway and back up dancers, but it's still there.  I wish it wasn't that way, but it is. Both Companies dd has been with have the "fat" talk with certain dancers.  That's not what they call it, of course, but that's what the dancers call it. 

I would stress being positive about food and the necessity to eat right so she doesn't get injured.  If she really wants to dance, and she gets injured, it could be over and no one wants that to happen.  I do think stressing about it as her mom will make it worse, so offer positive, fun suggestions.  That's why I've tried to be supportive about her choices, but stress the need to stay strong and healthy.  I hope things go well and keep us posted.  The peer pressure is really tough at that age too, so I'm sure that's part of what is going on.
0
momoftwo

High Gold Member
Registered:
Posts: 518
Reply with quote  #23 
OP - I agree with the others.... You both should seek help. I've seen it in my family as well as at the dance studio and it gets very scary - very fast.
((hugs))

0
tappinmom

Avatar / Picture

Double Diamond Member
Registered:
Posts: 13,214
Reply with quote  #24 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Becca
I apologize if I seemed to attack anyone. I understand that in a lot of ways vegetarian can turn into an ED or restricted eating. I am very sensitive about this subject because my own DD has a medical condition that does affect her weight. The amount of grown adults talking about her body nearly caused a problem. I just caution adults that kids that hear gossips and whispers that so and so lost weight or so and so is looking a bit chubby can be deeply impacted by them.


When DS was younger he was extremely underweight because of health issues.  At 4 when he started school he was under 20 lbs and that carried on pretty much until he was through puberty - at 16 he was almost 6' tall and only about 130lbs at his lowest.  Tons of people made comments about how "sickly" he always looked.  He did develop a bit of self consciousness because of it but I made sure that every time we were at the dr they reassured him that he was eating just fine and not to worry about what people though because they didn't know his situation.  He has recently gone vegan but he is eating very healthy just no animal products so I'm not concerned.
0
Suzit42

Platinum Member
Registered:
Posts: 1,580
Reply with quote  #25 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChelleB70
I stated more than once that I don't think veg is an end all, be all of signs of an ED.  However, I found it interesting that my concern with my niece wasn't unfounded.  I've also noted through the years that kids with parents (who I know personally) who obsess over food, even in the name of health, have odd eating habits even as they get older.  I'm not saying it to the parents, or the kids....just noting what I've seen through the years.  I certainly don't mean any harm in it and apologize if it came off that way.


Yes, I have found that the kids whose parents restrict what their kids eat at home, gluten, sugar, dairy, etc., not because of allergies, are the first ones in my pantry looking for "banned" food to eat.
0
Previous Topic | Next Topic
Print
Reply

Quick Navigation: