"Will you make me eat?"

The brochure starts with the question:

"Will you make me eat?"

The answer:

"...although one of the program goals is to develop healthy eating habits, food is not forced."


Food, at an eating disorder clinic, is optional.


  1. What would the reaction be if it were a pediatric diabetes clinic that said, "...although one of the program goals is stable blood sugar levels, insulin is not forced?"

  2. Good grief. That's ridiculous.

    Let's repeat: An eating disorder is an illness, not a choice.

    J- great analogy.


    What clinic is this, anyways? If you'd rather not say on your blog, email me.

  3. The generalist psychiatric hospital where my daughter was treated very briefly, were not allowed to tackle a patient's eating - there was an obviously underweight anorexic woman in there who constantly paced the corridors with a can of diet coke.
    In their defence, they WERE generalists, and not in any way claiming to be able to tackle eating disorders. They were still rubbish - or in my dear younger daughter's words "they were shit, they didn't even make anorexics eat, so they were closed down"
    I suppose with this place you are quoting from the trouble is they quite literally need the patient to buy in to their program and so feel the need to pander to the distorted feelings of the illness, to get hold of the patient and her $$s

  4. At the hospital program we used the T didn't even address the ED until my daughter said she had ENOUGH and told them they weren't helping her with the one thing she sought help for. It was true. In turn they offered her an intensive day program to help monitor her and get her back in control. She was so disillusioned by what she hoped was the "help" she needed that she did end up creating her own recovery so in the end she recovered in spite of them. Money is in managing a disease, never curing it. And ED's are curable! They KNOW this now so it's their crime that they "do harm" when they swore not to.

  5. Treatment of eating disorders probably has improved generally, but I do have to say that when I was suffering in the 1970s and I needed to go in the hospital, the expectation was always that I was going there to be fed and to eat. That was the top priority of treatment.

  6. Ladies,

    All I have to keep stating is that this is ALL BS-BS-BS!

    Maybe one out of say ten patients, if EVEN that, MIGHT find some "help" in these dungeons of peril and who-knows-who's-in-charge-of-whom, etc. and what the patients are picking up and learning/reinforcing with one another. But the way the clinicians, referral agencies, therapists, et al go on and on about these places you would think they are the be-all=cure, magic sprinkles for ED's- they are NOT.

    Where are these #'s of successfully recovered, where is their evidence to back up locking a patient up, separating him/her from family, manipulating a vunerable circumstance, not fully supporting a sufferer/family towards successful refeeding? And I didn't say an easy, straight linear path, because if any of us have done the "work" we know this is not what unfolds for long term recovery.

    Guess what, when you ask they don't have it to provide you, "confidentialilty" is the greatest cover for this huge void and keeps the billing, and potential customer coming back for more until they are shut down, or enough parents and patients demand better. The majority of these facilities don't care if your child recovers- so what? That's not their goal- please; they'll wait it out until the gig is up. You know that song- "MONEY-MONEY-MONEY"... cha-ching!

    I cannot help but be constantly unnerved and wonder what truly lies at the endless pushing and almost coercing of parents and patients to enlist and sign away their children to these unscrutinized, unproven, hugely expensive, and loosely monitored "treatment" facilities. Do these providers get some kick-back's from these places, seriously I do wonder what the real bottom line is.

    Why would Dr's recommend such places when they KNOW the dismal records, discharge rates, multiple relapsing, and increased ED behavior that for the most part ensues afterwards? This is the next level of help for families and sufferers? And why the hell do these providers, Dr's etc. take everyone's "word" towards continually recommending these facilities with only false publicizing/claims, unproven methods, ill-trained/educated staff? Yikes!

    When the Dr's/therapists are met with difficulty and frustration- which, hello, is bound to happen; they simply throw the baby out with the bathwater, and state "we've done all we can" ?? Correct me if I'm wrong, but pardon me? Do you not work specifically in this field, advertise your clinic/services like gangbusters to the unwary, and after countless months/years of apts, $$'s have been collected in which barely any effort to truly do the real work has been made- then just throw out the next worse option- IP/OP facility care?

    Another hyped key word we endlessly hear in referring to IP/OP care is "intensive"... when we've toured these facilities I saw nothing resembling "intensive" one-to-one individualized assistance, collaboration with family, etc. But alot of unhealthy walking, over drugged adolescent zombies, with staff/Dr's/therapists that brought back frightening images of "One Flew Over the Cookoos Nest". No one blinked an eye to what was painfully obvious- but "they know what they are doing, because they have been doing this for a LONG time". So what, where is the proof behind all the browbeating words?

    Please, someone wake me from this nightmare! THIS is the endless wheel that keeps turning, NOT the families and patients that are demanding better options, asking endless questions, looking for support, education, evidence, and expanded choices and an overhaul of the present treatment "standard".


  7. Tracey,

    You know I'm with you on the ineffectiveness, the lack of science, the excluding of parents. But I can tell you that I have not yet met someone treating eating disorders whose motives were anything but good. These are passionate, hard-working, well-meaning people who care, deeply, about people with eating disorders. That doesn't make them right about what causes it, what helps, or the role of parents, but they aren't in it for money or fame and they wouldn't do it if they didn't truly TRULY believe what they are doing is best.

    It isn't cynicism, greed, or stupidity. It is the legacy of flawed conclusions, and a history of failed interventions.

  8. Dear Laura,

    Unfortunately, here in Wisconsin, there are indeed individuals, clinics/therapists/facilities, etc. that have monetary motives behind their ED treatment practices.

    Perhaps they started out with all the greatest of intentions when they began their work here, or working within this field, etc. I have no idea. What I do know is that for almost a year now since our d was dx, we have yet to find a provider that fits the description of yours above. And, in fact, have experienced the exact opposite.

    I'm not stating that those individuals/clinicians do not exist- obviously, they do. But in the meantime, until the standard of care improves, drastically here in the Midwest, there is plenty to bring to the light and attention to others of what is definitely NOT working. And even more importantly, what to potentially avoid.

    Some of these individuals and facilities I strongly feel should not be applying care or treatment, or at the very least should be adequately screened, majorly updated or at the very least have a sufficient data base for families and patients that truly reflects those qualified for the job. Demographically, this is so appallingly deficient, expensive, inconsistent, and sporadically available, and way too many affected slip through the cracks, still.

    We have also experienced an incredible amount of cynicism, ambivalence, even hostility within the treatment practices of our d from those who supposedly care and are so passionate about what they do- so quietly hushing myself into a passive corner isn't going to work.

    I'm not attempting to argue with you and the diligent work you continue to do, Laura. I'm not wanting to come across unduly hostile, but this is indeed happening to some of us, and we are tired of it and are not simply going to pay lip service to a system of care that is definitely inadequate, and not accessible to everyone equally. Would cancer, diabetes be treated the same, the patient still requires that same level of care and committment regardless of the dx, right?

    I definitely agree that the "flawed conclusions" horrendous history of treating ED's is so blatantly pithy, but so are some of the practitioners who continue working in this field, much like teachers in public schools, who are just hanging in there, collecting paychecks for providing zip- sorry, I can't find a nicer way of putting this.

    Apologies for my bluntness- not meaning to offend you in any way.

    Cheers~ Tracey

  9. I think I know the hospital group you are refering to--they are a kind, well meaning group. However, they have their own particular beliefs about 'healthy eating' and they support vegetarianism.

  10. I was in a few programs like that (I'm now 21). I did Maudsley with my parents when I was 14...we never made it past phase 1 because my household was abusive in nature...Dr.leGrange was a really great guy and did help me in other ways after that. Unfortunately I'm not doing very well now---I actually have type 1 diabetes...someone above mentioned how it would be ironic to say that a diabetic didnt have to take insulin, and I have been in inpatient hospitals where they did NOT make me take my insulin (or eat). Wasted alot of time, money, and have alot of permanent health problems

  11. I'm sick of you people assuming that non-Maudsley treatment providers are just in it for the money.

    Cancer, asthma, and diabetes are also "managed" diseases yet no one would assume that endocrinologists or oncologists are purposely withhold a cure from their patients in favor of "managing" those diseases for more profit.

    Think about all the money that would be lost if diabetics didn't have to take insulin for the rest of their lives or if cancer patients didn't have to go through months or years of chemo, radiation, and drugs or if asthma patients didn't need to use inhalers for the rest of their lives.

    Not denying that there are shitty ED clinics out there but those conspiracy theory comments are complete BS.

  12. "But they aren't in it for money or fame and they wouldn't do it if they didn't truly TRULY believe what they are doing is best."

    YES! For once I'm happy with one of your posts!!! I have major disagreements with you (I still blame my mother for my ED) but I'm glad you're at least you're willing to look at the other of the fence and use some logic. I have to grudgingly give you credit for that.

    Are there crooked people working at these ED clinics? I'm sure there are. But you'll find crooked people in EVERY profession. I work at an inpatient facility for alcoholics, another condition that has a high relapse rate and I can assure you, I'm am not driving a BMW or receiving any kickbacks.

    Like those non-Maudsley treatment providers are really driving BMWs and thinking, "Yes! Sally has relapsed. Now I get to make more money and I can take that vacation to Hawaii. Muahahahahahaha!" Oh PULEEZE! *eyeroll* How childish can you possibly be?

  13. And another note. Did it ever occur to you that some of those evil employees at those evil ED clinics have suffered from EDs themselves? Maybe the traditional methods worked for them and they want to give back. It's the same reason many of you are promoting Maudsley. You found a method that worked in your situation so you want to spread it. Every situation is different. If Maudsley worked for YOU then that's great but Maudsley will not work for ME because my family is dysfunctional. Every situation is different.

    Try to be more empathetic. Those evil ED clinic folks are human, just like you.


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