"Parentectomy" - the separation of patients from their families - has long been practiced in eating disorder treatment. The reasons behind this thinking were, it is now clear, flawed. I believe generations of patients have been disabled or killed by these policies.

I am very proud to say that F.E.A.S.T.'s Parent Council, with assistance from our Advisory Panel, has published a Policy Statement:
"F.E.A.S.T. Protests Continued Use of "Parentectomy" in Eating Disorder Treatment"

Together, let us usher the era of parentectomy to the history books.


  1. Hi Laura,

    I've been out of the country the past nine days (a whole other story--in a French speaking predominantly black South American country where observing the election of Barack Obama was a tremendous well as watching my 22 year old daughter teach English to local high school TAKE THAT all you theorists that think I'm an over protective parent...never was, never will be, EXCEPT when my child is ill with a deadly disease!)

    I'd like to see you go even farther. I'd like to see this practice banned totally. I'd also like to see a statement to the effect that the mental health rights of family members should also be respected and considered throughout the treatment of the ill member. That limiting contact causes unnecessary pain and guilt on all sides, that the assumption that it allows the patient 'more control and more autonomy' may well be false and that it may well indeed do lasting damage to the health of family relationships, especially in a time of stress. It sends the message to impressionable, ill adolescents and teens that their families are incapable of helping them and, worst yet, have or may damage them. My mental health and well being should count too. Many times, I felt like it didn't.

  2. We felt that way, too.

    Treating the patient as if they CAN be treated in isolation like a cog in a machine is so... misguided.

    We need a wholesale change in how families are regarded.


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