Gifts for my daughter
I got the chance to finish Jenni Schaefer's new book, "Goodbye ED," and put it on my daughter's bed for her next visit home from college then chatted her ear off about it.
I've only given my daughter, who suffered from anorexia, a few books about eating disorders. Life Without ED (Jenni's first) and this one are the only patient narratives I've ever recommended.
It will interest my allies and my critics that Jenni's book isn't about or even much mention genetics. You won't find predisposition, brain disease, or Maudsley in this book. It isn't about parents taking control or refeeding or any of the topics I spend so much time ranting about. Those are my bailiwick, and Jenni has hers and they don't conflict. My focus is on caregivers and how those around the person can respond at the start, hers is about how the patient takes over recovery from the inside - and on life after recovery.
We need both. Recovery has stages, and we play different roles at different places in the story. The ultimate goal for parents and loved ones is to watch as the person moves beyond the illness. We need more discussion and thinking about recovery and wellness after an eating disorder. We need the unique and truly thoughtful work Jenni is doing.