Reasons to love the eating disorder parent community
|what it looks like when F.E.A.S.T. parents
accompany their friends down the other
side of the sand hill.
1. The fierce, dogged, unquenchable commitment that parents have to their kids. Is there any other relationship like it? I think people forget, because perhaps it seems so obvious, but it is still miraculous how committed and courageous and resourceful parents can be. We may not be able to fix everything but being in this parent world has offered me a view to parental love. Even in the face of extreme hardship, scary prognoses, lack of support, rejection by and even loss of a child, parents step up. If you met or knew the parents I know you would be staggered by the heroic love.
2. The selfless, generally invisible nature of parent advocacy. Most of it is done by moms in their dining rooms or in the car between errands. Most of the names are unknown or barely known. They don't call attention to themselves. The parents who are making F.E.A.S.T. and other organizations run do so because they care about making sure other parents are not alone or without information. I know these parents and their deep sense of responsibility and caring.
3. An emphasis on results. Parent advocacy isn't about making parents feel better. It's about making parents more effective at helping the patient and nurturing the family. The problem is "ED," not the person. Parents are on the side of their loved ones, and that means persistence toward the goal of recovery and a rich and fulfilling life.
4. The F.E.A.S.T. community, in particular, believes in science. Science is a tool to understanding and analyzing and applying information. When parents put their support behind science they are saying that results matter, that understanding the illness is their responsibility, and that there is hope in reason.
5. Strange fact: eating disorder parents are great to be with. Do we fight? Yes. Do we trip over one another? Yeah. But this one thing we share makes this wonderful bond that allows for both engagement and vulnerability. Before I fell down the ED rabbit hole I would not have imagined being friends with people on this basis but now I have to say that MOST of my best friends are fellow ED parents, and I'm so glad.
6. Around the Dinner Table. The longest running conversation about eating disorders and parents: a thriving, fascinating, sometimes silly, completely unique forum.
|Hannah, we're cheering!