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2015-02-11 9:37 AM

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State College, Pennsylvania
Subject: Been gone a long time... (long)
I'm not sure where to post this but figured "A Cup Of Joe" is as good as anyplace. I need to share something important that now defines me and my new journey. Many of you used to be my former BT friends and some of you are also my friends on Facebook.

For those of you who knew me, I used to be SweetK.... I'm from Central PA and I mostly competed in local races from Sprint to 1/2 distances and then I slowly quit training like I used too, due too injuries as one reason, but the primary reason was the health and well being of my daughter.

My daughter's fight (for her life)... began at age 11 when she was admitted to Hershey Medical Centre for treatment for and Eating Disorder (ED) Anorexia Nervousa, restrictive-type. She was admitted to the program at 72 lbs at 5'2". There are many reasons for her decline into ED - most of it was for control of her own life and to punish (mostly) her Dad with whom she has had a strained relationship. There are many factors at play there that I won't get into but with want to share the guilt I feel for my part in declining health. When my daughter was an impressionable young child I always stressed the benefits of healthy eating and exercise. I myself, as a Type AAA used to analytically watch every calorie I consumed, track every mile I ran and biked and yard I swam, always wanting to improve myself. I thought I was being a good parent by instilling those behaviors on my child. There was never any parental pressure on my daughter to perform and we always had fun doing active things together.

What spurned the eating disorder was a common factor in adolescents who get ED, it was her 1st period. Women know the struggles of temporary weight gain with their period and know it goes away when it's over. Well with an adolescent, it's not the same acceptance unfortunately... the fact my daughter gained 7 lbs from it, sent her into a turmoil that she was going to get FAT. She then used any stressor, bad-feelings etc, to give the ED strength to grow to a point to where it took her mind over. She wouldn't eat and would excessively exercise. She was not herself, but was possessed by ED (possession is the best way I can describe it). Before she was admitted to Hershey we tried the in-home therapies, support groups, medication, etc - nothing worked because ED was so strong in her young mind. She was in the program for 3 months and was released at 95 lbs. Being released doesn't mean healed. For 3 years she underwent medical appointments, psychiatry appointments, social worker meetings etc and was pretty much on the right track to good healthy body image, higher self-esteem and feeling good about herself.

When she finished 8th grade, we moved for a fresh start and where my daughter could be more surrounded by her close friends and the activities she was involved in, her 9th grade year was going to be great! and it mostly was except for the fact that she went from Anorexia to Bulemia Nervousa. She was at a normal weight but would consume huge amounts of food... (I'm talking like 5 pounds of peanut butter/week, plus other stuff) of which I couldn't understand where it was all going. I would find empty wrappers and empty boxes of food. She hid it pretty well for several months and I would question her and she would yell back at me that I was "imagining it" and so on... but her friends were concerned for her as well and contacted the school and we quickly intervened to restore her health and mental well-being. This time, the bulemia was the result of her receiving many rejections for roles for the activities she loves to do like singing and musical theater. She didn't get the roles she wanted or picked for a special choral ensemble, that she thought she was no good and had no talent. Through more appointments and support, she is once again restored to her healthy self. Now, at 16 years old and a Sophomore, she has recognized that she has had successes and that she is talented and that she won't get every role or performance she wants. Her maturity has helped her understand that. Although she is now "healthy" she still exhibits ED behaviors and probably will for the rest of her life. It's helping her learn to recognize on her own when she is about to let ED take a hold of her and to stop him.

So that is her story... but mine is forever entwined with her recovery. When she was going through of this, I would stress eat or eat her portions of food that she wouldn't eat. Every food I made for us during her recovery was laden with hidden calories in order to boost her calorie consumption I would find ways to add extra fat into sauces by adding more EVOO, cream or cheeses (great way to boost calories). I was eating this and too much of it. I gained weight between 25-30 pounds. I didn't exercise much because it would trigger her to exercise more... I had to hide the treadmill key, deflate bike tires, shut down the Wii and Xbox so she could not exercise. She did in her bedroom anyway.

It was through our many psychiatry sessions that my daughter revealed that my constant exercising and recording my food intake gave her the tools to feed ED. That by my example, she was able to learn how to count calories and restrict her intake. She learned how many calories she would burn if she ran fast and long or on a high incline. I felt so much guilt from being so regimented that it didn't teach her rightly how to be healthy but quite the opposite. So I stopped triathlons, training, and setting goals for myself. It's not my daughter's fault, it was my way of somehow trying to make up for guilt and pain I was holding on the inside. I've tried before to come back but mentally I was not ready. I believe I'm ready about 90% now and know I will feel better if I get started and come back slowly. I don't want re-injury to give me an excuse to quit again.

Thanks for listening...


2015-02-11 9:46 AM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Atlanta, Georgia
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)

Hey Kristen, welcome back. My heart broke a little bit reading your post (especially the last part), but it sounds like both of you are taking steps for the better. Thanks for sharing.

2015-02-11 9:53 AM
in reply to: lisac957

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New user
8

State College, Pennsylvania
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
Thank you. I've been struggling for a few years and BT used to be my home. I'm thinking perhaps I can resume a healthy comeback with the BT community to support me again.
2015-02-11 9:59 AM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Master
2800
2000500100100100
Minnetonka, Minnesota
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
Welcome back and thanks for sharing. Best wishes moving forward to you all!
2015-02-11 10:25 AM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Master
6726
5000100050010010025
Englewood, Florida
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)

Wow, that is a whole lot for any one person. What a roller coaster of emotions. I hope and pray that both you and your daughter are moving forward.

2015-02-11 10:43 AM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Champion
7036
5000200025
Sarasota, FL
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)

Welcome back.  Sounds like you've had quite a struggle.  Pray that you and your daughter continue to have the strength to deal with your challenges.

Mark



2015-02-11 11:05 AM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Champion
14571
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the alamo city, Texas
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)

Thank you for sharing this.  It was very personal and very brave.  Best of luck to you and your daughter.

2015-02-11 12:06 PM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Elite
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Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)

Teenage years are so hard.  I won't go into details but our daughters had some difficult years too.  Whatever you do, do not give up.  Give her time, read up on helping her, keep talking to other parents, be present whenever she needs you.  There is hope and success in the future.  I know it.  

I am like you on the record-keeping for maintaining health and weight.  It is something I do because it motivates me but I have to keep it under control because it can become obsessive.  Do what works for you.  Judging from your writing alone, you have the skills to modify your behavior successfully.  Good luck.

TW

2015-02-11 2:54 PM
in reply to: 0

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New user
8

State College, Pennsylvania
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
Originally posted by tech_geezer

Teenage years are so hard.  I won't go into details but our daughters had some difficult years too.  Whatever you do, do not give up.  Give her time, read up on helping her, keep talking to other parents, be present whenever she needs you.  There is hope and success in the future.  I know it.  

I am like you on the record-keeping for maintaining health and weight.  It is something I do because it motivates me but I have to keep it under control because it can become obsessive.  Do what works for you.  Judging from your writing alone, you have the skills to modify your behavior successfully.  Good luck.

TW




Thank you... switching behaviors back to where they once were when I was healthier (pre-ED) has been my hardest challenge. It seems like it's always easier to change for the worse? LOL. Part of the entire process was that I did everything I could possibly do for my daughter's health and recovery at risk of my own. I didn't ask for or seek help - fully expecting I could do it on my own. Well I can't (I know this now). I will always be there for my daughter no matter what. And it's nice to know that she can now recognize that I need her help and support without the risk of her regressing.





Edited by JourneyGal 2015-02-11 2:55 PM
2015-02-11 6:10 PM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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100010010025
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
As I was reading your post I was mentally preparing myself for the worst outcome, glad that wasn't the case. Welcome back!

2015-02-11 6:18 PM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)

Welcome back!!!!!!!!!!



2015-02-11 10:17 PM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Champion
7821
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Brooklyn, NY
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
Welcome home.
2015-02-11 10:27 PM
in reply to: 0

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Pro
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500050005000500
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)

Originally posted by JourneyGal
Originally posted by tech_geezer

Teenage years are so hard.  I won't go into details but our daughters had some difficult years too.  Whatever you do, do not give up.  Give her time, read up on helping her, keep talking to other parents, be present whenever she needs you.  There is hope and success in the future.  I know it.  

I am like you on the record-keeping for maintaining health and weight.  It is something I do because it motivates me but I have to keep it under control because it can become obsessive.  Do what works for you.  Judging from your writing alone, you have the skills to modify your behavior successfully.  Good luck.

TW

Thank you... switching behaviors back to where they once were when I was healthier (pre-ED) has been my hardest challenge. It seems like it's always easier to change for the worse? LOL. Part of the entire process was that I did everything I could possibly do for my daughter's health and recovery at risk of my own. I didn't ask for or seek help - fully expecting I could do it on my own. Well I can't (I know this now). I will always be there for my daughter no matter what. And it's nice to know that she can now recognize that I need her help and support without the risk of her regressing.

Every kid who makes it back has someone like you.  I admire you. 

Keep fighting, you and your daughter will come out strong.  "JourneyGal".......yeah, fitting.



Edited by Left Brain 2015-02-11 10:29 PM
2015-02-12 2:09 PM
in reply to: Left Brain

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New user
8

State College, Pennsylvania
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
Aww thanks!
2015-02-12 6:30 PM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Champion
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Williamston, Michigan
Gold member
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)

Welcome home So glad both you and your daughter are doing better   ED is a constantly slippery slope. 

2015-02-12 9:05 PM
in reply to: Socks

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Science Nerd
28760
50005000500050005000200010005001001002525
Redwood City, California
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
Welcome back. Best of luck to you and your daughter.


2015-02-15 5:23 PM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Expert
1456
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Central New Jersey
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
welcome home - hugs to you and your daughter - it will be a lifelong struggle - but with your support she'll do great - and we are here for you!
2015-03-18 2:12 PM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Master
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Ellsworth, WI
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
2015-07-26 4:26 PM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
have had similar thoughts and similar issues with my teen daughter. Who would have thought.
2015-07-26 11:17 PM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Master
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Portland, Oregon
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
Welcome back. I remember you as SweetK. Good to see you post again and I'm glad to hear your daughter is doing well.
2015-07-27 11:31 AM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Extreme Veteran
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Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)

Welcome back and hopes for good health for both you and your daughter.



2015-07-29 9:26 AM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)

Powerful story.  thank you for sharing.

 

 

2015-10-12 9:04 AM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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101
100
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
PM'd
2015-10-12 9:36 PM
in reply to: mtrunner6

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Expert
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Boise, Idaho
Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)

Thanks so much for sharing.  As the father of a young, teenage girl, hopefully I'll be better prepared to help see her through a health, fulfilling adolescence. 

Good Luck to you, both.

2015-10-12 10:26 PM
in reply to: JourneyGal

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Subject: RE: Been gone a long time... (long)
Wow powerful stuff! Welcome back
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