It can be overwhelming for a family to cope with an eating disorder. These are serious illnesses that can be life threatening. Meal times are often extremely difficult for youth, parents, and siblings.
The Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre has developed a number of videos and tools to help parents and families. These materials explain ways to provide structure and support to youth with eating disorders before, during and after meals. These videos are available in English, Korean, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, French and Punjabi.
No matter which tools you decide to use, please remember the 4C’s of Meal Support:
- Remain Calm. Children will pick up on your anxiety which will probably make them more anxious.
- Be Confident. The more confident you appear the more reassured they will feel.
- Be Consistent. Stick with what you’ve decided and don’t negotiate.
- Be Compassionate. Understand that they are doing something that is very difficult for them.
(Note: this video can also be viewed in 6 separate chapters from the Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre youtube channel).