Many young girls and women are in denial about their eating disorders. Bulimia, anorexia and binge eating disorder are serious psychological sicknesses that, if not treated, can lead to debilitation and death. Here are some shocking statistics:
- For women ages 15-25, anorexia is the Number One cause of death
- Three percent of all US adults suffer from binge eating disorder
- 70 percent of anorexia victims and 94 percent of bulimia victims do not receive mental health care
- Frequent dieting makes it 12 times more likely that a girl will become a binger
- If you are a ten-year-old, there is a 81 percent chance you perceive yourself as fat
- A typical female American model is almost six feet tall and weighs 117 pounds. The average American woman weighs 140 pounds and is only five feet four inches tall.
With statistics like these, it’s no wonder that many girls today are experiencing extremely unhealthy emotions and attitudes regarding body weight and image.
Quite a few parents intervene in their daughters’ lives and enroll them in an outpatient treatment facility, only to be severely disappointed by negative results. Yes, often the symptoms get worse or lead to other problems such as drug addiction or promiscuity. In some cases, there is no substitute for extended stays at inpatient facilities specializing in eating disorders. Only these types of facilities can provide the round-the-clock counseling and intimate supervision necessary to break suicidal eating habits. To make them appear cheery, a friendly decorating scheme is often employed.
A no-nonsense approach is best. Many facilities give candidates a simple checklist that describes what will happen over the next six months. Here is a sample:
- Prepare to move: pack up your essentials, get moving quotes and select a mover.
- Have your belongings sent ahead.
- Arrive at the facility at 7:30 am sharp on the appointed day. Do not bring any food or reading material with you.
- Put on the color-coded uniform that is correct for your condition: red for bulimia, green for anorexia, blue for binge eating and black for a combination of conditions.
- Take a tour of the facility with one of our trained handlers. You will be shown the commissary where all meals are served. Remember, there is no access to food from any location other than the commissary.
- Update the daily food log with all that you ate on the day before you arrived.
- Hop into bed! You are expected to stay in bed whenever you are not participating in supervised communal events like meals, baths and at least one hour a day of exercise or team sport.
Some call it tough love, but many lives have been saved by ending a girl’s self-destructive behavior and replacing it with socially acceptable conduct.