I am worried that a family member or friend has an eating disorder. How can I tell if they need help?
Sometimes it’s hard to know whether a loved one has an eating disorder and whether they need eating disorder treatment. Because of the complexity of bulimia or anorexia, it can be difficult to even know what questions to ask your loved one. When someone is suffering with an eating disorder, they may be defensive, isolated, irritable, or may appear unaffected by the concern around them. If your loved one understood why they were struggling with food, they would be the first to say, but most eating disorder patients struggle with the identification and labeling of emotions, and therefore are just as confused by their disorder as you are. However, there are some common warning signs that may indicate an eating disorder (i.e. hiding food, refusing to eat with others, rigid rules about food, over-exercise that is disproportionate to calorie intake are just a few of the many possible warning signs. Educating yourself on eating disorders is the first step to figuring out how to help your loved one. because part of the disorder is the secrecy and hiding that can accompany the problems. If you believe someone you know has an eating disorder, direct and nonjudgmental conversation is often the best approach. The National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) has an excellent and in-depth booklet written especially for parents, friends and families. We highly recommend this as further reading for understanding and talking to a loved one about your concerns for their health: Parents Toolkit.
How is treatment for my loved one paid?
At Bright Road Recovery, we work with each client or their family individually to make “single-case-agreements” with their insurance carriers, and/or discuss with the client how we may make eating disorder treatment services available on a basis that will work for them.
How long will my family member be in the program at Bright Road Recovery?
Each client’s needs are highly individual, and each client has their specific treatment needs. Your loved one’s eating disorder recovery and eating disorder treatment progress determines the length of their work with Bright Road.
You talk a lot about collaboration and families. What about confidentiality?
In addition to your loved one’s recovery, their privacy is our primary concern. So we will only share the information we are specifically given permission to share. With the exception of information we are required to share by law (e.g. danger to self or others), your loved one’s information and treatment is confidential.
Will family be involved in my loved one’s treatment?
We have family groups and we support family sessions for your loved one’s program of recovery. As with all other aspects of the treatment plan, this will be individualized to your family member’s specific needs.
Is Bright Road Recovery a faith-based program?
We design each client’s treatment plan to their specific needs, including their religious and spiritual faith. In order to be inclusive and welcoming to everyone, we are a proudly non-denominational program. We encourage each client to bring and explore their own personal spiritual values, incorporating them into their recovery process as it works best for them.
What happens when my loved one completes their program at Bright Road?
Our goal, as your team, is to work with your loved one to address the root cause of their eating disorder and help them to build a life that no longer includes the disorder.
In order to help our clients fully integrate and maintain recovery into their life, it is often recommended that our clients continue with an individual therapist and dietitian who specialize in treating eating disorders when they leave Intensive Outpatient Program. At Bright Road Recovery, we are committed to ensuring the continuity of care as your loved one prepares to leave our program. We will assist your loved one every step of the way in locating a carefully screened eating disorder therapist who can continue the road of recovery with them upon their discharge.
If your loved one has an established therapist who referred them to us for a higher level of care, we will coordinate with the established therapist prior to their discharge from Bright Road. It is our intention that if your loved one chooses to continue seeing their current provider(s) while in our program, we will coordinate care with their established team and openly invite them to be a part of their treatment plan.