Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Shame, Denial, Guilt and the media

So, as a parent of someone in eating disorder recovery how often are you feeling like you must have done something wrong in your parenting? How useful is that?

In interviewing a woman in eating disorder recovery for my book for families I learned some interesting lessons about parental Shame, Denial and Guilt. This woman works in the chemical dependency world as well as being in eating disorder recovery herself. She told me how surprised she was that a parent once told her how responsible she felt for giving her child the genes that may have contributed to the child's eating disorder. From the perspective of a chemical dependency professional she was shocked that this mom felt so much control over her child.

Is it control or is it love? A parent I know who has been through al-anon for her son's drug addiction told me that she learned this: Ask once, it's love. Ask twice, it's control. That's an eye opener for parents.

What if we as parents were to let go of feeling guilty or responsible for our children's eating disorders and let them do their recovery and just loved them? What would be available to us then?

This brings me to the media part of the title of today's post. What if we didn't do anything wrong and our kids got some twisted messages from the media that pulled the trigger of the gun that was loaded by their genes?

Take a look at the Dove campaign for real beauty video about the twisted messages the media is giving us: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hibyAJOSW8U

Take a deep breath and let go of the Shame, Denial and Guilt and spend the energy loving yourself and your child/husband/friend/co-worker/son/daughter in recovery.


mike said...

" Ask once, it's love. Ask twice, it's control. "
I absolutely love this statement. This summarizes codependency in a nutshell!

Darlene Siddons said...

your article has many of the things that disorders are made of, i think i had them all and it took me years to hit my bottom and to recover from them, however, i did and now am happy joyous and free and everyone else can also, thanks for the great article and bringing light and recovery to everyone who reads it...