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My daughter is bulimic

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Painfuljourney posted 8/21/2013 10:04 AM

I just found out my 14 year old is bulimic. She started in 5th grade around the time when my husband cheated on me. We are going through a R and things are going well. But now my daughter is sick and has been for some time. I really think it's a result of all our dysfunction. Even though we were fakers of happiness all these years. My husband had anger issues due to his affair and I built walls to avoid his anger.

What family repercussions have you seen as a result of the cheating and dysfunction?

Morhurt posted 8/21/2013 10:31 AM

Oh man, I'm so sorry. I have a 14 yo daughter too, that must be so scary.

We haven't seen any actual effects yet but there are lots of little things. Yesterday our younger daughters (6&8) were saying they missed how things used to be, when I wasn't so tired all the time and I made good snacks. Kinda cute, pretty sad.

I hope you're able to help your daughter through this quickly. Eating disorders are awful. :(

tushnurse posted 8/21/2013 10:42 AM

There was a time during our R that my H was angry, angry with himself primarily but his fuse was short. It made the kids really leary. Fortunately we overcame it.

Bulemia is a tough one. When I was doing all of my adolescent psych stuff (a million years ago in school) they said that 95% of the time it stems from issues of control, and an unhealthy relationship with their father.....They feel like they have no control, but they can control that.
Does she know about the A?
Does she know you have been pretending?
Does she blame dad?
She's 14 to I am just going to assume she doesn't care for him....(mine really loathes her father now).
I would push for family therapy for this. She needs to feel safe to share her feelings and come up with solutions so that she doesn't feel the need to repeat the bulemic behaviors.

((((and strength))))

Reality posted 8/21/2013 10:54 AM

My 15 year old is anorexic. She started during WH's affairs, too, last year.

Yes, agreed, it's completely about trying to find something to control.

((Painfuljourney)) Best wishes for you and your daughter.

Painfuljourney posted 8/21/2013 10:59 AM

We have never told the kids about the affair. We have no plans to. But that doesn't mean she didn't figure it out. When DD happened they were home and we quietly argued. It is very possible she knows.

He was very hard on her all these years. Very critical, negative and there was a vibe of anger under the surface. We all felt it. We all avoided it. I even slept in alone most of the time to avoid it (used snoring as an excuse), no public displays of affection or hugs between us. Again, total dysfunction but in denial about it. Made a public face of everything being ok.

But to me what is interesting is she started all this when he had his EA and PA, 4 years ago. Like she sensed it. I had no clue, just thought he was an unhappy person like his dad.

[This message edited by Painfuljourney at 11:00 AM, August 21st (Wednesday)]

confused615 posted 8/21/2013 11:04 AM

My oldest DD knows what WH did. She found out on dday..she was 16 at the time.

She left for college last year..and came home for the summer...she just left again last Sunday.

She spent as much time out of the house when WH was home as she possibly could. She has no respect for him. She knows he made certain promises that he would follow through with,if he and I tried to R. And she knows he didn't follow through with 90% of those promises. She has commented on the change in me. She says what he did to me changed her mother and she will never forgive him for that. She is furious that he had so little regard for my health,for my heart,for DS10 and DD9, for his family. I think she could have forgiven him,had he made good on those promises. But he didn't. She has told me,once she has a family of her own,I will always be a part of that family, but he won't. She thinks he is a bully and an asshole,and she wants no part of him. I don't see that changing..unless he does.

My oldest DS became a daddy last May. I have a granddaughter. But the animosity between my DS and WH has prevented me from being able to be the Gramma I want to be.

WH's actions have had huge consequences. Far reaching consequences. I think he thinks,in time,everyone will calm down and this will just go away. He fails to understand just how devastating this has been for all of us.

Painfuljourney posted 8/21/2013 11:19 AM

Yes, as a child of divorce (my dad was a cheater) it changes kids forever. I think whether or not there is divorce or not. That is why I am going to not tell them right now, maybe later, I don't know. But now I just can't. They have noticed major changes in him. My youngest is much happier. My older one is cynical of his changes. I hope she will come around. But again we are just seeing all her problems and she is depressed. Maybe once the depression lifts (possible medication) things will be better.

Crushed1 posted 8/21/2013 11:20 AM

My DD was 11 y/o and in 6th grade when she found out her father was in A. There was inevitably dramatic tension in the air around here during that time and all three of my children felt it deeply.

DD started cutting herself and had mild bulimic episodes after finding out. Youngest DS started having nightmares, oldest DS got angry with the whole world. The youngest two were put in counseling which wasn't much help, both had drops in grade averages in school and became withdrawn for a while.

It proves that the WS 'secret' life does have profound affect in their 'real' life, like throwing a pebble into a pond, there will always be ripples going out to everyone around them.

I hope you can get some help for your DD. ((((Painfuljourney,DD,family)))).

BeyondBreaking posted 8/21/2013 11:38 AM

My DD's dad and I split up after his cheating and abusive behavior. She was just a baby, so she doesn't remember THANK GOD, but she STILL makes comments about how she wishes her dad and I were together, and about how it's not fair. She is 4 and a half.

tushnurse posted 8/21/2013 11:54 AM

Your daughter may know more that you think she does. This is why it's essential to sit down and get it all out in the open. She is relieved of the burden of keeping secrets. She gets to have her opinion heard. I'm sorry you are in this situation, but playing happy family is very hard on the kids. Unfortunately they pick up on things, and frequently you end up showing them that "normal" is total dysfunction, and thus the cycle is repeated.

Painfuljourney posted 8/21/2013 15:13 PM

We are no longer faking being happy but the affair is being kept from them. I don't want to burden them with that. I don't know if that is right or wrong, I just can't go there now. The only outside person who knows is my MIL. She did mention to MIL that we seem to be happier, that we are hugging and kissing now, etc. Before we didn't hardly touch each other.

She will be in counseling. It might come out there and if so we will face it then. But right now I'm not comfortable bringing it into conversation, especially if she doesn't know about it. My 10 year old definitely doesn't know. I don't want to burden her with it either.

WH and I are working it out and R is going well even so soon after DD. As a result we are gaining "happy" again.

I think 14 year old is cynical right now about everything. Her secret is out, she has lost some control. She is mourning that control.

HFSSC posted 8/21/2013 15:38 PM

My ds14 was 12 when JM and I S, went through false R and S again. A couple of months after he turned 13, he told me one night that during the 2nd S, he had contemplated suicide. We talked a long time, and that boy was serious. Had a plan. Kept it secret all that time. There is NOTHING I have ever been through that could have prepared me to hear that from my child.

He is much better now and was released from his IC after several months. Still makes me so sad.

crazyblindsided posted 8/21/2013 15:39 PM

What family repercussions have you seen as a result of the cheating and dysfunction?

My son has become a very angry little man. We are working on this little by little...

lifeishard24 posted 8/22/2013 10:33 AM

Oldest daughter is 15, and unfortunately overheard an arguement over affair by following us into woods, where we went to talk in private. I was probably screaming, so may not have mattered. In effort to conceal the affair, my wife threw me under the bus. Told her daddy has anger issues and she should lock her bedroom door at night so I don't beat them. WTF? I may yell when I find out my wife is cheating, but no one, and I mean no one from the dogs to my wife have EVER had a hand raised to them. EVER. A diversion tactic with no regard for the impact on my daughter. When she threatened and then attempted (a poor attempt at that, a few slices to wrists), she confided in a teacher who called the school principal and school psychiatrist. My wife and I were called in to a surprise meeting where we were completely humiliated. I dont fault the teacher or school. In fact I profusely thanked all of them for their concern. Because she relayed the threat of abuse by me (as told by my loving wife), the State police were there to remove me. They called in my daughter, who was shocked to see the thing go down, and asked if she felt safe in her home. When she said she felt totally safe, the police were dismissed. These affairs are real family issues. You can try to shield your kids from the fall out, but you are kidding yourself if you think they don't know.

lifeishard24 posted 8/22/2013 10:50 AM

I should also mention that since it all came to light, my daughter has become sexually active with boys she meets on line for casual sex, began drinking, etc.. I'd say something like she's just like her mother, but that would just be mean spirited

Mack9512 posted 8/22/2013 13:01 PM

My DD was 6 when my fWH's A started. She won't go to bed if I'm not in the house. She needs to know where I am at all times. And my little girl that use to be afraid of nothing has become afraid of just about everything. She is in IC and we expect her to be in IC for a very long time.

Even though R is going well for us, that is the one major thing that I cannot forgive. How my fWH's selfish actions turned his DD into a basket case. He cannot forgive himself for it either. He has stated that he will be making it up to our DD for the rest of his life. I believe him.

Alexa posted 8/26/2013 15:15 PM

My daughter had similar issues prior to d-day. She is 16 now (15 at the time) and does not know about her father. I'm afraid of what will happen if she finds out. She went through a lot to get to where she is and I don't want her to regress. Depression and eating disorders are horrific for the entire family. I took my D to a dietician and a counselor as soon as i noticed to teach her what she was doing was not healthy. It is definitely a control thing. They can't control outside factors but they can control what they eat. It took a few months but it worked. She is eating fine now. Sometimes it's junk food but after those 9 months of hell, I don't care right now. The depression is gone which I truly believe was due to the drugs they gave her for anxiety. I will never again put my children on any anti-psychotic medication ever again. It messed her up worse than when she started. There are other means besides medicine. Do not trust these doctors. They are just filling a prescription. They don't actually analyze the problem. Psycho doctor gave my D appetite suppressant because she was binge eating after being anorexic. Binging was due to medication. It was a nightmare. Thank God that is all over. Watch over your kids and protect them as much as you can. They are smarter than we think and they may eventually figure it out on their own but do not tell them yourself unless they are mature and old enough to handle it. I don't know that I will ever tell mine until they are parents themselves. It will dissolve their trust in any future relationship. Stay strong and take care of yourself and your children. They are why we are all here.

StillStanding1 posted 8/26/2013 17:34 PM

(((painfuljourney))) I hope that you can get help for your daughter. It just compounds the horror of all of this -- to see the effects that the A has on the innocent victims in all of this.

I am so horrified at the effects that this has and will have on my kids. I could write a book on the how differently my 3 kids are coping.

The shortest I can manage is: My oldest 2 found out about the A 6 months before I did and kept it from me. Lots of horror for them watching him lie to me. I don't blame them, but they blame themselves. DD confronted him in September 2012, but H continued the A until February. On Dday, my DS also told H he knew. Fog lifted a bit and H's "happily ever after scenario" with OW came crashing down.

For 6 months, my DS17 has been in a complete rage against her dad. I don't blame her, but it makes trying to R almost impossible. DS15 was supportive and wanted us to R. DS12 doesn't know about A but was devastated by S, since he was oblivious to issues.

I worry that we've messed our kids up for a lifetime. It is so disheartening. Tragic, really. These were 3 happy, smart, outgoing, well-adjusted kids. Had everything going for them.

I think they are perhaps bouncing back a little. 6 months of seeing us working on it.... But even DS15 broke down the other night over confusion about where we were headed. He puts up a strong mask, but obviously is just internalizing.

The damage and fallout of an A is devastating to kids. As bad as this is for us (BSs), it just amplifies it all to see our kids suffering for their father's selfishness on top of it all. It just kills me.

On a positive note, our whole famiy of 5 spent this past weekend "up north" - rafting, horsebackriding, swimming. A huge step for us, as DD boycotted our July vacation. This weekend was wonderful. I only hope and pray it is the start of perhaps a new chapter of healing for us.

I am praying for all of us here and for all of our children. None of us deserved this. May we all have the strength to help them to the best of our ability.

[This message edited by StillStanding1 at 5:35 PM, August 26th (Monday)]

TrulySad posted 8/26/2013 18:26 PM

I'm so so sorry she's suffering. It breaks my heart to see how our children are hurt by this disgusting behavior.

I discovered my daughter was cutting herself, around the same age as yours. It was back when I had separated from my WXH. Luckily I saw it early, and was able to help her. Today, she's a strong young lady, 21, and entering into her fourth year of college.

It's so painful to see, and we wish we could shelter them from it all. My best advice, aside from counseling, continue to show her the incredibly strong woman you are.

((((Hugs to you both))))

RockyMtn posted 8/26/2013 21:56 PM

Sorry for all the kiddos mentioned on this thread. One of my kids showed physical signs of stress at not even 2 years old. I don't think WH has even fully admitted to himself what this did to our kids, who may not remember this time in their lives - but memory is not required for far-reaching effects. What a damn shame. And what for?

As someone who suffers from an ED, I just want to throw out there that not every single one is about control (although may be for the younger set, it might be, mine didn't onset until my early 20s). It isn't about control for me. It can also be about anxiety, self-soothing, compulsion, and myriad other things.

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