Riptide: Struggling with and Resurfacing from a Daughter's Eating Disorder

Riptide: Struggling with and Resurfacing from a Daughter's Eating Disorder

by Barbara Hale-Seubert
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Riptide: Struggling with and Resurfacing from a Daughter's Eating Disorder by Barbara Hale-Seubert

?Riptide is the raw and revealing account of the author’s journey during the ten years her oldest daughter struggled with anorexia and bulimia, a battle that ended with her death at age 23 in February 2000. Motherhood is about nurturing and protecting your child, yet with eating disorders, as with any addiction complicated by mental illness, parents can feel frustrated with powerlessness and filled with guilt and fear as they watch their beloved child consumed by a condition that has life-threatening power. Eating disorders are rampant, with emaciated stars on the covers of tabloids and the modeling industry being challenged about unhealthy, unrealistic images of what is desirable. In the face of these ubiquitous images, obesity is at an all-time high among children and teens, driving more and younger children to “experiment” with anorectic and bulimic behaviors. That means more parents and caregivers need to understand how to cope and not only try to help these children, but also take care of themselves. Using her unique perspective as a mother and psychotherapist, Barbara Hale-Seubert vividly chronicles her rollercoaster of grief, fear, and powerlessness. Here, Hale-Seubert holds onto the hope that her daughter could salvage some form of a life not fully eclipsed by the disorder, while at the same time learning to surrender what was out of her control and embracing, once again, the grace and value in her own life. Riptide offers other parents the redemptive solace that comes with knowing that they aren’t alone in their struggles.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781550229950
Publisher: ECW Press
Publication date: 05/01/2011
Pages: 200
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Barbara Hale-Seubert is a psychotherapist. She lives in Mansfield, Pennsylvania.

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Riptide: Struggling with and Resurfacing from a Daughter's Eating Disorder 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
MStefanides More than 1 year ago
Barbara Hale-Seubert writes a deeply moving memoir of her journey through her daughter Erin's 10-year struggle with an eating disorder. Erin is the oldest of Hale-Seubert's four daughters. The outward sign of the beginning of her battle begins at age 12 with a school assignment's diary of everything she eats. Although she is shocked at how little Erin had listed as eating for the day, Hale-Seubert doesn't push, knowing that her daughter would only push back harder. That caution quickly fades, as Erin first stops growing, and then turns into a skeletal version of herself from eating less and less. But Riptide is far more than a chronicle of a daughter's serious illness; it is a voyage into the heart and soul of Hale-Seubert herself. Although parents can seldom be held responsible directly for the course of their children's lives, we all carry our own baggage that affects them. As Hale-Seubert examines her own life and how to live it in the context of Erin's disease, she discovers her own views on food and body image, and that of her mother and grandmother. She learns how she had subconsciously absorbed the attitudes of generations before her, not seeing at the time how her family's outlook on food shaped her own. Hale-Seubert's view of herself, and her relationships with her parents, her first husband, and later her second husband, also shape the lives of her daughters, as does the girls' father's behavior toward them. The struggles Hale-Seubert writes about are with herself as much as with Erin. Over the years, she discovers her true inner self and learns the importance of being true to herself even as she makes all the traditional sacrifices mothers make for their children. In the end, Hale-Seubert's memoir brings parents a message of hope amid the tragedy of not being able to save her daughter. As she learns, the only one who can save Erin is Erin herself. And the only one who can save Hale-Seubert is herself. We suffer with her, and rejoice with her. We grieve with her, and celebrate with her. As painful as this journey is, it ends with self-discovery that provides Hale-Seubert with forgiveness and redemption. Hale-Seubert bares open her heart and soul first to herself, and then to the readers, with harsh honesty. I couldn't help but be moved by her pain and then peace. She gives hope to all parents who ride the roller coaster of feeling they're not doing enough for their children, yet facing the need to authentically live their own lives. I recommend this book not only for parents who are struggling with a child's serious mental illness, but for all parents who wonder and worry that they are not doing enough for their children, including sacrificing living their own lives. And in reality, isn't that all of us?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
He hopped out of a bush with a Vole dangling from his mouth. He saw Fiercepaw and hissed "Why is HE here Spottepaw?"
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
He sneaks up on a rabbit...he caught it and another one...he saw a mouse and he killed it...he caught a sparrow also...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Respond at secret res two!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
JUST READ B on Opra if she still Had show.