Last updated on August 3rd, 2021
The price is flexible: see below
Why this workshop?
Treatment for our children is tough, at a time when the eating disorder puts them in a highly distressed state. While previously, we parents did a perfectly fine job and had happy, loving children, suddenly we need to skill up.
Without new skills, our homes become war zones, or we're constantly walking on eggshells. Parents ask, "What should I say when…?"
When we get better at connecting with our children, we reduce their distress, bring a vision of wellbeing, and make it easier for them to go through the challenges of treatment.
"I never won on the strength of my argument […], I won on the strength of our relationship"
(Psychologist Xavier Amador, talking about psychosis, but I think it's just as applicable to eating disorders)
When we're skilled at connection, we are imparting emotion-regulation tools that help them grow confidently independent, and that will serve them well in all their relationships.
It's good for us too: we find more wellbeing when we know we can connect with our children, even though many youngsters have an impulse to reject us. We get less conflicted when we know how to be loving and compassionate while also, where necessary, being firm and persistent.
I have studied and compiled much of what is known on communication and connection. While there are various 'schools' and methods, the principles are the same everywhere, and that is what I will share with you.
Content of the workshop
One and a half hour led by myself:
- First, brief introductions to make you feel welcome and connected to everyone — feeling you're with like-minded souls is a benefit of groups . However those of you who are Zoom-shy will be able to stay in the background throughout.
- I focus on a few of the most effective tips for dialogue that nurtures connection and makes it more likely you will be effective.
- I demonstrate them on some of your own situations (anyone willing to engage in a short role-play, that works well).
- We address your questions, which usually are highly relevant to others
- Then you can leave, or stay on for the following:
Another half hour follows for parent chat
- You're welcome to stay on in small groups for another half hour, so you can chat freely. Some parents really like the warmth and connection. If you need me during that time, you can call me into the room.
The calendar above should show you a choice of dates and times. You are welcome to come to just one workshop, or to several.
Who is it for?
This is for parents or carers who have a child or teen with an eating disorder, living at home. Relatives are also most welcome.
As this is about communication, you can be at any stage of the treatment journey and this should be relevant to any type of eating disorder. Note that if your main issue is around meals, you will get more help in my "Getting started" workshop. My field of knowledge is mostly around children/teens with anorexia or similar.
Limitations of the workshop: READ THIS FOR YOUR CHILD'S SAFETY
This is parent-to-parent coaching and sharing of experiences. This workshop does not replace the expertise of clinicians.
If your child's communication needs are different because of autism, you will need, even more than others, to assess how the tips we share may or may not suit your child.
People with an eating disorder needs expert treatment, so keep pushing for what your child needs. And of course, keep using doctors and the accident/emergency services any time you are in doubt about your child's condition.
Don't blindly take advice from anyone in the group, including me. There is not enough time in a workshop to know anyone's individual situation well enough, and none of us are clinicians. Your child may be in a very different psychological space and need a different style of communication. Pay attention to your instincts, read and consult widely. If, as I hope, your child is in treatment, keep the clinicians in the loop if you are considering changing anything you're doing as a result of the workshop.
Pricing: making it affordable to absolutely anyone
Notice that you can choose the currency that suits you.
In this unequal world, I want everyone to have the knowledge to help their child, whatever their finances. I'm pricing this workshop so as to cover my tech costs, have an income and most of all, be able to make it affordable for those who would not otherwise come.
In this way, those of you who can pay full price are contributing to those who can't.
To pay less, no explanations needed – just use a 'coupon' on the checkout page:
- If you choose to pay 80%, the coupon is workshop80
- If you choose to pay 75%, the coupon is workshop75
- And so on, in increments of 5. I'm not offering lower than 15% to try and reduce the risk of intruders. If you'd rather not pay at all, I can book you in manually.
No cost for other family members, as it takes a village to help our children. So any adult family members (partners, grandparents, aunts/uncles) can piggy-back onto your booking — just book for yourself and give them the booking info.
Tips and rules to keep everyone comfortable: PLEASE READ
You're going to be well looked after in the meeting — that's my intention. Apologies if the following sounds fierce: it's to make sure everyone is OK.
- Confidentiality: any personal stuff said in the group stays in the group. No recording, photographing or screenshots.
- Everyone's video must be ON, at least at the start. This is to help us know that every participant is genuine, so everyone feels safe and private. If you don't have video then this workshop is not for you. If you're not sure you can make video work, you can practice on https://zoom.us/test
- Find a private space where your children cannot listen in, as the adults must speak freely. If you think children might eavesdrop, use earphones.
- To respect everyone's time, we start on time, so please aim, as much as you can, to get onto Zoom at least 5mn early, and you can make yourself a nice cuppa and grab a notepad while in the 'waiting room'.
- Apart from the above rules, everything is an 'invitation'. Feel free to not do something, for instance you can stay quiet, and you can ask to not be included in any smaller group. You can of course click to leave the meeting any time. If anything didn't feel right, please contact me so I don't do it again.
- Preferably use a big screen as you might find Zoom group meetings on a mobile phone awkward. Position your camera and set up the lighting so you can be seen well (I find this stops me from squinting and makes me more comfortable!)
- In Zoom, your name is displayed: you can 'rename' yourself (the menu is on the 3 dots)
- Tears and emotions totally have a place in our group. I want you to feel comfortable and safe. If you really want to leave you can just click to leave the meeting. You can come back on later.
- If you know you can't attend the full length of time, you're still welcome. If you have to join the meeting late, that's not ideal of group cohesion but we can live with it.
Using Zoom: where to find the link
When you've gone through the checkout you will see a confirmation screen giving you the zoom link as Join Meeting. I propose you keep hold of it right away. You can also click to add the date to your calendar, and the zoom link will be included.
You will also receive an email with the date and zoom link (Join Meeting )
If you're not familiar with Zoom, feel free to try out the Zoom link right now. I've also written instructions for a laptop/PC here, and for a phone (and I don't recommend you do this workshop on a phone) here.
Cancellations and refunds
I appreciate you only booking if you are pretty sure you can attend (it's OK to book at the last minute if you're not sure). This will save me admin work.
If something comes up that prevents you from attending, get in touch and tell me if you would like a refund or to move you to another workshop date. If you'd like a refund, I will hold back 10% or a minimum of £3. This is to account for my time and for the processing fees which I cannot get back from the credit card/paypal companies. Should you be dissatisfied with the workshop then I will refund you.
If I have to cancel I will of course give you a full refund, or if you prefer, move you to another date.