The Maudsley Approach for treating adolescent anorexics is getting more attention now in the United States. Many have strong opinions about it and not all of it positive. I went through my own “growing pains” before I fully embraced Maudsley and I’ll talk a bit about that here.

Any time something unknown begins making traction in any given field, eye brows are raised and the gloves can come off for an all out fight. There are those who want to hang onto what they know at any cost; some who have an open mind to considering new approaches; and a few who are willing to dive in and do the research.

I was somewhere in the middle category when I started learning about Maudsley. The nutritionist who helped me with all my ED girls heard about it and suggested I look into it. All she told me is the approach puts the feeding into the hands of the parents and it is showing promising results with adolescents.

I was all for giving parents more power. It was just intimidating to think about learning a new approach. I’ve been doing this a long time and the more I researched it the more I realized it was going to involve a complete shift in my thinking and in how I do treatment.

Was I willing to commit myself to the rigors of research and training? How about all the preconceived ideas I had been taught and had been using for years? Was I really willing to open my mind to this new approach?

Fortunately for my clients I love to learn new things. The more I learned about Maudsley the more excited I got. I jumped in with both feet and have been learning ever since.

I would encourage you to do the same. If you have an adolescent with an eating disorder; my recommendation is to consider the Maudsley Approach first. Then go from there. It isn’t for every family; no treatment is for everyone. But it is a great place to start!

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