Tuesday, 12 April 2011

How the actual Maudlsey visit went

After the fiasco of Monday, we went back to the Maudsley on the Tuesday (2 weeks ago now).

When I arrived at Waif's school to pick her up, the car refused to start again  :-(   Happily Waif breezed off and returned 10 minutes later riding high up in the maintenance men's van, along with Bob and John who gave me a jump start.  There are kind people around.

We were half an hour late arriving at the Maudsley, but the psych was very understanding.  Anorexia Daddy came along too, which he has not done for ages.

First things first and Waif was weighed.  She came in at 48.1kg, so a whole kg more than last visit.  Whilst this is slow progress, Waif has been steadily gaining weight for 15 months now so the trend is fantastic.  I can't help thinking that controlled weight gain is more likely to last than if we stuffed Waif with chocolates and ice cream for 4 weeks and then expected her to eat normally and maintain a new high weight.  Obviously, below a certain weight, immediate gain is imperative and urgent so there is no choice, but where we are now (hovering just above anorexic range) the slow and steady proper meals approach feels more sustainable to me.

The sessions are always relaxed when Waif has gained (in contrast to the tears, misery and monosyllables that greet the infrequent losses).  Waif was able to express her desire to go out at all times of day and night without telling  me (!) saying that "all her friends did it".   I pointed out that I have NEVER stopped her doing anything she has wanted to do (true) and all I wanted was an indication of where she would be, with whom and what time to expect her home.  She kind of agreed this was reasonable but said it was a complete pain to have to say goodbye when she was going out.  We all agreed (hubby, psych and I) that this is the minimum you would do with a flatmate.  Sigh, she is a proper teen now, which on the whole is good.  Her latest t-shirt reads "nicotine, alcohol, caffeine".    Ho hum.  I know that her friends smoke but hope that Waif is sensible enough never to try.  She knows exactly how disappointed I would be if she were to smoke.

The conversation then turned to motorbikes:  I have now passed my motorbike test (did I mention that?) and am giving Waif the odd lift to school on the back.  Actually, I am kind of regretting it as it does not feel wholly safe and Waif spends the journey telling me to go faster!!!  I had thought it would be safer than letting her cycle on her own (which is what she wanted to do) but now I am not so sure - on the bicycle, it is possible to avoid roads for the first 2 miles, and there is only road at the end.  On the motorbike, I have no choice but to take a major "A" road and, since I stick to the speed limit, I feel very vulnerable being tailgated by lorries and cars wanting to go faster.

Anyway, Waif told the psych that she was getting a moped on her 16th birthday.  Hubby and I said she wasn't as it was too dangerous.  She says she will spend her own money on it, and leave school and get a job if necessary.  I am 99% certain this is all bluster but quite effective all the same!  I realise the hypocrisy of my having a motorbike but forbidding it to my daughter on safety grounds so I said that I wanted to get rid of my motorbike as I have realised it is too dangerous (really, I feel fine on it myself but am prepared to give it up if that is what it takes to stop her having one of her own as a teen), hoping that Hubby would pick up the cue.  But instead he said that we had spent so much money on helmets and leathers that there was no way we were giving up!!  Sigh.

Hubby and I agreed afterwards that when it came to it, we thought that Waif would forget about the idea of a moped (personally, I think this more likely if I have sold my own), especially if I offer to drive her in the convertible we have just ordered (wahay!).

Father in Law is in on the act, having just bought himself two vintage Bugattis and being determined to ride them despite having two hip replacements and not having ridden a motorbike for over 45 years!!  Two of his brothers have had months in hospital following motorbike accidents but this seems to be no deterrent.  I feel doubly worried now I have read a thread on mumsnet with women saying how many from their class at school were now dead....I assumed this would be older mothers writing, but they were not:  many were in their twenties and the common theme seemed to be drugs and motorbike accidents.  Ho hum, let's hope Waif makes it to a hundred.

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