What I Learned When My Autistic Daughter Refused to Eat

And what it taught me about my eating disorder

Charly in the hospital, after hitting her head at the local splash pad.
Charly at 6 years old.
Charly’s BMI from age 2–10 plotted on the CDC “U.S. Body Mass Index for Age Percentiles, Girls 2–20” growth chart — https://www.cdc.gov/growthcharts/clinical_charts.htm
Charly at 6 (left), 8 (center), and 10 years old (right).
I gave Charly access to the fridge as a reward for doing well in therapy when she was four years old. This says a lot about her relationship with food. She was far more concerned with sensory input than eating
Charly’s weight has changed trajectory since we began feeding therapy at 10 years old.
Charly on our way home from having her braces put on. Putting braces on an autistic kid with SPD and eating issues is a medically risky move. I never would’ve done it without the support of a feeding therapist.
Charly on Day #1 of her flu infection. I spent most of the day reading at her bedside because I was scared to take my eyes off of her.
Charly, out of bed and recovering — at home — from the flu with our cat, JackJack, who recently had her own health scare.
Charly at 12 years old.
Charly at 12 years old at our local Krav Maga gym, beating up a bag.
Char and I having an after-school cuddle (deep pressure/sensory integration) session in our favorite yellow chair.

Mama, writer, lover, fighter — I wear my heart on my sleeve because my pants pockets are too small. www.ajkaywriter.com

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