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To be really worried there's something more sinister to this? Feel like I've failed DD

(298 Posts)
karenaanna Mon 17-Feb-14 05:12:27

This could be long, sorry. Have NCed. Not sure this is the right place to post but more traffic and want to know if I'm worrying over nothing.

A bit of background- DD is almost 18 and is yet to start her period. I took her to the GP when she was 14 as I was concerned she wasn't showing any real signs of starting to hit puberty and they put it down to she being small for her age combined with the amount of intense exercise she does- at the time she was doing 20ish hours of semi-professional dance school a week and was planning on a dance career, she's now doing 18 hours but no longer wants to dance professionally, although she's still dancing at the same intensity. To this day she's never really had typical teenage mood swings.

Over the last few weeks, since the new year maybe she's put on a lot of weight, she's always been tiny, very ballerina esque and it's almost like she's suddenly gone into the pre puberty baby fat stage but at 17. Her level of physical activity and diet haven't changed. She hasn't said anything but is clearly aware. She's meant to be at a half term dance intensive this week starting today but came and woke me up in the middle of the night- which she hasn't done since she was about 6- in tears with what she described as stomach ache 'down there' (potential sign period is about to start?) and begged me not to make her go today. I sent her back to bed with neurofen and a hot water bottle and told her she'd probably feel better in the morning, but I'm getting an overwhelming vibe from her she doesn't want to go.

She hasn't been herself for the last few weeks, she's last year of Sixth form, so applications for further education. She's had offers from all of her chosen universities back but was inconsolable last week as she's also been rejected from all of the specialist drama schools she applied for- the Ucas application was for another subject and intended as a back up as the specialist drama schools are so competitive. When she sent off the applications she was intending to take up the university place if she didn't get a drama school place, but now it's actually happened she's decided she doesn't want to go to university and wants to reapply for drama school next year. She's at an academic school and so not getting any offers for a chosen course is very unusual, I don't think it's been easy for her seeing all her friends getting excited about university and place offers knowing she's going to be reapplying next year. She's been really low and unhappy since then, again she hasn't said as much, but she clearly hasn't been happy.

Since January she's had fainting episodes/dizzy/temporary lost vision spells, and episodes of what DD describes as severe pins and needles, she's had it a few times in dance classes and had to sit out because she can't physically put weight on her leg. Her dance teacher put it down to stress, I'm starting to wonder if it's all somehow connected and I should have pushed harder for a proper examination before. Do I take her to the walk in centre or is that overreacting?

karenaanna Fri 21-Feb-14 14:08:34

She's still at school- and already saying she doesn't want to go on Monday. I tried phoning up to see if I could talk to someone this morning but no answer, going to send her year of year an email I think. DH has been away for two weeks and she's absolutely terrified he's going to think she's fat when he gets home, I wonder if she's going to be less dead against going to school come the weekend. It's a bit of a dilemma really, I sort of feel don't make her go but then this could go on for months, she's going to have to go in eventually.

puffin I think she already has taken it to heart sad She will NOT be seeing that GP again and I will be making a complaint.

Re stretch marks she's confessed to me she's been scratching because she's so disgusted with herself, it could well be a combination of both though. I've only seen from a distance, VERY unlikely she'd let me look the way she's been today but will ask her. Although not sure letting on to her it might be stretch marks is the best idea at the moment.

ToffeeOwnsTheSausage Fri 21-Feb-14 14:38:01

I am so sorry you are going through so much. I would be careful about assuming there is just one thing wrong. You have ruled out pregnancy and think it may be linked to diet or her periods starting but there are also other options causing weight gain and all her other symptoms.

I would be making daily appointments until something is done unless you are 100% happy with what the hospital is doing.

Maybe pre-warn your DH that your DD is worried he will think she is fat. She shouldn't have to worry about that and he should have enough compassion to not mention it to her but just in case.

Good luck. Keep fighting for your DD to be helped.

MrsKent Fri 21-Feb-14 15:43:34


This may not be what you want to hear but it sounds like she has clearly been self harming, she is at a bad place with her body image and she has problems with food.

Sit down with her, tell her you think there is s problem but you can only help her if she explains to you what's going on. She has already disclosed some info, sounds like she is ready to have that conversation.

It sounds like you are a caring and loving mum and I am sure she is aware of that.

Quinteszilla Fri 21-Feb-14 16:46:43

Op, I have no medical input, but does your dd have access to social media, such as Instagram, or Facebook? If so, have you checked her accounts recently?

I was shocked to find my son following a lot of self harm and suicide profiles on instagram. Story after story of self harm, eating and being sick, stories of bullying, etc. Basically, users can message the profile owners their experiences, and it will be spewed out to all the followers. They tend to wallow a bit, and my son was so caught up in this that he started sh-ing too, just for the "community" of it all. It took a while to get him out of the mindset. He did not have so much else going on like your dd has, but it could be worth checking the social media site for any inspiration of "community" of kindred souls egging each other on...

yegodsandlittlefishes Fri 21-Feb-14 18:33:43

Can I just say too though, that the community of those recovering from sh and EDs can be invaluable. The support netwok is great for gettimg the right kind of information and help. Avoid 'pro ana' or any orher pro-sh sites or blogs certainly, but don't write them all off. Also consider carefully before banning that kind of thing outright for a teenager who is nearly 18 and sounds very sensible. She sounds like she might like some help and support from others who have been through something similar. Maybe you could set up a blog together where you can help her through it (or she could do this herself, as a way to express how she is feeling, without having to go into details or ansewr questions. Blogs have options to not allow comment or PMs.)

karenaanna Fri 21-Feb-14 20:01:49

Well she's visibly more relaxed now DH is back and nothing has been said but she's still insisting she's not going to school on Monday- we'll see.

Quinteszilla I've checked her accounts, I can't see anything but I'll keep an eye on it, that sounds scary. Sorry to hear about your son, hope he's doing OK now.

yegodsandlittlefishes I'll have a look, thanks smile

HuiledOlive Fri 21-Feb-14 21:14:32

Have you thought about some sort of counselling or similar for your dd. It sounds as though she needs somewhere to express herself.

I had an ED (not saying this is necessarily her issue) and I wish this had been suggested to me. Someone gentle and non-judgemental to talk to. just to empty my head. EDs can be a form of self-harm.

This might have already been said, but has she made any changes to diet (before the recent restricting)? I was a vegetarian for years and recently started eating meat. I have put on loads of weight and it has all gone to my tummy. People were thinking I was pregnant way before i was actually pregnant!

hippoinamudhole Fri 21-Feb-14 22:32:55

Does she say why she doesn't want to go to school? Is it feeling bad this week or is there something going on at school she hasn't told you about?

karenaanna Fri 21-Feb-14 23:08:31

No changes to her diet, no- apart from she's barely eaten this week. She doesn't want to go into school because she's scared people will make fun of her sad

Newyearchanger Sat 22-Feb-14 00:05:27

It sounds to me as if this is too do with confidence, depression and anxiety.
It's possible with reassurance and talking it out she may improve .... What do you think about the dance/ ballet issue, is there much pressure on her from that POV both performance wise and thin ness wise?

Krindlekrax Sat 22-Feb-14 11:46:54

Hmm...When is your next appointment with the GP?

I know that you've taken up the CAMHS referral, but waiting times can be ridiculously long, in which time problems can worsen.

Personally, from the point of view of someone who's experienced similar things, I would be tempted to go back to the GP on Monday and demand that something is done, and agree that you won't send her back to school until there's a plan in place. I'd ring the school on Monday and discuss how you can make going back to school easier for her - it's better that they know earlier on than when (if) things reach crisis point.

muser31 Sat 22-Feb-14 13:08:01

i agree with getting her a counsellor. the sooner she is able to talk about everything and deal with it all the better.... the GP surgeries often offer counselling but again you can be waiting awhile.... there could be some charities that offer free counselling in your area, or counselling with a reduced fee since she is a student maybe you could check on online, counselling can be so helpful

LurkingCinners Sat 22-Feb-14 14:01:51

I would try and access counselling or therapy asap, if you've got private healthcare, it could be really quick. If not, try everything so she's getting help in the very near future. Camhs referals tend to take a while.

The other aspect is the physical one, getting her checked properly is absolutely necessary.

Don't let them tell you it's all ed related when it may not be.

All the best for you and your daughter.

Krindlekrax Sun 23-Feb-14 12:57:39

How is she today, karenaanna?

JenniMoo Tue 25-Feb-14 11:34:01

Hope you're both ok, have been thinking of you.

Gruntfuttock Tue 25-Feb-14 14:03:16

How is your daughter, OP?

MrsCosmopilite Wed 26-Feb-14 22:38:13

Any progress/improvement with your daughter, OP?

ShitOnAStick Sat 01-Mar-14 09:40:23

How is your daughter op? I hope she's getting some answers/treatment now.

HuntingforBunting Sat 01-Mar-14 10:48:12

Me too, thinking of you op, how is your daughter feeling?

funnyperson Sun 02-Mar-14 19:28:05

Must admit to wondering what the outcome has been though probably OP doesnt want to post too much detail.

Stockhausen Sun 02-Mar-14 19:54:17

Hope all is ok OP

Onsera3 Mon 03-Mar-14 12:44:48

Sorry I don't have time to read all the recent posts OP. I've read through yours though.

I'm sure someone's already suggest PCOS. Just reading through the physical symptoms it is making me think of this. Can cause lack of periods, weight gain (esp around abdomen), pain. I know my sister experienced some crazy weight gain with it despite dieting.

It affects the blood sugar so weight gain isn't always sorted by restricting (could make it worse if blood sugar thrown even more out of whack). I have PCO too and am prone to weight gain in tummy. Only way I can lose it is low carb. Calorie restriction alone doesn't help and you don't really want to restrict the calories of a teen anyway. A healthy version of Atkins ie lots of natural fats and whole foods might help. Could add brown rice and some other gluten free grains like oats.

Obv this is just a suggestion for one aspect of her issues as from what I have read there is a lot going on.

I hope that you get speedy help from the medical profession to resolve this as soon as possible.

She's lucky to have a mum like you.

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