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Silenced by Bulimia

Andrea Smeltzer had the world at her feet: she was vibrant, talented, strong, and beautiful. But, after a one-year struggle with Bulimia, Andrea died in her sleep at the age of 19, catapulting her mother, Doris, into a journey of self-discovery and realization about who her daughter really was. Doris' honest and unabashed exploration of the emotional issues around her daughter's development of Bulimia provides insight and guidance not only to parents, whose families have been affected by eating disorders and to any daughter who is struggling to find her independence. Doris weaves her family's experiences around excerpts from Andrea's writings, so that mother and daughter are telling it together, capturing the bond that connected them. This is not just a story of one family's tragedy, but a perspective about our attitudes toward our bodies and society's obsession with appearance. Andrea's poetry and journal entries, combined with her mother's reflections, will prompt readers to understand the devastating effects that innocent remarks about size and weight can have on vulnerable ears. Parents will see the toxic effects of modeling body hatred. Educators and other professionals will be sensitized to the insidiousness of these illnesses and their own misconceptions. This book provides all readers, no matter their background, with an understanding of eating disorders, the grieving process, and hope.
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"This is one of the most beautiful, real, compassionate and personal books from the point of view of the eating disorder, sufferer, the family and the community. We should all celebrate Andrea's Voice."-- Ira M. Sacker, MD, President, Helping End Eating Disorders (Heed) Foundation, author of Regaining Yourself Thanks to Doris Smeltzer's courageous examination of her daughter's illness and death, Andrea may actually empower many others struggling with eating disorders to live. Ultimately, this is a book of hope and of healing."-- Margo Maine, PhD, psychologist and author, specializing in eating disorders for 25 years

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