The daily Astorian. (Astoria, Or.) 1961-current, July 22, 2016, WEEKEND EDITION, Page 6A, Image 6

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Girl has out-of-control diet
Dear Annie: One day a few
months ago, my 15-year-old daugh-
ter got into the car after school with
bloodshot eyes and red cheeks. I could
tell she had been crying. I asked her
what was wrong. At irst, she said
nothing. Then, with some gentle pry-
ing, she burst into tears and said,
“Jason came up to me at lunch and
said, ‘Nancy, you would be really
pretty if you lost some weight.’” As
she relived the story, tears welled up
in her eyes again. “Mom, I really want
to lose weight. I am so tired of being
picked last at gym because I can’t run
as fast as the other kids. Please help
My sister had just lost 30 pounds
at a local diet center. I quickly went
online and signed Nancy and myself
up. Although I only had a few pounds
to lose, I wanted to do the program
with her so that we could make
the necessary eating habit changes
together. Our irst meeting was at the
same type of center. Nancy weighed
in 25 pounds overweight. We learned
tips for healthy eating and the impor-
tance of daily exercise. We heard
women’s success stories of losing
over 100 pounds. When we got in the
car, we were both excited to start los-
ing weight.
We began writing down every-
thing we ate in a food diary and
Dear Annie
would make all sorts of delicious veg-
gie dishes we could snack on all day.
Every evening, we would take our
dog out for long walks for exercise. It
was a great bonding experience.
Week after week, Nancy and I
were losing weight. She was feeling
more and more conident and even
told me that Jason had asked her to
go to a party with him. After about
12 weeks, she and I reached our goal
weight and were instructed to begin
the maintenance program.
I began to adjust my daily food
intake for maintenance, but Nancy
did not. At the next weigh-in, she had
dropped another 3 pounds, which was
below her healthy weight. When I told
her that she could eat a little more,
she became very defensive and said
she was still heavy and overweight. I
reminded her to look at the number on
the scale.
During the following weeks, she
was eating less and less. She said
she was not losing fast enough. It
was then that I noticed she had basi-
cally stopped eating. She would just
move food around her plate. She now
refused to go back to the diet center
meetings. She was wasting away. I
didn’t know what to do. I took her to
the pediatrician for a checkup. He told
me that Nancy had the early signs of
anorexia nervosa.
I was so upset. I felt as if the whole
thing was my fault. I should never
have taken her to the diet center. I
should never have dieted alongside
her. Did I contribute to this disorder?
— Regretful Mother
Dear Regretful: Jason sounds like
a shallow jerk, and I’d discourage your
daughter from spending any more
time with him. But don’t beat yourself
up about what you might have done
differently. You took action to try to
help your daughter, which proves you
care. That love and support is what’s
going to help get her better.
Ask your pediatrician for a rec-
ommendation of a therapist who
works with girls suffering from body
image problems. There are many
great organizations that offer help.
One of my favorites is The Ren-
frew Center, which can be reached at
Tomorrow’s horoscope
By Holiday Mathis, Creators Syndicate Inc.
ARIES (March 21-April 19). “Do you know
what I mean?” they ask. You do, but that
doesn’t necessarily equate to agreement.
The fact that they want validation from you
says something. You’ve a strong presence
now. They want your respect.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20). What you did
in the past is its own kind of ghost, haunting
you at the oddest times. Just remember that
ghosts, having no body, are illusory and able
to distort themselves.
GEMINI (May 21-June 21). Someone who
took a road you didn’t will give you a glimpse
into your parallel life, and you’ll gain insight
as to what it might have been like to live, love
or work in a different direction. You’ll let this
inform your next decision.
CANCER (June 22-July 22). There’s
something so great about doing it your way,
even if the results themselves don’t exactly
turn out the way you intended (or even close).
It’s just interesting to know what the unadul-
terated, uncompromised version is.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22). When everyone
wants you to show up somewhere, it’s a
testament to your stellar company and their
deep affection for you. It also has something
to do with the way the financial end of these
occasions is likely to shake out.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22). Sometimes
you just have to bite the bullet and blurt out
what’s on your mind, but this is not one of
those times. If you feel nervous and wordless
on the subject, wait it out. Nothing needs to
be said just yet.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 23). Is “almost” ever
enough? “Nearly there” isn’t (SET ITAL) there,
(END ITAL) to be sure, but it’s not nowhere,
either. Stand where you landed for a while
and consider your options. This valiant but
failed effort isn’t the last step you’ll take.
SCORPIO (Oct. 24-Nov. 21). Remember
when you took the popular route and were
sorely disappointed in the views? That’s
what’s at your creative core today, driving
your unusual and oh-so-satisfying choices.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21). Just as
the bitterness of coffee makes the flavor so
compelling, a harsh take on a situation that’s
gotten sickeningly sweet will provide intellec-
tual and comedic interest today.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19). What flies
for entertainment on a stage might be con-
sidered an overly bold and inappropriate re-
sponse in real life. You’re good at reading your
“room,” though, and will perform accordingly.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18). Growth is
often associated with pain, but currently you
are in a relatively pleasurable growth period.
Sure, there are moments of uncertainty, and
it’s not the most comfortable process in the
world... but it’s not half bad, either.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20). Foiled? Go
again. Never end the story with the hero (you)
in a position that doesn’t have the audience
(you) cheering. Who’s to say tomorrow’s play
won’t be a game changer? Keep trying.
Straightaway, your solar return inspires a
decision that will shape all that follows. The
experience you gain through the rapid-fire
exercise of August will put you in a new po-
sition by September. January brings versatile
partnership. It will be lucky to travel with this
person or go into a short-term investment or
business situation. Scorpio and Virgo adore
you. Your lucky numbers are: 6, 35, 20, 16
and 45.