1. MoodGym website
  2. Book Review: Anorexia and Bulimia in the Family – One Parent’s Practical Guide to Recovery

MoodGym Review

MoodGym is a CBT based online programme that is designed to prevent and treat depression in young people and anxiety for all ages.

Direct link to the website :

ANU - Australian National University, a centre for Mental Health Research and Development.
Despite this being an Australian site, it was offered as a source of help to my Daughter by Adult Mental Health Services in the UK.

The site helps users identify and overcome problem emotions. Users have to register their name and age and they can complete as much or as little as they like.
There are five parts or modules in total, each taking between 20 and 40 minutes to complete.

The modules are :-


The modules have questionnaires, with scores given at the end and based on the scores recommends helpful solutions.

My Daughter found this website very helpful, but has not yet completed all modules due to lack of time, but it is something she definitely wants to continue with.

She liked being able to put in her emotions/feelings in privacy at a time when she felt she wanted to and she says that it made her feel less ‘alone’ and made her feel like she was doing something positive and productive. She found that it helped to compare herself to different characters used on the site and liked being given different ways in which to respond to various situations. It teaches users to stop and analyse things.

Book Review: Anorexia and Bulimia in the Family – One Parent’s Practical Guide to Recovery: (Grainne Smith ISBN 0-470-86161-4)
"This book was the one that helped me most, and I’ve read quite a few over the years! "
It is written by a mum whose adult daughter developed anorexia and bulimia. Grainne also shares her many years’ experience from supporting other parents via a telephone helpline.

Grainne acknowledges the impact of eating disorders on the whole family. She encourages early intervention, and a collaborative approach by all concerned in the care of a sufferer.
Grainne considers not only the physical effects on the body, but also other effects such as distorted perceptions, rejecting expressions of love from others, depression, poor concentration, mood swings, screaming and violence, and threats of suicide. 
She explores the effects on family members – one parent may get angry, blame the other parent, immerse themselves in work or stay out late leaving the other to cope unsupported; siblings may feel jealous or angry when attention is diverted away from them or a sense of injustice when one member of the family is getting away with intolerable behaviour. 

The risk is a breakdown in family communications as the ED seeks to ‘divide and rule’. 
A key message is – Families have a crucial part to play in supporting the sufferer and each other, and in motivating a change of behaviour.

Photo: Copyright Anna Ross 2014