The Chaos of Treating Eating Disorders - Interview with Katie Lear
Are you interested in how Therapists treat clients who struggle with Eating Disorders, and why some Therapists hesitate to treat them? If so, join us for a talk with Katie Lear, who is a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor in North Carolina and is a Registered Drama Therapist and Registered Play Therapist.
Katie will offer some information about why she is hesitant to treat Eating Disorders, and Tracy will offer some resources for Katie and all therapists to calm any chaos they might have about treating individuals who struggle with Eating Disorders.
Katie combines research-based coping skills with creative play to help tween girls live better lives with anxiety and OCD. She uses Dungeons and Dragons as part of her therapy with children, and when she's not counseling, you can find her playing Dungeons & Dragons with middle schoolers through her sister business, Young Dragonslayers.
I. Intro – Tell us about yourself and how you got started doing the work you do.
II. Oh…and what about D&D?
III. Let’s talk about Eating Disorders, and the reasons why you hesitate to treat individuals who struggle with food, eating and body image.
IV. Katie’s Fears about treating Eating Disorders
Fears about practicing outside of my scope
A lack of knowledge: we covered eating disorders for less than one class period in my graduate program's abnormal psych class.
We were essentially told "Anorexia has the highest mortality rate of any mental health diagnosis" and not much else.
A fear of unintentionally causing physical harm to a client
A sense of pressure (or perceived pressure) from the therapist community that treating ED requires extensive additional training. (Say more about this, Katie)
A lack of general awareness. In my experience disordered eating is rarely included in case vignettes, roleplays, licensure exams, or other ways that therapists train.
It feels as though the message I've gotten is "this is not for you."
V. Tour of the website at https://www.katielear.com/
VI. Products / Services
• Katie’s Book: “A Parent’s Guide to Managing Childhood Grief” at https://www.simonandschuster.com/authors/Katie-Lear/190548524
• Katie’s D&D Group: Kids and teens use the creativity and structure of Dungeons and Dragons to forge meaningful friendships through online gaming at https://www.youngdragonslayers.com/
Additional information: Katie’s first book, A Parent's Guide to Managing Childhood Grief, was published in July by Adams Media and Simon & Schuster, and was recently featured in the New York Times. Her writing and commentary on children's mental health has appeared in Parents Magazine, Business Insider, and National Geographic, as well as on websites like WebMD and Healthline.
Free Eating Disorder Consult Groups for Therapists
Center for Discovery – Contact Clacy Albert at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Emily Program – Contact Katie Sherpe at Katie.Sherpe@emilyprogram.com
Free Eating Disorder Support Groups for Clients
Center for Discovery https://centerfordiscovery.com/blog/online-eating-disorder-support-groups/
The Emily Program https://www.emilyprogram.com/for-families/support-for-families/