“Avoid it like the plague”: Adults' Lived Experience of Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder
Megan Knedgen, PsyD, is a 2023 graduate of the PsyD Program in Clinical Psychology at Antioch University, Seattle.
Dana Waters, PsyD, ABPP, Committee Chair
Wendy Oliver-Pyatt, MD, CEDS, Committee Member
Melissa Kennedy, PhD, Committee Member
avoidant restrictive food intake disorder, interpretative phenomenological analysis, adults, DSM-5
This phenomenological study explored the lived experiences of adults with a DSM-5 diagnosis of avoidant restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID) aiming to describe key features of ARFID as it is understood by treatment-seeking adults. Nine treatment-seeking adults with a full-threshold diagnosis of ARFID (aged 20–42) were recruited. In-depth, semi-structured, qualitative interviews were conducted to explore participants’ experiences and perceptions of avoidant and/or restrictive eating. Transcripts were analyzed using interpretative phenomenological analysis, through which three group experimental themes were generated: (a) “A tradeoff between safety and freedom,” (b) “A broken self,” and (c) “Being seen: A double-edged sword.” This study’s findings highlighted participants’ perspectives on ARFID which may help enhance treatment quality, retention, and engagement, as well as inform the development and implementation of future interventions.
Knedgen, M. (2023). “Avoid it like the plague”: Adults' Lived Experience of Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder. https://aura.antioch.edu/etds/920
Megan Knedgen, PsyD, 2023
ORCID Scholar ID# 0000-0003-0890-6897