This study investigated the caregiving experiences of mothers and fathers of restrictive and binge-eating/purging eating disordered (ED) inpatients with and without non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI). Sixty-five mothers and 65 fathers completed the Experience of Caregiving Inventory. All inpatients completed the Self-Injury Questionnaire-Treatment Related to assess NSSI and the Eating Disorder Evaluation Scale to assess eating disorder symptoms. Mothers reported significant more negative and more positive caregiving experiences compared with fathers. Mothers (but not fathers) of restrictive ED patients reported more positive caregiving experiences compared with mothers of binge-eating/purging patients. The presence of NSSI in ED patients was associated with more negative caregiving experiences of both parents. Mothers and fathers of ED inpatients differ in caregiving experiences, and both binge-eating behaviours and NSSI negatively affect their caregiving experience. Therefore, supportive interventions for parents of ED patients are necessary, especially of those patients who engage in NSSI. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association.