please help

<p>Hi parents and everyone who reads this, i wandered past this forum and noticed how helpful everyone is and I really could use some advice. </p>

<p>One of my friends is bulimic and I want desperately to help her, but she doesn't seem to want it. She says that her problem "isn't bad" and that she could stop anytime she wants to and that she doesn't even consider herself bulimic because she doesn't throw up everyday. But I don't think that she can stop, she knows all the affects of bulimia and knows how damaging it is to her health, but she's convinced that it's worth it because she thinks that she's fat. (she's only a size 6!)</p>

<p>She's 18 and as far as I know, she's been dealing with this since she was 15. I don't know what I could do to help her, but she's made it clear that she doesn't want her parents to know because she doesn't want to "burden them." I'm really scared for her health. If your daughter was going through it, and her best friend knew, what would you tell her to tell your daughter. Please help.</p>

<p>One resource:</p>

<p><a href=""&gt;;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>If there's a guidance counselor at your school, you can anonymously leave them a note explaining your concern. Guidance counselors have the resources and know-how to handle these things and they'll help your friend get the help she needs.</p>

<p>The guidance counselor will likely need to tell her parents, but I think her parents probably <em>need</em> to know. This is a rough situation that your friend has pulled you into, and your friend is endangering her health and possibly her life. You'll need all the support you can get to help create a network to pull your friend up out of her bulimia, and her parents and a guidance counselor are two important pieces of that network. Certain people need to be told about this, but that doesn't mean that you can't get the ball rolling anonymously.</p>

<p>Best of luck. Hugs to you for being so brave and caring a friend that you want to help her, even if she doesn't want to help herself right now. IM me if you need support, too-- this must be stressful for you.</p>


<p>The answer to your specific question
"If your daughter was going through it, and her best friend knew, what would you tell her to tell your daughter"</p>

<p>I would tell her "your parents need to know, if its 'not that bad' then it won't be a 'burden' ...they have known you for 18 years they know whether you are fat ..nothing to lose; and well ok if you don't want to tell them directly let's tell (Ms.; Rev, Dr --trusted adult); they will know how to speak to your parents. Besides I hear that it can get worse, you might get sick; and have to go the hospital or therapy/treatment or something..You know how stupid your parents are they will spend money they dont have to help you get well, then they will miss out on things they and your sisters/brothers want to do, so you can get help after your sick... I saw a note on this CC web board a parent wrote --he says his sister is a dietician in a college town in texas and she sees lots of bulimina and eating disorders--most of them are girls and they just come in for a little while every week or two... maybe your parents can find someone like that --no one will know, it wont cost too much, and hey if your right and its not a big deal...they will tell you not to come back... but mostly you need to let your parent know somehow"</p>

<p>I would say something like that</p>

<p>When D was a freshman, she found out that one of her classmates was cutting herself. She encouraged the classmate to seek help from the GC, but the classmate was scared. So, D made the appointment with the classmate's GC herself and walked her friend to the office. I don't know how whether it helped or not and to this day don't know who the friend is.</p>

<p>If you make the offer, perhaps your friend might respond positively as well. Also, check out the HS's rules for reporting to parents once a student turns 18. Your friend might feel more comfortable talking with the GC or the school social worker then.</p>

<p>Best wishes!</p>

<p>yes I might modify my advice a little since the girl is 18; but the general idea is there ... our society considers 18 you can take care of yourself, however people who care--hopefully parents-- always care.</p>

<p>the GC suggestion is excellent. The GC can keep it anonymous, too; they can say info was "overheard in the girls bathroom." My D came to me with info about someone in 7th grade; since we did not know the parents we handled it this way.</p>

<p>The GCs, at least where I grew up, DO NOT keep these things anonymous. Best way to have her parents find out is to tell guidance about it. 18 or not, they can say she's a harm to herself and justify breaking the confidentiality. Trust me, I've seen it happen to a few people - no warning, no opportunity to allow an adult to explain why they don't want their parents called, and someone carted off in an ambulance in restraints. The schools are more concerned about being sued than about doing the right thing.</p>

<p>Talk to a clergy person, minister, priest, rabbi, etc. If that fails, is there an older friend - someone's big sister or aunt who can help out?</p>

<p>Try to find out about the effects of bulimia - one of which is an imbalance of electrolytes which can trigger a heart attack. Not to be awful, but will photos of Terri Schiavo help get your point across? Talk to your friend about the long-term consequences - electrolyte imbalance, erosion of the back of her teeth from the stomach acid, etc.</p>

<p>The GC can be anonymous if the subject isn't in danger to herself, but I think the parents need to be brought in on this one... If your friend's parents are reasonable people and aren't constantly giving her flack about things in her life like some overbearing parents can, then I'd definitely go with the GC route. A religious counselor would work, too, but you're more likely to see action with a GC than with a religious counselor, since the GC <em>is</em> required to take action if the person is in danger, and your friend <em>is</em> in danger right now.</p>

<p>correction: I meant they can keep *who told them[/] anonymous. Of course her parents must know.</p>

<p>My D had a similar situation, she and several friends were concerned about a girl, so they went in together and spoke to GC...the girl who was cutting herself and had an eating issue was pretty mad at all the girls, but not for long, once she got help, she realized her friends did the right thing. My D said that even if she lost the friend over it, it was worth it because she was so worried. She couldn't watch while a friend was hurting themselves, and she felt what kind of friend am I if I don't do something to help?</p>

<p>My D also came to me once and told me about someone she knew who had talked about suicide. I called the mom. I told her of course this is third hand, but if I didn't say something, and the child did hurt themselves, I don't turns out the child was already seeing someone, but mom didn't realize he was feeling that distraught, and was in fact glad I called.</p>

<p>thank you so much to everyone for the advice! the problem with the GC is that we both graduated from high school this year and since it is summer, we have no access to our counselor. i'm trying to convice her to talk to a counselor when she gets to college, but i'm scared that something bad might happen in between now and then. it's so hard for me to get the point accross to her that she's hurting herself. how am i suppose to convince her of that when whenever i mention the subject, all she says is that it's a release for her, that it keeps her sane and keeps her from doing other stupid things?</p>

<p>"How to Help a Friend
with Eating and Body Image Issues":</p>

<p>see </p>

<p><a href=""&gt;;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>My one buddy's girlfriend once had bullmia so bad that her esophagal (sp?) lining was almost gone to the point where if she ate food, it got puked backed up immeadiately.</p>

<p>On a somewhat related note, I saw a 300 lbs man wearing a shirt that said "I beat Anorexia" last week.</p>

<p>The scary thing is that often in college, the stress, the being away from home, the new people, the situation can get worse...and I would guess that eating disorders are pretty prevelant in college to, so she might find a like minded friend</p>

<p>Do you think her parents know?</p>

<p>thank you again everyone.</p>

<p>citygirlsmom - i don't think her parents know, she hides it very well. if she hadn't told me herself, i would have never known.</p>