What to do if you suspect your loved one has an eating disorder

When you suspect someone you love has an eating disorder it can be difficult knowing how to face them. The matter can be particularly delicate and people often worry about saying the wrong thing or being pushed away, so they can leave things to fester.

However, by following our advice, you will be able to broach the topic with confidence:

  • Prepare what you want to say and how you say it before approaching your friend.
  • Timing is critical. Try to pick a time when you won’t be interrupted and when both you and your friend are relaxed and happy.
  • Avoid talking to them before or after a meal.
  • Tell them your concerns and give them a chance to answer.
  • Avoid mentioning diets and weight loss but be honest about your feelings.
  • Prepare for the backlash but don’t take it to heart.
  • If they don’t want to talk, tell them you are there for them and encourage them to visit their GP.

It is important that you don’t keep your concerns to yourself because the sooner a disorder is dealt with, the sooner your loved one can get better.