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Posts Tagged ‘eating disorder’

My friend P has been having some troubles this semester – not with classes, but with anorexia.  I’ve known about it for a while, since we eat dinner together most nights and it’s fairly obvious, and have been encouraging her to work on it.  She does go to a nutritionist and her parents are aware of the problem.  But they can only do so much.

Tonight, she told me that she and her nutritionist had talked earlier today, and the nutritionist had said that if things don’t start going better, she might want to consider going to an in-patient facility for these sorts of issues for a few weeks after graduation to try to work on this issue, rather than only seeing someone for an hour or two a week.  P understands the possible necessity, and the potential help this could give her, and she’s at a prime time in her life that she can afford to take a few weeks off, before she actually finds a job.  But at the same time, she doesn’t really want her parents to think that she’s failed them, particularly since her mother is someone who works with people with eating disorders.

I know she’s really torn about all this, particularly since she sees how much she’s failing to correct the damage that’s been done.  She would have to eat at least double what she’s eating now to maintain her current (unhealthy) weight, much less gain all the weight back that she’s lost in the last few months.  Fortunately, she has stopped going to the gym quite as often as she did before she started seeing the nutrionist.  I think the possibility that she might faint in public – a possibility raised by the nutritionist apparently – was more encouragement than the possibility of just fainting or working too hard in general.  But, whatever helps.

And so, here I am.  I really want to help her, but I fear I just don’t quite understand.  I’m trying to be as supportive as I can be, but I just can’t seem to grasp a true understanding of why she’s having so many issues with eating.  And I get that it’s probably really hard to understand unless you’ve gone through it yourself – which I haven’t – but I feel like the only way to help, or even try to begin to help is through understanding.

Is there anyone out there who has been in a similar situation?  And ideas for how I can help her?  I know I can’t cure her or anything drastic like that, but I also know, from our talks, that she recognizes how big of an impact this is having on her life (i.e. academically and emotionally as well as physically), and that I can understand, and I just want to help her in someway – any way.

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