If you think you know someone with an eating problem and you are worried about their wellbeing, it may be difficult to talk to them about it. You may have tried to support the person but they don’t want to accept support.
- Telling the person you’re there whenever they are ready to talk, and you can help them find support.
- Don’t make assumptions without listening to the person, it could add to their feeling of being out of control, making them less able to share their emotions.
- Understand that the person might not see their eating as a problem.
- Don’t try to persuade the person to change their behaviour, as this could make them feel threatened and they may just hide their eating problem from you.
- Encourage the person to seek professional help, such as counselling or their GP. If they are worried or anxious, offer to accompany them.
- Help the person find good information, such as looking for online support. Avoid websites or forums that promote eating and exercise habits which are unsafe.
- Include the person in social activities. If the person finds it difficult to eat, organise activities that don’t include food.
- If the person is a family member, try family therapy. You can work through issues together with the support of a therapist.