Middlebury

 

How To Help A Friend

If you're worried about a friend's eating patterns, you can help by taking the following steps:

  • Discuss your concerns with a professional. A member of the staff at the Health Services or the Counseling Services can give you valuable information about eating disorders and can help you evaluate the situation and what will be most helpful for your friend. They can also help "coach" you as how to approach and talk to your friend about your concerns.
  • Talk to your friend. Talk with him/her in a private setting and be respectful and compassionate. Be specific and concrete about what behaviors are of concern to you. Focus on your concerns about your friend's health, not weight or appearance. If your friend is able to acknowledge there is a problem, suggest some resources.
  • Realize your friend may deny that he/she has a problem. It is still important for him/her to hear your concerns.
  • Don't try to control your friend's eating by bringing him/her food, badgering him/her to eat, or ridiculing him/her. This will only damage your friendship.

Remember that you are not responsible for curing your friend's problem with food.


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