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Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH
Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 251
Experience:  Over 15 years of experience as a substance abuse therapist. I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker
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My best friend is anorexic, she has been for about 3-4 years

Customer Question

My best friend is anorexic, she has been for about 3-4 years now. Lately she has been having sharp CP and they are worse when she runs. I have asked her to get a physical and she said she knows she needs to (which she has always ignored before). She said she knows she needs help (also first time she has said this), however she does not want the doctor to find out she is anorexic. She knows doctors are not suppose to judge, we are both in the medical field, but nothing I say helps. I have offered to go with her and that's when I hit a wall. How do I approach this with her? She has a husband and 3 children at home and I worry she will die and leave them without a mother. Her mother died when she was 12 so when I tell her to get help she knows she needs to. I also understand I can't force her to and the last thing I want to do is push too hard. I have asked her to see a therapist, and she did last year, but she only went to one session. I know this is a difficult disease to treat, please help.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH replied 5 years ago.
Hello,
Thank you for using JustAnswer.com. I am so sorry to hear your friend is going through this. It's really hard to watch some one get worse and worse and not seek help. It sounds like you have tried most every tactic to convince her to get help. At this point, I would suggest not discussing the topic anymore unless she asks for help.

You can continue to help in a few ways. Become very educated about the disease. Learn about the emotional and psychological pieces associated with this illness. Knowledge is very helpful to teach you how to not enable her eating disorder. Know the available resources in your area incase she says, Okay, I want help.

I would suggest avoiding talking about her food or weight. For an anorexic, it's almost like fuel when she hears how thin she looks or when people point out how little she is eating. It sort of encourages her to keep doing what she's doing.

Lastly, try to be empathetic without preaching or asking them to get help. Be a good listener, put it out there that you are ready to help her get help when she is and leave it at that.

I hope this answer helps. I wish there were an easier way to help her see what she's doing to herself and family. Eating disorders are riddled with denial, and it's hard for the person to want to change until there are serious consequences.

I hope this answer helps. Please let me know if you have further questions or if you need clarification about this answer.

All the best,


Kym

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Customer: replied 5 years ago.
do you have any book suggestions? i have checked amazon and there are hundreds.
thanks
Expert:  Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH replied 5 years ago.
Hi again,
thank you for this questions as well. Here are some books that are informative. You can leave them around for her to explore if she is so inclined =)

http://www.gainingthetruth.com/

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0446384178?ie=UTF8&tag=eatidisohope-20&link_code=as3&camp=211189&creative=373489&creativeASIN=0446384178

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0763754501?ie=UTF8&tag=eatidisohope-20&link_code=as3&camp=211189&creative=373489&creativeASIN=0763754501


I hope these suggestions help. Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

Best of luck with helping her,
Kym
Expert:  Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH replied 5 years ago.
oh and one other

http://www.amazon.com/Surviving-Eating-Disorder-Third-Strategies/dp/0061698954/ref=pd_bxgy_b_text_b

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