I Think I Have an Eating Disorder

Dear Marlena,

I want to be skinny like my best friend but nothing I do seems to work and I’ve tried A LOT of diets. I know I’m not eating right and my parents are starting to notice. I think I have an eating disorder but I don’t want to freak them out if I tell them. What do I do?




Dear Mary,

I’m so glad you took your first step to getting help. My short answer to this important question will not be the whole answer, so I do hope you speak to someone soon, as it’s very important to me and those that love you that you stay healthy. I know by you reaching out to me that you want to better yourself so if you aren’t comfortable sharing yet, you can start by speaking anonymously to a counselor at 2-1-1. They will give you some referrals to get you on track and talk with you a bit about what you are going through. It will also be the first step for you to begin opening up about the subject of anorexia and bulimia. Eating disorders are more common than you may know. In fact, 1 or 2 out of every 100 students will struggle with one in the U.S. this year. Learning to be comfortable with your body is a process. Be patient, you can learn to like your body, understand your eating behaviors, and figure out the relationship between feelings and eating — all the tools you need to feel in control and to like and accept yourself for who you are.

If you want to talk to someone about eating disorders but are unable or not ready to talk to a parent or close family member, try reaching out to a friend, teacher, school nurse or counselor, coach, neighbor, your doctor, or another trusted adult. You can always call 2-1-1 as well.

Best of Luck,

P.S. I’ve found a helpful website that may help with some more information: http://renfrew.contextdevel.com/resources/educational-materials/videos