National Eating Disorders Association

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How do I tell my family??? Help

I’ve been seeking help on my own but find it SOO hard to not use behaviours at home. Part of me thinks that if my family knew about my eating disorder they could help, but another part of me thinks it would make everything so much worse. I struggle with restricting and purging and part of me is angry that my family has never noticed. It’s almost like I want to be sick enough that they have to say something. Does anyone have advice or stories of how they told their family/friends and how they reacted??

I need any advice I can get.

Sorry you’re going through this

I didn’t have to tell my family but I do understand wanting to be sick enough for people to notice. It’s so much more uncomfortable when they do though. I thought I’d feel validated when people would step in to stop me but I just retreated farther into denial that I still have to work through. Not sure this helped but you’re not alone

no one in my family has it

so they deny it and always said "great you're a healthy eater" the famous one was during WWII.
"Eat, don't you know the children in Europe are starving?" also we had food rationing during WWII.

I understand

I know what that feels like. I still haven't told my parents and I had a chance to talk to my doctor but my mom was like oh she's just really petite because of her swimming when it's really me starving myself or working out. I hope you find out how to talk to them (by the way, in nedas website, they have a page talking about how to tell a loved one or someone close to you, so maybe look at that.) My anxiety makes it hard to tell people, and since im not comfortable speaking to my parents about this, I'm speaking to close friends of mine this week (since school starts up in a couple of days.) So maybe that could be the same with you, work on speaking to someone like your best friend or someone you trust, then try speaking up to your parents. Keep posting and giving us updates! and I don't know if this is your first time in the forums but welcome.


Thanks everyone

Thanks for all the support! I guess I’m lucky enough that the choice is mine since I’m over 18 and if I don’t want my parents and family knowing they don’t have to. Right now I’m prepared to pay for counselling out of pocket because I’m too scared for my parents to know I’m getting help. Ughh, everyone in my family is so petite and even though I look the same as them they think it’s genetics. I think it’s frustrating that’s it’s so easy for people outside of my family to be concerned about my weight - but to my family it just seems normal.

sick enough

i have this same problem, in my own different way. I'm constantly feeling like I need to be "sick enough" for someone to notice, or no one will care. you need to care enough about yourself and just tell your parents that you have this problem. it's tough, i know and just do what you can at the time period you feel comfortable doing so. here for you

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