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How can I help my teen friend with an eating disorder?

Vicki Berkus, MD
Psychiatry
I would start by using "I" statements and just describe the behavior you are seeing. " When I see your weight going down, or when you isolate from me, I feel ____________." If your friend is open to talking about it, then offer to help her get help either from a counselor at school or her parents. If she is not willing to get help and you are afraid that she will continue to starve or hurt herself, I would encourage you to go to her parents for help. She may be angry but realize that she may not be able to make good decisions for herself if she is "starving" her brain.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.