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I have a friend (whom I've lost touch with, but has recently come back into my life) and she is EXTREMELY anorexic. She has come outright and told everyone she is 64 lbs.....YES she is only 4 lbs more than her 6 year old daughter. She knows she is gravely ill, but is refusing help. (long story) My question:

What should I say to her?? How should I act around her? Do I ignore the issue and just chat about our kids or should I have a heart to heart with her? She's been in and out of hospitals dozens of times and leaves AMA....I have never been close to anyone w/anorexia and I'm not sure if talking about it with her will help/hurt her....I am still trying to be the same friend I was before, but her condition is heartbreaking to me and I'm having trouble not crying whenever we talk or hug. I want to re-establish our friendship, but don't know how to act "normal"....HELP please!!

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Asked by proudmommy82 at 12:26 AM on Aug. 31, 2009 in Relationships

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Answers (2)
  • I feel so bad for everyone involved. I don't know what I'd do really other than be her friend. Tell her how you feel, that you're concerned about her, that you worry about her health, that you worry that she is going to let this win and it's going to cost her child their Mom, it's going to cost her family their sister, aunt, daughter, wife, friend.
    I'm sure there's a lot of places online you can read about how to support her but unfortunately we can't heal people from their sickness and yes, I do believe this is a sickness. It's a control thing, a mental hang up that they feel so out of control in their lives that this is the one thing they can control because it hurts no one but them, only they're wrong, it hurts the people who love them.
    My prayers go out to her and her family and friends tonight.

    Answer by lisa_ann_p at 1:00 AM on Aug. 31, 2009

  • Anorexia is a mental illness. It is about control. She's endangering her life, it will affect her child both by example and there's always a possibility that if she's alone, caring for her child, something could happen to her. If she cannot willingly get better, I know there has been legal precedence in which family members have sought some type of guardianship on the grounds that a person may not be of sound mind to care for his/her self and were then able to legally keep a person in treatment. It's a very rough thing to do, I'm sure, but necessary to save a life in some situations. Does she have supportive family? I can't imagine if she's that underweight that no one has noticed so I assume they would be aware she has a problem. For your friend's sake, if I were you, I might discuss some type of intervention.

    Answer by iluvmommyhood58 at 7:15 AM on Aug. 31, 2009

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