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How to help friend

(5 Posts)
ElephantsCanFly Thu 20-Apr-17 22:33:17

Just looking for some advice really, I'm a bit stuck.
Over the last couple of years, I've become quite good friends with the mum of DDs BF. Turns out we have quite a lot in common, same sense of humour etc and get on well.

Recently, I've noticed she's lost quite a lot of weight in a relatively short space of time, and is now starting to look ill (although still happy/cheery on the outside, if a little quieter than normal). She has briefly mentioned suffering with eating disorders in the past (late teens) and I'm worried she might possibly be falling back into that. Thing is, I don't feel we're 'close' enough for me to just bring it up in conversation. How would I casually try and talk about this without coming across as being nosey or making her feel uncomfortable. I'd like to offer support and help if needed but really don't want to overstep the mark and ruin a good friendship.

I've not had a close female friend since school so only really used to more superficial chat, hence the need for advice.

April229 Thu 20-Apr-17 23:21:05

Tricky. Can you get to know her better, perhaps go for a coffee and if you feel there is a bit of an opening say you look like you've lost a lot of weight recently, is everything ok, you don't have to talk about it at all if it's a bit personal, but I just wanted to check on you? Or some such.

notusualmnname Fri 21-Apr-17 13:37:17

Please don't mention her weight loss to her. I say that as someone who has had EDs in various forms over the years and whenever someone says anything about weight loss I can't help but become defensive.
Would be better to just make arrangements to do something together/with your DDs whatever you usually do and mention she seems quiet and is she okay/anything you can do.

ElephantsCanFly Fri 21-Apr-17 20:31:39

Thanks for replies.
Thats what I thought notusual, I asked her in passing a few weeks ago if she'd lost weight and she gave me a short sharp 'no' so I've not brought it up again.
I'm just getting quite worried about her. I saw her briefly today and she really didn't look well. Thinking I might just drop her a text asking if everything's ok. I just feel so helpless.

notusualmnname Sat 22-Apr-17 08:09:57

Ha, if it wasn't for the fact that I don't have a friend like you describe I would be thinking your friend is me! Though my reaction actually is usually a 'doubt it' in this hideous moody teenager voice that I unintentionally use.
Questions I would feel instantly more comfortable with would be along the lines of you seem quiet/not your usual self/upset about something?
Or think of something nice to do. Whatever she likes to do and just have a day out or evening or whatever. You dont have to actually ask her anything at all but the message is the same - that you are a friend and you are there for her. What is she usually like about eating with other people, I panic about this a lot so just bear in mind that mentioning food in plans is something that can make people in an ED relapse go into a bit of a panic and back out of it through fear of the food aspect even if it is otherwise something they would like to do.
I know your friend is NOT me even if she does sound similar, but I am very adept at pushing people away when I actually really, really need and want their help. I don't think I am alone in this rather daft (when thinking logically) behaviour, so just something to be aware of.
Btw - you sound great and your friend is lucky to have you.

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