Sister

Hi everyone,

Im not really sure how to go about this so please bare with me.

My family has suspected that my sister has been making her self sick for a couple of months, but she would always deny it, she is 29 and is very thin.

Last year it got to a point where we were all worried about how thin she was and also her friends were too.

I finally managed to sit her down and talk to her about it last night without the parents knowing and i asked her.

She finally admitted to me that she eats then "purges" the food out the system and to my utter shock she had told me she had been doing this for 10 years but over the last few years it got worse.

Part of the deal that allowed her to tell me this was that our parents were not to know at any cost.

I am a 23 male and have been trying to look into it and to work out what i can do and i promised her i would help her overcome this.

Im really unsure on my next step in what to do as she wont see a doctor yet as she wants to see if she can stop it herself.

What makes it harder is she doesn't live at home so i cant see what she is doing.

Im writing this to ask for advice on everything, i feel like this is something parents should know but she made me promise not to say anything as she worries they will think they are too blame and put her in a clinic etc even though i have explained this is not how they will see it.

Many thanks in advance

OWSI

4 Replies

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  • Hello

    Please don't break her trust by telling your parents. You will need support so I suggest you see a gp who might be able to help support you or find someone who can help. This might be helping you cope with helping your sister or finding ways to help her accept she needs help. There is no quick fix. Telling you is a very big deal and important first step.

    She will not beat this without professional support of some sort. It may be a while until she gets it, tries it and accepts this. I can tell you from experience it is very very hard.

    I can also tell you that I strongly believe eating disorders develop where parental /child relationships are strained, unbalanced or non existent. Those You feel you should be able to turn to or feel care about you most in the world and unconditionally well this isn't the case or in place and this leads to eating disorders. This is why I feel it is paramount that you do not break your sisters trust. If this was something she could talk to them about she would have done so and probably wouldn't be abusing food or herself in the first place. She has let you in on her secret. This is a big thing. Seek help and support for you to help her in time.

    Good luck

    n

  • suggest you look at the anorexia & bulimia care website - or make contact with them - they have some really helpful material and guidance. they are also confidential and offer support to sufferers so this might help your sister too.

    your sister has made the first step - but it is professional help she is going to need. its great she felt able to talk to you - now I guess its about supporting and encouraging her to talk to her GP and ask for specialist help and support.

    good luck

  • Firstly well done for not giving up, most family members especially siblings

    give up or get annoyed and shame when it comes to eating disorders,

    so well done for supporting your sister.

    I understand you can't do this on your own and neither can she, and neither should

    you have to. She does need specialist help to recover from this, in light of the fact

    that she managed to hide it for 10 years and still isn't comfortable talking about

    it openly, there are probably some deep seated issues behind how she feels and why

    she's doing this to herself. It is about doing it to herself and not about hurting you,

    so please keep talking to her as much as you can and let her know you're there for her.

    You'll support her when she's ready to get help, and until then you'll be by her side whatever she does, no matter what happens you'll love her and support her.

    If she can start to feel safe and supported, you can suggest going to see the doctor together,

    see what her options are and you'll help her through it as best as you can.

    I would say for you though, either a partner or a family member you really trust, tell them you're dealing with something, don't break any confidences but you'll need someone

    to talk to as well.

    Hope some of this was helpful

    Message me anytime if you need support or just an understanding ear/eye : )

    Amy

  • Hello OWSI,

    Sorry to hear you are in this predicament with the confidentiality but it is really important that you don't break the confidentiality.

    Working with children/the youth we have to say something on the lines of... 'if I think what you're about to tell me means you may be harmed or on danger, I will have to speak to someone else that can help'.

    In real life this isn't the first thing that rattles off your tongue.... But what you could do is assure her that you are looking into seeking help, mention this site and other s like A & B or BEAT so that she is aware you are not holding onto all this alone. I think that is really important, for your sanity too.

    You could also get hold of this book. I am a parent of a daughter with a severe ED and this was recommended.

    amazon.co.uk/Skills-based-L...

    She does need specialist help. Via a GP referral - Your local authority will have an ED clinic. They will have Nutrition Psychologists to work with, psychologists etc, parent/carer sessions (usually 6 weeks), books to recommend, and perhaps informal groups you could attend together. Try to google in your area NHS Eating Disorder Services and see what comes up.

    They don't readily put ED clients in clinics/hospital unless they have a 'duty of care' to that is she is in danger. They would need to take blood tests and monitor them over months to decide if she was in danger, i.e. kidney damage, heart etc.... This is how I was advised by our ED clinic and this is the process we are going through now.

    So please put her mind at rest! Others here may suggest otherwise through their own experience.

    I wish you well, keep us posted. We are all here for you.

    Best wishes.

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