(Closed) Friend in worrisomely bad relationship & developing eating disorder :(

posted 5 years ago in Relationships
Post # 3
1400 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

If she already knows she has a problem and that it needs to change, there’s not a lot you can do except be supportive. Once you get to the point where you realize you’re out of control (ironic eh) it becomes a personal battle of wills and as much as you want to help her, you can’t really.

Just be there, let her know you’re there and don’t stop being supportive. A strong support system is so valuable in recovering from an eating disorder. When she is ready, she’ll find a way to ask for help and then you can go from there. She can only be so destructive for so long, eventually she’ll want out. And if she has people who love her around her, she will make it through. 

You can’t force it. There’s nothing you can tell her that she doesn’t already know or that will make her change her mind on the spot, it doesn’t happen that way unfortunately. Just be her friend for now and try to let her work her way through it. If you see it get too bad, maybe call in the reinforments but you don’t want to force it right off the bat because often, that doesn’t work long term anyways. Its like addictions, smoking, alcohol.. you don’t stop until you want to.

I wish your friend wellness, and I hope she gets through this sooner rather than later. And I wsh you patience and a little peace, its a really hard struggle to watch someone you’re close to go through.


Post # 4
1737 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

@Creiddylad: I feel so sad for your friend. What an awful situation to be in. I see that you said she won’t cut off contact with him right now, which is a shame because honestly, that’s the best thing she could do for herself. But if she isn’t able to do that, I think her second-best option is to start seeing a counselor or therapist ASAP. Would she be open to doing that? They can do a lot to teach her appropriate methods for dealing with this guy when he starts to get manipulative and also help her with her eating disorder.

Post # 5
734 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

*sigh* This is my FI’s mom exactly. The weight thing is the one thing she can control.

Please, keep boosting your friend’s confidence. Don’t say “hey, you better leave”… instead, encourage her every day and let her know what a strong, capable woman she is. It doesn’t have to be much… just a tiny bit of encouragement will do wonders for someone like her.

Let her know that you’ll always be there for her and prove that you will… don’t get annoyed or frustrated when she tells you about things that he has done. I have a hard time with this one.

Chances are, she knows there is a problem, he has just beaten her down so much that she doesn’t believe she can make it on her own AND/OR she is scared about what he would do if she were to leave.

It always seems to get harder to leave longer women stay with these men and I personally believe that a big part of it is that people start getting tired of the drama. And I honestly can’t blame them in many ways… but I will say from my FMIL’s situation that she really could have used a good friend who actually would have encouraged her a long time ago instead of what she had which was either “leave now, you’re such a doormat!” or “maybe you just should stop making him so angry…” (MAJOR UGH! To that second one). She had a lot of people willing to help if she wanted to leave, but unfortunately she didn’t have the confidence to leave.


It is huge that you are as concerned as you are. Sad to say, a lot of people just want to look away and “not get involved” or “they don’t want to choose sides” because “there are always two sides to the story and everyone has their own interpretation” (when it comes to abuse there is only ONE SIDE, IMHO). I know you’ll be a great friend to her and have a huge impact on her life. 🙂

Post # 7
174 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 2015

@Creiddylad:  I had a friend who was in a bad relationship and developed anorexia as a result (not just of the relationship, but also the fact he brought up comments about her childhood which wasn’t the best, messily divorced parents etc.). He made her believe that she was fat (which she never was, and I’ve known her since we were 5) and that noone else would ever want her.

The tricky thing is, trying to help someone out of this sort of situation can come across badly to the person in a relationship. They tend to be beaten down, and think you are just anothre person having a go at them, which doesn’t help. If your friend knows she has an issue, this is a great start, however there is very little you can do yourself except be supportive. Depending how sensitive she is, just be there for her, and test the waters as to what she will listen to you saying.

I’m really sorry you have a friend in this situation, I know how nasty it is. I hope she comes out of the relationship and can build herself back into a strong person with the support of loved ones.

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