October 23, 2012

How to Get Your Family Member into Care

Many people ask how they can get their loved one who is suffering from an eating disorder into treatment.

I recently received an email from a young girl who was concerned about her best friend. She saw that her friend had a severe eating disorder and felt that no one was doing anything to help – not the school, not her parents, and the not girl herself.

My suggestion was to stage an intervention. Get everyone that cares for the girl, and that the girl cares for into a room together to gently tell her about their concern for her, and the pain that they are feeling watching her do this to herself. Have everyone tell her that she needs to seek help as this cannot go on.

The technique of an intervention originally came out of the drug and alcohol field and can be very effective. In my experience it can finally convince the person to engage with professional services.

If you are at a loss of how to help your friend or family member consider an intervention. Of course, this is general advice and you must consider if it would be appropriate in your personal situation. For specific advice on your situation consider going to a mental health professional and sharing your difficulties with them.

Yours in health.

Dr. Charles

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  • carole: this makes a lot of sense to me too.I instead of asking and asking for help with my partner and kids do the...
  • Jennifer: Try looking up F.E.A.S.T. on the internet and going onto ‘Around the Dinner Table’. It is a...
  • Jenny: What about spitting? My daughter has changed from anorexia, to a habit of chewing but not swallowing food....
  • Jenny: I just showed my other daughter this (the one without an eating disorder) and she looked skeptical… Do...
  • pip: He’s just moved to CREDS today after his second sectioning. Hoping this is the break we are needing

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Book: Enduring Change in Eating Disorders

Enduring Change in Eating Disorders - Book Cover

Dr Fishman is the author of 'Enduring Change in Eating Disorders – Interventions with long -term results' (Brunner-Routledge 2004).

This book presents the powerful and proven effective model of Intensive Structural Family Therapy and its application to the treatment of eating disorders.