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Talking to someone you're worried about.

Encouraging your friends or family members to talk about how they feel can be one way of starting the help process.

What to talk about

  • Encourage the person to talk about how they feel.
  • Avoid focusing the conversation around food or eating.
  • Encourage them to get help and let them know you’ll be there to support them.

How to talk openly

  • Use statements like “I care about you” or “I’m worried about you”.
  • Let them you know you are there to support them and that you respect their feelings.
  • Don’t use guilt statements like “You’re causing problems for everyone” or “You’re behaving stupidly”.
  • Don’t rush the conversation.
  • Don’t dominate the conversation or talk over the top of the person; instead, listen.

What to remember

  • Remember that the person may feel angry, embarrassed, ashamed or guilty
  • Remember that the person may deny they have a problem
  • Don’t criticise or judge the person you are trying to help
  • Never blame the person for the things they are doing or the way they are feeling