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My sister has confessed to being depressed and eating less... watch

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    Ever since my sister has left for Uni she has confessed to my cousin of her depression and her forcing herself to vomit. I'm really worried, I've never had to deal with this before... I want to confront her, help her get better but I have no idea how to?

    has anyone ever gone through something like this before? I'm really worried of the consequences which may occur, she's currently at home now, so I think this would be the appropriate time.

    Thanks for any advice guys, serious responses please.
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    You need to get her to the GP asap.
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    I've gone through the depression side I had to drop out of uni and never intended to go back, My health was far more important than worrying and stressing about everything. Seriously talk to her she'll be on a slippery down hill slope.
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    (Original post by FormerlyFrisbeeFan)
    You need to get her to the GP asap.
    And how do I persuade her? when a person has established a state of mind, trying to convince them to change and sough after an alternative is a really difficult task. She's also a very stubborn person, so I have no clue on how to approach this.

    Anon fail -.-;
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    Yes. If she's not in a stable state of mind or if she's been putting a lot of effort into maintaining a happy, healthy facade then it can be very devastating to confront her head on. It may stress her out and she may go straight back into those behaviours to get rid of the stress.

    You don't have to confront her directly because it may seem like an accusal - she may perceive that you do not understand her reasons and that you are judging her for it. These can be tricky. My suggestion is to gather information slowly - is it because she has a personality that feels anxious at revealing stress? Is it body or weight issues? Relationship problems? It could even be that university is just boring and she hasn't found her direction and this disappointment can drive people into despair.

    Offer to take her out, find ways to change the behaviour. Maybe you could learn to have a better relationship with food and her over some low-cal recipes. Find a new way of destressing. Show her places she can go to, things she can do, people she can meet if she is disappointed with university life. And if none of these work - tell her you are concerned and you have known it for a while and that you have never judged her a single bit for it. You have been trying, and that she should go to see a GP.
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    (Original post by turandot)
    Yes. If she's not in a stable state of mind or if she's been putting a lot of effort into maintaining a happy, healthy facade then it can be very devastating to confront her head on. It may stress her out and she may go straight back into those behaviours to get rid of the stress.

    You don't have to confront her directly because it may seem like an accusal - she may perceive that you do not understand her reasons and that you are judging her for it. These can be tricky. My suggestion is to gather information slowly - is it because she has a personality that feels anxious at revealing stress? Is it body or weight issues? Relationship problems? It could even be that university is just boring and she hasn't found her direction and this disappointment can drive people into despair.

    Offer to take her out, find ways to change the behaviour. Maybe you could learn to have a better relationship with food and her over some low-cal recipes. Find a new way of destressing. Show her places she can go to, things she can do, people she can meet if she is disappointed with university life. And if none of these work - tell her you are concerned and you have known it for a while and that you have never judged her a single bit for it. You have been trying, and that she should go to see a GP.
    I believe the weight issue was the catalyst for this radical behavior. Could I sit her down and help her plan a new diet? provide her with a exercise plan of sorts?
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    (Original post by Threepigs)
    And how do I persuade her? when a person has established a state of mind, trying to convince them to change and sough after an alternative is a really difficult task. She's also a very stubborn person, so I have no clue on how to approach this.

    Anon fail -.-;
    Ask her how much better she would feel if she knew she was on the road to recovery and did not feel trapped by her depression and eating disorder any more. I've got moderate depression and I've found medication and counselling helpful. Somehow, she needs to realise that there is hope, and that she - not the depression or the eating disorder - can be in control of her life.

    How you go about that is tricky, I agree. I didn't need to be persuaded to go to the doctor personally, because I'd just had enough and wanted to feel normal again. Maybe you could remind her of happier times, when she felt more in control? I'd chat to her first about how uni has been for her in general, then delve a bit deeper. If she complains at all about feeling anxious, lost, lonely or hopeless, I'd suggest in as tactful a manner as possible that she sees a university counsellor at least (and hopefully a GP as well). If she's receptive to the idea, you could suggest medication - she might prefer to think of depression as more of a chemical imbalance in the brain than as a mental condition.

    Sorry I can't be of more help.

    Edit: yes, sitting down with her and planning healthy recipes and meals is a good idea, so long as you don't just randomly introduce the subject into normal conversation.
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    Yes. You could ask her to join you on a Real lifestyle and diet change. Cut out refined carbohydrates, eat small portions of (delicious) whole grain pasta, bread and brown rice. Learn to cook lean meats in delicious ways (stir-fry with virtually no oil on a non-stick pan with lots of herbs or grilling) and replacing heavy cream with fromage frais with milk. Have more vegetables and protein than carbohydrates. Take the time and effort to do this together, make beautiful meals and be proud of your work. With a bit of time all the goodness and positive associations with food will inspire. Pizzas won't look as delicious, crisps will seem pointless. And if indulging, make sure it is special and meaningful. Sometimes food becomes a hobby because people get bored and feel life is meaningless.

    As for exercise, (myself included) sometimes it's getting started that is the hardest. Other times it may be anxiety (I wouldn't want to sweat in front of 20 other people) so there are many ways around just going to a gym and worrying about the cost. Taking long walks to the shop or making excursions to interesting places will get you walking too. Get happy enough to jump around, it's great to be able to move your limbs I like to watch a video on my laptop and jump around. Youtube has quite a lot of pilates videos too. It can be fun and empowering to try together.

    Sometimes we can be caught in our own despair but when there's someone else who looks ahead and charts the course there's too many good things to be unhappy.

    One thing about bulimia is that the behaviour is basically one that starts with a small lapse in control, which in turn is perceived as 'catastrophic' and more food is consumed, fueling both self-disgust and self-pity. Vomiting is almost punishment and something that is routine to prevent oneself getting 'fatter' or 'uglier' or even be closer to the subject of envy and admiration. To stop bulimia is to learn to not engage in the 'mistake' of eating too much to begin with - and if there is a lapse, learning to compensate with real and positive behaviours as well as forgiving oneself. It is probably very tempting or habitual to vomit instead of having to tackle the insurmountable, impossible task of getting fit the way 'other people do it'. These are thought patterns of despair and you can help her by being a positive, but not controlling, influence.

    (I've followed many forums for a long time and observed people talk about their problems. I don't profess to know your sister's issues in entirety! These are only my suggestions and I think self-improvement can go a long way.)
 
 
 
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