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Avatar universal

Is he okay?

I was visiting my boyfriend for the holidays (long ditance relationship) and learned from his mother that he wasn't eating. Evidently sometimes he'll go for days without eating, and then he'll pass out. I've known him for years, but this is the first time I've met him, and the first time I've heared tat he does this kind of thing.

I asked him about it, and he acted like there was nothing to discuss, other than when he goes without eating, when he finally does eat his stomach rejects it. While I was there he did throw up once--but I don't think he's bulimic.

He's very skinny... not like scary skinny, but he's about 5'8" and weighs 130lbs. he doesn't look sickly, but he is rather pale (he's a bit of a hermit, never goes out) and he has Eczema.

Every day since, on the phone I ask him what he's eaten that day.

I'm conserned for his health. I care for him very much and I want him to be as healthy as possible. Especially if one day we choose to have children.

Is there anything I should know?
Should I express more consern?
Is pressuring him to eat daily/plentifully the wrong thing?

Thank you,
-ConsernedGirlfriend
9 Responses
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712314 tn?1303098090
Well, first of all he's lucky to have you. Yes, i think you have a real reason to be concerned. It is very possible he might be anorexic. If this is something that he's just started doing you might not see a huge change in weight. He like myself might also have bulimerexia, which is a combonation of the two. He may be going days without eating, and then when he begins to eat normally he throws up afterward.
I think that you should know that this is extreamly dangerous and addicting.
I would talk to him more, tell him your concerned that he may have an eating disorder, and that your not mad, and you won't judge him, you just want him to be healthy.
Personally when people remind me to eat i find is annoying, but helpful. It reminds me that people care about me, and i should try to eat for them.
Best wishes
Rach878
Helpful - 1
Avatar universal
We met each other through a mutual friend about two years ago, and we've been really good friends for at least the last year. We've been "dating" since early September. He lives in Ohio, I live in Washington. I spent New Years with him and his family. When I graduate High School (with my AA, I might add) and he graduates High School (Home Schooled) in 2010, we've recently had a lighthearted conversation about him moving here.
It's still a young relationship, but we're pretty serious and we do plan on living together if our relationship lasts, (and as of now, we've never fought or had any disagreements.)
As for emotional and physical intimacy issues, it's kinda different, because he has Genital Eczema. He's really modest and is meek when I mention... well... when I mention certain things.
But aside from that he's a poster of a boyfriend. He's pretty 'clingy' and he's a bit of a hermit, so he doesn't talk to many other girls. He loves me bunches and he puts up with my fits just fine (I have Manic-Bipolar Disorder, and I take Lamictal for it, but when I forget to take it I call him screaming and crying and he has a knack for calming me down when nobody else can)
I've been asking him every day what and how much he's eaten, and he seems to be eating every day at least two meals (We're working on breakfast)
He eats when I ask him to... every once in a while I ask for photographic proof.
I think He's been taking care of himself since I found out about it.
It DID ruin our date when he was having issues eating at the Olive Garden.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Thank you. Your comment made me more confident to talk to him. If I tell him to eat, he will, but I find that if I don't mention it, he doesn't eat.

I guess he loves me enough to listen to me ^_^

After a while of keeping him eating, do you think I'll have to worry about it? Or is this something I might have to watch for the rest of his life? Can I ween (sp) him off of his anorexia?
Helpful - 0
712314 tn?1303098090
Anorexia is a complicated disease. It depends how willing he is to get better. People do recover, but it's still with them for the rest of there lives. I would talk to him, he might not even have anorexia. Some signes, are avoiding eating, hair loss, weight loss, fruequent bathroom use after meals, eating large amounts after not eating for a while. I would also say to you if he does have anorexia encourage him to go see his doctor, because you want to make sure he doesn't make himself sick.

It is possible for him to get better, he just has to want it. You might also ask him to go see a shrink, because he must have a reason for his anorexia that he needs to talk out with someone.

Hope this was helpful. Best wishes
Helpful - 0
514715 tn?1338266258
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Dear ConcernedGirlfriend,

I have a few questions.  How is it that you have just now met your boyfriend?  Do you and he have plans to be living in close proximity in the not too distant future?  Individuals with eating disorders have emotional and physical intimacy issues.  It would be important to see how your relationship would develop living close day in and day out.

Recent research shows that up to 20-25% of those with eating disorders are male.  The fact that your boyfriend does not eat for days and has purged is a concern.  Asking him what he’s eaten is not helpful.  Ultimately he is the one who needs to decide to address his eating and emotional dynamics.

You could express your concerns with saying I feel (sad, frustrated, angry, etc.), when you do (state the actual behavior).  So for example, I feel concerned for your health when I hear you do not eat for days.  I feel frustrated when I try to communicate with you about not eating, and you tell me it’s nothing.

Feel free to visit the bella vita website to learn more about eating disorders.  If your boyfriend is open to it, there is a male survey on our website he could take to see if he may have an eating disorder.

Best,

Dr Patricia Pitts
Los Angeles, CA
The Bella Vita

Helpful - 0
712314 tn?1303098090
Well, it sounds like he's doing ok. It's good he's eating 2 meals a day and is working on also eating breakfast.  Has he definitly confirmed to you that he has been anorexic?
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
The few times I've accused him of anorexia, he hasn't denied it... he doesn't really comment at all. He pretty much keeps his mouth shut about it.

But thank you all for being there to help me!
Helpful - 0
712314 tn?1303098090
My best guess is that his silence is telling you he thinks he has had anorexia, but prepapes to ashamed to verbally confirm. Keep me updated on how he's doing with eating.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
I am here to help.  And it's never too late for you.  I've had bulimia, I've had anorexia, and I've had both at the same time.  I don't have anorexia or bulimia anymore.  I've seen more therapists than I can count.  I've been sent, against my will, to lots of inpatient programs for months at a time.  I had almost no contact with my family during my stays. I am 5 ft 7 in. and weigh 120.  I have not thrown-up at all in 2009.  I exercise daily.  Ed has been my worst enemy and my best friend.  
Benotafraid Rachel because YOU are not alone.
Helpful - 0

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