Deciding to confide in your parents about your struggles is one of the bravest decisions you can make. It’s never easy to confide something so personal to someone, especially as a teenager to your parents. You may be worried that they’ll get angry with you, or won’t understand. If you’re like me you’ll be embarrassed and worried about disappointing them. Those are all normal feelings. Chances are that they already have an idea of what’s going on and by telling them you are taking a crucial step towards your recovery and receiving the support and care you need. Here are some tips for this conversation.
1 – Before the conversation make sure you’re in a quiet space with ample time to talk this out where no one will be interrupted.
2 – Be prepared for any response. Denial, anger, misunderstanding – these reactions are all possible. However, remember that if this is what you are met with it does not invalidate your struggles.
3 – Have literature to share to help them understand more what you are going through.
4 – Be patient and allow them to ask very basic questions.
5 – Be honest about your experiences no matter how embarrassing they might be. Your parents need to know the nitty gritty details and heartbreaking particulars in order to support you.
6 – Try not to get defensive and argue with them, that is not an effective way to get them on board with you.
If you are asking for help seeking treatment then telling your parents and having them understand is essential to their financial support. Your parents or guardians love you, they raised you, and they want what’s best for you.
Suffering with an eating disorder does not make you a bad daughter or son. Approach your parents with love, understanding, and an eagerness to help them learn more about what you are going through. This could be the first time they’ve ever heard firsthand about some of these disorders.
Good luck, you’ve got this.