We have had a ‘recovering’ anorexic, bulimic and body dysmorphic girl move into our flat to live with her boyfriend. She has been here around about two months. In this time, we (the other 5 members of the flat) have not seen her eat.
I have asked her about this an she says she eats when she is out in the afternoons, that she can’t eat a lot of food varieties because she is pescatarian (or something similar), cant eat bread or similar, and that she does eat just not in front of anyone (dubious).
I have also been told some ‘facts’ and am wondering whether they are true – when she was 1st diagnosed she was told that is she ate an apple she would gain 2 pounds because her metabolism was so slow that she has to walk after every meal for it to digest, she has the metabolism of an extremely obese woman and so can’t eat anything that ‘sits heavy’ in her stomach e.g., that’s not veges/salad.
At meal times she sits on the couch and reads magazines (such as Vogue etc, the type with far too thin models) while we eat, like it is normal. As we are all girls who are, at times, conscious of our weight this in turn makes us conscious of what we eat.
What can we do? I have talked to her about it but there appears to always be an excuse – if I ask her to make some meals to freeze then have them with us she says she doesn’t like cooking only for herself, if we cook something vegetarian or similar its ‘no thanks’ and if we ask her to cook us a meal so that she can have it with us she says that we wont consider it to be real ‘food’ because its pescatarian/salad/similar. Once though she did make a salad for our side and ate maybe ½ a small bowl which was encouraging.
This has escalated to when the other day I said I don’t believe she is eating in town, as she has lost weight (is –and always was- rail thin, just more so now). Her boyfriend (who said he didn’t want anything to do with it, to talk to her about it, didn’t want to know if there was actually a problem etc) has gotten incredibly fired up over this confrontation.
I am at a loss of what to do next. Does this sound like there may be a problem or have I brought up something that is not really an issue?
Some advice on how to approach this would be EXTREMELY appreciated as I don’t have any prior experience of dealing with/approaching an eating disorder.