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To Sam

anorexia? bulimia?

hi sam,

ive had this on my mind but i dont know if i have anorexia or bulimia but if i do i know i need help most days i dont eat or drink because i just feel horrible about myself i think i do need help. but im scared to go to my gp as im only 12 and i dont want my parents finding out because if they do i feel like they will freak out and not trust me ever again since my family has been through so much already and i feel like if i do end up getting they would find out about my eating problems and disown me and i just want to stop this before it gets really put of hand

please can you give me some advice on this, thank you

Ask Sam



It’s difficult to know if you have an eating disorder without speaking to someone who is trained, like a doctor. If there are signs that make you think you have a problem with eating, it is important to go to your GP – even if this is a scary thing for you to do. It’s usually possible to go to your doctor without your parents knowing if you wanted to.

Some people tell me that they worry what their family and friends will say if they tell people they have an eating problem. I can’t tell you what would happen in your situation because everyone is different, but someone like your GP should take your worries seriously.

Going to your GP is a big step and it’s important to be ready for this. There is a website called Doc Ready which can help your prepare to speak to your GP. You have a right to go to your doctor and talk to them without anyone finding out what you said. Hiding things from your family is probably not going to make things easier though – as part of treatment for eating problems often involves people around you.

I asked Samantha from Beat about this and she suggested you read a page on their website for when you are worried about talking to people about eating disorders. She said that if going to your GP is too difficult then a good first step is to ask one of their Beat advisors a question.

Remember that Childline is always here for you as well. Thanks for sending me this letter.

Take care,


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