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How can I tell others that that even though I am a male and not effeminate, I also have an eating disorder?

16 Answers
Last Updated: 04/17/2018 at 1:18am
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
Moderated by

Cynthia Stocker, LCSW

Clinical Social Work/Therapist

My approach is direct, kind, honest & collaborative. My clients appreciate that I help them in a way that cuts through the jargon and gives clear explanations.

Top Rated Answers
March 24th, 2015 5:09pm
Well, people who can't believe that, are probably not the people you want to be with. Those who matter, aren't really bothered by it, and those who are bothered, don't matter. Just say it aloud along with some ice breakers.
April 27th, 2015 6:03am
that you have an eating disorder. it can happen to anyone not just girls and guys that act "girly".
May 25th, 2015 1:51pm
Just tell them that you have an eating disorder. Eating disorders are not depending on the gender, they will understand it.
August 16th, 2015 10:12am
Explain what you feel the causes were, how it affects your life, make them understand it as a person
September 28th, 2015 8:52pm
don't worry about telling them if you said it once then its no need to say it again you know what you are and that's all that matters its just a stereotype
September 30th, 2015 2:14pm
Eating disorders are not biased in who they effect and they can effect anyone. If you feel comfortable enough to share it with someone they should be understanding and care for you. Remember that you didn't choose it, it's not your fault and it doesn't make you any less 'male' at all. It's only a stereotype that is a 'female' illness and if they cannot see passed this then maybe they are not the best person to confide in.
October 2nd, 2015 7:05am
Eating disorders aren't a female issue despite what society says. You have every right to seek and receive help, if people judge it only defines them as a person, not you.
October 5th, 2015 7:55pm
Hi. It is so cool that you are asking this here? You set an example for other males to not be ashamed to share this particular issue if they suffer from it. I struggled with Bulimia for over 20 years - I am male, straight, married. ED's are not gender specific, nor do they target certain sexual orientations. Telling others can of course be challenging. Not everyone needs to know, is how I feel. I have maybe a handful of people who know - they are my support. I trust them inherently. Maybe, start with one person you trust the most. Give it a shot. Explain to them why you are sharing - that maybe there is relief in it, that maybe you would not feel so alone. See how they handle this. Maybe one person is enough. Good luck to you, and again, as a male, I'm impressed with your uncommon courage.
November 12th, 2015 11:26am
It's a great misconception that eating disorders are something only women face. It's socially accepted that they are the result of media putting pressure on women to be skinny, but this is hardly the case. I suppose it's expected that if as a male you talk to someone about it they will be confused at first. However, you don't have to be hindered by it and you can explain your situation. If it's a person you trust and close to you, I'm sure they will put the effort on getting over the misconceptions and trying to understand you personally.
December 8th, 2015 3:27pm
I am so proud that you recognize that you have a problem and that you wish to tell others - the best thing you can do is just flat out tell whomever that you have a disorder, and that telling them, is you asking for help.
December 13th, 2015 4:37pm
To me, an eating disorder is not linked to a gender or character type. You can be the most manly man on the planet and suffer from an eating disorder (or any other disorder, mental or otherwise). As most people said, if you feel like sharing your problem, say it straight out. I believe that nowadays a lot of people already know that men and women can suffer from eating disorders equally, so it may not even be a question of "but why, youre a guy? its a girls thing!" but more "where does it come from?". Good luck and I hope you find helpful advice in your friends/family!
January 19th, 2016 6:46am
You could say I'm not effeminate and it is really none of your buissness so go be yourself and learn not to care what people think. It really helps
February 16th, 2016 7:25pm
Eating disorders can happen to anyone. Male or female, Caucasian or Hispanic, young or old, wealthy or poor. Eating disorders affect males, too.
April 4th, 2017 5:55am
My question is, why do you feel that you have to tell others? If you want to tell others, be comfortable in your own skin and have no shame to say so. Eating disorders may be known as a "female" issue, but it is an issue that affects men just as much.
November 28th, 2017 3:53pm
Unfortunately there is a stigma that eating disorders only happen to women and/or feminine people. However that doesn't make it true. If they know about your situation chances are they may actually learn more and be more accepting than you thought, but only do what's safe and comfortable.
April 17th, 2018 1:18am
Even though there are a lot of stigmas, guys can have EDs too. It's not a girl thing, it's a brain thing, and eating disorders don't discriminate. Just let them know what's happening, and if they act like you're lying or they make fun of you, just tell them that it's a mental illness. Your brain and its chemicals are acting in a way that makes you exhibit certain behaviors. Talking about it from a biological standpoint might make it seem less stigmatized.