Dare to Care – Bystander Intervention
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Dare to Care – Bystander Intervention

This year’s ETSU civility week theme,
Dare to Care, has inspired us to think more about our connection to others and
our common ground. One way you can Dare to Care is by engaging in bystander
intervention when you see someone who needs help. As a college student there is
a good chance that someone you know or even you may be suffering from an eating
disorder. An estimated eleven percent of all college students are suffering from
an eating disorder and the majority of eating disorders around 86% start before
the age of twenty. They affect both women and men. The earlier someone gets help
from an eating disorder, the better the chances of treating the disorder
successfully, so it is important to be informed and pay attention for these
warning signs in ourselves and those we care about, so what should you look out
for? Certain food related behaviors like skipping meals, portions that are too
small, or not eating in front of others may
be warning signs. Also behavior warnings like frantic fear of weight gain or obesity,
spending time obsessing over their image or reflection or disproportionate guilt
over eating. Also beware of excessive exercising, so how can you help? It is
important to address these issues as intervention breaks down the walls of
denial and secrecy that allow these disorders to thrive, but it is important
to approach this topic carefully, try to avoid sounding accusatory, let the person
know you’re coming from a place of concern. I worry that you aren’t getting
enough to eat, you have been skipping a lot of meals lately, don’t try to force
them to eat or make threats or ultimatums. Most importantly don’t be
afraid to talk with the professional about your concerns and how to help and
last but not least, don’t forget to speak up, speak out and Dare to Care.

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