NOTE: Remember that with eating disorders or any other resident concern, you need to communicate with your supervisor about the situation. YOu are not a trained counselor, and it is not good for you or for your resident to try and handle this alone.

Q. Eating disorders plague a huge number of college students, mainly women.(but remember, it can affect men) How can an RA be of assistance to someone with an eating disorder, especially since many these victims are not aware or deny they have a disorder.
See bottom of page for resource links

A. I think that the big thing that an RA would have a problem with here is in not being afraid to confront the situation. It’s a hard topic to deal with, and it can be kind of intimidating, but sometimes the most important step is the first one. Simply expressing your concerns and being there for help, along with providing some resources is a great way to start. Of course, if you know something is going on, and aren’t wholly comfortable helping the person just yet, contacting the university counseling center is always a good option.
Amber Benoit – Colorado State University

A. Educate. Educate. Educate.
Michael Wilde – Concordia College

A. I think the role of the RA in that situation is to show his/her concerns to that resident. Express your feelings about their well-being, tell them where they can get help, and once THEY decide to get the help, be a member of their support team.
Jennifer Anderson – Southern Methodist University

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