I'm not writing to you about me today, but rather my boyfriend. He's not a furry, but I figured that you might still be able to help us. So here's the swing of things: He's not happy with anything about his body, period. He said he feels unnatural. I think he's got body dysmorphia, because he's talked about hurting himself and other things like that. I'm just really concerned about him, and I don't know how to help. I've told him that he should talk to someone, but he lives in the southern area of the States (Louisiana), and doesn't feel that the response would be very good. Since you've been giving advice to lots of different people, I figured that you could give me some advice. Sorry in advance for any trouble.
Wreath (age 14)
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First, never apologize for "the trouble." That is what I am here for. Do you have a photo of him? What is his family life like? How is he doing in school? Is he sociable or does he keep to himself?
I will need much more information about your boyfriend. The following is from the Mayo Clinic website. Please look through it and get back to me on your thoughts...
Shame and embarrassment about your appearance may keep you from seeking treatment for body dysmorphic disorder. But if you have any signs or symptoms, see your health care provider or a mental health professional.
Body dysmorphic disorder usually doesn't get better on its own, and if untreated, it may get worse over time, leading to severe depression, anxiety and extensive medical bills, and may lead to suicidal thoughts and behavior.
CausesIt's not known specifically what causes body dysmorphic disorder. Like many other mental illnesses, body dysmorphic disorder may result from a combination of causes, such as:
Risk factorsCertain factors seem to increase the risk of developing or triggering body dysmorphic disorder, including:
ComplicationsComplications that may be caused by or associated with body dysmorphic disorder include, for example:
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Thanks for the quick response. I'm sorry, but I don't have a picture of him. As for his family life, as far as I know it's fairly good, with both parents and a supportive family. From my understanding he's got great grades and is fairly pleased with his work. Lastly, when it comes to friends and being sociable, offline he's very timid and quiet, but online is very outgoing. And concerning the article you sent me, some of the symptoms and complications do match (he has anorexia and depression, as well as social anxiety disorder). He's also teased quite a bit by his cousins, although if it's about his appearance I don't know. Anything else you need to know about him, and I'll tell you. Thank you so much for everything you do.
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Okay, well, if he has anorexia that would explain his bad body image, of course! I would suggest visiting this site https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/find-help-support to find some assistance with eating disorders.
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