Bulemic Employee

I think this may have been asked in a previous post (I think I may have even responded to it), and so please excuse if this seems redundant, but I really could use some help.

 One of our remote locations has an employee who seems to be bulemic.  It is a small office of 5-6 people and they share a single bathroom and so the entire office can hear the employee purge on a regular basis.  The manager of the office is concerned for the employee's health and also the climate in the office.  The employee's work is not suffering, but everyone is concerned for the person.

Short of the employee directly asking for help, is there anything that can be done?  I'd like to be able to provide some useful advice.

- E.



  • 3 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • I posted the same question about two months ago.  We had an employee that was also purging in the bathroom several times a day.  After calling our EAP and speaking to several other HR professionals, the safest route was to simply tell her about the EAP and discuss what they can provide.  We later found a suicide note from this employee, which led to mandatory counciling to ensure she was fit for duty.  She turned in her resignation a few days after this.  It's an awful situation, but the employee could be vomiting for a number of reasons; cancer, pregnancy, etc.  If her work is not suffering, saying anything about her health is a dangerous area. 
  • If you do not have EAP, you can try this tactic:


    "Jack, it's a little awkward for me to bring this up, but a few people have noticed that you are throwing up a lot.  I really don't want any illness flying around the office.  Are you OK to work?"


    It's a good conversation starter.  You are not likely (and should not try) to "cure" the bulemia problem but, at least you can get them to have less impact on your other workers.  This is exactly the kind of situation that makes EAP so nice to have.

  • I like TXHRGuy's approach to this if you don't have an EAP. I agree with the other poster that this could be something entirely different then bulemia that you are unaware of (pregnancy, serious illness like cancer, etc).
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