I’ve taken online tests and I have several matching symptoms to disorders like schizophrenia and bulimia. I’m 14, and my dad refuses to take me to a doctor. He makes fun of people with disorders and says their faking it. He says I’m looking for attention. I’m not saying I have this disorder but I’d like to find out if I do.

A. One way to deal with this issue is to speak to your school counselor or another trusted faculty member. Report your symptoms and discuss your struggle with convincing your father to take you for help. They might be able to speak to your father on your behalf and convince him of the importance of seeking professional help.

Another strategy is to collect educational information about the importance of proactively seeking mental health treatment and show it to your father. Perhaps he would be more open to your seeking help if he were educated about these matters.

You mentioned your father in your letter but not your mother. I’m wondering if she may be able to help. If not her, then perhaps there is a trusted family member whom you can speak to about these matters. Perhaps that individual could convince your father that you need help.

Two other ideas include: (1) writing your father a detailed letter about why you want help or (2) showing him the letter you wrote to Psych Central and my response. Perhaps one of those two things would convince him that you’re serious about wanting help. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle