How to Show Your Support
When someone you love is struggling with an eating disorder, it can leave you feeling helpless. We're here to share ways you can help to support your loved one on their journey to wellness and recovery.
Arm Yourself with Accurate Information
Living in the age of information and technology can be beneficial and harmful as there is a mass spread of misinformation and stigma around mental illness. It is imperative that you learn the differences between common myths and facts about the eating disorder your loved one is living with.
In addition to learning about the eating disorder your loved one is living with, it is also helpful to learn more about proper nutrition, maintaining a healthy weight, and exercise.
Provide Positive Reinforcement
When living with an eating disorder, it is not uncommon for people to deviate from their path to recovery and wellness. In these moments, your loved one may be harsh on themselves for a misstep. You can be supportive by offering words of encouragement, reminding them of their courage and strength for seeking the help they need.
Ask How You Can Help
Although you may find yourself worrying about what to say or do in this delicate situation, more often than not, you can trust your judgment. Keep in mind that people can sense when you’re being overly delicate or hyper-focused on making sure they are “okay.” If you ever find yourself wondering what you can do to help, ask what you can do to make them feel supported.
Although you may want to help your loved one through this difficult time, it is important to remember that they will only recover from their eating disorder when they are ready and willing to work toward it. You cannot love someone into feeling better and that’s okay — recovery can prove to be a long process.
Remember to Take Care of Yourself
While you work toward supporting a loved one living with or recovering from an eating disorder, remember to prioritize your wellbeing. Continue your self-care routine to maintain your mental health and wellness while you help your friend or family member through this stressful process.