Someone asked me a few weeks ago to write a post on how to help/what to say to someone with an eating disorder. So here we are. Being someone who is always going to have an eating disorder I think I can write about this thoroughly without offending anyone. Please note that the things I’m going to say now have helped me. This doesn’t mean it’ll work with everyone so sorry in advance if it doesn’t work.
I’ve had an eating disorder since the age of 13 and it’s safe to say that I’ve had every argument, been offended in every way and had friends that have supported me massively. So here are my 10 top things you can say to someone with an eating disorder.
- It’s ok if you relapsed.
- You’re eating disorder doesn’t define you but it’s ok if you want it to.
- What do YOU fancy eating today?
- I believe you. – This I must stress is the most important to me. We spend years lying about our eating disorders so when in recovery and we slip up but mention it just to be called a liar… you can imagine the face we’ll pull.
- I’m here if you want me to be.
- I can’t understand this, but I can be here if you need to talk.
- You look good! – There is no point in trying to avoid commenting on our body, we know what you’re doing when you hesitate before complimenting something else like our hair.
- I’m worried about you – This is 100% better than you’re worrying me or you’re relapsing. We will listen!
- Don’t force yourself to eat, it’s ok – Sometimes we feel the need to eat when we’re in social events so having someone say we don’t have to is very helpful
- Let’s go and have a chat – Like I say sometimes being in social situations can spike our issues so to have someone who can notice when we’re struggling and get us out of these situations is super helpful.
I’m not saying all of these things will work because they 100% will not with some people but they are a good shot! Let me know how you get on with it or please leave any suggestions in the comment box on how you help someone you love with an eating disorder, equally if you have any questions please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org