When a friend is suffering from an eating disorder, it can be very difficult to know what to do and admittedly, even though I have suffered from Anorexia, I still find it difficult to know how to approach friends who are struggling.
Looking back, I now realise how important the role of my friends were during my battle. They told me that they believed in me and they knew I could recover. Just having this encouragement helped me to keep fighting.
Supporting a friend
It is sometimes difficult to know how to support a friend who has an eating disorder, and this often leads people to feel helpless and unsure of what to do. My advice would be to keep being yourself!! It’s nice for the sufferer to know that, even though they have a mental illness, your friendship hasn’t changed.
It’s also important to remember that, although your support will be a big help to your friend, only they are able to make the necessary changes. Although mental illness itself is not a choice, recovery is, and that choice has to be made by the person with the illness.
Take care of yourself
Mental illness not only affects the sufferer, but also those around them, so it is very important that you put yourself first and tend to your own needs before anybody else’s.