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E.D. Contact goes On-Line!

E.D. Contact is a new and positive Information Resource created by and for Families and Individuals living with Eating Distress in Ireland.

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friends and families

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what did not help me in my recovery

Reach Out



Bringing it out in the open .   


If you feel someone in your family or in school , at your workplace or among your friends is suffering from an Eating Disorder it is crucial to reach out and communicate in a gentle and supportive manner.

If you know someone with Eating Distress you probably often wonder what to say or do.

Remember what you say can potentially influence their recovery. You will need to anticipate how you should approach the subject - plan it.


Here are some tips to consider:


Decide who would be the best person to do the talking.

Sometimes it could be a parent, sibling, friend or room-mate. It helps to write down what you want to say. You will probably feel anxious when you start to talk. By familiarising yourself with what you want to say before you actually say it, you will be clearer when you do speak and your anxiety will lessened.


Pick a time when you are feeling calm.

If you are upset, angry or hurt your pain may be burdensome to the other person. It might also be much harder for the sufferer to open up if he or she fears causing you even more pain.


Avoid accusations and confrontations,

as it will only result in shutting down potential lines of communication. The other person will take it not as concern, but as a criticism or an attack. Gently express your concern. This is a small change, which can make a big difference in the end.


During the talk do not change the subject.

Let them know that you know how hard this must be to talk about it. Do not let the issue get sidetracked. Resist judging the other person's feelings. ("You must be very angry, otherwise you would be not doing this.")


Write your feelings down without too much analysing.

Just concentrate on expressing them. Keep in touch with other people in a similar situation.


Let go of your own guilt !

parents often can experience guilt and shame. It is a negative emotion that can paralyse you and sap energy that could be used more positively.


Do not try to find a rational answer to an irrational problem.

You could waste a lot time trying to find 'why'. You may need to accept this fact in order to avoid feeling angry and frustrated. Stop trying to find a single cause or cure for Eating Distress. These are complex, multifactor problems that have emerged over time from many different emotions, experiences, biological and psychological conditions. Each individual has his/her own history that makes his/her eating distress unique. This often makes the recovery process slow and complex.


You must understand that there are no 'magic pills' or instant cures.

how can teachers help



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