Free Support for Support People

Family Heart

Getting treatment and having a strong support system at home is instrumental for individuals seeking recovery from their eating disorder. We strongly encourage families and friends to be active in their loved one’s journey, but that can also come with its own set of frustrations and feelings of being overwhelmed.

A few things that support people should know:

  • You did not cause the eating disorder.
  • Recovery takes time. Sometimes, lots of time.
  • Be patient — with yourself and your loved one. Treatment is rarely a quick, linear path. There will be some backward motion that comes with forward motion.
  • Get support for yourself. You’re not alone in this.

The Emily Program provides free Family and Friends support groups in the Twin Cities that are held at The Emily Program offices, and The Emily Program provides free support groups in Washington locations – Spokane, Seattle, and South Sound (Lacey).

These groups offer support people a safe, open forum to listen and be heard — from advice, tips, failed attempts, successes, and everything in between — gathering with others going through a similar situation is a great way to make sure you are getting the support you need. Groups are important so you don’t ever feel alone and you have people to talk to who “get it.”

Our Understanding Eating Disorders, Treatment, and Recovery is another option for any support person who is “new” to eating disorders. This group will help you begin to understand the complex nature of eating disorders, language you might hear used as your loved one goes through treatment, and how to begin to support your loved one. This group is available to anyone in Seattle or Spokane, WA and St. Paul, MN. 

All of the Family and Friends support groups are free and open to anyone in the community who has someone in their life struggling with an eating disorder — your loved one doesn’t have to be receiving treatment at The Emily Program to attend. And it’s drop-in based, so no need to RSVP. Click here for more information about days, times, and locations for these groups. We hope to see you there!

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