National Eating Disorders Association
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Leon Silvers is a psychotherapist, founder, and director of Silvers Psychotherapy, a group therapy practice in NYC. He specializes in working with clients with eating disorders, substance abuse, trauma, and LGBT issues.

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When I was deeply suffering from my eating disorder, I hated my body. I abused it. Worst of all, I separated myself from it. My mind became one entity and my body became another. To my mind, my body seldom did anything right. 

Since entering recovery, I have had to learn how to care for my body, how to nourish it, and how to appreciate it. But most importantly, I have had to accept that I am my body and my body is me. I will never be able to separate from my body, nor should I want to. When I hurt my body, I am hurting myself.

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We are nearing the end of Hispanic Heritage Month (also known as Latino Heritage Month), and although this month purports to celebrate and honor brown culture, it is a time that evokes feelings of dissociation for me. Yes, I am of Mexican-indigenous descent, and I genuinely appreciate recognition and celebration of people of the brown diaspora. I don’t, however, understand the logic behind the language used—Hispanic, Latino, Latinx—to describe a group of people that I have felt forced to identify with all these years. 

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From an early age, I knew that I loved deeply. I loved people in a way that felt like too much at times. I had names for every single one of my stuffed animals and I'd always buy them used because I felt like I had to save all of the orphans that were being given away. Growing up in a big family, I never felt alone. My three brothers and two sisters would keep me company and I always had someone to play with. It wasn't until the end of 5th grade when I learned how to play by myself—not because I didn't have friends, but because I felt safer being by myself.

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October marks LGBTQ History Month, a time for reflecting on the community’s history as well as the LGBTQ+ civil rights movement. The community’s numerous accomplishments would not have been possible without the efforts of countless individuals working tirelessly for equality. Here are 10 individuals from the past and present who have made the world a better place—and have offered words of wisdom on confidence and taking up space. 

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Last week, I had the privilege of attending  In My Mind: A LGBTQ People of Color Mental Health Conference organized by DBGM. Held once a year in New York City, the conference centers the voices of LGBTQ+ people of color, particularly trans women of color. 

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It’s no secret that gender stereotypes are an omnipresent aspect of today’s society. A trip to a toy store, visit to a playground, or afternoon watching children’s television programs reveal that from an early age, girls are expected to be vulnerable and in need of protection while boys are supposed to be adventurous and independent. These harsh norms are often ingrained into children before the time they reach age 10. 

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This week, the bisexual+ community is being celebrated and recognized. #BiWeek aims to increase awareness and support for LGBTQ people who fall under the bisexual+ umbrella. LGBTQ people already have many issues of being misunderstood, mislabeled, bullied, and victimized. In addition to these issues, people who fall into the LGBTQ community are far more likely to suffer from an eating disorder. 

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Many of us from minority communities, whether it be our race/ethnicity, sexual orientation/gender identity, foreign/immigration status, or any other such factor, share an unfortunately common experience moving through the world: being the only one of your group in a room.

This “room” may be a classroom, a waiting room, a workplace, a party or event, or even a terminal at an airport. It doesn’t really matter what the context is, the experience remains the same.  

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Each year, it is reported that one person in the UK completes suicide every 120 minutes. Most of those people are men. And suicide and eating disorders often intersect; for example, those suffering with anorexia are 31 times more likely to attempt suicide than the general population. 

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