National Eating Disorders Association

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Falling during recovery

I am 2 months into recovery and I've been triggered by a friend with an eating disorder and I'm not sure what to do.

I'm studying abroad so I'm not able to see my therapist. Was there anything that helped you during any triggers in recovery?


Hello and welcome to the forum. I am glad you found us. First off congratulations on two months of recovery. I would like you to know that recovery is a process with a lot of ups and downs. It is not a linear process. I am sorry you are being triggered by your friend. As a suggestion, can you reduce the amount of time you spent with your friend. You need to protect your process and sometimes that requires separating from triggering people, including friends. Two months after how long have you struggled? If you are in college most campuses have psychologists or therapists that are usually free. Also there may be a support group on campus. Actually I just realized you are abroad. I still think it is important to have someone to talk to about what you are going through. Recovery is difficult when doing it alone. Recovery is tricky because we have a few months of doing well and then bamm!!!!! We have to stand up again and start from where we fell, not from the beginning. You don't have to start all over again but stand up, brush the dust off and continue pursuing recovery. I am proud of you for posting. How long have you been out of the country? Could that be a trigger? Are you able to be in contact with family or friends from the states?

I just want to encourage you that there is Hope and recovery is possible. It does take time though. And a lot of work. I hope some of what I said was helpful. Keep posting as much as you need to or want to. Take care, iwanttolive


Hi Love-
Thanks so much for posting! We are glad you are here and hope you can find community among others who understand. First of all, congratulations on your 2 months of recovery! I'm sorry to hear you have been triggered by a friend- that must be so difficult. I agree with iwanttolive's suggestion of perhaps taking some space/distance from your friend, for your own health & well-being- because we ultimately need to put our own health first and prioritize our recovery. I've found that the number one step for me in managing triggers during recovery is just being aware of them- recognizing why it is a trigger, challenging the unhealthy thinking behind it. Dispelling the lies of ED and as difficult as it may be, saying NO to that voice. And above all, remembering why I want to recover- what ED takes away from our lives and the fact that hope & freedom is possible! I can imagine it is difficult being away from your surroundings and being able to see your therapist. I hope that you do have some source of support and people you can talk to while there. Know that we are always here for you in this community. Hope to hear from you again soon <3