Manhattan Wellness


Three-tier Dropdown Menu
Three-tier Dropdown Menu
Three-tier Dropdown Menu


Book Now


mw editorial

How to speak to a friend about your eating disorder

May 30, 2024

Two Brooklyn friends supporting each other through an eating disorder disclosure.

Speaking to a friend about your eating disorder can be a difficult and sensitive conversation. Opening up about such a personal and sensitive topic requires trust and careful communication. Eating disorders can be so isolating, and you can feel so alone in your struggle, so it is important to take advantage of your support system if you feel comfortable doing so.

Here our some of our tips for navigating this conversation:

1. Choose the Right Time and Place

Find a quiet, private, and comfortable space where you can talk without interruptions. Choose a time when both of you are relatively calm and have enough time to discuss the topic without feeling rushed.

Two friends walking in Brooklyn enjoying eating disorder recovery.

2. Plan What You Want to Say

Take some time to gather your thoughts and plan what you want to communicate. Be honest and clear about your feelings, experiences, and concerns related to your eating disorder. Don’t feel like you need a script, but rather, get curious about your feelings and needs

3. Express Your Feelings

Start the conversation by expressing your feelings and letting your friend know that you value their support and understanding. You might say something like, “There’s something important I’d like to talk to you about. I trust you and I value our friendship.”

4. Provide Information

Many people may not fully understand eating disorders, so consider offering some basic information about the disorder and how it has been affecting you. This can help your friend grasp the seriousness of the situation and provide a foundation for the conversation.

5. Share Your Experience

Share your personal experiences and emotions related to your eating disorder. Be open about how it makes you feel, the challenges you face, and any specific behaviors or thoughts you’ve been dealing with.

Three friends sitting in a Brooklyn park. Eating disorder recovery is better with a support system.

6. Explain What You Need

Let your friend know what you need from them. This might include emotional support, someone to listen without judgment, or someone to hold you accountable in your recovery journey.

7. Set Boundaries

If you’re comfortable, share any boundaries or triggers that you’d like your friend to be aware of while discussing this topic. This can help them understand how best to support you.

8. Be Patient

Remember that your friend may need some time to process the information and respond. They might not have all the right words immediately. Be patient and give them space if they need it.

9. Encourage Questions

Invite your friend to ask questions if they have any. This can help clear up any misunderstandings and show that you’re open to discussing the topic.

Two friends in Brooklyn smiling and laughing enjoying their relationship. Eating disorder recovery is better with support.

10. Avoid Blame

Frame the conversation in a way that focuses on your feelings and experiences rather than blaming or accusing. This can help create a safe and nonjudgmental space for both of you to communicate.

11. Offer Resources

If your friend is receptive, you can provide them with resources, such as websites, books, or articles, where they can learn more about eating disorders and how to be supportive.

12. Thank Them

After sharing your feelings and experiences, thank your friend for listening and being there for you. Their support can mean a lot, and acknowledging their willingness to be part of your journey is important.

Remember that every friendship is unique, and your friend’s response might vary. Be prepared for different reactions and emotions. If your friend is supportive, that’s wonderful. If they struggle to understand, consider sharing educational resources or seeking support from other sources, such as other friends, family, mental health professionals, or support groups. It’s important to prioritize your own well-being throughout this process and to seek professional help if needed.


At Manhattan Wellness, we understand that your relationship with food can be complicated. With all the messages and images we are bombarded with on social media, it can be difficult to navigate a positive relationship with food.  That’s why our female therapists want to support you in tackling your eating disorder with compassion and care. Let us help you create an empowering narrative that will benefit all aspects of your life. If you are interested in beginning counseling for women:

  1. Submit a Contact Form or Email Us at
  2. Learn More About Our Team and Our Areas of Expertise
  3. Prioritize Your Maternal Mental Health and Embrace the Fourth Trimester!


Our therapists understand that life in New York City is not always easy, and that other issues can come up along the way. To better support you, we offer a variety of services to cater to your individual needs. The therapy services we offer are Therapy for Self Esteem, Anxiety Treatment, and therapy for dating and relationship issues. As well as therapy for college students, support for maternal mental health, body image therapy, and so much more. Are you feel like you’re not living the life you want and need to make changes? Let’s talk about it.

Skip to content