Family & Friends

Family and Friends Helpline: 03000 11 12 13 (Option 2)

We know how difficult it is for you when the person you care about has an eating disorder or appears to be developing one. We understand the feelings; the fear for their physical and emotional wellbeing, the uncertainty – not being able to see the way forward or have hope for recovery. For family members there is often unnecessary guilt, the sense of isolation, the exhaustion and differences of opinion within the family as to how best to handle things.

We also know the dilemmas you face when first suspecting or discovering; will talking about it make matters worse?  Should I let him/her continue on their path, hoping it will be a passing phase? He/she won’t talk about it and is adamant that there is nothing wrong, so how can I help them move forward towards recovery, or even get them some professional help? Perhaps they’re waiting for a referral and you feel ‘stuck’ or they’re receiving professional care and you’re worried about their progress. Maybe they’ve left professional care and seem to be slipping back . 

We understand the depth of fear and worry, the helplessness and hopelessness you may be feeling and are here to help you, to offer you emotional support and practical suggestions for the way forward. Our family support has been a major part of ABC’s work for over 25 years and from our feedback, we know the difference our help makes.

Our team offers support and guidance to parents, partners, carers, family members and friends.

Get help now

Parent and Carers' Online Community

You have told us that speaking to another parent or carer who is supporting someone battling an eating disorder can be incredibly useful and supportive. You can be encouraged and gain insight by sharing your thoughts, feelings and experiences with someone going through a similar situation. At ABC we recognise the need to create a free platform through which parents and carers can form a virtual community. We invite you to follow the link, register and start posting, please click here.

"I found the call to ABC, informative, warm, reassuring, realistic without being afraid of alerting me to the potential dangers. It was trustworthy and reliable - ABC is a safe pair of hands."

Struggling during Coronavirus? 

We know how difficult it is to care for a child or loved one with an eating disorder during a health pandemic. The initial focus on food availability and the potential lack of 'safe' foods, the closure of gyms and leisure spaces, the social isolation and loss of routine and the additional worry and stress this situation creates can take a huge toll on parents and families. 

Alongside the support offered by our family and friends telephone and email helpline, we have created a downloadable guide: Coping with an Eating Disorder during Coronavirus. The guide includes tips and suggestions for both those struggling personally and their family and friends. 

ABC's Guide to Coping with an Eating Disorder during Coronavirus

Download your copy here