Eating disorder social cues 

In today’s world, how someone looks is often the main topic of conversation in gossip between friends. It’s not always meant to be rude, sometimes a person will make a comment without even thinking about how it could affect someone. While focusing on eating disorder awareness, it is important to note the impact words can have.

Certain words can trigger an eating disorder because people struggling with them see themselves differently than others do. Making comments like “Oh you are so skinny, you should eat and get some meat on those bones” or “Why aren’t you eating anything? You look like you’re starving” can trigger a relapse. The same thing goes for comments like “Did you really need to get that much food?” or “I don’t know if that will fit you, it’s probably too small.” Even phrases like “Oh my gosh you look so good, have you lost weight?” can be triggering even though they are meant as a compliment. 

In many cases, the way someone looks is not entirely up to them. Telling someone “you need to eat, I can literally see your collarbone” is not helpful because that’s the way their body is shaped naturally. It’s the same concept for someone that’s not considered skinny. Some people are built to have more fat in certain areas than others, so while you think they look “big” they aren’t, it’s just how their body works. 

Society has made it so that someone’s weight and how they look are of the utmost importance. In old Hollywood movies, lots of female characters have noticeable curves because that is what women were supposed to look like. Those looks weren’t natural, women would use corsets and other methods to portray the ideal body. It’s important to remember how the media can create stupidly unrealistic expectations.

The all-encompassing idea is to be careful what you say about a person’s appearance. Just because you may not think a comment is hurtful doesn’t mean that applies to someone else. Live by the golden rule and treat others the way you want to be treated, you never know who you might be helping.