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Eating disorders

Peer support

Support provided by or between people with lived experience

What is it?

Peer support for carers provides non-clinical support that is informed by someone with a lived experience of caring for someone recovering from an eating disorder.

Peer support for carers creates a safe environment to support, learn, share and be connected with others who understand your experience.

What can someone expect?

Peer support can be a valuable resource to you as a carer or key support, in the same way peer support can benefit your loved one in their recovery.

Carer peer supports can be useful for:

  • drawing on lived experience supporting a loved one through recovery
  • providing a connection to other carers who might be struggling with carer fatigue
  • offering hope for your loved one’s recovery
  • helping you understand how to support the person you’re caring for and yourself.

Carer peer support places value on lived experience but isn’t a replacement for therapeutic interventions delivered by counsellors or psychologists.

There are many forms of peer support available for carers and they may be delivered in a group setting or through one-on-one sessions. They may be online or face to face. Carer peer support typically takes on the following forms.

  • Carer peer mentoring connects and matches someone currently supporting a loved one in their recovery from an eating disorder with a mentor who has lived experience caring for a loved one with an eating disorder.
  • Carer peer support groups and forums provide safe and supportive spaces online or in person for someone caring for a loved one with an eating disorder to connect with others with a shared experience.

Who is this for?

Peer support can be helpful if you’re a family member, friend, carer or key support of an individual living with an eating disorder.

How can someone access it?

Eating Disorders Queensland (EDQ) delivers two carer peer support programs with virtual and in-person (located in South Brisbane) activities:

  • carer peer mentor program
  • carer connect groups.

To find information about or access EDQ’s peer support services, contact the EDQ Care Navigator by emailing, calling 07 3844 6055 or visiting the EDQ website.

Butterfly Foundation has virtual and webchat carer support groups facilitated by trained peer facilitators or specialist counsellors.

Eating Disorders Families Australia (EDFA) is a national organisation providing support and education for carers and families impacted by an eating disorder. EDFA’s Strive Carers Support Program includes:

  • Strive Australia Facebook group—a private, 24/7 online support forum
  • regular virtual carer support groups—including groups tailored for specific disorders, ‘newbies’, siblings and men.
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