Anorexics and bulimics anonymous is a type of support group for individuals suffering from an eating disorder. It is based on the same principles as Alcoholics Anonymous, and helps participants to follow twelve steps to change their behavior, and ideally progress toward recovery. Regular meetings of anorexics and bulimics anonymous are held, and membership is free to anyone who wishes to join. The groups will also frequently hold yearly retreats, where members may go away for a long weekend, attend special events and speaking engagements, and connect with other people.
It is important for anyone suffering from anorexia or bulimia to seek help from a qualified medical professional, and not to rely solely on anorexics and bulimics anonymous meetings for help. Medical treatment and psychotherapy are frequently required to treat eating disorders, which can be fatal if they are left untreated. Then, anorexics and bulimics anonymous meetings can be used as a supplement to treatment, and a way to develop an additional support system of people who care about the individual's success. This can be invaluable as part of an ongoing treatment and healthy maintenance plan.
Each anorexics and bulimics meeting will present an opportunity for individuals to share their stories, discuss the challenges they are facing, and receive input from others in a non-judgmental way. The people leading the meeting will discuss the twelve steps as well, and sometimes a particular speaker will come in to share his or her story. There is no set standard for anorexics and bulimics anonymous meetings, though there are program guides and literature that can be followed if necessary. A person attending these meetings might also work with a sponsor, and individual they can call if they are finding themselves particularly struggling, and cannot attend a meeting at that very moment.
The idea behind anorexics and bulimics anonymous is to give people a safe place to share their feelings with other people who understand, and ideally to change the way they think and behave by completing the twelve steps. Because it is also free, it allows people of any financial means to take part in the program, even if they cannot afford to go to therapy elsewhere. The anonymity of the program and the meetings also makes it more appealing to many.