Society places undue pressure on women to maintain certain physical conditions. If you have ever felt stress or anxiety related to your size, your body, and your eating habits, then you know how quickly those feelings can spiral out of control. If you are struggling with an eating disorder, it is worth considering the benefits of women-only treatment for eating disorders in a safe space where you can be open and honest about your struggles.

Top 3 Benefits of Women-Only Treatment for Eating Disorders 

So, what are the main benefits of participating in a program at a women’s only treatment center for eating disorders?

Honest Discourse

One of the benefits of women-only treatment, especially for eating disorders, is an opportunity for honest discourse. In a combined, coed situation, you may be less comfortable opening up, especially about gender-related stereotypes or social pressures that may have contributed to or exacerbated your eating disorder. At a women-only treatment center, you can feel more comfortable to speak openly about these gender-related issues.

That honest discourse goes both ways. Not only do you have a chance to be honest, but so can the facilitators, therapists, or other leaders who are also women and who may have been in your shoes at some point.

Tackling Social Pressures

When you work with a women-only treatment center, you can trust that you are not only surrounded by other female participants but that all programs are led by women. This means you can openly talk about the unique, gender-specific issues and social pressures that can contribute to eating disorders for women. This can include the pressure to:

  • Stay thin after having a baby
  • Remain appealing for a partner
  • Look the same as models
  • Not “let yourself go” when busy
  • Stay fit even if you are raising kids and/or working

Moral Support

When you’re able to have honest discourse and tackle the social pressures that relate to your gender, you are also in a position to capitalize on moral and social support. When you are in a women’s only treatment center, you can find support from women who understand exactly what you’re going through. This support can extend not only through group therapy sessions but after you have completed your treatment.

Getting Women-Only Treatment for Eating Disorders at Casa Serena

When you come to Casa Serena for care, you reap all of the benefits of women-only treatment for eating disorders with access to several forms of therapy groups as part of your eating disorder program. This includes programs such as an OCD and Anxiety Group, where you can learn how to cope with symptoms of co-occurring OCD and anxiety and learn how to not let it significantly affect your emotional state, distress levels, and, by extension, eating habits.

Our women’s eating disorder program in Santa Barbara runs between 10 and 12 weeks, during which time you’ll have access to a certified nutritionist on staff and the ability to participate in several body positivity groups like:

  • Acceptance of Body Image Dissatisfaction
  • Perfectly Imperfect, which addresses emotional eating
  • Health at Every Size
  • Sorry Not Sorry (My Body is Not an Apology)

During your participation, we will provide access to resources that teach you how to set healthy boundaries, how to incorporate family support in your eating disorder recovery, and how to identify what food represents to you. The more in-depth awareness you have of what food represents to you, the better position you are to make healthy, positive food choices.

At Casa Serena’s women’s mental health treatment center, clients can participate in women-only residential and outpatient programs. We have been open for 65 years, working with community members to build safety, healing, and peer support. Our communal program helps women gain insight into their emotional distress and trauma and how that affects behaviors, particularly behaviors like eating disorders. With a focus on building that insight, clients walk away with more coping mechanisms and a love for themselves.

Overall, there are several benefits of women-only treatment for eating disorders, but the biggest benefit comes from the fact that gender-specific care gives you a safe space where you can open up about gender-specific issues and societal pressures relating to the female form and eating disorders. By offering women-only treatment for eating disorders, we hope to help you find the peer support you need for long-term recovery. If you are ready for a safe place for healing, contact Casa Serena today. 

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