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How We Are Helping

MentorCONNECT's presence within the eating disorders field offers recovered and recovering individuals a place to connect, find support, give back, and contribute to recovery research. Read on for highlights!

 

August 22, 2014: The Journal of Eating Disorders publishes the results of MentorCONNECT's 2010 research survey (in partnership with Dr. Marisol Perez / Texas A&M University)

Findings suggest a mentor model is beneficial for individuals engaged in the process of recovering from an eating disorder in the areas of quality of life and treatment compliance. Specifically, mentees in a mentoring relationship reported better family and close relationships, future outlook, and psychological, emotional, and physical well-being than unmatched mentees. Mentors reported being positively impacted by the mentoring relationship by strengthening the skills they learned while in recovery, and reminding them of how far they had come in their own recovery. The findings in this study suggest that mentor programs warrant further investigation as ancillary support services for individuals recovering from an eating disorder....READ MORE

 

MentorCONNECT Member Art Gallery

 

Visit our "I Love MC" photo gallery for more!

 

 

 

Books Endorsing MentorCONNECT

by Shannon Cutts (Founder of MentorCONNECT)by Andrea Roe with Shannon Cuttsby Carolyn Costin & Gwen Schubert Grabb

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

by Cheryl Kerriganby Jenni Schaefer

by June Alexander & Cate Sangster  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

by Lindsey Hall & Leigh Cohn

 by Dena Cabrera & Emily Wierengaby Meryl Hershey Beck

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recent Print Articles

NEDA Parent, Family & Friends Network Newsletter

British Columbia's Women's Hospital eNews interview with Lori Henry

Say Yes to Life: The Road Back from Eating Disorders

The East Hampton Star profiles Emi's amazing ride!

New York Metropolitan Parents Magazine: Cross Country Ride Raises Awareness of Eating Disorders

 

Recent Press Releases

4th Annual Virtual Walk Fundraising Event Brings Eating Disorder Awareness Initiatives to Social Media

MentorCONNECT Joins with the National Eating Disorders Association for the 3rd Annual Virtual Walk, a Social Media-based Awareness and Fundraising Event for Eating Disorders

National Eating Disorders Association and MentorCONNECT Launch 2nd Annual 'Virtual Walk' - 'It's Time to Walk, Talk, Post, Tweet & Blog About It!'

MentorCONNECT Celebrates the Stunning Success of Emi Berger's "Tour de MentorCONNECT" with over $10,000 in funds raised!

MentorCONNECT Announces Collaboration with Dr. Walter Kaye / UCSD Eating Disorder Research Program

MentorCONNECT is a Winner of the 2011 Health Impact Award from Wellsphere

MentorCONNECT Announces the Launch of Emi Berger's "Tour de MentorCONNECT" cross-country eating disorders awareness and fundraising ride

 

Recent Videos


 

 

Presentations on Mentoring & Eating Disorders

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Testimonials from Members & Professionals

I think that you are bringing something into the field that can make a huge difference and eventually, having a Mentor before discharge will be like having a sponsor in AA. -Wendy Oliver-Pyatt, M.D. FAED, CEDS, Founder of Oliver-Pyatt Centers

 

There is nothing more isolating than a battle with an eating disorder.  During my recovery from anorexia, I found the most healing of course through therapy, but also through connecting again with people.  Friends. Family.  Individuals whom I could trust and talk to at any time, whether I was feeling blissfully happy or woefully inadequate.  Letting my guard down and opening up to people; having mentors to guide me and encourage me through the HARD journey of recovery was my saving grace.  One cannot weather the storms of this life alone, especially the darkness of an eating disorder.  MentorCONNECT is a positive and powerful way for individuals and professionals to lift up and support each other when they feel no one else in the world could possibly care.  I congratulate Shannon for all of her hard work in bringing the eating disorders community together and helping people not only to hear the words "You are not alone," but to experience that truth for themselves.  I will be forever grateful to my mentors, and know that thousands will find the love and compassion at MC that they need to recover to health and happiness. -Kirsten Haglund, Miss America 2008

 

Having a mentor has been the missing piece I have needed in my two decade search for freedom. Today with her support, I will succeed in reaching recovery once and for all. -T.D., Mentee Member

 

My mentor has been an unbelievable source of support and inspiration to me. She is incredibly insightful and truly "gets it". Thank you MentorConnect for providing me with this wonderful and integral part of my treatment team and for truly igniting the spark in my recovery process that I was so desperately lacking. -Pratibha, Mentee Member

 

I may have only been here three days, but I've already received more support than I have in the past three months. Thank you so much for providing a place like this. You have no idea just how much it all means to me - and my recovery. -Laura, Mentee Member

 

Which takes more courage --- to suffer alone and remain isolated or to reach out for help? Exactly. Knowing that you need help is wisdom. Doing what it takes to get that help is an act of courage. Shannon Cutts' MentorCONNECT program is here to give you a place to display your courage. -Thom Rutledge, Author of "Embracing Fear" and co-author with Jenni Schaefer of "Life Without Ed"

 

My advice to you, as a new member on this site is to: spend some time exploring it. Check out all the different tabs and see all the cool things that are offered. Then, jump in! Write a blog, join a chat, find a group,  write on someones page, call in to the teleconferences, find a mentor (or mentee), and just reach out. There are so many opportunities to get connected and learn about recovery. If one thing isn't your style, try something else. Don't give up. DO realize that you aren't alone in this. Most of all, have fun and make friends along the way. Recovery doesn't have to be dull and boring when you have a site as cool as this one!! -Catey Mentee Member

 

Shannon Cutts wisely recognizes that healing from eating disordered behaviors includes not only skilled treatment from a knowledgeable team of providers but a number of adjunct activities as well. The addition of these activities (yoga, mindfulness, mentoring) allows for an integrated approach to treatment that can produce positive results way beyond what a "standard" treatment protocol may achieve. There is no "one-size-fits-all" protocol for the treatment of EDs. Including MentorCONNECT as an adjunct activity provides an important component to a well-rounded approach. -Doris Smeltzer, MA, author "Andrea's Voice: Silenced by Bulimia"

 

I just wanted to share with you how much I have enjoyed and eagerly look-forward to the monthly teleconferences on MentorCONNECT.  I have gotten sooooooooooooo much out of each one.  My husband and I just moved to a new house, and I have been spending a lot of time stripping wallpaper and painting walls.  During that time, I like to listen to the teleconferences and radio shows.  It helps feed "My" mind and lets Ed know that I am still in the fight to kick him to curb....step by step.  I hope you continue the teleconferences and maybe one day, even be able to increase the number of them you have each month! -Jill, General Support Member

 

Shannon Cutts, the founder of MentorCONNECT, is an inspiring and positive light illuminating the path to recovery from eating disorders.  MentorCONNECT is a unique opportunity to find online support through mentoring relationships, groups and posting forums.  Mentoring, along with a treatment team of eating disorder treatment specialists,  may be the next step in helping an eating disorder sufferer recover and thrive.  If you haven't already joined MentorCONNECT, check it out and find uplifting recovery support! -Jacquelyn Ekern, Director of Eating Disorder Hope

 

I cannot say that I would love myself to the extent I love myself today without the support I have received from MentorCONNECT. When I first decided to join MentorCONNECT I didn't really think it would truly help my recovery nor my life. I was doing well at the time but for some reason I still cannot fully explain today, I joined as a mentee member. It was one of the hardest things I did to make that decision in my recovery journey. I felt anxious once I was approved about what it would be like, what would it help with, if any, and what kind of people would be on there. I have had experience on other sites that ranged from pro-ana and mia to pro-recovery, watched many inspirational videos and done my own research on what I could do on my own. I was already fully supported by a treatment team and I am thankful for them. After about a week or so I decided to go on a Monday night chat. It was that chat I discovered that MentorCONNECT really is a beautiful place that is different than anywhere I have been before. I then that night actually decided to take a risk to get more involved so I posted in some groups, wrote some blogs and my life began to change even more for the better. MentorCONNECT has been a great addition to my treatment team as well, and they agree. I can't say enough how much MentorCONNECT and its structure of everything from pro-recovery guidelines to the plethora of groups has helped me experience the freedom I do today. Not the false freedom Ed tells you that you have with him but the true freedom where I have self-love, self-compassion and the sense I can overcome anything Ed tries to throw my way and also anything life throws my way. I know MentorCONNECT will always be there in my tough times to help me but I love that on MentorCONNECT we can support others too. This community is one-of-a-kind. -Devyn Kerr, Mentee Member

 

I have to admit I had no idea what I was getting into with MentorCONNECT!!! I thought it would be great to connect with ED sufferers and share what I have learned about myself in my very long battle with ED but I never could've imagined the many rewards I would receive! The power of really connecting with someone else who is struggling with what you have struggled with before both validates my own struggle and allows me to truly come from a place of compassion....which is where healing begins. I look so forward to hearing from my mentees and feel proud when things are good and feel my heart hurt when things are not so good but either way I'm there as a sounding board. I'm there for them to be accountable and to sometimes be the reality check. Mentoring has also enabled me to solidify my own recovery. I am human and sometimes stumble myself but am able to right myself quite quickly by applying the advice I have given to my mentees....it's practicing what you preach for sure! So I would encourage anyone who is considering mentoring to do it, you can't imagine how it will change your own recovery. Thank you Shannon & MentorCONNECT's Leadership Team for being so dedicated to the simple and true principle that Relationships Replace Eating Disorders!!! -Julie Squires, Mentor Member

 

I really feel like I'm starting to grow. I think that the biggest role in my growth has been sharing so openly with my mentor and through the blogs. I'm finally able to get thoughts out of my head and not feel so overwhelmed and bogged down by them. I am starting to be able to recognize my needs. I'm also starting to recognize/ distinguish between the Ed voice and my voice, what Ed wants and what I want. This stuff has been so important for me. I know that I wouldn't be where I'm at without all the support on this site! Thank you so much for being here!!! It's saving my life! -Leslie Ann, Mentee Member

 

This program is amazing. It feels so good to be able to mentor and help someone and possibly make it a bit easier for them. There is nothing more rewarding than knowing you are making even the smallest bit of a difference in someone's life. When you have been where they have been, when you have experienced, first-hand, the pain and the frustration and the sorrow, you know what it's like. The greatest feeling is knowing that you are lessening that for someone. You can see the relief from them when you simply say, "I've been there. I get it. It gets better." Being able to help, and being able to use my struggles to better someone else's life is truly as good as it gets. -Jen, Mentor Member



I would just like to say THANK YOU for MentorCONNECT. It has been such a blessing in my life and a fantastic recovery tool. The daily mentoring emails that you send out are very encouraging and help me start my day on a positive note. I also really enjoy listening to the monthly teleconference recordings. You're doing such an amazing thing! -Elizabeth, General Support Member

 

I just want to take a moment to say thanks! I cannot thank you enough for all you do- it's so amazing! I am stronger in recovery now then i ever was and that is due to mentor connect! -Miriam, Mentee Member

 

Thank you for Mentor CONNECT. It really has been the most influential tool in my recovery thus far. I feel like MC is my recovery family. I can get on here when I'm struggling with thoughts or when I am in a really good place, and always find people who care. I've met some truly amazing people through this website, that I can honestly say have changed my life for the better. Another thing that is so great about MC is that while we are all recovering from an eating disorder in whatever manifestation, there isn't a single person on here that I have talked to that I think of in terms of what their eating disorder looks like. I've been in a variety of online eating disorder groups from pro-ana groups to recovery groups, but it is only on MentorCONNECT that I feel like everyone is a person separate from their eating disorder. I honestly love the pro-recovery guidelines because they set the boundary for relationships, so you can be supportive about the real recovery stuff instead of getting caught in the symptomatic comparison. Whether it be on chat, the blog postings, or any of the numerous groups on all sorts of topics there is a place for people to come at any hour of the day or night to find support in your recovery from people all over the country (and world!). We talk about our recoveries a lot, but I feel like I KNOW the people fighting against the monster eating disorder, instead of just knowing "their form of the monster". I've met people of all ages, stages of recovery... with different interests, hobbies, passions, dreams, goals, talents, and personalities. This place is something special, and I love it here. I don't think there is another group of people together on the internet that can brag of being so deeply supportive and encouraging of those who are battling or have battled an eating disorder. -Caitlyn Davis, Mentee Member

 

MentorCONNECT has been very helpful for me in my recovery journey. After joining, I looked forward to receiving a mentor, and when I did I was amazed at her wisdom and insight. While having the support of a therapist, doctor, and others is very helpful and often necessary, I have found this additional support to be very beneficial. It is great to be able to talk through various issues with someone who’s been through struggles similar to yours. They tend to have a different perspective from those who have never dealt with ED. I also find the weekly online chats to be helpful. They remind me of my recovery goals and equip me with courage to face the challenges of a new week. -Joan, Mentee Member

 

Being on MentorCONNECT has helped me see that there's a lot of people out there that get it and care. MentorCONNECT has really been that missing link for me. It's like I can actually use my skills and everything I've learned [in treatment and with my therapist] because I know I'm supported. When I'm struggling I know I can get online or make a call. I have hope now that I personally know more people that have really recovered. -Katie, Mentee Member

 

To all the MentorCONNECT newbies you are in a WONDERFUL place. MC is amazing and so is everyone on that. I don't just say that. It has helped pushed me further into my recovery. Recovery is possible for everyone and that you are in a good community that will help support you. You are not ALONE, far from that. Use the groups, blogs, and chats it helps so much! USE MC! WE love you! We are in this together! I believe that soo much. My favorite quote is "Recovery is a journey, not a destination." by one of our own Cheryl Kerrigan! -D.K. Mentee Member

 

I think this is great what you have put together. I think one of the hardest parts of having an ED is the loneliness that comes with it. People without eating disorders do not understand the disease at all and people that are struggling are not the best people to go to lean on. To have a place that you can connect with others throughout the country who are in recovery can really be helpful. For me, having someone to talk to and listen has helped me try and recover more than anything but it is hard to stay on that path during the times that I feel all alone. -A.K., General Support Member

 

I have made a connection with a mentee and I think it is going good. I really enjoy helping and I think this is a wonderful program. Thank you so much for letting me be a part of it. -Cayce, Mentor Member

 

Although I have a long way to go, I have gained so much already in my recovery, and I feel that I have a lot to offer to others. I love being able to give the gift of hope. -Jessica, Mentor Member

 

One of the biggest pitfalls to a patient relapsing in their recovery is that they discontinue with their treatment. Many of these individuals lack the support to maintain the gains that they have made while being in treatment. MentorConnect provides excellent supplemental support to one’s recovery and treatment team. By providing consistent support, encouragement, and hope, MentorConnect is a unique resource that can truly benefit a person on their recovery journey! -Jennifer Nardozzi, PsyD

 

I can say that so far being a mentor is an insurance policy in the fact that I wouldn’t even think about relapsing...reason being.......hearing their pain and suffering as they deal with ED. It reminds me what I left behind and saddens me because I want to make it better quick but I can’t; it’s a process. It’s a lot of work but I love it so far. It’s a great addition to my recovery. -Cheryl, Mentor Member

 

I can't tell you the amount of hope I felt when I saw your program! I went right to Barnes & Nobles and bought your book b/c I couldn't wait for it to come through the mail! Thank you so much...this is what I need! Look forward to working your program, being in touch and again THANK YOU so much!!!!! -J., Mentee Member

 

Welcome to all new members. It is wonderful to see you have found this site and joined our community. Find encouragement and strength within others and it will grow in yourself. You are strong. Just by joining this site ED has lost a battle. I look forward to learning from each other and seeing all of us say goodbye to ED litterally. Congrats on this step. -Cora, Mentee Member