This is a word that continues to strike fear into the psyches of mentors, mentees, clinicians, family members, and pretty much everyone else who understands what the word “trigger” means.
In case you are new to the term, here we are not talking about the trigger in terms of a physical weapon, but rather an emotional trigger that can get “pulled” and have a similar inner effect.
Which is why today’s “elephant in the room” question is – “What if the mentoring community is triggering?”
Triggers are a hot button topic in that there seem to be two prevailing schools of thought – in the first, triggers are to be avoided, as they could promote a setback in a recovering person’s efforts.
In the second, triggers are to be welcomed, because they show the recovering person where dependency on a fixed set of thoughts and behaviors (those of the eating disorder) still impede that person’s ability to fully engage with and live life in each moment.
I am of a mind to join both camps, because I think each school of thought applies more readily in earlier and then later stages of recovery.
However, the fact remains that triggers happen.