What I wish people understood about eating disorders

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In the news recently, there have been reports of an increase in the number of patients being admitted to hospital with eating disorders. And when it comes to eating problems, I am very much aware that there is a huge lack of understanding. I think the best way to learn is from those with experience themselves – no book, lecture or degree can match experience. So take it from someone who knows….

What do I wish I could tell the public about what it is like to struggle with an eating disorder? Simple…it is HELL.

The ‘c word’

An eating disorder is driven by control – that dreadful ‘c word’! And with the eating disorder having such control over me when I was struggling, it sometimes felt impossible to live.

Eating disorders do not all look the same

An eating disorder is not as simple as just not wanting to eat. There are many different forms; some people love food, but their brain will not allow them to eat it, or they will eat it and then compensate in alternate ways; others may feel differently. Eating disorders look different for different people.

Hope and recovery

However, there is hope. You can recover. You can win. But you have to trust the process. Unfortunately, there is NO QUICK FIX to recovery. And it most certainly is not as simple as saying, ‘just eat’. It is much more about what’s going on in your mind than you may think. But you can get there. So, if you are struggling with an eating disorder, please don’t give up.

If you think you may be struggling with an eating disorder, have a look at our eating problems page for advice and guidance on ways to get help.

This article was adapted from Young Minds. The full article can be found here.

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