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My daughter became unwell in her teens with what we now know was OSFED: Other Specified Feeding or Eating Disorder.
I’ve worked tirelessly in day care, private therapy and on my own to get as “recovered” as I can possibly be. I wasn’t content with surviving with an eating disorder. To me the mental torture and confines are the worst part, so a healthy body without a quality of life was not enough.
When I was about 13, I stopped eating for a bit, just to see how it felt, what it would do. Prior to this, I don't think I had been even vaguely concerned about my weight and, to be honest, I don't know what it was that triggered it.
After looking back on the years of my life that were taken due to my eating disorder, I realise how much I now love my life and want to keep recovering every day.
I've had EDNOS (eating disorder not otherwise specified), for twelve years now. Although first diagnosed as anorexic binge purge subtype, my habits and behaviours were constantly changing as the years went by.
Recovery is a long road. Sometimes there will be bumps and hills and the occasional spiral, but you learn to make yourself stronger each time you are set back.
Dear me, the girl with the laughing face. Hard times are coming. You’re going to hate your body, detest the very skin you reside in, yet obsess over it, every inch of skin.
From the age of 14 I developed consciousness and insecurities about the way I looked. I was surrounded by a family who were influenced by ‘Slimming World’ and other dietary groups, which reflected on the way I perceived not only myself, but food as well.
Approaching the end of my psychotherapy sessions I am so grateful for finally receiving the correct help. I remember being completely convinced that I was going to be laughed out of therapy and told ‘you’re fine, you’re not ill enough yet, what are you doing here?’
Some would be shocked and consider it a waste of NHS money if I told you I spent some sessions just sobbing or in angry silence, but that was what I needed.
10 helpful things to say to someone with an eating disorder as knowing what to say to someone can be tricky.