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. It wasn’t until I wasn’t until I was 15 that I let my mind and thoughts take over my life, influenced by being a victim of bullying in high school. I wanted control; I wanted the perfect body; I wanted to be ‘normal’. I let my thoughts try and destroy my future, my potential. But the people around me knew I deserved more than that and deep down I did too.
I reached crisis point at the age of 16 and my parents sought professional help/advice from my GP on the next steps to take, I was referred to my local psychiatric unit (which was a very long process but worth every minute) where I received help from a psychiatrist, CEDS nurse and a dietitian. I had lost weight over the six-week school holiday and was ruining all my relationships around me. I missed out on so much valuable time with my family during those six weeks, as my mother had six weeks off work at the time, but all I wanted to do was excessively exercise, weigh myself and torture myself.
I tried so hard in my GCSEs. I missed a lot of schooling during the last crucial months of my education. I turned into a perfectionist, and when I found out my grades after sitting my 18 exam papers, they weren't good enough, I was a ‘failure’, I wasn’t going to be able to get into sixth form because my mind told me I didn’t have potential and I believed it.
I again reached crisis point a couple of days before school prom (which I was adamant I wasn’t going to) and failed a suicide attempt. My family were distraught and from this point onwards I wanted to accept help. I wanted a turning point; I didn't want my life to revolve around my unhealthy obsession anymore – I chose a future.
Many people need something drastic to happen in order for them to turn their life around, but don’t wait for that potentially fatal occurrence to happen. Recovery is a long process; it’s difficult, but my God, it’s worth it. Seek help now and change your life for the better! To live your life without eating disorder voices is the best kind of freedom I have ever felt, and I now realise life IS worth living. I had more than enough GCSE grades to get into sixth form – my mind lied to me. My family were over the moon with my grades considering the circumstance I was in, and that's all I needed. I know I tried my hardest and there’s nothing more I could have done.
I am now studying Medical Science and Law at College and I am happier than I have ever been. I’m finally back to my old self, if not better than the old happy me, and I can proudly say I have marked a one-year anniversary of being discharged from the MH services. I’m so glad I chose recovery, and I hope each and every one of you suffering does too. You are strong, stronger than your mind.
R ealize you’re worth recovery.E xperience true happiness.C are about yourself.O vercome your demons.V alidate your worth.E at without the regret.R elapse – it might happen but it’s OKAY to.Y earning to live.
Stay safe and healthy. Choose recovery.