I have chosen to raise money for Beat because it hits quite close to home for me. I have struggled, and I still am, with eating problems (and related) for most of my teen years, probably since I was about 12 years old. I am now 17. I was turned away by my local CAMHS a year or so ago because I wasn't dangerously underweight and I don't think they fully understood my situation, despite having evidence that I was eating less than one meal a day. They said they couldn't do anything, and that I was fine. Luckily, I am supported now as my dietician (who I ended up seeing as a result of the CAMHS disaster!) referred me to Medical Psychology team within a hospital, which I believe will help me a lot as they understand the other health problems I deal with too. I've been seeing them for about 2 months now. I understand the importance of being supported in these kinds of conditions, especially as Anorexia and other eating disorders are among the biggest killers in mental health and I know that Beat will support people like me who were (possibly wrongly) turned away from their local NHS services due lack of funding.
I fully understand that any kind of eating disorder or anything even vaguely similar is horrible, you can't eat even if you wanted too. It's emotionally and physically draining and most people underestimate what it does to you. From experience I know that a lot of GPs don't really understand the severity of any kind of eating problem, for instance a while back my GP told me to (and I quote) 'Just eat more' and 'eat chicken nuggets for breakfast if that's what you like' Eat Chicken Nuggets for breakfast?????? What kind of advice is that? I don't even like chicken nuggets THAT much! This is why it's super important that everyone is educated on the impact of eating problems and that MH services are more readily funded for EVERYONE!
Thank you for reading my story, I am yet to overcome my problem but I understand that it does take time and hopefully it will happen especially with support from charities like Beat!