Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Documentaries

Life recently has been overshadowed by the darker moments of life - losing my lovely, cantankerous, elderly Bussie to begin with. Then Mr B's even older mother would not be hurried onto her next journey, which obviously caused a lot of distress for the family. And while I was writing about organ donation, I had to dip into Pip's last days, which was harrowing to say the least.

It's all served as a reminder of how in life we have to deal with matters that are incredibly hard. And ones that I wish to write about, for I feel they can help others.

Then last Sunday Louis Theroux did a very good documentary on anorexia. Having suffered myself - thankfully a long time ago - it brought back all those terrible feelings of powerlessness, fear and complete lack of self worth. Nowadays the media might be unhelpful in portraying celebrities with supposedly perfect bodies, but most anorexics' problems stem from lack of confidence, a desire to gain some control over their lives. Some may have experienced terrible loss or other unhappiness and find life just too painful; starving yourself brings a certain numbness, and all focus is then drawn in on oneself rather than external factors that might be too difficult to deal with.

I could see Louis Theroux looking completely flummoxed on more than one occasion, for all the women featured were highly intelligent, extremely attractive and very adept at describing their situations. So why would they seek to destroy themselves in such a vicious way? For believe me, anorexia is terrifying. It seizes you with an iron grip that is so, so hard to get out of - think addiction and it's a million times worse than that. I've given up smoking, which is apparently more difficult to give up than heroin, and that was a breeze compared to getting out of the anorexic grip.

But many people - myself included - have found our way out of this stranglehold. it is perfectly possible to live a normal life after an eating disorder. And to be happy. To form good, meaningful relationships, to bear children. But it is so important to get help. And get that help as soon as possible.

So if you know of anyone who has an eating disorder, it is vitally important that they get help soon. I know only too well how difficult it can be to persuade an anorexic to get help, but be patient. Contact BEAT. Do what you can. For I wouldn't wish anorexia on my worst enemy. And it's one of the few reasons I am glad I don't have children - at least I don't have to go through what my poor mum went through all those years of my life that were ruled by this miserable condition.

4 comments:

Sally said...

Oh, Sue, my heart goes out to you. Must meet again for lunch soon - it was good to catch up today.

Flowerpot said...

Yes, it was lovely to have a catch up, sorry i had to scoot! Let's do the same venue again when we both have a bit more time XX

Kim @ Him, Him Me said...

Hi Sue, I wish I had seen the Louis Theroux programme. I had the opposite or very nearly, never officially diagnosed. My mum was told I would grow out of it sooner or later. I would eat everything in sight, even stuff I could not usually bear like Peanut Butter or Coconut, Jelly or custard, until I was physically sick and then not eat for days. My childhood and teen years were very bad. My parents had a very stormy marriage and I was being abused,I guess that was my way of coping with things. It leaves scars which may never heal, I think I will always have a strange relationship with food but unlike some people I know, I'm still here.

Flowerpot said...

I am so sorry to hear that, Kim. The programme should be on catchup I would think if you still want to see it. I think a lot of 'normal' people have a strange relationship with food, but I am so sorry and hope you are in a happier place now. XX