Charlotte Bevan, fierce advocate and activist, died at home January 13, 2014.
A mother of teenagers, wife of a farmer, parent advocate for parents of eating disorder patients, major contributor to the Around the Dinner Table forum, writer of short information films, Expert Carer for the Eating Disorders team at the Maudsley and Breast Cancer patient.
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Sunday 29 September 2013
Guest Blog: Sheppard Pratt from inside
*****In response to this blog I did some time ago, I received an email blog from a brave girl who had been there and her view from the inside. I have not edited. I love you MM. Just saying.****
Sheppard Pratt is the firey hell of eating disorders. It is like shoving a claustrophobic in a closet.
You see, you take this child, however old they might be...just a child...a teen or kid, and you take them away from their parents, friends, boyfriends. And you group them with all kinds of mature people, some 30 years old, that can intimidate them. That's already enhancement of TWO anxiety disorders many people with anorexia most likely suffer from. Whether you believe it or not, anorexia, is basically sort of an anxiety disorder. It is the utter fear of weight gain.
So you're pulled away from your parents, seperation anxiety, grouped with tons of adults and people that are just fucking scary, rude, and judgmental and are not scolded whatsoever for doing so, social anxiety, and are shamed for having your eating disorder. Punished. It's your fault.
And if you don't gain a pound EACH day, (When your body can't even control that...), or finish your food within the alotted time (I believe it was about an hour...that was plenty for ME, but I'm a very fast eater, even in the midst of my ED, plus I was not conversational at the table, just focused on my food), you were stripped of all your priveledges: Including phone calls, a SHOWER, and visiting hours.
During my time at Sheppard, I ate every meal. Every single one. I did not refuse one meal. I always finished it within the hour.
It didn't matter.
In anorexia recovery, the body takes on a hyper-metabolism unlike any one I've ever known to exist. It's theorised that, in some cases nine thousand calories were required a day, simply to gain an ounce.
I ate EVERY meal. Every one.Yet, when my body else refused to comply and gain a pound a day, I was punished and had taken away what I'd eaten that entire meal for: the whole bloody point of eating - to see my parents.
I was punished for something I could not control.
I also could not shower. If I did not gain weight for three days, I could not shower for three days. You take this person, already DISGUSTED with themselves for whatever of the two reasons - for eating, or for the weight they've so far gained (if any), and you strip them of the human right to bathe. They walk around with greasy hair, smelling like god awful horse shit, and expect them to recover.
Sheppard Pratt is not only a cruel environment, but they are extremely uneducated in recovery.