As promised, this week’s investigation has been about B-eat. You might want to do something about your eating difficulty, but you don’t necessarily wish the whole world to know, and talking to friends and family sounds like making your world go upside down.
Since this shouldn’t stop anyone from looking for a solution, B-eat can be the right call.
As most of you, I would rather have proofs than be asked to believe to a stranger’s words, so this is what happened: an email was sent to the B-eat helpline for over 18 years old, to let you know how they approach a person with a potential eating difficulty, and what they will suggest. No worries, it is all good news!
An advisor will respond in a couple of hours. It doesn’t matter if it’s 8pm on a Friday, once you find the courage to call, someone will be there. They will take the pressure off and have a real conversation. Even if the email is two detached lines signed with initials, they will call you by first name, if they can figure it out from the address. Your questions and worries are their first priority. They will answer and calm those, rather than push any kind of agenda on you. They will encourage you to continue with any support you are currently using, and suggest to rely on the University peer support groups, if there are any. This is because sharing a difficulty and connecting with others are likely to be easier and more helpful with someone of your same age and lifestyle.
Important point: you need to expect that they gently insist (if you wish!), that you consult your GP. They know how much effort it takes to send them an email, and this proves them that you are worried enough to call for help. Also, it means that you are almost or definitely aware that a problem exists. However, suggesting to see a GP might scare someone off. No need!! They will send you this leaflet to feel prepared and make the call. The most important thing to remember is that you should come out of that visit with the name of a specialist to see.
After responding to your queries, they will let you know what they can do to help. They do not have free consultancies in Cardiff, but they offer several free support services. One of them is the B-eat message board, which allows people to post and ask for advise. Another tool is the online groups, which work as an interactive chat to discuss a particular challenge related to eating disorders. In order to use these services you will have to register, but you can create a username and remain anonymous.
Last point before going home: they stress on seeing your GP because eating disorders trigger every person differently. That personal way of living it determines what is best for your recovery. No online chat or peer will know that, and it’s not fair nor safe asking or telling that to anyone.
See you all next Friday to talk peer support groups! Comment below if you made the call! Uoh, that rhyms;) #closertoDreamingtheMoon