What Does an Eating Disorder Look Like to You? – Butterfly: Let’s Talk Season 2, Episode 11

About a million people in Australia will be struggling with an eating disorder during a season often defined by feasting – but the people around them won’t know. Why? Because they don’t look the way people with eating disorders are supposed to look. They don’t fit the stereotype.

Myths about who is affected by eating disorders account for why experts believe many people go undiagnosed and don’t get support. They don’t feel like they can get help because their experience feels so unusual.

In this episode, we hear from AJ, an Indigenous man who thought that eating disorders only happened to pretty girls who did ballet, and that what he was experiencing couldn’t be treated. June, in her 70s now, lived with a debilitating eating disorder for years before she was diagnosed well into her 30s. Katie, living in a larger body, has a history of starving herself. Expert researcher Claire Lister and Dr Michelle Blanchard from the National Mental Health Commission and National Stigma Report Card offer insights into why, too often, people with eating disorders ‘hide in plain sight’.

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