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    • #30
    #30

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Have any of you guys ever been referred to a therapist by a GP? If so, how long was the wait?

    Also, what's a typical therapy session like?

    Deliberating on whether it's worth pursuing on a referral..
    Yes I have. The answer is: it depends.

    If you are under 18, you should be seen very quickly. Within a couple of weeks.

    If you are over 18, it depends on the area. Some areas have no specialist ED services.

    For me, in the past it usually took up to a couple of months to be assessed by an ED psychotherapist, then could choose group or individual therapy. Individual therapy was nearly a year waiting list, group therapy was a few months so I chose group therapy. Was put on the waiting list and took a few months to start group therapy.

    The group therapy was ok, but I don't feel it helped me much.

    However, the travelling to get to therapy was too much every week (took 5 hrs in total) so I stopped going in the end.

    Since then not much NHS help has been offered. GP referred me to a private therapist, but that therapist wasn't right for me. Later was referred to a dietitian who I was able to see within a couple of weeks and can see whenever needed. The dietitian was lovely but for me I think I need to work on the deeper aspects and long term individual therapy would be better.

    Because I live in south England and go to uni in Scotland it has been complicated trying to keep up with the NHS referrals in Scotland so now I'm staying in London I'm seeing a private therapist found on the beat website.

    Typical therapy session is variable. It depends on which therapist you get, what methods they use etc. They might ask about your life, your ED, your childhood etc.

    ----

    My personal advice would be:

    1. You have nothing to lose by asking your GP for a referral. You might as well go for it and get put on the waiting list. Bear in mind that services and waiting lists vary hugely across different areas.

    2. If you can afford it in any way, look for a private therapist. I found some by using the beat helpfinder, called a few up to get an idea and met a couple of them to see how they were like. Make sure they are registered with a counselling or psychology association e.g. bacp. Some are willing to offer negotiable rates for students, unemployed people etc.

    The main advantages of going private are:

    - can choose the therapist. Therapy is very personal and not all therapists will suit everyone. On the NHS, choice of therapist is more limited
    - can choose the type of therapy. NHS usually recommends CBT for bulimia, sometimes other types of therapy. However if you go private you can choose any type of therapy you think works for you
    - NHS tends to limit the no of therapy sessions you can have, private you can have as many as you need
    - (almost) no waiting list
    - convenience. nhs is usually quite inflexible about days/times, whereas private is much easier to get appointments that suit you
    - I personally find it easier to be open with my private therapist because I knew she had no contact with my GP or my medical school

    It is an extra expense, but it is very worth it for me. I wasn't able to get any effective help on the NHS.

    NHS ED services may be better in London, for example.

    Maybe I am too cynical after 10 years of ED, but my impression of the NHS in relation to EDs is that unless you are so emaciated you are almost dead, they don't do very much or take it very seriously. The waiting lists are long, haven't come across therapists who suit me, appointments too far away, difficult to arrange around studies etc. Also the NHS offers only limited types of therapy that are short term e.g CBT.

    I think maybe I was a bit pissed off bc I have really bad bulimia and my GP wasn't checking my bloods regularly and I ended up with very low potassium and in A&E.

    Anyone had better experiences with NHS ED services? I do like the NHS in general, but I feel let down in terms of my ED. When I was under 18 I was seen v quickly, but the nurse was effing useless and patronising.
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    I second the NHS deal. It's a conveyorbelt. Personally I went private and my specialist is super harsh/realistic- that's what you need!!

    She would tell me "you chose to be here, so you're equally capable of choosing if you're going to be hospitalised this month, or dead. I can only advise you."

    Sounds horrific when I spout it off but its what you need; a dose of reality. "you're doing so well! Yay! Pie in the sky love!" only goes so far before you and the ED take the p***.

    And the ED has made us all bloody good liars.

    But she would say, "don't lie to me, you've been cheating recovery again eh?" and I would say no, and she'd say, "ah, fair enough, that's why all the proof says you've lost weight again on my plan. After ten years making my recovery plans, yours is the only one to fail. I must just have written you a faulty plan on purpose?" and boom. I was outfoxed.

    You need someone to give you it REAL. Not Dr XYZ who sees you as patient 463.
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    (Original post by TotoMimo)
    I second the NHS deal. It's a conveyorbelt. Personally I went private and my specialist is super harsh/realistic- that's what you need!!

    She would tell me "you chose to be here, so you're equally capable of choosing if you're going to be hospitalised this month, or dead. I can only advise you."

    Sounds horrific when I spout it off but its what you need; a dose of reality. "you're doing so well! Yay! Pie in the sky love!" only goes so far before you and the ED take the p***.

    And the ED has made us all bloody good liars.

    But she would say, "don't lie to me, you've been cheating recovery again eh?" and I would say no, and she'd say, "ah, fair enough, that's why all the proof says you've lost weight again on my plan. After ten years making my recovery plans, yours is the only one to fail. I must just have written you a faulty plan on purpose?" and boom. I was outfoxed.

    You need someone to give you it REAL. Not Dr XYZ who sees you as patient 463.
    I'll second anyone who says the NHS is ****e for MH. A friend of mine is in that awkward bit where shes just turned 18, so CAMHS want nowt to do with her, but adult MH havent taken her on yet.
    • #96
    #96

    (Original post by .snowflake.)
    I'll second anyone who says the NHS is ****e for MH. A friend of mine is in that awkward bit where shes just turned 18, so CAMHS want nowt to do with her, but adult MH havent taken her on yet.
    I'll be one of the few who had a good experience transferring from CAMHS to adult MH! I had turned 18 already but they still kept me on until I was accepted into an adult ED service a few months later.
    • #81
    #81

    (Original post by TotoMimo)
    I second the NHS deal. It's a conveyorbelt. Personally I went private and my specialist is super harsh/realistic- that's what you need!!

    She would tell me "you chose to be here, so you're equally capable of choosing if you're going to be hospitalised this month, or dead. I can only advise you."

    Sounds horrific when I spout it off but its what you need; a dose of reality. "you're doing so well! Yay! Pie in the sky love!" only goes so far before you and the ED take the p***.

    And the ED has made us all bloody good liars.

    But she would say, "don't lie to me, you've been cheating recovery again eh?" and I would say no, and she'd say, "ah, fair enough, that's why all the proof says you've lost weight again on my plan. After ten years making my recovery plans, yours is the only one to fail. I must just have written you a faulty plan on purpose?" and boom. I was outfoxed.

    You need someone to give you it REAL. Not Dr XYZ who sees you as patient 463.
    Lol, she comes across as a cow.

    Anyways, I'm based in Scotland too so all that information was very useful to me. How much do private sessions cost? From google, £50 seems like the average but it seems outrageously high (maybe I'm being naive :erm:).

    On a more personal note, I just need to rant my nut off. Been off the wagon horribly these past few days. I don't even know why it happened really. I just felt compelled to munch my way through all the cereal . Anyways, I thought to myself that I should forget about it all. There wasn't any point in feeling like **** after all that purging. I told myself to just have a nice home cooked meal and kick start my diet tomorrow. I was enjoying said meal when my brother muttered "you're still eating"?. He called me selfish because I'm worrying my mum and making her clean up after me. I just flipped and told him to **** off. I don't make anyone do anything. I clean up after myself. He only knew about my condition because my mum ****ing told him in the first place. Personally, I would never confide in him ever because he's the least empathetic ******* on the planet. It doesn't help that I'm forced to see his ****ing repulsive face day in day out now.

    Anyways, I've started looking into meditation and journalling my thoughts (not like this though :laugh:) during stressful/unhappy times. Hopefully, these 2 things might help recovery. I've been told they help to boost willpower and self compassion.
    • #30
    #30

    (Original post by Anonymous)

    Anyways, I'm based in Scotland too so all that information was very useful to me. How much do private sessions cost? From google, £50 seems like the average but it seems outrageously high (maybe I'm being naive :erm:).
    If it helps, I was living in St Andrews and was referred for group therapy to the Cullen Centre in Edinburgh. I don't know what NHS ED services are like across the rest of Scotland, from what I have read it doesn't sound like there is as much as in some parts of England, e.g. there is only one NHS inpatient unit in Scotland (Aberdeen) and that only opened recently.

    Therapy prices vary a lot. Here are some prices of therapists I have seen or looked up when searching.

    St Andrews £40
    Edinburgh £65 (nb deals with anxiety/depression rather than EDs)
    London £45, £55, £65, £75, £150 (yes, for real!!). I'm seeing the £45 one because I think she's good.

    So in the past I've paid £40, £45 or thereabouts. It does seem like quite a lot of money, but after the ED has affected my life so much for so many years and I've not been able to deal with it my self, I figure it's worth it. Also it's a lot cheaper than private inpatient. I feel trapped in the ED, but also feel I should give therapy a go. I hope I can eventually get over this and have a more normal, happier life.

    When I looked for therapists I also found that some offer the first session free or at a reduced rate so you can get a feel for the person/see if their approach might suit you. I saw two in London initially, one was free the other was £45 but it was worth it for me to meet them and get an idea of them before committing to weekly or more therapy for a long period of time.

    I think Toto is right, well for me personally I agree that a therapist who is tough and honest is really important. If they're too nicey nicey or don't get to grips with the deeper issues, it doesn't help and just wastes time and money. (like the one I saw in St Andrews). Sometimes therapists might say things that you initially don't agree with/may upset you, but months later you may realise they were actually right.

    Don't feel that you have to commit to seeing the first one you come across. It's really important to see someone you feel comfortable with or you feel can help/understands you. When I called up several in London, I just spoke to them for a bit and asked a few questions about their approach, their experience dealing with ED patients etc. Imo it's important to choose a therapist who specializes in EDs or has a lot of experience with EDs specifically.

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Anyways, I've started looking into meditation and journalling my thoughts (not like this though :laugh:) during stressful/unhappy times. Hopefully, these 2 things might help recovery. I've been told they help to boost willpower and self compassion.
    I think that's a really good idea. I sometimes do yoga which I find relaxing, helps 'mindfulness' and makes me feel slightly better about my body.
    • #30
    #30

    (Original post by TotoMimo)
    I second the NHS deal. It's a conveyorbelt. Personally I went private and my specialist is super harsh/realistic- that's what you need!!

    She would tell me "you chose to be here, so you're equally capable of choosing if you're going to be hospitalised this month, or dead. I can only advise you."

    Sounds horrific when I spout it off but its what you need; a dose of reality. "you're doing so well! Yay! Pie in the sky love!" only goes so far before you and the ED take the p***.

    And the ED has made us all bloody good liars.

    But she would say, "don't lie to me, you've been cheating recovery again eh?" and I would say no, and she'd say, "ah, fair enough, that's why all the proof says you've lost weight again on my plan. After ten years making my recovery plans, yours is the only one to fail. I must just have written you a faulty plan on purpose?" and boom. I was outfoxed.

    You need someone to give you it REAL. Not Dr XYZ who sees you as patient 463.
    So true. If the therapist (or GP or dietician) is too nicey nicey or doesn't really understand EDs deeply then it's easy for me to smile, lie and they say how well I'm doing and pat on the head.

    I
    • #30
    #30

    I think people with EDs need tough love with a VERY smart therapist. It's important for me that the therapist is very clever.
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    I know I'm not anorexic, but I'm not sure if i'm on the verge of becoming it. It's not about weight, it's more about shape: I really want a 24' waist and my thighs to just about not touch. I don't count calories either, I just am careful with WHAT I eat, not as much about HOW MUCH I eat. It was a New Year's Resolution to not accept junk food and we never have it in the house, I haven't given in yet. I'm 15 and not under too much stress, I don't feel like I need control or anying, but when I resist junk foo I feel so great...is there anything to worry about?
    • #48
    #48

    I hate wandering around a supermarket and walking out with a load of crap... two cans of diet coke, some digestive biscuits, strawberry laces, a pack of Milkyway cake bars and a Dream bar. I went in for something to go with dinner (a pizza - failed miserably) and all the way around I was just thinking 'God I would love that... but no...'. I bought what I did because I know that various people around the house will eat them for me.

    Rant - how is it ****ing fair that my sister has always been stick thin, growing up she was damn near underweight, and my parents say nothing to her, but the second I, the fat child, lose any weight I 'look ill' and 'have a problem'. Yes, I have a problem but they've never said it to my sister, and she's just the same as me with food. Feels like every meal time is a public humiliation where my parents can tut and go 'Oh, you haven't finished your meal' when they pile double the amount of food on my plate that they normally would have.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Cinnie, you'll find the further you go into recovery, the more your weight will stabilise at a healthy point without any conscious effort. Until then, we don't have to justify every decision we make foodwise! To me, freedom from ED in that sense means not having to explain to myself why I am allowed X and just having it. It's a while off yet because I'm sticking to 'healthy' while the binging subsides so that I can treat my body and mind well, but treats will and are being added in a much less structured, natural way, and ultimately you won't need to follow your own meal plan but live according to your own, flexible choice.
    For that matter, we're allowed to be spontaneous in general; allowing and accepting that we're not machines, we are human, and we're prone to impulses and emotions beyond what we 'should' do or is the most logical. It's far better that you develop solid grounds and commitment to your values and principles which you live your life by, and the actions which shape you as a person in the process; that's the direction I think we all need for true happiness. x
    I know hun but the problem is I am binging every day so it will never stabilise at a healthy weight if i'm not eating healthily I am looking into every distraction I can find.
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    I love those friends who can slap you silly into thinking sense and tell you you're amazing just the way you are ^_^
    • #81
    #81

    To anyone suffering from bulimia/bed, I've recently bought "brain over binge" for my kindle after being recommended by a few folk. Only about 5 chapters in but I can completely relate to what the author experienced so far. This is her blog too.
    • #43
    #43

    For the first time in a long time, I am going to actually try to get a truly early night as if it's possible, and see if it makes any difference to my mood and the urges. Wish me luck
    • #59
    #59

    Two years I've pushed and pushed to be seen by the eating disorders service. Time and again I'm told things will happen in a couple of weeks and yet here I am, still without help, still desperate for help and now slipping past the point where I want to accept help. Weight has dropped to lowest it's been in a while but I can't see that in the mirror anymore. I'm sick of feeling so alone and my family I know are worried but shouting at me and making me lie to them hurts.
    Sorry just needed to let it out somewhere tonight
    • #117
    #117

    Has anyone here had to put off university or studying because of their eating disorder?

    I've been struggling for a year trying to recover and my aim was to return to university to do a postgrad this september, however at the moment i've had to admit that i'm really not well still - i'm a higher weight, but i still can maintain, i'm either stupid restricting and dropping weight, or binging and purging several times a day so my weight is darting all over the place driving me mental! I get so depressed over it too and it distracts every second of the day. I feel so ill too - always dizzy cold and exhausted. The stress of returning to university has triggered the eating disordered behaviours. I really don't believe I can manage returning for a postgraduate. But now i'm terrified that if i don't go then i'm just going to plummet into my eating disorder and end up even worse instead of using the year out to recover.

    I don't know how to stop myself getting worse! I feel like a failure for not making it back to university this year. I also feel relieved cause i really don't feel like i could manage it well - s on the one hand its the right decision - but on the other i'm terrified that a year out will be another year to be consumed by this eating disorder. I just can't stand it anymore! I just don't know what to do

    Sorry for the rant, I just feel so frustrated and hopeless. I don't want to be ill for the rest of my life, but its seems so hard to get over this. Has anyone had a similar experience? How can I keep motivated for a year to get better? Everytime I get close the pressure gets to me
    • #24
    #24

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Two years I've pushed and pushed to be seen by the eating disorders service. Time and again I'm told things will happen in a couple of weeks and yet here I am, still without help, still desperate for help and now slipping past the point where I want to accept help. Weight has dropped to lowest it's been in a while but I can't see that in the mirror anymore. I'm sick of feeling so alone and my family I know are worried but shouting at me and making me lie to them hurts.
    Sorry just needed to let it out somewhere tonight
    You are not alone. You are NEVER alone.

    In the grand cosmic jungle that we all live in there are gonna be people who can relate. People who love you like family. People who understand what the agony of it all feels like. We are all joined in the blissful agony of life, the fantastic tribulations and nonsensical whimsy that life brings us to dance with.

    People don't really know how to work with people when they are a bit ill in the head, the things we learn throughout our lives don't really help. Bed rest and chicken soup TECHNICALLY would help, but not really. It's a much more complex disorder than most people have ever come across. They run through everything they can think of; cooing, coercing, guilt, attention, love... and eventually when those things don't really work they shout, because frustration overwhelms. First accept it as it is, they are frustrated, you are frustrated.

    Anorexia is an unique disorder in which the actual problem in recovery is actually the fear of recovering. Instead of treating it as doing something that feels wrong, see it as facing that demon that has stood at your door. It's not guilt for eating, it's fear of recovery. You can do it girl! Eat that, anorexia! (bad pun intentional)

    Don't look in the mirror. Avoid checking yourself. Each time you check yourself make a mental note of it. Keep a 'checking diary' if need be. Look at what triggers you to check. Note what you are feeling. Make the mental decision NOT to check. Cover mirrors. Put away the scales. Hell, I don't even know what my weight is at the moment myself! Recovery means accepting what you are, or what you are meant to be in effect.

    Best wishes,
    A
    • #43
    #43

    Oooh I'm getting silly again, supposed to be watching Fame or playing Mass Effect because I forgot to let myself go to bed on time and can't be bothered doing anything, started looking at thinspo instead : (
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Oooh I'm getting silly again, supposed to be watching Fame or playing Mass Effect because I forgot to let myself go to bed on time and can't be bothered doing anything, started looking at thinspo instead : (
    thinspo is bad. -nods-. I'll tell you this, but wont take that advice myself. Started thinking about results day, which was silly. now a nervous wreck. Going to tidy my bedroom.
    • #43
    #43

    (Original post by .snowflake.)
    thinspo is bad. -nods-. I'll tell you this, but wont take that advice myself. Started thinking about results day, which was silly. now a nervous wreck. Going to tidy my bedroom.
    :hugs: you will do AMAZING. And if you don't, so what? Grades aren't the be-all and end-all. I'd rather have a friend who gets Bs and will be there for me, than a friend who's an A* ********. :hugs:
 
 
 
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