Ed Spoke Up. Will You?
His words didn’t make for the most comfortable of reading – particularly for those of us who’ve experienced any kind of disordered eating.
But my God…these are words we need to read.
Thank you Ed Sheeran. This is just one more reason why the world needs to applaud and adore you right now.
This week, Ed’s Hay House interview was shared globally, in which the superstar gives a really honest insight into his addictive behaviours, his mental health struggles, and – specifically – the fact that he would binge on large amounts of food, and then vomit.
He recalls reading the biography of Elton John, and saw direct comparisons. He says:
“There are so many things that he did that I do. He would be like: ‘I would just go on an ice-cream binge and eat four fucking desserts until I threw up,’ and I was like: ‘I’ve done that before.’”
It’s only right to point out that at no point does Ed refer to himself as having a diagnosed eating disorder, or specifically that he considered himself to be experiencing bulimia.
That said, he’s talked very candidly about an extremely disordered relationship with food, which he was experiencing for a period of his life.
So why do we care?
Why should anyone read his words and consider them to be of more significance than any pop sensation talking about their ‘crazy’ touring days?
Well, because it matters hugely that society understands the realities of eating disorder distress, and that we all take our heads out of the clouds and appreciate that eating disorders can affect EVERYONE.
Yes, that’s right.
Eating disorders are not a female issue.
They’re not only an issue for people who live a deprived life.
They’re not just a problem for those who have no intelligence, or no home, no education, no family, no readily available cash, no ambition.
And they’re not something which results only from a lifelong desire to be the skinniest and the prettiest.
Eating disorders are, first and foremost, a mental health issue.
Yes, think of them as a brain disorder (please), not a body disorder.
So again, while we absolutely have to be clear that Ed has not referred to having a formally diagnosed eating disorder, it is as clear as it could be, that anyone on this planet could
succumb to disordered eating and to mental health behaviours.
The more that people like Ed – be they famous or not, male or not – decide to talk about their struggles, the more we all benefit from a greater opportunity for society to recognise what a battle disordered eating can be.
If just one person read Ed’s candid words this week and thought, yes, ‘me too’, and decided in that moment to feel less shame and to get help for their illness – then hooray for that.
Know that whatever your battle, whoever you are, however the world sees your façade, if you’re battling an eating disorder (or disordered eating of any kind), you deserve to get help and support.
Do let us know if we can hold your hand through your journey.
…and from us to you Ed….Thanks again. Talking triggers change.
- Jul 2020