Bright, popular and a star on the rugby pitch, 15 year old Ben had everything he could want. But then, inexplicably, our food-loving teenage son began to systematically starve himself. At the same time his urge to exercise went extreme. In a matter of months Ben lost one quarter of his bodyweight as he plunged into anorexia nervosa.
But back in the summer of 2009 when Ben began to show classic signs of anorexia my husband Paul and I had no idea that boys got eating disorders. As a result we didn’t recognise the warning signs. We knew something was wrong and that it appeared to be getting worse, but we had no idea what “it” was. As parents of a teenage boy you don’t expect your child to get anorexia. You don’t even think about it.
Published in March 2013, Please eat… A mother’s struggle to free her teenage son from anorexia is my account of how anorexia crept into our normal, happy family life completely undetected. This book describes how, once we realised what we were dealing with, my husband and I watched helplessly as the illness threatened to destroy our son on more than one occasion.
When I sat down to write Please eat… I was acutely aware that I wanted to do my bit to help other parents and carers – not only to identify the warning signs of anorexia in boys but to show that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, and to describe how we got there. I also wanted to highlight the importance of early intervention and effective treatment for young people with eating disorders.
This isn’t a story of despair. Please eat… A mother’s struggle to free her teenage son from anorexia describes how, with our help and through his own determination, Ben slowly began to recover from anorexia and re-build his life.
Even if we help just one family to overcome anorexia or another eating disorder by sharing our experiences of anorexia in boys then this book has done its job.
Please eat… A mother’s struggle to free her teenage son from anorexia by Bev Mattocks will be published in March 2013 (ISBN 978-0-9575118-0-4)
Find out more at www.bevmattocks.co.uk and anorexiaboyrecovery.blogspot.co.uk