To the editor:
Fresh on the heels of the excitement of Bell Canada’s Let’s Talk for mental health campaign is Provincial Eating Disorders Awareness Week (PEDAW), which runs Feb. 1 to 7 every year. Eating disorders are one of the forms of mental illness for which the Let’s Talk campaign was started. Of all psychiatric illnesses, including major depression, eating disorders have the highest mortality rate. This is, at least in part, due to the shame and stigma which contribute to the silence exhibited by so many who suffer. As the PEDAW movement grows each year, so will the understanding that eating disorders are #notachoice and are in fact serious mental health issues that often develop as an emotional and physical response to trauma and difficult emotions. As we embrace awareness and acceptance for anxiety and depression, let’s not forget about eating disorders which are also often rooted in shame.
Tasha McAdam, Kelowna