Now first of all I would like you to watch the video above. This is a video of a wonderful musician, Matt Ryd, and his story of having an eating disorder. I think his explanation and the things he says (or writes as the case might be) are truly amazing and very brave.
My introduction to this wonderfully brave and talented musician came about in a very sad way indeed. I read a blog post by MGEDT (Men get eating disorders too) that was written in memory of Matt who very sadly lost his battle with an eating disorder recently. Initially the idea of watching the video knowing that this brave man had passed away felt wrong and wasn’t something I wanted to do. However, I did go ahead and watch the video and I was glad, feeling really privileged to see what he chose to share as an awareness for eating disorders.
MGEDT have a really important role to play in raising awareness of male sufferers of eating disorders. In their report of eating disorders in the media ‘Warning this picture may damage your health’ B-eat found that the majority of individuals surveyed (72% in fact) could name anorexia as a type of eating disorder and only 3% said binge eating. The thing is, only 10% of eating disorders present as anorexia! There is also the common misconception that most eating disorder sufferers are female and are underweight, when in fact 80% of people with an eating disorder are overweight.
Eating disorders do not just affect teenage girls. Anyone can be affected at any age, regardless of their gender, race, culturally upbringing or background. It is important to think about those individuals who may be suffering in silence as they don’t feel they fit into the stereotypes so are ashamed to seek help or feel that they don’t fit with what is expected so therefore don’t have a problem.
Matt Ryd’s death is horribly sad, but hopefully some awareness may come from this tragedy and help more people to seek help that need it.