I remember the first time I heard anorexia classified as a mental illness. My new therapist must’ve been testing out scare tactics in eating disorder treatment. She looked down at her notes, then up at me with a stern, you’re old enough to know better, expression.
“Did you know that eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of all mental illnesses and that anorexia’s death rate is 12 times higher than the death rate of all causes of death for females 15 – 24 years old?”
I didn’t know.
“Twenty percent of people suffering from anorexia will prematurely die from complications related to their eating disorder, including suicide and heart problems.
I didn’t know that either, but my mind was hung up on the term, mental illness. I’m not crazy, I wanted to scream at her, but caught myself as I remembered the feeling of being trapped within my own mind. I had sure felt crazy.