Hometown News For Orange County, Texas

Series on Mental Illness Present in Society

Maddy is a student at Little Cypress-Mauriceville High School. She is a talented young writer whose columns offer unique insights from the perspective of a local high school student. Intended primarily for young people, all of The Record readers are welcome to enjoy our columns by Maddy Smith.

Mental illness is something very relevant in society today especially in teenagers. Approximately 9% of children from the ages of 2-17 have been diagnosed with ADHD, 8% of teenagers aging 13-18 have been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, 8% of teenagers from 12-17 have had major depression episodes, and 2.7% of teenagers from 13-18 suffer from eating disorders that can include bulimia, anorexia, and binge eating. The list of mental illnesses that can affect everyday life goes on and on. These articles are meant to help those that don’t understand fully what a certain mental illness looks and feels like. Everybody deals with mental illness in a different way and show different signs.

Having an eating disorder or any mental illness is not something you see yourself having. It is not something that everyone goes through and should not be seen as a phase to those you open up to. It controls your mind causing you to lose control of your body. You have dreams and goals you want to accomplish when you grow up. However, mental illness can but a block in between you and those goals.

An eating disorder of any kind you would easily think could be fixed with some self-love but it is deeper than that. It consumes your mind all times of the day. You fear the one thing that you need to survive. Your mind tells you that food is the enemy and that you are not worth it. The voices in your head constantly tell you you’re not good enough, having no purpose, and not feeling worthy around others. However, an eating disorder can make all these thoughts feel twice as big. The eating disorder makes you sink further into the thoughts of feeling unworthy and having no purpose. You constantly feel like you need to lose weight to be good enough.

As it takes even more control of your mind, your social life is being affected. You fear going out with friends to avoid eating. Anxiety and depression can also play a part in an eating disorder. It can either trigger an eating disorder or make itself known further down the road of your eating disorder making your thoughts worse. All you want to do is be able to eat and not think about it. You don’t want to think about the numbers. The number of calories or the number on the scale that ties you down. You are constantly fighting the hunger inside of you. The fear is what keeps you tied to your bed all day. Everywhere you go there is food. You see it at the grocery store, in restaurants, at school, and even in your own home. You have to see what you fear the most every day multiple times a day.

If you know someone that struggles with an eating disorder please help. You don’t have to understand how they feel they just need someone. Don’t be condescending and tell them things they already know. They know the effects of an eating disorder so don’t think that it will convince them to just eat. It is a feeling of not being good enough and not any amount of love and kind words you give them will help because deep down, they truly feel worthless and not good enough.


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