Why was FEDS Kirklees setup?
My name is Cherie Hinchliffe and I have personal experience of dealing with an eating disorder as my 16 year old daughter has been suffering from Anorexia Nervosa (Annie as we call it) since she was 12 years old. She was admitted to an in-patient unit aged only 13; had to be fed through a Naso-gastric tube for 9 weeks; and spent 24 weeks 3 days in hospital.
She has attended Glen-Acre-House* on a weekly or fortnightly basis since October 2009 and continues to do so. She is now aged 16 and after 4 years is now thankfully in the early stages of recovery
My beautiful daughter battles with her demon “Annie” every minute of every day and she has done looking back now since as early as 2008, before I even realised that she had a “new friend”. She has had fantastic support from Glen-Acre-House all the staff there have been amazing. My daughter’s therapist has been there for me and supported and advised me every-step of the way.
In September 2011, my daughter’s therapist asked me if it was ok for another mum to ring me, her daughter had recently been diagnosed with anorexia nervosa and she felt that it may be of use to talk to me as I had been there myself. It was early September that I received a call from Ouadia, I arranged to meet her and we talked for hours, she like me is strong willed and feisty and will not let “Annie “ or “The bitch” as she calls it beat her, or take her child.
“You are the only one who understands me and speaks my new language” Ouadia told me.
It was then that I realised how “useful sharing your experience and knowledge is” you can do as much research on line, but unless you “live” with an eating disorder or care for an eating disorder sufferer you have no idea of the reality of it, the strain that it puts of families.
Ouadia was my inspiration for starting the group; together we will share our knowledge “Expert Carers Help Others” and empower families in Kirklees and Calderdale to deal with eating disorders.
On the 5th January 2012, I decided to create a support group and so FEDS Kirklees was set up.
*Glen-Acre-House is next to the Huddersfield Royal and it is where Huddersfield’s Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) are based. They deal with all mental health issues for children/adolescents and your GP has to make a referral to them direct.
I am a B-eat Group Facilitator having attended and completed B-eat training in Cambridge in March 2012.
My name is Gillian Holroyd, I am the mother of FEDS Kirklees founder Cherie Hinchliffe. I have personal experience of the devastating effects that eating disorders have on families and the emotional roller-coaster that both the sufferers and the carers go through on a daily basis.
As a grandparent and mother I have been supporting my daughter Cherie since 2009 when my granddaughter was diagnosed with Anorexia.
Since 2009 there have been many occasions when I would have liked to have been able to talk to other parents/grandparents about Annie and how it changed my beautiful granddaughter physically and emotionally into a person that I hardly recognised .
It is for this reason that I backed my daughter 100% when she told me that she wanted to set up a support group.
Initially I was to take a more back seat approach; however in March 2012 I stepped in at the last minute to attend B-eat Training in Cambridge and I am now also a B-eat Group Facilitator.
My name is Ouadia Lewis, I am a nurse and have worked in ICU (Intensive Care Unit) for many years. Despite training as a nurse and dealing with very ill people on a daily basis, nothing prepared me for the horrors of anorexia.
My beautiful/perfect 18 year old daughter was seduced by the dark side; the evil that is anorexia in February 2011 (the bitch as we call it). We did not know that at the time, she explained away her weight loss by the stress of studying for her GCSE’s.
In June 2011 after her exams had finished I confronted her and she denied that she had a problem.
Due to my daughter’s age; 16 she fell into the abyss; the Bermuda triangle, where she was too old for paediatrics and not old enough for adult services. For months I banged on doors trying to find someone, some service to help me with my daughter. All the time she was fading before my eyes, and I a nurse was helpless, unable to make her better.
In September 2011 she was seen by Huddersfield CAMHS, even though we do not “live in the right area” to be referred to Huddersfield CAHMS. Finally I was seen by someone who knew that I was not mad; not an overreacting parent making a fuss over nothing and my daughter was diagnosed with anorexia nervosa; but by this time she already had a critically low BMI.
It was in September 2011 that I first met Cherie; at last I had someone who spoke my language. She had been there herself with her daughter and just speaking to her made me realise that there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Unfortunately due to the delays in being diagnosed my daughter was too ill to be treated at home and she was admitted to an in-patient unit in early October 2011 and she is still in there now.
I have now completed all my training and am also a B-eat Group Facilitator.