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Eating Disorders and Orthodoxy

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#1 Phoebe K.

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Posted 23 September 2017 - 08:23 PM

I have been wondering for a wile if any of the fathers of the Church Ancient or Modern has written on how we should support those who are suffering from eating disorders.  I am talking hear about the condition like Anorexia Norvos and Bulimia Norvosa along with the other less well know conditions which are serious mental heath problems and can be fatal. 

 

I have not been able to find anything orthodox except the blog of one Coptic Christian who has survived Anorexia. I suppose I worry it leaves our communities unprepared and unequipped to deal with the situation of one of the parish being diagnosed or a convert who had recover relapsing and needing support. Particularly as the confessor may be the first person to here someones concerns about their weight and the like as that may be the only place they admit to the feelings or behaviours which signal a significant problem, and if it is not handled well things could go down hill very quickly.

 

There is a lot online by medical organisations and charities including protestant christen ones, but there is a noticeable absence of any advice for the Orthodox. We have the healing tradition of the church yet as far as I can see there has not been a word on one of the most dangerous and growing heath problems, especially but not exclusively among young adults.  This leaves many of our clergy without guidance as to how to react as very few have training in dealing with mental heath problems, and possibly no one in the parish who dose who can guide to the appropriate medical help which is needed alongside the spiritual as these problems can exist alongside the other problems.

 

Phoebe



#2 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 24 September 2017 - 06:08 PM

I can't paste the link but Google 'Orthodox Church anorexia' and you will find an article on the Antiochian US website by Fr George Morelli called 'Food that perishes: An Orthodox Approach to Food and Eating . . . '



#3 Phoebe K.

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Posted 24 September 2017 - 09:03 PM

I had found that article but it is not really much use as all that it dose it is quote the established facts about eating disorders and refer to texts which are outdated at least in the uk considering what BEAT and various universites put out regularly.  There is also no real discussion on the practical implication on parish life or the challenges it presents in the real world. 

 

The search did bring up another useful page https://www.firstthi...-control  which is written by an orthodox survive of an eating disorder and she deals with the real practical problems of being orthodox and having this sort of mental heath problem.

 

Phoebe







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