After 10 years of battling my Eating Disorder, I arrived at Montrose Manor exhausted and desperate for help. My life had become a living hell, my family relationships were in tatters, I was exhausted from all the lies.

I was prepared to hand myself over completely, but I was still not quite prepared for the hard work ahead of me. My journey has been a slow one, and often frustrating – I spent time on ‘couch rest’ and was unable to attend therapy groups or go out. I was angry about this at the time, but now see the Team were quite right to keep me ‘quiet’ for that time, my body needed to be healthy and my mind needed to heal enough for me to be able to accept the therapy that they would offer. I learned to be patient and to trust. Eventually, I was able to attend group therapy sessions, to go on outings and walks, I appreciated each step as I had worked hard to get there. My body and mind grew stronger.

I have learned so much about myself that I wasn’t aware of, a realisation that so many of the behaviours I despised in myself were not my fault, they were the result of past experiences and I was predisposed to certain traits. I learned to forgive myself and others, to be honest and not to keep secrets – all of this has been enormously freeing.

The Team as a whole were amazing, they worked together to help each individual in the way that they needed most. The group sessions were so helpful, they focused on aspects of our illness, not just on the food and eating. The extra groups such as drama, art, movement and craft were all helpful too, and the people that run these groups are a real asset to Montrose Manor. The combination of all the groups meant that all my needs were met and this has been so helpful to my Recovery. Individual sessions allowed me to discuss issues that had been too difficult for me to face previously. All of this has made me feel more confident in myself and my abilities. I know that the real work will only truly begin when I get home, but I feel very confident that I can now cope with my emotions, and start to fill my life with fulfilling things. Relationships will improve because I will now be an active participant instead of a spectre hovering on the edges. I will always have an Eating Disorder, that’s a harsh reality I have learned to accept, however I now know that it can be managed and does not have to stop me from living my life.

I wish I could clone Montrose so that Eating Disorder sufferers around the world could all have an opportunity to experience Recovery as I have. I will always be grateful to Montrose for giving me the gift of life and a chance to be happy again. Having said all that, as good as Montrose Manor is, for the process to have a chance to work you have to be open to it and prepared to fully hand yourself, body and soul, over to the Team.

For those of you out there who are fortunate enough to be able to come to Montrose Manor,  I can only say “ Just do it, don’t hesitate – You are worth it !!”

51 Yr Old Client – Western Australia – 2016