Eating disorders ravage individuals and families every day. They are the deadliest mental illnesses taking up to 25% of those affected.

Recovery also happens. During this week of education and awareness of eating disorders, the Renfrew Center asks us all on 2/24/13 to take a picture of ourselves with no make-up. To love who we are in our raw beauty.

picture of me sans make-up, photo credit: my awesome 11 year old

I still remember my mothers and sisters faces when I came to after my heart stopped. I looked up and their eyes held as much hurt as I did inside. Anorexia captured every ounce of my being. I knew nothing else but to starve and keep people away from knowing me.

My family tried everything. Patience, love, anger, out patient therapists, nutritionists, support groups, hospital floors of others obsessed with food.

It wasn’t until Renfrew that I found enough courage and hope to really get on a path to recovery. No doubt everyone from the kitchen staff, to the daytime nurses, to the art therapists, to my individual therapists, nutritionists and most important other women who knew how painful it was to carry a disease that seems so hopeless to try and beat—they all helped me and thousands of women and families start to recover.

Renfrew gives women a chance at fighting back. Wearing no make-up and tweeting a pic is simple. Fighting for women and men to have a chance to fight for their lives means everything.

During this week of eating disorders awareness help the millions of men and women find the courage to eat, the courage to let others in and the courage to fully recover.


Learn more about eating disorders and push Congress to acknowledge the public health risk:

Barefaced and Beautiful Campaign:

Tag your picture: #barefacedbeauty

Watch award-wining documentary “Thin” about recovery:


Image from when I worked at Renfrew, we created a series of t-shirts with rockin company back in the day Cybelle.