Boys Get Eating Disorders Too - Talking Bulimia with Sam Thomas artwork
Teenage Kicks Podcast

Boys Get Eating Disorders Too - Talking Bulimia with Sam Thomas

  • S2E15
  • 37:38
  • October 1st 2020

Sam Thomas is an award winning mental health campaigner, writer and public speaker. He lives in Brighton and is in recovery from bulimia and alcohol addiction. 

I first found Sam in Happiful Magazine, where he's a contributor on mental health issues.

What is bulimia?

Sam is very open in this podcast episode about how his experiences of eating disorders began. Listen to the podcast to hear his very straightforward explanation of how he first began bingeing and purging.

Boys and bulimia

What's really interesting is Sam's point about how eating disorders were always seen as a 'girl' thing. It meant that getting help was even more difficult because of the stigma of being a boy with bulimia. After his recovery, Sam started a social media campaign #mengeteatingdisorderstoo to raise awareness of the lack of community support for boys and men dealing with bulimia or anorexia.

Why do eating disorders happen?

I also had a lightbulb moment when Sam explained that eating disorders are really not about weight. Listen to the podcast to hear his perspective explained so parents can understand what their child is going through, and how best to help.

Where to find help with bulimia

More teen mental health resources

There are lots more episodes of the Teenage Kicks podcast – do have a browse and see if I’ve covered anything else you might find useful. And if you have a suggestion of something you’d like to see talked about on the podcast please do email me on [email protected] I have loads more fabulous guests coming up to help families navigate some of the most complicated – but wonderful – teenage parenting years. I’ve also got some posts on the blog that might help parents with other teenage parenting dilemmas, so do pop over to Actually Mummy if you fancy a read.

Thank you so much for listening! Subscribe now to the Teenage Kicks podcast to hear all my new episodes. I'll be talking to some fabulous guests about difficult things that happened to them as teenagers - including losing a parent, becoming a young carer, and being hospitalised with mental health problems - and how they overcame things to move on with their lives.

I'd love it if you'd rate and review the podcast on iTunes too - it would really help other people to find it. You can also find more from me on parenting teenagers on my blog Actually Mummy, and on Instagram and Twitter @iamhelenwills.

For information on your data privacy please visit Podcast.co.

Please note that I am not a medical expert, and nothing in this podcast should be taken as medical advice.

Teenage Kicks Podcast

Welcome to the Teenage Kicks podcast, where we take the fear out of parenting - or becoming - a teenager. The internet is full of parenting advice, from when you feel those first baby kicks, until they reach secondary school. And then it stops. No one is talking about teen parenting problems; so we’re going to.


Essential listening for teenagers and their parents, as well as those who work with young adults; Teenage Kicks has teen mental health at its core, and each episode will empower young people to tackle their own problems, and give parents the guidance to know how to help them.


Each week Helen speaks to real individuals who've experienced the issues that young people are dealing with now, and they don't sugar-coat it. From exam nerves and career worries to issues around sexuality and consent, we get tips and advice from expert guests who understand what it’s like to be a teenager today.


Helen will also be chatting about tough teenage problems like cyberbullying and self-harm, drugs, alcohol and teenage pregnancy, all with a heavy dose of reality from someone who's been there and made it through to the other side.


Teenage Kicks for Parents:

As parents, we understand some of our kids’ struggles, but let’s face it, it’s been a while, and things have moved on since we last panicked over a detention! Teenage choices today can seem alien to their parents because teenage life has changed so dramatically since we were young. Teenage Kicks helps you unravel topics like social media, sexting and teen self-esteem so that you can figure out what your child needs support with, and what’s just normal teenage behaviour.

 

Teenage Kicks for Teens:

Teenagers and parents come at things from different angles, we know. But teenage life can be challenging, and the support of your parents can make navigating tricky dilemmas easier. Teenage Kicks guests aren’t adults who’ve read a textbook; nor are they heavily invested in your day-to-day safety, like your mum and dad. They are real people who’ve been through what you’re dealing with, and they have the inspiration and advice you need to handle it yourself.

Join Helen each week as she chats to a different guest about topics affecting teenagers in 2020, and helps parents and teens to open up a dialogue that will make life easier to navigate on all sides.

You'll also find me chatting about teen parenting here:

Useful websites:

  • The Mix - good information for under 25's
  • Shout - for anyone struggling with anxiety or depression

This series of the Teenage Kicks Podcast is sponsored by Blue Microphones, who gave me the fabulous Yeticaster mic for all my recordings. It's really straightforward to use, and gives me great sound quality without too much editing.