Interrupting the stigma: Aldergrove resident shares story

The eating disorder, according to Busby, acted as a coping mechanism for depression and was a way to get rid of the feelings he had inside

Aldergrove resident Tyson Busby has lived with an eating disorder for seven years.

The Provincial Eating Disorders Awareness (PEDAW) campaign presents, Interrupting the Stigma: Putting an End to Size-Shaming, a free panel discussion, in recognition of Eating Disorders Awareness Week of February 1-7.

The event takes place Saturday, Jan. 30 from noon to 1:30 p.m. and will feature insight from a number of individuals including Aldergrove resident, Tyson Busby, who lived with an eating disorder for seven years.

For Busby, growing up wasn’t easy. He was sexually abused at age seven. By age 12, he fell into a deep depression. His father was in and out of his life. By 18, he developed an eating disorder.

The eating disorder, according to Busby, acted as a coping mechanism for his depression and was a way to get rid of the feelings he had inside.

Busby hid his eating disorder for a number of years while dating the person who would eventually become his wife. When she found out, she tried to do everything she could to help, but roadblocks stood in the way: being a male with an eating disorder, Busby found group support was inaccessible.

Not being able to find help led to desperation and he tried to take his own life a couple of times.

Fortunately, Busby’s wife found The Looking Glass Foundation for Eating Disorders and the chance to enter residential treatment. In January 2012, he took that chance, and entered residential treatment at Woodstone Residence on Galiano Island as the first male to ever access their services (the treatment facility has since re-located to Vancouver and is now called the Looking Glass Residence).

“Going to a residential treatment facility changed my life,” said Busby. “I was able to get away from everyday living and just focus on myself which I needed the most.

“The biggest help to my recovery was being able to express my feelings… I was able to learn that a lot of things that happened in my life I didn’t cause, but I thought I did and I was able to learn how to deal with my feelings in a positive way.”

Busby has been recovered since March of 2012. On January 30 Busby will be joined by panelists Kristi Gordon, Caitlin O’Reilly and Ali Eberhardt. The panel will be moderated by Chiara Fero.

The event takes place at UBC Robson Square, 800 Robson Street, Vancouver, in the Main Lecture Theatre.

For free tickets, visit: pedawpanel.eventbrite.ca and for more information, email pedaw@familyservices.bc.ca or visit http://bit.ly/PEDAW2016Panel.