What struck Kylie Davis ’14 as being an unusually high number of eating disorders prompted her to start Deerfield’s first Eating Disorder Support Group (EDSP) this past March.
“I saw how much eating disorders affect people here,” Davis said. Having overcome an eating disorder herself, Davis wanted people to understand “the consequences of it.”
She approached Science & Health Teacher, Peer Counseling & Residential Head Kristin Loftus with her idea in the fall.
“My goal is for our community to become aware and have a better understanding regarding eating disorders and disordered eating,” she said.
The group meets about once every two weeks in the Health Issues classroom, and Davis tries to come up with topics that highlight different aspects of eating disorders for each meeting. Davis leads a group of fifteen on average at each meeting.
“Our first meeting was about getting the elephant out of the room,” she said straightforwardly. In a discussion-based meeting, members considered various pressures at school that account for the rising number of eating disorders.
“The second meeting was more factual and information based, so people actually got to know the consequences,” Davis said.
For her third meeting, Davis zeroed in on media’s impact on eating disorders and disordered eating.
Ultimately, she hopes that raising awareness and promoting discussion will “reduce the number of people affected by [eating disorders] in our community.”