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Stereotypes about who gets eating disorders are stopping LGBTQ+ people seeking help

February 26, 2019
Cosmopolitan
LGBTQ+ people are much more likely to experience eating disorders throughout their lifetimes - mainly because of the unique challenges they face (such as fear of rejection, and internalised negative messages, and trauma).

Yet, Beats research found lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans folk are much less likely to seek help than
straight people. 37 per cent of LGBTQ+ people said they wouldnt feel comfortable pursuing treatment, compared to 24 per cent of straight people. And the damaging stereotypes contribute to this. One respondent, Andy, said he found people "thought gay men were all muscle or thin. I wanted people to understand, but they didn’t take my illness seriously. It took years to explain that I wasn’t just greedy and my problems were emotional".

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