Anorexia nervosa: an interview with Mair Elliott and Dr William Mandy

Mair Elliott is an activist who speaks openly about her experience of being autistic and living with mental illness, campaigning for improved services for autistic children and young people. Will Mandy is a clinical psychologist and senior lecturer at University College London (UCL) whose work aims to improve the recognition of autism and develop new interventions to support autistic people.

Mair and William kindly agreed to be interviewed for Network Autism when they attended the National Autistic Society Professional Conference in 2018.

In this interview Mair and William discuss the prevalence and presentation of anorexia nervosa in autistic people, and they explore the support options available from both a professional and personal perspective.

Download a PDF transcript of this interview

Will and Mair will be speaking at the forthcoming Women and girls conference 2018 in London

Date added: 21 May 2018


Thu, 31/05/2018 - 13:18

I was fighting tears watching Mair speak.  I don't personally suffer from ED but do have similar experiences of going through mental health services with a very late diagnosed ASD and similarly complex presentation.  In my experience, the issues she describes are by no means restricted to ED services but permeate throughout MH services.  I have often begged for help, only to be offered services & treatments which are highly unsuitable and often make things worse.  I am frequently left with the impression that my attempts to describe my thoughts and feelings simply aren't believed and often described as obstructive/manipulative.  The end result is typically a feeling of hopelessness and despair, I suspect on both sides, and I have now discharged myself from services completely as the support I need simply does not exist in my area.