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by Barbara Lawrence on 06/28/11

Welcome to my Blog.  I'm sitting here having a small attack of writer's block thinking about why anyone besides me might be interested in this blog, and simultaneously how to organize it because I like learning about many different things.  I've written books and articles about eating disorders in men and education, particularly about small schools, gifted education, and issues with facilities. 

That's an odd combination, but I can explain.  My former husband is eating disordered, I used to run a real estate and construction company, and I worked as a policy analyst in education and taught courses in history, sociology, and anthropology.  I also taught writing for over 10 years at two universities in Massachusetts, and now I'm trying to use what my students taught me to finish a novel and write a history of my British family during World War II.

So this is a blog about:

1) Eating disorders in men and boys
2) Education - particularly the benefits of small schools
3) Maine - that's where I lived for many years and the story in the novel takes place, and where I have cottages on Mount Desert Island (see
4) World War II in Great Britain

and more as I figure it out.

For now, I'm posting a short excerpt from my second book about eating disorders, The Hungry i: A workbook for partners of men with eating disorders,, and a comment.

"You saved my life," the man going down the escalator said, gesturing towards me as I moved past him on the escalator going up.  "How?" I asked, amazed.  "Bitter Ice," he replied, but then was gone.  This book is for him and all the other men and women who are partners of men with eating disorders.  May reading it help them as writing it has helped me.

40 percent of the people in college who are bulimic are men.  In 1999, when my first book Bitter Ice was published, one in twenty of the people in the US who is eating disordered was male.  Today the ratio is one in four.  We need to take a serious look at the reasons males become eating disordered, stop promoting unhealthy eating habits to "make weight" for athletic teams, or purging to get an endorphin high that makes young men temporarily feel clean, confident and strong.  I don't understand how a coach can look away when he knows his athletes are making themselves throw up before an event, and yet that happens every day.  I don't understand why so many on-campus programs for eating disorders reach out only to young women.  What can we do?

Comments (1)

1. Recovered bulimic said on 6/28/11 - 05:55PM
As a recovered male bulimic, this book was incredibly helpful and eye-opening for me. Given the selfish nature of eating disorders, Barbara's "The Hungry i" helped me both recognize the behaviors I used while in the throes of bulimia and understand how they hurt myself and those around me. An incredibly helpful read for those with male loved ones suffering from eating disorders.

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It's an odd mix of photographs, I agree: The cover of The Hungry i: A workbook for partners of men with eating disorders (that's me with Johanna Kandel, Director of The Alliance for Eating Disorders, launching the book in Florida this winter.  Then there's a photograph looking towards the outer islands off the coast of Mount Desert Island, the setting for my novel, Islands of Time.  The next photograph, taken in the fall of 1939, shows my mother Barbara Kent Greene, and her brother Ralph Kent Green, just as she signed up for the Voluntary Aid Detachment, and was hastily trained to take the place of fully trained nurses during World War II.  No, that isn't a typo.  Her last name was originally Green, but she changed it to Greene when she made her first film in 1936.  My uncle Kent signed up for the army 9 days after Great Britain declared war on Germany in September, 1939.  At the time I think this photograph was taken, he was just about to leave for France where he served with the British Expeditionary Forces, and was later rescued from the beaches of Dunkirk when the German Army stormed into France.  The last photograph is of me when my partner Bob and I were in Florida.

​EXPLANATION OF TEXT COLORS:  We'll discuss three major topics about which I've written or am writing books and articles: EATING DISORDERS IN MEN (BLACK), new writing (TEALWORLD WAR II (NAVY BLUE), and  SMALL SCHOOLS (GREEN). If a topic doesn't fit within these confines I'll write it in  ORANGE.   I hope this system will help you find posts that interest you, and avoid those that don't.