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Surrey Eating Disorders Therapist in Conversation with Sharrie Williams

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Kate Hudson-Hall is a psychotherapist and author of Bulimia Sucks! Which is a self-help book for people with the eating disorder bulimia nervosa. She has a podcast also called Bulimia Sucks and recently interviewed Sharrie Williams, Tom Lyle Williams’s (founder of Maybelline cosmetics,) great niece.

Sharrie is an award-winning speaker, celebrity columnist, Hollywood correspondent and author of The Maybelline Story. A gifted storyteller, Sharrie guides her readers through the birth of the Maybelline empire, revealing intimate and never-before-told details about the fascinating family dynasty.

In episode 27,  Sharrie inspiringly shares her journey throughout her privileged yet challenging life with her eating disorder, explaining how she was given diet tablets at the age of 12 because she was a larger girl and would be: an embarrassment to the family if she continued to gain weight; seen as a failure; rejected by the family and never find a husband; perfect in every way, from how she looked, her weight, and presented herself.

The enormous pressure to ‘be perfect’ sent her off the diving board into an eating disorder, alcohol and drug abuse. Snorting cocaine for breakfast to prevent her from eating, and with the pressures of becoming fat when pregnant, she joined weight watchers and stopped eating.

The podcast becomes intriguing yet inspiring as Sharrie discusses how she had to lose everything on the outside to gain everything inside. Hitting rock bottom after her grandmother ‘Miss Maybelline’ was murdered, the loss of her second child and her house burning to cinders before she began on her pathway to freedom learning how she doesn’t always have to look and present perfection. Plus, the realisation she has a voice, not just her looks. She also learned how she can be comfortable in her own self; how she changed her thinking of who she had to be, to be loved and how she re-parented herself with compassion and forgave her father for being incapable of loving her unconditionally; and a variety of empowering and encouraging ways to finally find herself, including many different therapies.

Kate – who suffered from bulimia and anorexia herself for 15 years before overcoming the illness and training as a psychotherapist, hypnotherapist, and NLP practitioner to help others – explains why she has written the book Bulimia Sucks! and also set up her podcast of the same name. There are so many problematic aspects of battling with an eating disorder, and she feels that there two key reasons for this. First it’s because an eating disorder is regularly seen as a more extreme mental illness, people find it extremely hard to understand why someone behaviour the way they do, particularly with the purging side of bulimia. Second, we often feel like we are all alone in the fight, creating many negative feelings, including isolation and loneliness. Even the most difficult challenge is so much easier when you aren’t going through it on your own. Hence why it’s so important to talk about eating disorders and mental health and why I set up Bulimia Sucks! to raise awareness of bulimia and end the stigma connected to it.  

The Bulimia Sucks podcast is a platform for people to share healthy conversations which are relatable, uplifting and inspiring based on bulimia and anorexia and other eating disorders. With real stories from people who are suffering or have suffered an eating disorder.

Episodes include their personal stories of where they are now, their difficult journeys and their steps taken into recovering from their eating disorder, and interviews with top experts in eating disorders sharing information for people recovering from eating disorders.

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