Everything you need to know about feelings and emotions as well as eating disorders and self harm

Feelings and emotions

Feeling and emotions are an important part of your life. The way you feel can affect everything you do and how to interact with other people. Sometimes it might seem like the way you feel is controlling what you do and taking over your life.

Sometimes the way you feel may mean you think about doing things to yourself that damage your mind or your body. When you don't feel good, it can be tempting to do things to make those feelings go away.

There are always people you can talk to about what you're thinking and feeling and can help you if you're feeling out of control or are damaging yourself in some way. You can find out more about how to understand what you're going through using the links below and find advice to help you help yourself.

Eating disorders

Eating disorders are mental health conditions that all involve an unhealthy relationship with food and eating, and often an intense fear of being overweight. The most common disorders are anorexia and bulimia, though there are many other types.

If you have an eating disorder you may experience one or more of the following:

  • You have a preoccupation and concern about food and gaining weight
  • You would like to lose weight even though friends or family worry that you are underweight
  • You let people around you think you have eaten when you haven't
  • You're secretive about your eating habits because you know they're unhealthy
  • Eating makes you feel anxious, upset or guilty
  • You make yourself vomit or use laxatives in order to lose weight

If you recognise any of these feelings or actions in yourself, you may have an eating disorder. If you think you have an eating disorder, the best thing to do is talk to someone you trust. You may have a close friend or family member you can talk to or a teacher at school/college. You can also go to your GP who can give you advice and talk to you about getting a diagnosis and the possible treatment options.

If you are concerned about a friend or family member, it can be difficult to know what to do. It is common for someone with an eating disorder to be secretive and defensive about their eating and their weight, and they are likely to deny being unwell.

If you have a friend that has or you think might have an eating disorder, you can get help and support here:

Self harm

Self-harm is when people set out to hurt themselves or damage their health deliberately, sometimes this is done in secret.

There are lots of things which may make you think about hurting yourself and understanding what makes you think that way can help you cope and stop harming.

Find out more including how to help a friend if you think they may be self-harming