Holly Griffiths at 34 weeks.
July 05, 2013 9:21AM
WITH her ribs visible beside her arms, Holly Griffiths looks barely able to carry herself, let alone a growing child.
She is eight months pregnant and battles with anorexia.
Pictures of the 21-year-old, who weighs just 50kg and is 1.7m tall, reveal her struggle to put on weight to keep her unborn child healthy.
Ms Griffiths has struggled with eating problems for 13 years but has already given birth to one healthy child – a son called Dylan, who is now two.
Normally, pregnant women are expected to consume about 2000 calories a day but Ms Griffiths makes do with between 800 and 1200, eating one slice of toast for breakfast, salad for lunch, and plain pasta for dinner.
She has to see a high-risk maternity doctor, but a 4D scan of her second child, who she has named Isla, shows she currently looks healthy.
“I know I have to eat for the baby, but it’s hard to push the voices away that are telling me I’m fat,” said Ms Griffiths, a Londoner who is engaged to the child’s father, gym manager Harrison Bogbanovs, 24.
“When I first discovered I was pregnant I was terrified of having to gain weight again. I suffered terrible morning sickness which caused my weight to drop, triggering my anorexia. I had thoughts of purging but didn’t need to, my body was reacting in its own way. This made eating a lot easier, because I would just vomit it up anyway.”
When Ms Griffiths was pregnant with Dylan she was so thin that one of her ribs cracked as the baby grew. She was induced at 37 weeks and gave birth after a labour of only 10 minutes.
Dylan weighed 5lb 10oz and, to her relief, was healthy.
“I was so lucky he was OK,” she said. “I felt so guilty I had put his life at risk.”
Ms Griffiths was eight when she started battling with her weight. She blames her condition on the pressure to look skinny in a leotard while taking ballet classes.
By 12 she had been admitted to a children’s psychiatric clinic weighing just 34kg – about 19kg underweight.
An avid blogger, Ms Griffiths often shares her struggles online.
At 16 weeks pregnant, she posted that she “finally gained back four of the eighteen pounds I’d lost despite still having pretty violent morning sickness. Gaining weight is strange. I’m starting to have the niggles of anorexia in my mind over the weight gain and yet I’m setting myself weight gain goals that should terrify me. It’s OK though, I’m prepared for this.”
She has also shared her story on YouTube, stating that “this subject is for the second time taking the main stage in my life. Eating disorders in their own are a constant and daily struggle, but pair them with pregnancy and trying to maintain a healthy diet and carry a healthy baby and it feels like you’re walking through a field of mines.”
In response, thinprincess87 wrote: “Thanks for posting this! I’m pregnant 16 weeks along and have an ED [Eating Disorder] for years and ED’s voice is driving me nuts now being now diabetic.”
And Lozzzzie89 said: “Thank you so much for posting this! can not describe how thankful I am. Definitely very helpful.”
At 35 weeks pregnant, Ms Griffiths is determined to gain 1.3kg before she gives birth to Isla. It is planned that she will be induced in three weeks.
“Thankfully my baby girl is a healthy size and the doctors are happy with my progress,” she added.
“I’m desperate to recover so I can teach my kids a healthy way to approach food. I couldn’t bear it if they had body issues like me, so I’m continuing to fight the voices in my head and get better for them.”
using the number/letter grid:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
A B C D E F G H I
J K L M N O P Q R
S T U V W X Y Z
A = 1 J = 1 S = 1
B = 2 K = 2 T = 2
C = 3 L = 3 U = 3
D = 4 M = 4 V = 4
E = 5 N = 5 W = 5
F = 6 O = 6 X = 6
G = 7 P = 7 Y = 7
H = 8 Q = 8 Z = 8
I = 9 R = 9
how she obtains her heart’s desire = HS = 81 = Re-examining her eating behavior.
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