YOUNG VOICES

This 23-Year-Old's Video About Being Sectioned Is Incredibly Powerful

17/07/2015 12:03 BST | Updated 17/07/2015 13:59 BST

A 23-year-old has made a video about her experience of being sectioned in a mental health hospital after becoming concerned young people think anorexia is fashionable.

Claire Greaves from Pontypool, South Wales, made the video as part of a campaign with youth charity Fixers in order to show others eating disorders aren't glamourous.

In the video, Greaves asks: "Anorexia is glamourous. Do you really think that?

"Having your urine measured, laying naked in a bath, being watched, having needles stabbed into your collapsed vein, that's glamourous right?"

Speaking to HuffPost UK, Greaves says: "I was sectioned last August for two months and when I came out of hospital I decided I was going to use what happened to me to make a positive change in the world.

"I saw a lot of pro and and pro self harm comments on social media and knowing the reality of mental illness, I wanted to send out the message that these illnesses are not something to strive for and they are not fashionable.

"As a writer it was important that I incorporated my love for words and so I wrote the piece and then came up with the visuals to go with it.

"A lot of the responses I've had have said how it captures the reality of mental illness and it's made a lot of people feel quite emotional too."

"I’ve seen comments online from people who say they want to have anorexia or another mental health issue," she explains.

"Most shockingly of all, someone said they wanted to be sectioned so they could have a hug when they’re sad.

"This sparked something within me. I’ve been sectioned and know it’s not like that. It’s certainly not something I would have wanted to go through.

"My campaign is to show people what being sectioned is really like, so they understand that mental illnesses are not something to strive for."

Useful websites and helplines:

  • Samaritans, open 24 hours a day, on 08457 90 90 90
  • Mind, open Monday to Friday, 9am-6pm on 0300 123 3393
  • HopeLine runs a confidential advice helpline if you are a young person at risk of suicide or are worried about a young person at risk of suicide. Mon-Fri 10-5pmand 7pm-10pm. Weekends 2pm-5pm on 0800 068 41 41
  • HeadMeds - a straight-talking website on mental health medication