A series of co-design workshops and interviews with women and healthcare professionals informed the development of the animation. The animation features some real life accounts from women about their experience of eating disorders during pregnancy and motherhood, and from healthcare professionals who provide support for pregnant women and mothers with these difficulties.

Featured interviewees

Jill Demilew

Jill Demilew is a Consultant Midwife in Public Health at King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. Jill has worked as a clinical midwife in a variety of roles, including NHS hospital and community based, Independent Midwifery and as a Midwifery Advisor at the Department of Health. Her work focuses on service development for women and families who experience social exclusion for any reason, such as women experiencing addiction or mental health problems, women seeking asylum, undocumented migrants, and victims of human trafficking. Her memberships include the National Institute for Health & Care Excellence (NICE) Antenatal & Postnatal Mental Health guideline, London Perinatal Network, and she is Chair of the Steering Group on Human Trafficking and Healthcare Professionals educational resources. Jill is currently collaborating with Professor Louise Howard on a programme of research funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) investigating the Effectiveness of Services for Mothers with Mental Illness (ESMI).

Christina Kelly

Christina Kelly is married with three children. Christina has struggled with an eating disorder since was a teenager and had to be admitted to hospital while she was studying at university. Throughout her twenties she sought help through counselling and support groups, and managed to live with her eating disorder symptoms. In her late twenties, Christina became pregnant with her first child and quickly found her eating disorder increased in severity. This was the case throughout each of her pregnancies, resulting in inpatient admission to a specialist eating disorder unit during her first and second pregnancy. She struggled with low mood and feelings of guilt and isolation during each pregnancy, struggling to find support that brought together her needs as a pregnant woman, a mother and someone needing support for an eating disorder. Christina now works in a mental health crisis service providing peer support to people in distress, working with compassion and using her own experiences to help others. She is also a writer and is interested in the health and therapeutic benefits of creative writing.

Dr Vicki Mountford

Dr Vicki Mountford is the principal clinical psychologist at the South London and Maudsley Eating Disorders Service. She has authored a number of books and papers on the eating disorders, including the self-help guide ‘Beating Your Eating Disorder: A Cognitive-Behavioural Self Help Guide for Adult Sufferers and their Carers’. Alongside her clinical work, she provides training in working with people with eating disorders. Her research interests include cognitive behaviour therapy, early intervention and outcome research in the eating disorders. The early intervention service have used a similar creative approach, click here for details.

Elizabeth Wilcock

Elizabeth Wilcock is a Registered Nurse and Health Visitor for Cheshire and Wirral Partnership Foundation Trust. She has a keen interest in Perinatal and Infant Mental Health, and she delivers training and attends the Institute of Health Visiting regional forum to share best practice in the field. Through her daily work she comes in to contact with a variety of mothers, children and wider families and supports them with the different challenges they experience in the early years.