Search

Islington anorexia survivor, 23, tells of her journey to recovery

PUBLISHED: 16:57 18 August 2016

Nina Martynchyk

Nina Martynchyk

Archant

Fourteen can be a tough age. Treading the tightrope between childhood and adulthood, for many it’s our first real experience of decision making, responsibility and independence. But for Islington woman Nina Martynchyk, it represented a low point in her life.

“When I was 14 my mum died, and with no one else around I was taken into care,” she said.

“I was already struggling with anorexia a bit at the time, and going into care didn’t help at all.”

Islington Council placed Nina with a foster family she felt didn’t care for her – something she says saw her condition worsen over the next two years. At the age of just 16, she was admitted to hospital for help.

“When I was in hospital my foster mum barely came to see me, and there was a period of about six weeks at the start where no one came at all,” she said. “If it wasn’t for the help of the NHS doctors and nurses during that time, I’m not sure what I would have done.”

At the end of six weeks without a single visitor Nina was placed with a new foster family. It was here that her recovery finally began. She spent just over a year in different hospitals but, when she came out, she began to see life differently.

“I found that eating disorders aren’t about food or weight – they’re about controlling your emotions,” she said.

Today, Nina works for mental health charity Starwards, and is teaming up with the Royal Free Hospital to put on a conference about eating disorders next month.

“When I was sick I felt like people did want to help, but they just didn’t understand how to,” she said.

“If I had a daughter and something were to happen to me, I’d want to know that she wouldn’t be going through the same things I went through, and that people would be able to help her.”

So far the conference has more than 250 people attending, with a host of guest speakers talking about their experiences. It’s been so popular it even has a waiting list, and Nina can’t wait for it to take place.

“I’m actually really excited. I’m a little nervous but really can’t wait, and am curious to see how it goes.”

For more on the conference, visit respondingtoeatingdisordersconference.com

Latest Islington News Stories

17:52

Building work on the historic Golden Lane Estate has been suspended after a gas leak caused dozens of families to be evacuated from their homes.

A nurse was “nearly killed” when the ceiling of her housing association flat off the Holloway Road collapsed on Friday.

A pregnant bulldog with life-threatening injuries was found covered in faeces and abandoned in a Finsbury Park alley on December 2.

Elderly service users of a Highbury day centre set for demolition staged an impassioned and slightly surreal demonstration on the Town Hall steps last night.

A drug dealer caught with £800,000 worth of cocaine in the boot of his car has been sentenced to 12 years in jail.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Islington became the first council to pass a motion of no confidence in the government’s flagship social welfare reform last night.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Councillors met with pupils from a Finsbury primary school to celebrate a commitment to resettle 100 asylum-seeking children over the next 10 years.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Marks and Spencer’s bid to sell alcohol every day from 8am at a new Archway store has angered police and Islington Council due to the high number of street drinkers in the area – but the shop says it doesn’t stock the kind of booze that attracts alcoholics.

Promoted Content

Fostering older teenagers means giving them the skills for life as an adult. Here, a supportive lodgings carer with Islington Council and young adult who has left care share their stories

Newsletter Sign Up

Islington Gazette twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now