This week on Four Corners the Australian mums fighting to keep their children alive.

For months reporter Grace Tobin and the team followed families as they struggled to get the right treatment for life-threatening eating disorders.

With more than one million Australians estimated to be living with an eating disorder at any time, they are also one of the deadliest of all mental illnesses.

The program explores the complexities of the illness and reveals a health system appallingly underprepared to deal with this crisis.  

For 23-year-old Sara, who compares her eating disorder to a “monster”, the solution is not as simple as just eating.

“It’s so much more than just the actual food. For me, when I have food, there’s so much guilt and shame and anxiety around it. That doesn’t just go away if you eat the food,” Sara says.

Her mother Jenny lives in fear, “I come home thinking, ‘Is she going to be collapsed on the floor or is she going to be okay?’ … She could die from it.”

Another mother, Faye lost her daughter Caitlin after a 16-year battle with the disease.

“She gave up on the system. The system is broken. It’s so broken,” she tells Four Corners.  

Four Corners: Fading Away reported by Grace Tobin goes to air on Monday 27th of February at 8.30pm on ABC TV and ABC iview.

Media Release – ABC