Ben Mitchell (Max Bowden) is set to throw himself into work in EastEnders as he tries his best to provide for Lola, Jay and Lexi (Danielle Harold, Jamie Borthwick and Isabella Brown), despite husband Callum’s (Tony Clay) concerns that he is doing too much.
As Kathy Beale (Gillian Taylforth) plans a big Eurovision themed bash for her 73rd birthday (no, we don’t believe it either), she too notices that Ben seems strung out and exhausted.
Unbeknown to his family, Ben has been suffering from bulimia, a condition which sees sufferers go through periods of eating a lot of food in a short amount of time, before making themselves sick, using laxatives or partaking in excessive exercise in order to prevent them from gaining weight.
With Lola’s condition worsening day by day and the news that rapist Lewis has been rearrested, Ben’s mental health has taken a rapid decline.
In an attempt to regain control, he has started to restrict aspects of his lifestyle, specifically exercise and food.
However, this doesn’t stop Ben agreeing to take on more overtime when Lola admits that she can’t work any longer.
As the day of Kathy’s party dawns, Ben works tirelessly to finish on time.
At one point, Jay drops in and informs him that Lola is far too tired to take Lexi to the party, so she will have to go with him.
With everything piling on top of him, Ben breaks down from exhaustion, before hauling himself to his mum’s party.
When he gets there, he realises that he’s forgotten something very important: Lexi.
Having faced the wrath of Lola and Jay, Ben turns to booze to settle his nerves, but this only riles him up further.
Soon, he is picking a fight with Vinny Panesar (Shiv Jalota), much to the horror of the other party guests.
With Lola screaming at him to stop and his family and friends looking on in complete shock, Ben realises that he has taken things a step too far.
Will he realise that he needs help, before it’s too late?
You can find information, advice, resources and support around eating disorders by visiting Beat’s website or contacting their helplines and web-chat services.
Further information can be found on the NHS’s information page on bulimia.
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