Miss Anya Heneghan

Research project: Siblings' Experiences of Having a Brother or Sister with an Eating Disorder


Eating disorders are serious mental illnesses which cause devastating consequences for those suffering and the people that care for them. As the age of emergence of EDs tends to be during adolescence, most sufferers still live at home with their parents and siblings. However, healthy siblings often lack information about their siblings' disorder despite it having a large effect on their own health, life, and relationships. Moreover, well-siblings have been neglected in the research and clinical fields, as such the proposed research aims to identify the gaps in this research area through a systematic review. This will be followed by quantitative and qualitative studies with well-siblings to gain a deeper understanding of their experiences, their needs and coping strategies and the impact the eating disorder on them. The aim of this research is to extend the limited current knowledge around the various ways in which eating disorders affect well-siblings.


I completed a BSc in Forensic Psychology at Kingston University before starting my PhD here. My main research area is eating disorders and I am passionate about bringing more awareness to this area. I am particularly interested in the experiences of adolescents with a sibling with an eating disorder.

I am also enjoying being an hourly paid lecturer and psychology research methods tutor at Kingston University.

Areas of research interest

  • Eating disorders
  • Mental Health
  • Stigma
  • The effect of eating disorders on siblings


  • BSc in Forensic Psychology, Kingston University London

Funding or awards received

  • Making the Future funding, Kingston University London, to organise an interdisciplinary conference. Funding amount: £900, Project Title: Shining the Light on Mental Health Stigma: Making the Future (2022)