For Robin Bailey, eating has never really been about food.
“Food is a life force,” Bailey says. “You have to eat to survive. So if you are someone that struggles with the whole concept of food, whether you don’t eat enough you can die, and if you eat too much you can die.
“But you can’t abstain, because you’ll die.”
For people who struggle with alcohol, the solution is often to abstain.
For people addicted to drugs, the solution is to stop taking them.
But for people who have a complicated relationship with food, it is a battle they must front up to multiple times a day.
Bailey has never been very much interested in cooking. Food has not been a source of joy in the same way it has for Sparrow. She has never, in all her life, eaten a three-course meal. She explains, "Through periods in my life I've been really thin... and I've ended up in hospital."
The Queensland radio personality says her time in hospital has not been the result of "any sort of eating disorder..." but rather of pushing her body "to the absolute limit."
When things have become seemingly unbearable for Bailey, she copes through restriction.
Listen: Robin Bailey opens up about her relationship with food on the latest episode of The Well. Post continues below.
And Bailey has had it tougher than most. Her husband of 16 years, Tony Smart, died by suicide in September 2014 after a long struggle with depression. She is a mother to three sons.
She explains that "not being able to eat in that process has made it so much worse..." and at times she has avoided going out to eat with family or friends, because she has felt "out of control".
"I don't want to be in that space because somehow it will feel like I'm going to be judged", Bailey reflects.
Staggered throughout the conversation are multiple clarifications that she is not suffering from an eating disorder: "Now don't all freak out and think that I'm some sort of anorexic, I'm not..."
Which ultimately begs the question, is she?
I'd argue that we exist in a culture that promotes and normalises disordered eating.