The Heroines

Beth Hartman Mc Gilley

is honored with a Brick from Angie Hardage-Bundy

 Beth Hartman Mc Gilley Beth Hartman McGilley, Ph.D., FAED

Beth Hartman McGilley, Ph.D., FAED, Associate Professor, University of Kansas School of Medicine--Wichita is a psychologist in private practice, specializing in the treatment of eating and related disorders, body image, trauma, grief, and athletes. A Fellow of the Academy for Eating Disorders, Dr. McGilley has practiced for over 20 years, writing, lecturing, supervising, directing an inpatient eating disorders program and providing individual, family and group therapy. Dr. McGilley has addressed national and international audiences regarding eating disorders and body image concerns, and has published in both academic journals and the popular media. An article detailing her recovery from anorexia was published in the Renfrew Perspective. Recently, Dr. McGilley published a chapter in the book, Self-Harm Behavior and Eating Disorders, entitled, Feminist Perspectives on Self-Harm Behaviors and Eating Disorders. She is currently working on her first book, Do The Know: Healing Mantras from Girls in Eating Disorder Recovery.
Dr. McGilley is a community activist, having co-founded and currently acting as President of Healing Path Foundation, a nonprofit foundation dedicated to the prevention and treatment of eating disorders. She is also involved with a local Health & Wellness Coalition addressing weight and health concerns in Kansas’s youth. Her hobbies include competitive cycling, mountain climbing, and writing.

What Her Friends Say About Her. . .
Beth is a genuine Heroine to:
Innumerable clients grappling with eating disorders and past traumas, nurtured by fierce and enduring compassion as their therapist,
A new generation of feminist-oriented therapists following her bold and pioneering lead in use of self-disclosure as part of the therapeutic process,
The many young persons she has inspired to pursue a career in counseling and clinical psychology,
Countless children attending school wide assemblies who have been entertained and heartened by her talks on self-respect and empowerment,
Thousands of national symposia audience members to whom she has introduced the subtleties and complexities of eating disorders,
The hundreds of medical students and resident physicians fortunate to hear her expert and moving discussions on the diagnosis and management of eating disorders,
Numerous female athletes she has inspired with courage to compete, and with a drive for optimal performance,
Those who see in her a model for community involvement, compassionate activism, and talented leadership through her participation in local and national committees, boards, and organizations,
Her many, many friends who enjoy her warmth, supportive concern, easy laughter, and empathetic enthusiasm for growth through life’s frequent struggles.
~ Dr. Keck Hartman

It has been my honor and blessing to know Beth for the past 20 years. We met as psychology interns and over the years our friendship has deepened and our professional interactions have become more frequent. I am often impressed with Beth’s depth of knowledge in the field of psychology and her considerable achievements as a writer, researcher, and clinician. She has given countless hours freely and generously to prevent and treat eating disorders in our community. She has literally saved numerous lives. On a regular basis, I watch how she partners with her clients and journeys with them to wholeness with a passion and commitment that is extraordinary. One of the things about Beth that leaves me in awe is her devotion to living in an authentic and engaged way in all areas of her life friend, wife, daughter, sister, and therapist. My life is blessed by her presence and our community has been enriched beyond measure.
~Maureen Morrison

she is a selfless servant ~ Lesa Lomax

I have learned so much from Beth over the last ten years. I have learned that asking questions is sometimes more helpful than making statements. I have learned about the labyrinth as a metaphor for life and self actualization. I have learned about interpersonal boundaries. I have learned to be a better parent. I have learned to live my life with intention and authenticity. I have learned to be fully present and embodied. I have learned how to navigate an often confusing and sometimes scary world without feeling the need to shrink from it. Beth has been my friend, mentor, and confidant, and in the process has literally changed the course of my life in several dimensions. I am grateful that the universe brought Beth into my world.
~Angie Hardage-Bundy

My Beth
Sometimes I wonder how some people can be so close. A mother and child, a husband and wife perhaps. They don’t have to speak a single word. A simple look between them can communicate a hundred words. They are able to relax in one another’s good company and something about an embrace between them feels like going home. Like an infusion of hearts. They’ve seen the others’ best and worst times and love each other in spite of everything. I’m blessed to have a friend in my life that I am able to experience that with.
I met Beth when I was 14 years old and severely anorexic. She would see me through my anorexic days and into my freshman year of college in Dallas and a brutal shift into Bulimia. She would listen, laugh, cry, and pray for me countless times in the 10 years that followed. I wish that somehow or someway we could have met under different circumstances. And yet, I’m not sure if we would have ended up so close had that happened.
It’s been almost 10 years and I can honestly say that I have a hard time remembering my weekly therapy sessions. I blame my starved brain. It wasn’t until my senior year in high school that I began to tear down the walls that surrounded my heart and mind. Beth was waiting anxiously on the other side of those walls like a child waiting to see what Santa had brought them on Christmas morning.
I’ve often thought what it must feel like to be Beth and to bear witness to so many people’s lives with her hands behind her back. It must feel like a 911 dispatch operator. She can only give advise and talk them through it. She can’t actually reach out her hand and grab the child drowning in the pool. All she can do is verbally teach them how to swim. It must be exhausting at times.
I can still see Beth sitting across from me in her chair. Perched on her legs she listened for an hour to the details of my life that I wanted her to know about, or those that I couldn’t reconcile within myself. I always hoped that she would be able to undo the stupid things that I had done in my life with her passionate words. I hoped that she could turn back time and unweave the fabric that I had so deliberately and maddeningly woven. Beth has a way of lifting the curtains in the sometimes blackened room I know as my brain.
One thing that Beth has taught me is to never leave home and venture into the cold unknown without knowing I have people that love me and are pulling for me. They think that I’m smart enough, and pretty enough, and funny enough, and all around enough to fill their lives’ with joy. If you focus on those people then the critical jabes that the world throws at you seem to hurt a bit less.
Beth is my inspiration, my mentor, my momma bear, my therapist, my doctor, and my friend. She is irreplaceable in my life! In fact I owe a good chunk of my consciousness to her, I might still be floating around in life masked with an eating disorder had she not been vigilant in my recovery. It’s as if she taught me to drive blindfolded while she sat in the seat beside me. I thank God that He chose her to be my angel and help me save my life. She loved me before I could love myself and then taught me how to be my own friend. She leaves the aroma of her passion, love, dedication, and spirit everywhere she goes. I’m happy to say that she is my true soul friend (anam cara).
~ Amy Smith