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Becca Ayers
February 20, 2024

Staff Spotlight, Becca Ayers

Tell us about yourself!

My name is Becca Ayers (she/her), and I’m a Behavioral Health Specialist (BHS) at Veritas Collaborative’s Douglas Eating Disorder Treatment Center for adults in Durham, North Carolina. I originally started as a Therapeutic Assistant in 2022, so I’ve been with Veritas Collaborative for a year and a half now!

What does a typical day look like for you at Veritas Collaborative?

While each day may look a bit different depending on the current needs of our patients, a typical day involves me arriving at 7am and preparing for our daily self-monitoring group. In this group, I assist patients in maintaining accountability for tracking their targeted behaviors and using that information to engage them in self-reflection and goal-setting. The rest of my day includes preparation for groups that I lead throughout the week (Boundaries, Psychoeducation, and Embracing Recovery), assisting with support, supervision, and processing during meals, direct patient care, team meetings, and precepting new hires.

What is one thing you wish people knew about eating disorders?

I wish more people knew that full recovery is not just about food. While eating disorders can manifest into visible behaviors surrounding food and body image, there are non-visible, deep-rooted issues that need to be addressed as well. I’ve worked with many patients who share how they feel like they shouldn’t be in a higher level of care because they’re following their meal plan and/or feel like their eating disorder “isn’t as bad.” This could not be further from the truth. Just because someone is giving their body the nutrition that it needs at the moment doesn’t mean they aren’t struggling with a life-threatening eating disorder. Each individual’s recovery process will look different! That’s what I appreciate about Veritas’ approach — each patient’s treatment plan is individualized according to what their specific needs are.

What motivates you to show up for work each day?

Getting to help such wonderful individuals work toward their personal recovery goals. Our patients are the ones putting in all the hard work and being able to witness their strength is awe-inspiring. Additionally, my incredible colleagues who have our patients’ best interests at heart make my day even better! They make work so much fun!

What piece of advice would you give to those struggling with eating disorders?

Try to be patient with yourself as you navigate learning and utilizing new coping skills for managing distress. You didn’t develop an eating disorder overnight, so recovery also won’t happen overnight (though I truly wish that’s how it worked)! It will take time — however, full recovery is possible.

What three words would you use to describe Veritas Collaborative? 

Innovative, Compassionate, and Competent.

If you could do another job just for a day, what would it be? 

Without a doubt, I would be a local bookshop owner. I’m an avid reader so I wouldn’t mind at all being surrounded by books and all the different worlds that live within them. I might even add a little cozy coffee shop in there too!