"Dear Eating Disorder": Where does your Eating Disorder End and you Begin? (Part 1 of 4)


By Julia Vickers, ALMFT

Dear Eating Disorder,

I think we need to talk. I’ve been wondering recently if you have my best interest in mind. I am nervous because you keep promising me things will get better, but we’ve been at this a while, and I am not seeing results. You promised me that I would be thin and toned...well, years ago. I actually feel more stuck and alone than ever before. You tell me that our work together is almost done and to not tell anyone else about you because they won’t understand our method. You whisper that you’re the only one who can help me reach my goals; that you can help me become who I’ve always wanted to be. I’m not sure who to trust…

Where does your Eating Disorder End and you Begin?

The couple kissed as the first snowflakes of the winter season dusted their jackets and the tall evergreen trees surrounding them. I reached for the last cookie of the dozen I had made feeling stuffed, guilty, and pathetic as the holiday themed credits rolled across the screen after Hallmark’s latest Christmas special. Can you relate to this feeling?

I pulled myself off the couch, wrapped my blanket close around me, and headed to the bathroom to brush my teeth before climbing in bed. I looked at myself in the mirror and heard, “How could you...again? A whole dozen! Seriously? Do you have any idea how unhealthy that is? We have some goals here and getting fat is not one of them. Why did you eat so much again? I thought you were a nutrition major and knew how to take care of yourself. You should know better. You need to be embarrassed of who your becoming…

I closed my eyes and pressed my fingers against my hard, aching abdomen, trying to come up with justifications to the onslaught of accusations. The truth was, I felt helpless and hopeless. I agreed with every negative word my eating disorder spoke to me and was too weak to fight. In fact, I felt completely out of control. I didn’t understand how I had gotten here. This was not a one-time episode but binge eating had become more and more frequent since I had left college and moved home. Honestly, I was scared. Was I trying to escape something? What was I trying to numb? A gentle yet strong voice rose above the noise in my head and said something that began unraveling my relationship with my eating disorder.

Stay tuned for my next journal entry where I share more about what I heard that night that led me to believe recovery from my eating disorder might be possible.

If you need the support of a licensed therapist for disordered eating, or a difficult relationship with food - call julia today at 630-480-0060 x 704 or fill out the “Get In Touch” form on our contact page.

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