This blog is geared specifically for people who are currently living with an eating disorder and might find themselves in various stages of recovery during the holidays. As always, we encourage you to be brave and take good care of yourself.
Sometimes personifying your eating disorder can give you the distance you need to get some clarity about next steps towards help and healing.
In our last blog, if you answered yes to some of the questions about your relationship with food then, in this blog, I want to have a moment with your eating disorder.
This is the part of you that walks around the grocery store aimlessly reading food labels, with your stomach gurgling and your fingers and toes cold as ice tells you that the next pound you shed will boost your sense of body image. It tells you one more pound will give you the opportunity you need, the confidence you want. The person at the grocery store or the family member that complements how much your body shape has changed does not know how much you are suffering on the inside. That compliment might give this part of you that extra boost of energy to keep restricting, telling you a few pounds will let you live a life free from a painfully low sense of self-worth.
Sadly, this part of you is lost in pain trying to survive, trying to help you be strong.
It tries to give you a voice through your body shape when using your actual voice seems impossible to access. The reality this part of you misses is that the more you restrict, the more energy and strength you lose, not gain. This part of you tells you that changing your shape might hide you from your abuser or that you will feel better about yourself if you are smaller. The truth is you don’t, it is never small enough, good enough, “right” enough. Instead you wind up living in a body with such low energy and very little ability to focus, incapable of living out many activities worth living for.
If your eating disorder feels seen or exposed in any part of this blog, please know you are strong and not alone.
I hope you find a therapist who works with eating disorders. I hope your eating disorder can finally meet the help it needs and have someone partner with you in your journey towards recovery.
Written by: Catherine Virden