I Guess This Means I Have An Eating Disorder

Kevin Dooley
Kevin Dooley

You found yourself throwing up again. It’s been days and this is still going on. You can easily assume that it’s from the flu season but it’s not. You wish it was. It’s an endless cycle that you can never stop. You don’t even know how, when and why you started this awful habit.

Bulimia. I never thought I’d had that diagnosis. As many of us quickly turn a blind eye to many mental health issues, I was doing it too. I never thought I’d had an eating disorder. I always thought that eating a ton of food was considered healthy. That’s what I’d been taught from an early age. I can still hear my mom’s voice in the back of my mind saying, “You are not leaving this room until you finish all your food that’s on your plate.” So I did. Every single day. I never had the right to put the amount of food I wanted in my plate until I was twelve and by that age I never knew what the proper amount was. So I ate a lot to keep my parents “satisfied”. When I reached puberty though, it hit me. My body was not considered skinny. I started to hate myself.

I restricted food. I was going through days of fasting. I was dropping weight and then putting it on again. I was forced into gym (which later became my passion), and thought that if I was exercising I was allowed to eat whatever I wanted. I believed that for years and consumed a lot of food on a daily basis. I was never thin though. Some days I felt so disgusted with myself and the amount of food I ate that I “allowed” myself to throw up so I could “come back to normal.” I still remember the first time I ever did it. It was always my secret, but I also thought that everyone did it and that it was okay to do it once in a while.

But the last few months I lost control. Now I can’t stop and I feel so ashamed. I count the days since I decided I would stop self-harming but I’m pretty sure that’s also the day that the monster inside my head started screaming that I’m not good enough to eat or do anything. I don’t know how I went from “normal” to having a dual diagnosis in only a few months, and I don’t know how I even got to the point where my therapist is referring me to an Eating Disorder specialist (and I do not approve and it stresses me out so I don’t go). In the past months, I’ve heard this many times, “if you even think you have an Eating Disorder, you probably have one.” I do. I meet all the criteria and it scares me.

I don’t control myself on how much I eat, I binge. I became such an expert on it that even if you are in the next room you won’t even notice I’m purging. I also started waking up in the middle of the night and end up in front of the fridge eating anything that is inside it. The scary part of this is when you realize in the morning that it wasn’t all a dream. And so you are diagnosed with depersonalization and you lose all the power you have over food. You fight to stop but it’s beyond your powers.

You wish you never started this but you did and now you are only battling with yourself. TC mark

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