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How Trauma and Eating Disorders Go Hand-in-Hand

How Trauma and Eating Disorders Go Hand-in-Hand

Eating disorder behaviors are often triggered by the effects of sexual trauma. Understanding this complex dynamic can help break the pattern of body shame.

Are you all too familiar with that bone-deep torment, roused by memories you didn’t choose to recall but might never forget? Can you feel the aftershocks surging through your body, invading the corners of your mind? Do you numb out from the world, from the trauma, from yourself? Have your methods of coping turned into behaviors that you can no longer control? Did you know this struggle is not yours to fight alone?

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Reasons Your Therapist Will Break Confidentiality

Reasons Your Therapist Will Break Confidentiality

There are reasons that your therapist will break confidentiality. A licensed therapist is bound by law to share a few things, so let's explore them. Read this.

There are reasons your therapist will break confidentiality. For some of us, this may come as a surprise because we’ve learned to trust our therapist. We see our therapist as Pandora’s box, where we think that they will never share anything that we tell them. However, a licensed therapist is bound by law to share a few things. Here’s what triggers your therapist to break confidentiality.

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What Happens When Eating Disorders and Body Dysmorphia Merge

What Happens When Eating Disorders and Body Dysmorphia Merge

There is a common link between eating disorders and body dysmorphia, so understanding this connection can help to address the symptoms of each illness.

Do you know the relationship between eating disorders and body dysmorphia? I remember the first time I stood in front of a mirror, scrutinizing every square-inch of my reflection. My thighs were not lean enough. My arms lacked definition. My stomach looked bloated underneath my shirt. My face registered the deep, gut-level disappointment I felt about my entire appearance. If I could just tweak those “problem areas”—shed a pound here, tone a muscle there—surely the mirror and I would become friends, or start tolerating each other at least. During the most critical and self-deprecating phases of my eating disorder, I had no idea this mirror-image was not reality, but a false representation of my distorted beliefs. I had never heard the term “body dysmorphia” or that it affects an estimated one in 50 people.1 Moreover, I did not make the connection I was one of those people, but eating disorders and body dysmorphia often go together.

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Can Exercise Have a Place in Eating Disorder Recovery?

Can Exercise Have a Place in Eating Disorder Recovery?

Exercise in eating disorder recovery is a delicate issue. Is it possible to find health and balance in exercise without compromising your recovery?

Why wouldn’t exercise have a place in eating disorder recovery? There’s no denying that bodies are designed for movement. In fact, exercise offers health benefits that we need in order to thrive, both physically and mentally. Being active helps us manage stress, boost our moods and feel more energized. It redirects our attention off social media or smartphones, so we can be mindful of how our breathing deepens, muscles contract and bodies function. When used for balance, enjoyment and wellness, exercise is a positive lifestyle choice. But for those of us recovering from eating disorders, exercise could turn into a compulsion.

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Introduction to Mary-Elizabeth Schurrer, Author of ‘Surviving ED’

Introduction to Mary-Elizabeth Schurrer, Author of ‘Surviving ED’

Mary-Elizabeth Schurrer, the new author of "Surviving ED" shares her story of developing, and recovering from, anorexia. Learn more here.My name is Mary-Elizabeth Schurrer (but for convenience sake, call me Mary-Beth). I’m honored to join HealthyPlace’s Surviving ED blog. I hope we can engage in honest, authentic and meaningful conversations about the triumphs and struggles of eating disorder recovery. But first, here’s some background on my own path to healing from anorexia nervosa.

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Empathy for Yourself and Others in Eating Disorder Recovery

Empathy for Yourself and Others in Eating Disorder Recovery

Eating disorder recovery requires that you show empathy to yourself and others. But remembering how to show empathy may not come easy. Read these tips.

It’s important to show empathy to yourself and others in eating disorder recovery. It’s vital for our loved ones to be able to show empathy for us as we journey towards recovery. It’s also vital to be able to show empathy for ourselves because empathy will help to keep us in eating disorder recovery. Here’s how to show empathy to yourself and others in eating disorder recovery.

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Let Go of Negative Body Image in Eating Disorder Recovery

Let Go of Negative Body Image in Eating Disorder Recovery

A negative body image in eating disorders is common. Here’s the reason our negative body image is the last thing we let go of in our eating disorder recovery.

Negative body image in eating disorder recovery is often the last thing you let go. It’s said that a negative body image is the first thing to come and the last to leave. Hating our bodies is a theme even though eating disorders aren’t really about what our bodies look like on the outside. Here’s the reason negative body image in our eating disorder recovery is the last thing we let go.

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Three Barriers to Eating Disorder Recovery

Three Barriers to Eating Disorder Recovery

There are many barriers to eating disorder recovery, but there are three that wreak havoc. You can conquer barriers to eating disorder recovery. Here's how.There are many barriers to eating disorder recovery, but there are three that particularly wreak havoc. Recovery of any addiction requires us to be brutally honest with ourselves, take responsibility, and hold ourselves accountable. These are all things that an addict of any kind despises (How to Fight Barriers and Get to Your Safe Place). But once we can face the three barriers to eating disorder recovery that stand in our way, the road opens under our feet.

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Numbing Out: What If I Said You Weren’t Addicted to Food?

Numbing Out: What If I Said You Weren’t Addicted to Food?

Numbing out helps you cope with tough feelings, but it can also be a lie behind an eating disorder. Learn options to numbing out in eating disorder recovery.What if numbing out pain with food is an unhealthy solution, not an addiction? What if I told you that you weren’t addicted to food? What if I told you that you didn’t have a problem with food at all? What if I told you that the problem was the discomfort beneath your skin, that urge to squirm and itch and run. The discomfort under your skin is what you’ve been trying to numb out. The food is just the solution you’ve come up with.

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Shame Traps You in an Eating Disorder But You Can Break Free

Shame Traps You in an Eating Disorder But You Can Break Free

Shame traps us in eating disorders by bullying us, creeping into our self-esteem to wreak havoc on our thoughts. Shame traps us, but you can break free.

Shame can keep you trapped in an eating disorder. Shame is insidious, creeping into our self-esteem and wreaking havoc on our thoughts and feelings. Eating disorders come with both shame and guilt, but the difference is important. Shame is the feeling that “I am bad,” while guilt is the feeling that, “I did something bad.” The insidious part about shame is that we begin to see ourselves and the eating disorder as one. When we do this, we become all bad and shame keeps us trapped in the eating disorder. 

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