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The Surprising Reason We Resist Eating Disorder Recovery

The Surprising Reason We Resist Eating Disorder Recovery

Why would anyone resist eating disorder recovery? Wouldn’t eating disorder recovery be better than an active eating disorder? Afterall, when we think about eating disorders, the terms laughing, cheerful, bright, glad, or content don’t make the list. For those of us who’ve been living with our disorder for a while, there’s a helplessness, hopelessness and self-doubt, which kicks us down the stairs of depression with an eating disorder. We’re not stupid. We know we’re missing out on life. Yet fear pokes us with a sharp stick taunting, “What if you never recover? You’ll get fat. You’ll spiral out of control.” Terror of the unknown keeps us frozen in place, or moving with icy limbs. There’s a simple reason we resist eating disorder recovery. Once we hear it, eating disorder recovery won’t be the same.

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Your Eating Disorder Recovery Has To Come First

Your Eating Disorder Recovery Has To Come First

When I first embarked on the long road that is recovery from anorexia, I did so half-heartedly. It was something I thought I “should” do, so I just went through the motions. I saw my therapist. I saw my dietitian. I went to a support group. But aside from that, very little changed.

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Eating Disorders and Diverse Populations

Eating Disorders and Diverse Populations

As a voice for eating disorders awareness, education, and advocacy, I am glad to have a platform such as this blog where my voice can be “heard.” Too often, popular media portrays a one-dimensional view of eating disorders. That said, I struggle with the fact that I am the exact stereotype that you see on television and in movies. I am a Lifetime Movie or After School Special waiting to happen. I am white, female, young, heterosexual, intelligent, middle class, and anorexic.

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Eating Disorder Recovery: One Year Later

Eating Disorder Recovery: One Year Later

Last month, I was traveling with family and friends and had a chance to see just how far my recovery from anorexia has come. When I went back to inpatient treatment over a year ago, I wanted to get better – to recover – but was honestly starting to doubt if it was possible. It was my third trip to treatment in as many years. It hadn’t “worked” before, so why would now be any different? Even in the year since returning from treatment, it hasn’t looked so great at times.

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Body Changes in Eating Disorder Recovery

Body Changes in Eating Disorder Recovery

Patricia and I have both written before about the long, slow process of coming to acceptance of your body in your eating disorder recovery. However, it occurred to me that one of the most helpful things in my early recovery from anorexia, was a list of very down-to-earth, very practical do’s and don’t’s for dealing with my changing body. Some of these are things I still use today if I’m having a rough body image day.

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See? I Told You My Eating Disorder Isn’t A Big Deal

See? I Told You My Eating Disorder Isn’t A Big Deal

In a lot of ways, the eating disorders section of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders improved drastically in the 2013 edition (the DSM-5). Binge eating was given its own diagnosis, finally allowing millions of Americans to hear the “me too” of not being alone in their struggle. People were finally able to see that they were sick (and stop shaming themselves), which is a huge step in the road to healing. Unfortunately, I can’t consider all of the changes in this most recent edit as progress.

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What The Mirror Shows Me in Eating Disorder Recovery

What The Mirror Shows Me in Eating Disorder Recovery

One of the major adjustments I’ve had to deal with in the last 6 years since I’ve started recovery from bulimia, has been to accept and love how my body looks and feels without abusing it the way I did for years. Because I suffered from bulimia and not anorexia, it was easier to hide at the time that I was suffering from an eating disorder, because I still looked ‘normal’ and maintained almost the same weight for a few years.

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Self-Care is Crucial to my Eating Disorder Recovery

Self-Care is Crucial to my Eating Disorder Recovery

I suffered from a mental illness for many years and at the time, felt powerless against it. My eating disorder, bulimia consumed every aspect of my life. Now 5 years into the recovery process, I stay recovered by maintaining a level of self-care that goes way beyond simply avoiding triggers and practicing coping skills. Without self-care, my recovery would be compromised.

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Coping with Food Anxiety in Eating Disorder Recovery

Coping with Food Anxiety in Eating Disorder Recovery

I’m a foodie! I love food and I love cookbooks. I love my kitchen. Also, preparing food for the people I love knows no bounds! Let’s pause for a second….I’ve also recovered from bulimia.

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Why Do I Need a Dietitian on My Eating Disorder Treatment Team?

Why Do I Need a Dietitian on My Eating Disorder Treatment Team?

I will always believe that eating disorders are, first and foremost, mental illnesses.  After all, how many times have we been told that “it’s not about the food”? So while it is true that the roots of the disorder have absolutely nothing to do with the pasta that you are (I am) convinced will make you (me) magically gain fifteen pounds, you cannot ignore the nutritional factor of recovery.

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