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Eating Disorders If you or someone close to you is struggling with an eating disorder, reach out here to ask questions or to receive support for recovery.

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The assumption that being thin and aiming to get thinner is the only size people are when they have an ED... *vent* - May 24th 2013, 01:25 PM

It drives me crazy that they make it seem like a marker for an ED is when people tell you your thin and you still believe your fat, or that you are trying to lose more and more weight even though your a healthy weight... It makes it sound as if EDs do not start until you are thin, that if you are overweight it's perfectly normal to hate your size and to want to change it because then people would have to try to recognize the point where you CAN want to lose weight if your overweight but at what point that person crosses into a ED'd-way of thinking of it but there is a definite focus on perception around body size (at least for anorexia since i know a lot of people with bulimia tend to be of a normal weight or slightly overweight body size)... But they forget that often EDs are at their worst once a person is facing an underweight size and that you can be anorexic and overweight at the beginning.
Like I have been struggling with unhealthy thoughts around food and exercise (ex. not wanting to go out for dinner with my friends and feeling super gross if I eat something to heavy/unhealthy and feeling super gross if I can't go for a run/other exercise for a day)... And in many ways I realize if I am not careful that this could get out of control, I match symptoms in both anorexia and bulemia except that when I think about my weight the fact I think I am overweight IS true, my image about my weight is NOT distorted, it's NOT unrealistic for me to think I a overweight (I simply AM overweight and that's the truth of it... But that doesn't mean some other things don't put me at risk for having an eating disorder, I do struggle with unhealthy thoughts sometimes but I have been able to work through it and be able to keep myself on a healthier path.... This post isn't to seek help for my risk of an ED, it's under control, my point is simply that I get frustrated by how they word the stuff when they explain the symptoms because then you'll et a lot of people who have an ED but think their perfectly because oh, well, they actually are overweight and it makes it sound like it only affects people of a healthy weight




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Re: The assumption that being thin and aiming to get thinner is the only size people are when they have an ED... *vent* - May 24th 2013, 10:25 PM

I completely agree.. I do have a lot of ED tendancies, because i AM overweight, like you said.. no one takes them seriously because my organs aren't failing yet, you know? My body image is slightly distorted, because I have lost weight (due to medications and exercise and healthy dieting, despite how hard it is to stay on that..) and I still see myself as extremely obese.. although, i still am overweight.. so it's debatable as to if I would be diagnosed with an ED or not due to how little i want to eat or how often i avoid eating because my thoughts aren't necessarily distorted, and i do still eat and take vitamins.. so.. who knows.

It's sad you have to get to a near death point for anyone to realize you need help, or that it's possible to happen at any size.. not just when you're at an unhealthy (low) BMI.

Someone could be morbidly obese and still have an ED.. There shouldn't be a weight limit on something that is all about weight and body perception/self esteem/etc.. It just makes people who realize they need help, not want to reach out for it if they don't fit certain qualifications.


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Re: The assumption that being thin and aiming to get thinner is the only size people are when they have an ED... *vent* - May 25th 2013, 12:24 PM

I agree as well.
My friends didn't begin "gossiping" about how I didn't go to the cafe to eat anymore UNTIL I was underweight and all my bones were poking out. It's so easy for someone to look at someone else who is super skinny and say "Wow, they must be anorexic". But never would they look at someone bigger and say that. With anorexia, you just never know. Someone who is overweight could have anorexia but have not had it long enough for them to be down to a really low weight. Some people just have anorexic tendencies where they starve and lose weight and then gain it back. Then they do it over again. This is just as unhealthy. OR some people have anorexic thoughts but just don't act on them. That's how my anorexia started out.
Now, as I approach a healthier weight, it makes me embarrassed and a little ashamed to go to my ED specialist and counselor still because I feel like I'm being stupid or selfish getting help because I LOOK healthy again. I feel as though people will think I don't need the help because of the fact that most people think that only the really skinny people need help.

So yes, it is stupid that many people believe that you must be underweight to have an eating disorder. Weight doesn't characterize it.


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Re: The assumption that being thin and aiming to get thinner is the only size people are when they have an ED... *vent* - May 25th 2013, 04:01 PM

Yeah, I hate it when people do that. My high school counselor once told a girl that she didn't have an eating disorder because she wasn't skinny enough. That was such a kind remark that she went to self harm for a while until going to a hospital for recovery.
I hate the assumption that overweight-- even by a few pounds-- means unhealthy, and more importantly, unattractive. It's stupid and superficial and I wish that the general population would give that idea up.



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