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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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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
Confused17 Offline
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I'm Scared, Alone & Confused. Am I Normal? - July 10th 2010, 04:23 PM

I just wanted to share how I feel. I have never been diagnosed with an eating disorder but every day, I ask myself: Whatís wrong with me? Because my behaviour isnít normal.
I just want advice on whatís wrong.

Iíve never been popular. In fact, Iím far from it. Iím the type of girl who focuses entirely on her work, concentrating perhaps a bit too hard, sitting at the front & ignoring the distractions around me. A geek if you like. Teachers tell my parents every year that Iím doing well, that Iím achieving highly. In some subjects, Iím even over achieving! But I can still do better canít I? I mean, what would the world be like if nobody settled for perfection? Nothingís okay if itís not good enough. Nothingís okay if you got one grade less than the highest. Sad, isnít it? When you know others are going out & having fun & you end up, stuck indoors because you donít want to have fun. You know the hard work will soon pay off.

Of course, as expected, I passed all of my GCSEís, pretty much with flying colours. I always knew what I wanted to do. Work with children. I knew how to get that qualification. I had to attend college & study but at least that meant I was learning.

Once again, I just happen to be the girl who focuses on her work, rather than messing around & having a joke in lessons, with her so-called friends. I even remember getting a diary task back one day, with having a 5 being the highest. It was out of four criteriaís. I suppose you know the result? 20 out of 20, of course. Nothing different there. Well, that was at least until the girl next to me whispered to another friend: ďIíd hate to know everything.Ē Know everything? Of course, she meant me, that was obvious having scored the highest grade in the class, but I didnít know everything, I still donít. Does anyone? But once again, the hard work paid off. They all received C grades in the exam. I didnít quite make the A but I got the B.

Mum convinced me that they were jealous that they canít work as hard as me, or get motivated. Jealous? Of me? What have they got to be jealous for? Theyíre confident & know how to go out & have fun. I donít do that. I keep myself to myself. I only try to have a few close friends which is better than lots of Ďacquaintancesí who mean nothing. I was supposed to be one of their friends in college, but I guessed not.

Even going shopping is a nightmare. I see gorgeous clothes that I fall in love with & want to punish myself for even thinking I can walk in, try them on & buy them. No. Iím not good enough yet & I wonít be until I lose more weight. And thatís a lot of weight.

I hate eating out. A nightmare. I order the small dish, something healthy, whilst my family are digging into chicken wings & everything else that makes them look greedy, I genuinely hate picking food up anyway, but especially in a restaurant when everyone else is watching.

Perhaps thatís why I have low self esteem? The rest of my family are confident, just not me. I even had to attend self esteem classes! Not that it did anything for my self esteem.

But how about we go back to the start? When I can recall it all beginning?

I left Primary School & began at Secondary School. I had always been happy & pretty confident back then. When I started in year 7, I didnít really know anybody. Therefore, it was up to me to make the effort to make friends. I got in with a group of about 10 girls. They never really included me much but at least I wasnít on my own, right? Wrong!

ďWeíre not your friends. You canít hang around with us.Ē

I guess it just pushed me away from the group. I wasnít good enough to hang around with them & I had to accept that. Instead, when I reached year 8, I joined another group & got friendly enough with them instead.

I guess the group I first hung around with began to tease me more than anything, silly things. But then they began to dig deeper & said I was fat. Me? Fat? I never could have been fat back then. But even so, I decided to diet, healthily. I did a lot of exercise anyway, swimming three times a week, karate once a week, & as time progressed, trampolining once a week. So, in the morning, I would have the breakfast my mum used to make me, a bowl of cereal with a juice. At lunch time, I had a sandwich with a drink and maybe even a piece of fruit, rather than a packet of crisps. Our dinnerís have always been healthy, generally a nice, home cooked meal. Very rarely did I come home to something & chips. So I would eat dinner normally. I cut back on cakes, crisps, chocolate, sweets, desserts & biscuits.

So I began to lose a few pounds & it felt great. Did it stop the bullying? No. I still wasnít good enough. So I decided to take drastic action on my body. I threw away my breakfast in the morning without my mumís knowledge, I threw away at least half of my lunch without my mumís knowledge, sometimes only eating fruit at lunch time & I would eat my dinner in the evening. I could leave some of it so as it didnít look obvious but I was destroying my body by eating food. I was getting fat.

But surely I was controlling my body, the one thing possible in life? I couldnít control or stop the bullying & I could only work as hard as I could to get my desired grades at school.

So of course, after dinner I asked to be excused. My mum always nagged that meal times is the most important part of the day seeing as we can talk properly as a family. Anyway, I remember being so scared when I got to the bathroom. I locked the door, forced my fingers down my throat & just let anything come up. Of course, once I got the hang of it, I was on a roll.

But night after night it became obvious & my mum noticed. She followed me up one night & knocked on the door & asked me if I was okay. I lied, of course, but she wasnít going to listen. Instead, I finally admitted to making myself sick.

The day after that, my dad already being informed, they watched me eat & I couldnít go to the bathroom until at least another hour later. It was practically torture.

Anyway, a week later, it just subsided. My dieting continued of course, losing more weight here & there. It was on and off, but not obvious enough for my parents to notice. I always remained to think about bringing it up again though.

It got worse yet again when I went into year 9, aged 14. It started again & I got quite scared so I told my best friend & she was really supportive of me which was great. However, I began to really, really like this guy & I began to speak to him. Unfortunately for me, after getting close to him, my best friend told him everything & so he kept tabs on me & wanted me to eat in front of him in the library. He was an ex student & helped around the school, kind of working there but wasnít exactly a member of staff.

I wondered why he made such a big deal out of my eating until a girl who walked into the library one day came up & spoke to him.

ďYou have a girlfriend, donít you?Ē

Once she said that, I basically zoned out. Him & this girl began talking about who his girlfriend was, what she was like. He never mentioned the most important thing though until a lot later, which kind of made sense why he was making sure I was eating. Eventually, he opened up to me & told me that his girlfriend was anorexic.

Not long after that, she dumped him. My best friend started dropping hints & saying that I was a lovely girl & he should be with me. Eventually he agreed he would be with me, as long as I was on the understanding that if his girlfriend ever wanted to get back with him, then they would.

I am not a skank, honestly, but I was so desperate to be loved by a guy like him, that I agreed, stupidly. He had said because he was technically a Ďstaff memberí we had to see each other in secret.

Didnít that technically mean, ďI donít want to be seen in public with you?Ē

I guess it does. It definitely seemed like that at the time anyway.

Well, my teachers were informed at the school just I was suffering from an Eating Disorder & without my knowledge, contacted my parents. To them, I was attention seeking. I could never have an eating disorder in their opinion!

This made it worse. The fact that my own parents couldnít see their daughter had a problem. Had they forgotten about the time when I was 11? Obviously, they had. From then on, I have never been comfortable discussing any dieting issues with them so I donít bother, in case I am accused of attention seeking once again.

Iím now 17 & still feel guilty when I eat. Iím always dieting, technically fasting, trying to plan meals. Obviously itís difficult as I live at home with my parents but I do try to make myself sick if I have eaten too much.

Take for example not so long ago, I had spaghetti on toast for breakfast because I was so hungry. I was so disgusted at the mere thought of it, seeing as I only usually have a small piece of fruit for breakfast. Anyway, I took advantage seeing as my family werenít going to be home until a lot later & I induced vomiting & it felt amazing that I can still do that & control my weight.

Throughout the day, I drink water or tea & only eat fruit. I have recently been surviving on one piece of fruit in the morning, one in the afternoon & a cooked meal in the evening. I am cooking food at the moment in the evening seeing as itís my holidays. I go back to college in September & am taking advantage where possible.

If we go out as a family & thereís nothing prepared for dinner, I try & encourage them all to have a ready meal, because if we go shopping to buy one, I buy a weight watchers meal.

The guilt & shame I feel when I eat is unbelievable. I feel fat, useless, worthless.

This is an ongoing problem for me & I know itís a problem but who do I talk to? If I talk to my parents, they wonít take it seriously & accuse me of attention seeking. I canít talk to my GP, seeing as my mum works there & will be interested to know why I am there. I know thereís something abnormal with me. I just donít know what to do.
  (#2 (permalink)) Old
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Re: I'm Scared, Alone & Confused. Am I Normal? - July 11th 2010, 11:20 AM

First of all, you don't have to admire someone because they are popular or outgoing. My friends' group (meh, my old friends' group) was the one who everyone would laugh at because of our high marks... pretty smart. What's wrong with studying? Nothing at all, the problem comes when it became obsessive.
Like you, I'd be the one studying, studying and studying because why should I do something if it isn't going to be perfect? It's 'black or white', I wanted it all or nothing. That's called perfectionism, but you should know nobody is perfect.
Maybe you were trying to make your parents be proud of you? You should be the one who's proud of yourself... and I see you weren't.
You were kinda bullied when younger, that's why your self-esteem decreased.
Thinking that sliming can solve everything is very common, thin womens are more successful, aren't them? All I'm going to tell you is that most of the times what we see isn't real... did losing weight made you happier or did it add a problem? same thing goes to them
There's an important fact about you: you know the reason why you became hmm I'd say anorexic.
Now, what you should try to ask yourself if you want to eat, I know you feel guilty. On the other hand, your body needs it. You need to feed your brain to study as well.
About this guy... I honestly think that relationship is doing more harm than good, and you deserve to be loved, but actually loved by someone who wouldn't leave you and who would be proud of be with you. I know you need love, but it'll only make you feel worse, like you have no value, and maybe it's another reason for you to be upset, which doesn't help that much to get over your ED because the less good you feel, the less you want to eat.
I personally think you should watch some therapist and a dietician. You can be healthy and happy, you know? but first you have to be ready, and it may takes a while when you've been sick for this long.
You control your eating because you can't control other things in your life, such as your 'appetite' for bright marks, what this guy feel for you, your social life, what your parents think about you... you're going through a lot.
I'd tell you something: you're more important than this, if you keep on starving you're going to end badly :/
So here I go:
1- You're allowed to fail, you don't have to be perfect but to be yourself, and yourself is more than enough
2- Once you are completely sure you want to recover, you are willing to more you can ever think. Tell your parents once again you aren't ok. You know you aren't right, it's up to them to believe it or not, so look for a therapist and a dietician, they may talk to them about you, and maybe they believe you if they have a professional opinion.
3- Remember recovery is slow, but the thing is you can get over the 'fat feeling'. Believe in yourself.
Sorry, this is so long. If you need to talk to someone/ need support, remember that I'm always here for you. Be strong, you're so brave that you have survived to all of this until now.
All the best xx

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"And if you told me 'go to the hell', I'd tell you I know pretty well that place"
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  (#3 (permalink)) Old
Casey. Offline
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Re: I'm Scared, Alone & Confused. Am I Normal? - July 12th 2010, 02:52 AM

It's not that you are abnormal. Your behaviors are unhealthy, for sure, but not abnormal. A lot of girls struggle with eating and eating disorders. It has a lot to do, as I'm sure you've guessed, with having control. You will never be good enough for yourself until you accept that you are not perfect, that we all have flaws, but that you are beautiful and capable just as you are. If you believe in yourself, others will too.

I know it's not that easy, and it's a long hard road to get to a healthy place, but you can do it, if you want to. You have to want to change though. If your college has a counselor, or tutor, you can talk to them, or even a trusted teacher. Also, you are 17, so in the U.K if you go to your GP, they can't tell your mum anything. Try to talk to someone, you don't have to do this alone.

If you need anything, feel free to pm me.

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Sometimes things just happen.

Smile through the tears.

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Re: I'm Scared, Alone & Confused. Am I Normal? - July 13th 2010, 02:45 AM

hey girl, i figured after reading through all that i should respond, but i'm not sure if i have anything helpful to say.
let's see.
first of all, that was painful to read because it's ridiculous how similar we are.
i'm such a perfectionist and it sounds like i crave the same things you do.
feeling the pangs of hunger and knowing you're better than them, stepping on the scale and seeing the newest low number, the control that no one can take away from you.
and, well. it's amazing.
believe me i know.
and when people try to step in it's so easy to shut them out.
control and perfection are the most important over everything, even friends, even family.
my boyfriend right now goes crazy when he hangs out with me for more than five hours because he knows i haven't eaten and he knows i won't.
it's so frustrating when people want to change you because it's like, they just don't get it.
except the thing is, their mindset is a lot clearer than yours.
they see your body without the bias that you have from seeing it every day for seventeen years, and they want you to stop hurting.
and that secret thrill you get from starving yourself, or throwing up?
let me be the first to tell you that that's nothing compared to what you can have when you realize that people accept and love you for who you are.
it's also nothing compared to how normal and amazing you'll start to feel after eating three meals a day.
(and they can be three tiny meals to start, baby steps.)
believe me, there's so many people in your life that will support you.
friends you might think don't care will listen.
neighbors living within ten steps from your house are friends waiting to happen.
your parents, well, they love you.
i don't think there's a single girl out there who isn't strong enough to beat an eating disorder.
which is what you have by the way.
maybe you don't fit into a textbook category, but you have a disorder in your mind that changes the way you conceive eating.
therefore, an eating disorder.
and if you can excel at school by setting your mind to it, you can excel at beating this by setting your mind to it.
and yeah, you'll gain some weight back.
but trust your body to know what it's doing.
eat little meals and work out a little bit.
you'll feel good and so will your body.
i know you can do it.
pm me anytime.

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