Monday, August 23, 2010

~Mental Health Monday Guestblog~

Please welcome today's guestblogger and support her as she is speaking about her struggle with ED. Since I am unsure what kind of triggers there are regarding this I would like to urge to be cautious when reading this.

The reason behind choosing to study Clinical Psychology...

Growing up I had a fairly normal relationship with food. I was never an overly big fan of take away and the like but to be honest that’s completely normal. I was a bit on the larger side and pushing a size 14 in some clothes. I didn’t mind all the time though, it was who I was and I felt fairly comfortable with being me. Everyone seemed to like me for who I was anyway, so what did being a bit bigger matter? What does it matter when you get ignored for your skinnier friends? What does it matter that people comment on your size? What does it matter when you look at yourself in the mirror and cry at your appearance? And what does it matter that you would do anything to change who or what you are? It doesn’t.

I know enough about all this to know there is never a single trigger towards eating problems. It is usually a combination of things. I’ve spoken to enough people who make the assumption that I have a mixture of reasons as to why I developed the issues, which I have, yet they all miss the obvious one. I simply don’t want to eat.

It started with having random days where I would just not eat; I loved being able to know exactly what I’ve eaten in a day. Listing it and knowing how many calories I had had became a daily game, which spiralled out of control. I enrolled at the gym and began going every day. Even days when I’d eaten nothing- just desperate to burn more fat, lose weight, look better. Anything. I was desperate. Desperate to
be a different person.

The first time I nearly passed out at the gym was scary- I was on my own and my legs just gave out. I sat there for a few seconds then tried to carry on. This clearly wasn’t going to work and so I gave up and went to my dance class, to push myself in a different way. No one knew and no one cared. I just knew how far I could push myself.

One week when my mum went away, I lived on ice-lollies and ice cubes. It was an amazing week and I have never felt in such control. I didn’t know at the time that this was going to be the start of a slippery slope into problems I would not be able to control. The thing was, the more people complimented me on my weight loss, and the more I wanted to lose. The more I thought I wasn’t doing well enough, the more I felt I had to work and the less I had to eat. However, if people hadn’t noticed, it would only have driven me to continue and perhaps work harder to get people to notice my weight loss. I didn’t want to be the big one any more.

I don’t know how I came to be so repulsed with myself- I just know that I am. There are days where I’m okay and feel that I am finally taking steps forward, but then there are many, many days when I am not okay and take tumbles backwards. These days are the days I need my friends around me. The days when I feel faint and exhausted are days I feel most in control, punishing my body. The days I don’t feel able to move, are the days I am most pleased with myself, because I know I’ve done this to myself. You could say that I’m a control freak. I love having control of a situation and being able to do exactly as I please. It would make things so much harder if my family did things such as big meal times, but then again maybe if
we did do that, I wouldn’t have been able to get this far in the first place.

The feeling of detachment i’ve felt during this is insane. Attempting to separate myself from situations which I might have to confront my “food daemons” or anything like that... This loneliness only furthers your belief that you’re doing the right thing... it’s you and your head... which is completely dangerous. There is so little awareness of eating disorders and the symptoms to look for etc. Most doctors don’t recognise eating disorders unless someone says “I think i have an eating disorder” or the person is completely emaciated, which is ridiculous. This is part of the reason why I’m studying at University, to be able to help others, either in the same or similar situation. I want to work hard enough to take away at
least one person’s pain from an experience, which in my opinion they don’t need to be going through; at least not on their own. I know those with eating disorders are normally reluctant to admit a problem or accept help... but sometimes i think that maybe if people were more understanding, they’d be less reluctant to do so?

Maybe.

This is only a very small account of some of the things i’ve experienced... but I’m willing to talk to others if they want or need to.

1 comment:

Inside the Mind of a... said...

I loved that you shared this...

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