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Bulimia...The Never-ending Nightmare

by Sara
(El Segundo, California, USA)

I am 17 years old. Since I was 14 there hasn't been a single day -no, not even one- that I haven't thrown up my meals. That's almost a thousand days. I know the risks. I want it to stop. I know it could kill me eventually. So why am I still doing this? Why can't my body say "hey, you cannot eat anymore, you should stop"? What is wrong with me?

Maybe it is that I want to be perfect, even though I am not and will never be. Maybe is something from my past that I've been carrying on my back. I don't know. I don't think I wanna know. The only thing I'm sure of is that my esophagus is rotting, as well as my teeth, my body is weak, my hearbeat is irregular, and my stomach has like a thousand holes.

At first, I thought I had conquered the world. I used to be a chubby kid, who always had something in her mouth. And I didn't care. All of a sudden, I stopped eating. I became a walking skeleton, with my bones showing up in awkward places and my hair falling down every time I combed it.

My mom noticed. Even my dad did. Friends I hadn't seen in years called me saying "are the rumors true?" are you as hideous as they say? I went to therapy, psychology, nutriologists... I was going to gain weight. My biggest fear.
So, when I started to eat again, my body didn't accept the food. I just couldn't eat. So, I threw up. Eventually I learned that that was the perfect way of staying thin. I pretended to eat and then I went to the nearest bathroom and vomit all that food. I had the best of both worlds.

But, you see, who can eat cakes, pizza, hamburgers, cookies, pasta, tacos, fries, chips, pies, and brownies WITHOUT even looking chubby? Besides, I was young and too obvious with my habits. I used to go throw up instantly after each meal, with everybody watching, and I came back with my eyes all swollen and red and my breath smelling like acid. My secret was uncovered.

Another round of psychological crap.

That summer I couldn't throw up as much as I liked to, so I gained enough weight to be considered "normal" again. My stomach grew, as well as my legs and hips. I felt like a disgusting whale.

I went back to school looking "better". I have these unusually big boobs, so that was another thing to get people's minds off my health issues.

Of course, in reality I didn't get any better. I still threw up- a lot- but this time I wasn't going to get caught. I worked out, I learnt to say "I'm full", I waited at least half an hour after meals to throw up, and I always checked if the toilets worked ok. I became such a good liar. I had the perfect life. At least that's what I made everyone think.
I hated myself. Every part of me, I loathed. My face, my body, my mind, my soul. I was such an awful person, a liar, and a cheater. I was betraying my mom, my friends. I was this cruel bitch with no personality of her own. I wanted to end my empty life.

My teeth and face were showing bulimic signs. All my friends asked what my special secret was. I had such an amazing bod! And I ate all the forbidden junk!

I couldn't stand it anymore. I told my two best friends. They wanted me to get help. I wanted that too. But bulimia is such a strange and bipolar disease. One day it makes you believe you're on the top of the world, the other day it makes you wonder why you are even alive.

I've been living with this for almost 3 years now. Non-stopping. How have I managed? With a lot of effort and will. I want it to stop, but I have surrendered. I guess I'm not that strong. All my friends love me, or at least they tell me they do. They are all really supportive, always pointing out my positive things. But I don't believe them. That's another characteristic of bulimia. No matter what other people tell you if you don't believe those things yourself.
So, I guess that's my story. I'm no special person. Just another victim of this cruel and heartless disorder.

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Article by Shaye Boddington
Author of
and creator of The Bulimia Recovery Program and Community

The Bulimia Recovery Program