My online program and private recovery community has helped hundreds of women beat bulimia.
Click here to learn more
Emotional eating and bulimia often come hand in hand. I used to run to the fridge at the first sign of an uncomfortable feeling... I wanted absolutely nothing to do with it!
It was much easier for me to binge than to look deeply into my emotional world...
I guess I was scared that if I allowed myself to feel, even once, I would open a can of worms. I would release the flood gates to a never ending torrent of tears.
But pushing my emotions away with food was like killing my emotional messenger. I never allowed myself to discover how I could improve my life for the better...
Pushing my emotional messenger away kept me stuck in my lonely little world.
Attempts to restrict my food were throwing my into the raging river of bingeing and purging - and pushing my emotions away with food was drowning me even further.
These were the two areas that I would work on in recovery...
Allowing myself to eat - and allowing myself to feel.
Needless to say, I have never cried so much in my life as I did in the year that I beat emotional eating and bulimia. I cried so much and so hard that I felt like my eyes were going to fall out...
I cried for all the years I had not allowed myself to cry. I cried for all the years I had lost to bulimia. I cried for the country I was forced to leave and for the friends who I had left behind. I cried for my Sophie who had died and I screamed for the people who had killed her.
I cried more than I thought it was humanly possible to cry.
But it was only through my tears that I began to release the emotions that had been driving my to the pantry for so long.
With each tear I shed, I realized more and more that I could survive my emotions. I realized that I was stronger than I had ever given myself credit for...
And after months of intense emotions, the sun gradually began to shine on my life...
At first it was a small flicker of light... But it grew quickly.
By the time one year had passed the world looked completely different through my eyes. Everywhere I looked I saw happiness, laughter and love.
I had never believed that a life free from emotional eating and bulimia would be so beautiful!
And I know that allowing yourself to feel will help you to do the same...
Just as I survived my emotions, you can survive yours too. And as you do, you'll realize the amazing strength and power that lies within you. You'll know that whenever you need to, you can tap into this power - and that you will be okay.
Emotional eating and bulimia can be a thing of the past if you tune into your bodies needs. If you nourish yourself with both food and love.
Care for yourself - the way you would care for a young child. When you feel an uncomfortable emotion coming along, sit with yourself. Treat yourself like that child...
Would you say to the child...
'No, do not feel this'
or would you say,
'Come here, sit with me for a while, and tell me all about what's troubling you'
You deserve the same compassion.
It is only then that your emotional messenger will be able to tell you what's wrong...
And by knowing what is wrong, you can figure out how to make it right :)
This will be a huge step towards your bulimia recovery!
(Thank you to Claire for asking me this question and prompting me to write this article!)
Article by Shaye Boddington
Author of your-bulimia-recovery.com
and creator of The Bulimia Recovery Program and Community