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by Samantha Browder
(Illinois )

My problems surfaced really early in my childhood. I always felt bigger than everyone else. Through out elementary school and my early years of junior high food was my drug of choice. I didn't start purging until I was in 7th grade. I told my mom in eight grade, she slapped me on the wrist and it blew over. Self medicating with pills and alcohol started in eight grade, January of that year I overdosed and was admitted into a hospital.

For a while I was fine i guess, I had everyone fooled, even my therapist. By freshman year I was out of therapy of my Prozac and being a normal teenager. I got really serious with volleyball. I made the freshman a team, I made a club team, I was losing weight, I had a boyfriend, friends, good grades, but I still wasn't happy. I broke it off with my boyfriend after three months, even though I still really liked him, I just did in a way of punishing myself. That only allowed me to fall into a hole.

To everyone around me I seemed fine, better than ever. Only few of my friends knew what i was doing to myself. Going from starving for three weeks to binging and purging up to 7 times a day. Getting high, abusing anything available to abuse just to escape for a while. Cutting. But I still managed to keep a balance. I loved volleyball, no matter what I would never miss a practice or tournament. Not even if I threw up three times before practice and could barely walk because I was so weak. I pushed, I was obsessed. It was the only thing that kept me from going off the deep end. But truth be told I wasn't, and am not the best player. I have the heart, I have the dedication, the work ethic, the skill, but with aggression and confidence I can't preform. Another thing that I have never had, in anything, consistency. I could go to practice do amazing, but the next practice it's gone. Fast forwarding to now, a couple nights ago I told my mom I was thinking about quitting. I honestly am, or at least taking a break. I need sometime to clear my head, and recover. But thinking about quitting volleyball, kills me. For so long it has been my motivation, what I looked forward to everyday. This morning I told my mom I have been throwing up. There is so much more that I have been doing. I have been doing literally anything to avoid my problems. This has only made me more depressed, and less interested in everything, including volleyball. This morning, it feels like for the first time in a while I'm semi facing the facts that I am killing myself. Sure I have known that, but starting today I want to care. For the first time in a long time, I want to care.

For anyone who reads this, don't wait until it's too late. I hid everything from my mom to avoid her worrying when all I did was push her farther and farther away. Get help as soon as you can, don't suffer how I have. Sure, I've only had bulimia for three years, but I've been depressed all my life. Going through life depressed is not a way to live. I'm only a sophomore but I have lost so much of my life to depression and bulimia. Don't be afraid to get help.

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

The Bulimia Recovery Program