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If they only knew the real "truth"....

by Trace
(Milwaukee, WI)

I have been battling bulimia for 13 years, in addition to alcoholism and Bipolar Disorder. While I am sober and continually manage my mental illness, bulimia controls my life. I have been hospitalized multiple times for all of these issues and my loved ones "think" I'm in better control over my eating. It is a lie. I have yet to share the depths of this disease and the state I reside in every day. From the moment I wake up to the moment I go to bed, I think about food. How and when to buy it. Where to get the money. What to buy, regardless of my desires. It has indeed become an addiction, just like alcohol. However, I need food to survive. I haven't eaten a regular meal in over 3 years. I purge everything I eat... up to 50 times a day. It goes on for hours. I work in catering and steal food. I binge and purge during events. I go to food pantries and take from those who really need it. My mom buys me food, as "mothers" do to help. I'm financially in trouble due to my spending on cards. I live in constant fear of being caught in a web of lies and deception. The strain in unbearable, mentally and physically. My teeth are rotting and falling out. I am in constant pain. I smoke 2 packs a day on top of matters and fear quitting because of the weight gain. I never go out except to work. I am terrified of others discovering my secret. The bulimia, alcoholism and mental illness combined would be a burden on any person. There are days I am barely able to focus. I spend hours doing dishes, cleaning the toilet from my purging. I throw away dozens of garbage bags filled with my "secret." I have no money for a therapist. I hate the hospitals. But do not know how to beat this demon. I want to be "normal." I feel that there is a reason for all of this, but I am so numb at this point. I don't want to end my life, as I once did. I realize that there is a place for me, a reason for all of my suffering. I am a stronger person, that is true. Yet, even with the truth of what could happen to me if I continue down this path, I feel trapped, ashamed and lost.

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

The Bulimia Recovery Program