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Long Ago There Was The Chubby Girl

I was always the chubby one in the family. As a little girl i was normal weight, and as a kid, I was very athletic, very healthy, very happy, but pretty chubby. My older brother and my cousin would make fun of me, and at dinner time my mom would feed me, and when i wanted more, asked me to drink water to make sure i was full. I loved food - i ate one more meal than the average person. The teasing from my family never really bothered me.
But when I was 11, around 5th grade, I caught a really bad stomach virus. For a week, I didn't eat, and when I did, I would throw it up. It was terrible, but at the end of the week, I was astonished to find that I lost so much weight! My mother commented on it, and said I looked great, and I thought I did. This was the point in my life where I realized maybe losing weight was what I wanted. I started portioning my foods, to very, very small portions. Instead of an entire plate of rice, i would less than a sixth of it. I lost so much weight, I was finally skinny and my cousin and my brother couldn't make fun of me anymore. I still look back at those pictures and find that I can't even recognize myself. However, I was unhappy. At this phase of my life, I was a bookworm, no longer the tomboy, and found it hard to smile.
I don't remember how, but I started eating again, and even more. Weight was always on my mind, but it didn't bother me as much as before. I would constantly go on diets that really didn't work and ending up gaining more weight than before. I didn't even think i was fat until someone pointed it out to me. The constant dieting started in tenth grade. That summer, I went to Bangladesh and in my third-world homeland, I found the food there revolting and got sick and diarrhea constantly. When i came back in 11th grade, I was transformed. I lost weight and got colored contacts, everyone told me I looked amazing. I finally was getting attention, LOTS OF IT. Guys were hitting on me constantly, i loved it. So, i continued to diet, cutting out rice, filling myself up on tea. Losing more and more weight, I found it hard to concentrate on much else.
Suddenly, life was getting more complicated. My grandma, someone who I hated and always found a burden, had cancer. I was mortified and felt overwhelming guilt. Then, my aunt caught cancer. My home life had always been filled with constant yelling between my parents. My dad was completely insane, and overly protective. I was never allowed to go out, and he was always yelling at me and my brothers, and getting into fights with my mother. Now that i was older, I wanted to go out more and started to rebel more. With my grandma and aunt having cancer, my dad was more upset and yelling more and more and more, hitting me and my brothers more and more and becoming more unreasonable. It was hard to bear. So i continued to diet and lose weight
In health one day, we were shown a video of a girl with bulimia. I had tried to throw up in the past, just to see if i could do it, and after seeing this video and how thin the girl got by throwing up, I tried it again. After dinner one day, I threw up. I continued to do it and loss a ridiculous amount of weight. With this, eating only fruits and vegetables and chicken, and constantly dieting, I lost massive amount of weight. In the other facets of my life, my grandma had died. I started throwing up more after emotional eating binges. My dad started having an affair...and i was the only that knew. More bingeing, more throwing up. It went from a weekly thing, to an everyday thing. Everyday after school. Eat less than X calories in the morning, and throw up anything more than that.
For my grandma's funeral, I visited Bangladesh again that summer. I couldn't throw up there because the servants would notice for sure that food was missing, and couldn't exercise because it was Ramadan and we were supposed to fasting, and it was hot. So i simply ate very little, and slept the rest of the day to prevent from feeling hungry. All my family commented on how thin I was looking, and how it was too much. On Eid, a muslim holiday filled with constant eating, i didn't want to seem awkward for not eating, so I ate and ate and ate. I found laxatives in my grandpas cabinets and overdosed on them in order to get rid of the food i was unable to purge. When i came back, I was X pounds and feeling beautiful..and fragile. But i wasn't purging, simply eating very little. everyone was concerned and jealous, i looked great.

Then my mom found out about my dad's affair, and I had college apps and thanksgiving and more. Bingeing and purging started once again. Worse this time. I would binge, and then throw up in my water bottles and hide them under my desk when i was supposed to be studying. My mom found them and tried to get me to stop, but i couldn't even though i tried promising myself to stop. And it's continuing on into the next summer and I'm afraid I might have to go to college like this. My parents excessive strictness and stress about boys and school and my depression make sure that bulimia never seeps to far from me.

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

The Bulimia Recovery Program