My journey through hell - bulimia
Ok here goes I suppose...
Well, when I was 13 years old my older sister died which took my family by storm.
My mother changed over night in mind and appearance. She dealt with her grief by not eating...
I was a young girl started to notice and pick up on the little things she would say and do i.e she'd talk about calories constantly and how bad carbs were and fat fat fat constantly. It drove me nuts but I was strong enough at the time to just put it to the back of my mind and understand she was grieving. She'd exercise a lot and go on huge long walks which she would always ask me to do but I always refused as I couldn't be bothered.
I got on with all this for many years.
It was my dream to become a model and when I did go to a casting I got told to loose half an inch off my waist which isn't a lot but to me that was it... The demon had entered my mind of loosing weight and always wanting to be that half an inch slimmer even when I had reached my so called goal. This all sounds the typical stereotype of why an eating disorder starts... but it had been building up slowly for years with comments from my mother constantly being said about weight/calories/exercise etc... That after the going to that model casting the whole lot came into one and it's from then on that i would say my eating disorder started.
Firstly I am 5ft 2 and seven stone so that was very tiny anyway but not tiny enough for me. I had heard far too many comments to keep ignoring about weight and dieting. Heres hows my journey through hell started...
I said to myself I need to loose just half an inch so I can please my casting agent. I cut out chocolate and sweets and would be eating what I would say now is a healthy diet of breakfast, lunch and dinner... But I noticed that I didn't lose much weight through doing this (I'm small anyway loosing a pound can be very difficult on a very small frame) So i started to slowly change my eating habits... Whole-meal bread only no butter with a scrape of marmite - which I had instead of my original lunchtime sandwich. I'd always skip breakfast in the mornings too and dinner time would be whatever I fancied. I started to loose weight - it was working. I was'nt exercising but I was liking the results.
So I started to go out walking with my mum too who would also follow a very strict diet and who was also struggling with bulimia. I noticed the walks were giving a great result... I was trimmer flatter and tighter - I loved it.
I said to myself I have to walk 3 times a week which I did do but the walks started to get longer as weeks went by and more frequent.
People would comment on me looking too slim... I was loving it through and through. They were just being rude. This cycle went on for about a year.
I moved out from my mums house with a boyfriend. I wasn't happy... we'd been together years but I didn't like this person much anymore and felt I had no escape. My diet became my little world away from anything going on around me I had started eating less and less. No carbs, no sugar. I had also started taking laxatives everyday - about 40 at the most one time... and had started at a gym which I attended 6 days a week plus an hour walk everyday.
My periods had stopped, my hair was falling out and everyone around me was telling me I was too thin. I didn't listen and carried on.
One day I was so hungry I remember eating something then feeling so guilty afterwards that I threw it up. I stuck my fingers down my throat like I had heard my mum sayin she had done before. It really hurt and I vowed to never do it again... But this was not the case everything from then on got out of control... The vomiting and bingeing became more frequent, until it was daily. I was spending about £40 a day on food that I was just flushing down the loo.
I tried every tip I could one being drinking perfume to make me throw up wich didnt work at all. I learnt over time what my mother told me and that was to drink a glass of water before which till this day I still do as it works best. In fact it's so regular that food naturally comes up now - without me needing to doing anything... My body is so used to purging everyday which I am ashamed to say.
As time went on I started to have severe problems with pottasium levels dropping dangerously low one time being a 2.0...
I have been in hopsital twice for this and twice whilst being in there I have made myself sick - even once whilst on a heart monitor which im appauled to say. I knew every trick in the book and fooled everyone - thinking I was clever - when in reality I couldn't be more stupid .
I am now purging everyday still and have exercise bullimia BIG TIME...
I see a counselor now and I no longer take laxatives anymore due to realizing they will kill me... Just like bullimia will kill me... so i'm trying so hard to knock the purging on the head but I cant seem to break the cycle at all.
Bulimia makes you swollen, bloated and has given me puffy cheeks which I hate. I now take pottasium medication from my doctor and have started to keep down cereal in the morning and cereal at night. Its the days that I can't control as i'm left alone and have no self control.
I have regular blood checks now every week to keep an eye on my pottasium levels and so far they are at a 4.0 so i'm pleased with that... But it's the medication thats helping that so i'm hoping that I will be able to stop purging and hold these levels up alone... It just seems a million miles away.
I accept that I have a problem - a severe one.
I accept im ill and slowly killing myself...
But I want to do something about it now and be like Shaye.
I pray to God to let me live and give me a chance. I prey to the sister I lost to give me strength but so far the strength is weak.
I don't wanna give up but sometimes I feel im up against the world.
I hav'nt taken laxatives in six months now and I never will again. A light turned on in my head towards those things so im praying that there will be a day when purging becomes the same.
This site has helped me a lot - I feel councilors today arn't that good as I got more from this site then from counseling sessions.
I wanna get across to people how dangerous bullimia is - Not enough people know the dangers of pottasium levels/electrolytes. It's not spoken about enough. If you have bullimia YOU MUST seek a doctor and have regular potassium level tests. If you don't, you'll collapse like I did on my bathroom floor for my boyfriend to find me - thinking I was dead. All this due to low potassium levels caused by bullimia. I survived that night but don't want this to happen again as I may not be so lucky...
So please, anyone who is bulimic - don't make my mistake and forget to do your research - learn all the facts about bulimia. They can be scary - but you need to help your body in any way you can...
- Get heart checks
- Blood tests
- Eat bananas (they've helped safe my life as I make sure now I eat a few a week as they help your pottasium level a lot)
The end of the story is that I still purge - but I want to get better. I want to live. I've had enough of the demon in my head... It's like being in hell.
Im hoping that I can write a bulimia recovery story on here one day.
If someone asked me if I'd rather win the lottery or be bullimia free - id take free of bullimia any day! It's my goal in life...
Please feel free to coment or ask any questions.
I'm sorry if I have blabbed on a bit... but it may help others and that's why I write my story.
Article by Shaye Boddington
Author of your-bulimia-recovery.com
and creator of The Bulimia Recovery Program and Community