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One year from hell to healing...


I'm 16. About a year ago I binged for the first time. This was following a period of near-anorexia during which I severely restricted food while vigorously exercising every day. I had become underweight, was completely obsessive, counted calories constantly and thought of nothing else. After being an extremely intelligent, unique and imaginative child, I had lost possession of my mind to this obsession. This was devastating, I'd become boring, anxious and dull.
Finally I realised I needed to gain back some weight... And went about it the worst way possible. Binging. You can imagine how amazing that felt after months of extremely severe restriction. Suddenly I was allowed everything!! Sugar!!
I'll stop once I'm at a healthy weight, I told myself. Yeah, right. I kept counting calories, trying for maintenance, only now it only made me so anxious that I'd binge once I'd reached the amount of calories 'allowed'.
Hell, absolute hell. I was abnormal, unhealthy, unworthy to be around normal people with normal eating habits, unable to enjoy simple life, defined by the binge eating. And NO ONE KNEW. The shame as my friends watched me gain weight, friends who had constantly admired and commented on my skinieness, imagining their confusion, pity, smugness...? More than once I made myself really sick after by binging, suffering from vomiting and diarrhoea for days. I was utterly disgusted with myself and it seemed there was no hope.
But I've always been strong. I've always gotten over stuff before, all by myself. I had way too much future to live for to let this ruin my life. I despised the lack of self control and willpower, the gluttony, and I despised myself-but the first thing I figured out that let me start recovering was that I had to stop despising myself. This wasn't me, it was a disease I had to get off my back. Things have improved hugely and now my eating is almost normal. I have to be honest with myself, very careful around sugar, and alert to potential binge situations, but every day I unlock more of my own mind, my ability to think like a normal intelligent person about interesting and important things. I'm almost there and just over a year after my first binge, I've almost defeated the disease!! Intuitive eating is the only way- I can never, ever allow myself to count calories, it just promotes anxiety and obsessiveness. My objective now is simply health, and I know that having a good, slim figure will come naturally with that without me having to obsess. I also know people will love me based on much more than my body, and everything is open to me in life so long as I am healthy and at peace with my mind and body... Here's to pure and simple health! Be calm, be reasonable, and this evil disease CAN be defeated COMPLETELY. I and everyone else can achieve healthy, normal intuitive relationships with food- believe me, I've been to the darkest most hopeless holes in my mind because of this. Keep climbing back out :)

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

The Bulimia Recovery Program