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Restricting and bingeing

by Jennifer
(Los Angeles)

I have been working on bulimia recovery for a few weeks now...

Last night I baked some cookies and actually refrained from bingeing. Today I ate one cookie which led to 2 and although I stopped eating at that point, I still thought about them. The longer that I thought about the cookies, the more and more I wanted to eat them. I became hungry and instead of eating what I wanted (a cookie) I ate an apple. I chose an apple because it was a "good" choice. Of course a few minutes later I snuck a bunch of cookies in the sleeve of my sweatshirt and went upstairs to eat them and throw up.

Restricting led to obsessing which led to bingeing and purging. I know this and yet I am scared to truly allow myself to eat whatever I want. I've been reading literature on eating disorders and I've learned that the human body can naturally be healthy if allowed. If I truly allow myself to eat what my body wants then I won't obsess, binge, purge etc. The more I learn, the better equipped I feel to fully recover. However I still associate thinness with being accepted and loved. I am still scared to let go of bulimia. I am still scared to trust my body... I want to live without bulimia and I am scared of letting it go.

Shaye Says

Hi Jennifer!

Wow, what a great lesson for others who read your post... it is so true - restricting leads to binging. Perhaps an apple and a cookie would have stopped the binge? Our bodies need a little fat when they're hungry and if all we have is a piece of fruit or some vegetables - we don't really feel satisfied! It's important to satisfy our hunger without over-fulling ourselves... it's a fine balance - bu once you find it - recovery will be that much easier!

It is such a vicious cycle associating thinness with being accepted...

Although I am a reasonably slim woman... I have never had the confidence to walk down the beach in just my bikini... I always wear my shorts. Even though bulimia is long gone from my life - I have not yet got to the point where I don't care what people think of me...

Today when I went to the beach... I walked all the way to one end with of course, my shorts on... Beneath them were a skimpy pair of bikini bottoms - which I know are a wee bit too small for me! I started thinking about how nice it would be to have the confidence to take my shorts off and not care what people thought...

Next thing I had pulled my shorts off and was strutting down the beach in my skimpy bikini... Every time a though passed into my mind about dimples, cellulite or whatever, I cleared it from my head, breathed in and reminded myself how lucky I am to have the body I have... I reminded myself that nobody is perfect and who cares if I am not either!

I walked all the way back down the beach without my shorts on... it felt amazing not to care!

I kept expecting people to look at me... But they walked on by enjoying their day... I realized that we are our greatest critics - and others don't even notice our flaws!

Yes, I have a dimple on my left thigh, yes, my butt could be a little firmer... But you know what... Who cares!?

5 years bulimia free - but I am still learning! The journey of self love and self discovery is eternal because we can never love ourselves enough!

We are all worthy of so much... We are all so wonderful in our own ways!


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

The Bulimia Recovery Program