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The last it possible?

by Jennifer
(Los Angeles)

Hi Shaye,

I hope all is well with you. I have been working on my recovery and I am feeling very frustrated because for every healthy step I take, I slip back with another binge and purge. Although I know the focus of my recovery is not my body I feel even more frustrated because I have gained some weight and bloat from the binges. I am nearing desperation to know that no matter what happens I will not binge and purge. I need to know that I can trust myself to stay on the recovery path and not binge again. I feel that each binge and purge deflates my momentum.

I've been conscious of my choice to binge and afterwards I write about the triggers etc. But now I am just feeling so tired of bulimia and I don't want to binge again. The relief that it gives me is not worth it anymore. But can I really never binge again? I don't trust myself and I suppose that statement is a direct reflection of my self worth. I just want the self confidence to know that I will not binge and purge again but I feel that desire is an impossibility because if I had that level of self confidence then I likely wouldn't be struggling with bulimia.

Any feedback you have would be most appreciated.


Shaye Says

Hi Jennifer!

I know your frustrations all too well... and hearing you express them makes me wanna reach out through the internet ang give you a massive hug! Don't feel disheartened... remember this is a journey... it might take a while... Bloating, weight gain, discomfort, frustration - it's temporary... recovery is forever...

One day you'll look back on this journey and smile - I promise.

It's a difficult stage you're at now... Holding in food is making your tummy bloat and making you retain water - so you feel yuk... But then on the other hand, the urge to binge and purge is still strong - so you feel it's all for nothing...

When I was at this stage I made little goals for myself... I knew that the goal of never bingeing an purging again was a little way off... so I started smaller... I made the first goal of not binging and purging during the day - This required practicing all my tools... As it was a big step for me... Gradually I began to achieve the goal of not binging and purging during the day on a regular basis... (I would still binge and purge at night times after uni - but I tried not to beat myself up about it) This was the beginning of the new neural pathways in my brain saying "it's okay to eat" and "I'm full"

Once I was comfortable getting through most 9-5's without bingeing and puring, I tried to get through an entire day - without bingeing or purging... It took me ages to achieve this - and it was very frustrating... but I persevered...

Eventually after about 9 months it happened - it was almost like all the hard work i'd been doing had accumulated and given me what i needed on that given day. The interesting this is... From then on it only got better and better... I had the occassional binges - but I never purged again.

But, don't forget it took a year to fully recover - it does take time.

I know it's hard but try not to get frustrated with yourself - your body and mind are learning an entire new way of living.

It could be a good time to start learning about Cognitive Behavioral therapy... This is when you are truly committed to recovering but feel habits are too strong... I used it a lot in my recovery... There are plenty of books on it - although they're not aimed directly at bulimia - they will give you a good idea of the therapy and ideas which could help a lot. Here's one on Amazon that has really good reviews...

I hope this helps! Keep your chin up - and keep walking in the direction of recovery - you will get there - and you SO deserve it!


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

The Bulimia Recovery Program