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by Polly

My eating disorder didn't start out as bulimia but moved to it when people started talking about how little they saw me eat. Questions started flying, red flags waved and so I buckled under the weight of it all and ate, publicly. After eating, (3 pieces of sushi) I became almost euphoric and delusional. I had a fever, was slurring my speech and was behaving rather drunk. Little did I know, this was my body's delight at recieving much needed sustenance. I purged the most natural purge I have had to date. My stomach simply rejected the food and I was sick, publicly. I was ashamed and thought for sure I had just shown everybody how right they were about me when it clicked. If I could throw up in secret and eat publicly, people would HAVE to stop throwing the "eating disorder" idea around and maybe let me get some peace.
This was 8 months ago.
Prior to that, I had been maintaining an average of X calories a day for 2 years. I was working out for 4-6 hours a day, working as many hours as I could get my hands on and taking the stairs instead of the elevator (18 floors). This had been going great for me. In the first 3 months, I had lost X kg. I was vibrant and energetic and positive. I was seeing myself as more capable and worthy every day I lost weight. I started setting goals and looking forward to having more money to spend on tiny clothes that I could now fit. But it all went south.
After discovering bulimia, I found I lost weight more rapidly which made me quite hopeful and happy. I didn't have to starve to be skinny. I could eat what I wanted and still lose. And I really did lose. Not a good thing in retrospect as that was WATER weight I was losing. Now I find it has made me GAIN weight. I have, in fact, gained so much weight I resent my illness and am looking for a way out.
My bulimia scares me. Food is everywhere and it smells so good. I can imagine the taste and my mouth craves chewing so I by what smells good and cram it into my body until either my stomach hurts or my jaw gives out. I have lost track of how much I eat and when and what calories I have ingested. Bulimia is ruling my life. My husband hasn't the patience for my mood swings that are triggered by food or lack of food, and not him. I smoke weed as much as I can to fight the need to binge but food is cheaper. I have lost jobs over my eating disorder. I have lost friends. I worry my husband will leave me too. I hate myself and that hate leads to more binging.

I have become aware of my problem. I have started to self help but it's so hard. I try not to eat until certain times and only certain things so as to stop myself from buying something quick when I want it. But I can only restrict myself so much and everyday I fail myself. I can't tell anyone because I don't want to be judged. I also secretly believe my eating disorder is keeping the secret and not me. It scares me and I worry that if I keep this up, I will lose everything and no one will know why.

I am 25 years old. I am also a Kiwi (interesting the number of kiwi's with eating disorders.) I weight X kg. This is heavier than I was. By all rights, I should be dead. I feel weak and dizzy all the time. By mid day, I am out of energy and need to sleep. My hands, feet and face tingles and goes numb all the time. Sometimes my hands sieze like cramp. I have fainted, fallen down stairs, given myself dehydration that hospitalized me. I have torn my throat, broken teeth, had horrible cuts at the corners of my mouth. I have acne around my mouth, lost hair, broken ribs from walking into a table. I feel defeated by my disease.

I don't know if my story is of any interest to anyone. It's certainly no help to those looking to recover. But maybe it will help one person somewhere to think twice about how "beautiful" it really is to be skinny.

I have never shared my story before.

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

The Bulimia Recovery Program