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Help! What am I??
Jan 14, 2003

Hi everyone. I want to introduce myself to you all and let you in on my unique situation. I'm not using my real name, so just call me "Jas", anyway I'm about 5'3 and weigh around 150 lbs. Not the typical anorexic, right? Here is the deal, at one point I weighed about 260 lbs and I lost all this weight by basically eating next to nothing. That being said, I'm experiencing many of the symptoms of anorexia, although I don't know if I would actually be considered anorexic given the fact that I'm not really skinny.

Here are some of the things that I do, and what my behavior is about food:

I go through long periods of time where I eat very little. I try not to consume more than 15 grams of fat (10, if I can) and try to limit myself to 500 calories. I am OBSESSED with calorie counting, measuring, and have been known to be obsessive about food that has been cooked by others (meaning I want absolutely no butter or oil or anything "fat" in it). I also go through periods of time where I excercise exccessively. I used to sneak out at nights to do a few miles. I wear a pedometer so that I can measure how many steps, how many miles, and how much calories I burn during the day. I try to burn as much calories as I have eaten. I did try purging once by vomitting, but it wasn't for me. I'm also obsessed with the nutritional facts of food, I constantly look at the labels to see what has the least amount of calories and fat. I won't eat anything that I don't know the exact nutritional info of. I mostly eat once a day. Sometimes I'll take a bite out of something just for the taste, but I'll spit it back out. I have heard comments from various people such as "she doesn't eat" "you need to eat" and related things. Recently someone took a picture of me over the holidays and the comments I heard about it was "you look anorexic" "you look pale" "you look like a little kid" "you look sick". From family and friends.

I know that I have a problem, and I can't stop it. I don't want to stop it until I reach at least 125-120 lbs. I've lost alot of weight but I have done it in a really bad way, and this is why, at 150 lbs, I look sick, and have been experiencing these symptoms:

Loss of hair: This has been particularly devastating to me. I used to have long, thick, beautiful hair and now it is thin, especially at the top where you can even see some bald spots. My hair falls out in clumps in the shower.

Feeling cold: I'm always cold, especially my hands and feet. There are times where my fingernails and my toenails turn very purple, and look as if they belong on a dead person.

Skin: I have become very pale. My skin has been breaking out alot (I did not have this problem before) it has become really dry. Sometimes I look like a really weird yellowish color.

Eyes: sunken eyes, dark circles.

Overall health: I do not feel very healthy. Even though I have more energy now than when I was at my heaviest, I feel weak, extremely weak. I have difficulty doing things like carrying items, pushing things, in other words I'm a wimp now. I also get sick easily. My body aches, my legs hurt. I do still get my periods.

What would I be classified as? I don't look like the typical anorexic because of my weight, but I do have pale skin and thinning hair (I have been at this behavior for a long time and it has also taken a long time to lose all the weight). And I'm not sure if I'd be an anorexic because I DO eat, just that I don't eat much. Plus I go through periods of time where I binge eat, but I do not purge. I'm not sure if anorexics do this.

Also I have a question. The problem with my hair is really depressing me, more and more everyday. It looks terrible, so thin at the top, and I cry about it all the time and am very self concious about it. I do not want my boyfriend to see me. My question is, will it ever grow back, to the same or how it used to be?? To those of you that have had this same problem, has it grown back for you, and if so, is it only when you eat better?? Believe it or not, this is my MAIN CONCERN. Please help me, because I'm on the brink of full-on depression over this. I feel like there is no hope, I am only 20 :*( :(


Thanks for your replies, I really appreciate it. I see that I'm not alone in this! Because of my weight I am afraid of going to any treatment centers because I fear they will laugh at me or not take me seriously. But I know that the people around me have noticed,and are worried,especially my family who have seen my transformation from obese to 150 lbs. They get shocked when I tell them I still want to lose like 30 lbs. I hear comments all the time about how I'm unhealthy and I never eat, so I know it's not just me!! It is too bad that clinics judge you by your weight, because I so agree with you, it's not about the weight! I do the same things that anorexics do, but I just happen to have started it at 260 pounds instead of 120. It's hard to be in this position. I'm trying real hard to get healthier, because instead of looking better like I wanted to, I am looking worse. Sure I'm alot thinner now, but that's not everything. What is the good in that, when you look sick and your hair is falling out? I look at pictures from when I was bigger and had not been experiencing these symptoms yet, and even though I was "fat", wow my skin was glowing and my hair was so full and healthy, I'd give anything to get that back. I've been struggling with this for so long, and I'm so tired of it!! I hope I get the courage soon to seek some help.

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