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Eating Disorder Recovery Message Board


Eating Disorder Recovery Board Index


I never had a "normal" relationship with food. Nobody knows when how how it started - but when I was 3 my sister came and I was neglected. That was when my weight began to increase and by the time I finished highschool at 17, I was obese with a BMI of 30+. So I can only guess that it was the pressure of having to compete for my mum's attention, having to be the "good girl who doesn't make mummy angry", and the intense fear of abandonment that led me to turn to food for comfort. My mum is also someone who is very concerned about weight and body image, and of course my weight did not sit well with her. I used to hear things like "I'm ashamed to have a fat daughter like you", "Why can't you be like so-and-so" etc., and I was also not allowed to have long hair or wear skirts/dresses because Mum said that fat girls look ugly in them.

Upon entering college, I went on a slimming programme losing 20kgs (approx. 44 pounds) in 6 months. The whole thing was quite gradual - it wasn't like I forgo all carbs in a day. And because it was so gradual, it was also deceptive - I mean what is 25% lesser rice than yesterday? I was also told to toast my bread, avoid even cereals, eat vege sticks when I'm hungry, and once a week I would have only vege (cabbage, tomatoes, capsicum, onions and celery) boiled without salt and oil. I also went on "detox" twice - during which I was given laxatives and told that it will "cleanse your body before the real thing".

My menses went off after 2 months into the diet, became very irregular. Hormone pills don't work at all and they only made me gain weight. When I started gaining the weight, I was frustrated and started to binge. I would be so obsessed with food during lectures and would always end up barging into the cafeteria alone to eat even though i know that I have food at home. I would also sneak snacks into my room, hide them under the cupboard and eating behind locked doors before throwing wrappers underneath other rubbish. I also started to do "lemon detox" - drinking concentrated lemon juice the first thing every morning.

When I came to another state to study, I decided to go back to "diets". This time, I didn't care about "safe foods". I had proper b/fast and lunch, but then have whatever that I would for b/fast - during dinner. So dinner would be 2 pieces of bread, or a packet of hot cereal, etc. Whenever my friends asked me for a movie I would usually decline. If I go along, I would have to plan ahead on how to compensate with the "extra meal". Hence, my weight would always fluctuate tremendously between study times and holidays.

In february, I learned the "art" of counting calories and using fiber products to "purge". It started when I saw a clinical psychologist with a background in nutrition. She insisted that I only had "weight management issues" and refused to hear about the psychological reasons behind my struggle with food. Hence, she counted calories in front of me and told me it's okay to use fiber. I stopped seeing her after a while.

Professional help for EDs in my country is almost non-existent. There are no ED clinics. One of my lecturers is a health psychologist specializing in EDs but she isn't a clinician.

Now I think my health is suffering. Besides my menses (which can go up to 5 weeks in a cycle), I also have low blood platelets (suspected to be autoimmune).

Even though I don't fit into the description of anorexia or bulimia, I think that this is more than just poor eating habits. Am I right?





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