“Just another bite won’t hurt me. The damage is done. I might as well keep stuffing my face and start fresh tomorrow.” Does this sound familiar? I’ve been dealing with food issues for most of my life and I want to share my struggles and recovery with you.
Somehow, dieting didn’t work for me…
Since my teenage years, I tried every food plan under the sun in hopes to find “the one that worked.” I’d do well for a few weeks, hit a tough spot, craved, binged, and undid every bit of progress I’ve worked so hard for in just a weekend. As the years went on, these cycles intensified. I felt like a failure, because I didn’t have the discipline to even follow a simple diet plan. I was obsessed with food, especially the kind I would not allow myself to eat. Those foods were forbidden… but I had to have them and my mind wouldn’t rest until I caved in to my cravings. I could always start fresh tomorrow.
Fighting & Giving Up
With every new diet, my confidence that this would be the one to save me from my cravings skyrocketed. Soon, however, I realized that this new diet was just another variation of the one that failed me just two weeks ago. My bookshelves were overflowing with self-help, diet, and cookbooks, yet, I didn’t feel any better than before. I felt worse. Another failed promise. “Why do I even try,” I thought. There was no hope, only disappointment.
I Needed Help
About 6 months ago, I hit rock-bottom. My blood-sugars where constantly out of whack, and one day, I had to go to the ER at work because I was dizzy and couldn’t formulate my words right. That’s when I realized that I needed help. This had to stop! My blood-pressure, my blood-sugar issues, my obesity – all were a direct result of my bingeing. It suddenly became clear as day: If I wanted to get better, I needed to deal with my food addiction. But how? I’ve read a ton of books about this topic, but wasn’t able to get my binges under control.
I opened my laptop and searched for therapists specializing in eating disorders in my area. I found several, but had doubts that I could afford them. After continuing my search for a while longer, I found an evening intensive outpatient program as part of the Eating Disorder Center of Denver in my city. I contacted them the next day and found out that I was accepted in the program. I was officially diagnosed with having a binge eating disorder, which was just recently recognized as an actual disease and is now covered by most insurances. Knowing that this could be my one and only shot at this level of recovery, I threw myself at everything this program had to offer. After 11 weeks of outpatient treatment of 3 long nights a week, my therapist suggested that I should consider stepping up to a partial hospitalization program in Denver for a few weeks. (I always thought that these recovery centers were only for the rich and famous, but my insurance covered most of it, to my surprise). So I went.
I want to share my experience with you!
For years, I was looking for help and wasn’t sure how to find what I needed. When I came back from treatment (I was pretty open to where I’ve been for the past couple of months) friends and co-workers opened up to me about their struggles with food, asking me about treatment, how to stop eating, etc. I told them that I can’t offer advice (I’m not a therapist and I don’t want to go to jail), but I can certainly share my own journey and experience with them and point them in the right direction to find help.
I consider myself lucky to have had the opportunity to go through treatment and I know that there are many of you who wish they could or don’t know where to start. I’m a writer (usually paranormal romantic comedies), but I felt the strong urge to share my story with you, to give you hope and inspiration. DON’T GIVE UP ON YOURSELF!
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To find help, check My (Growing) List of Binge Eating Disorder Resources