Come Test Your Knowledge on Eating Disorders: My Own Journey Included
According to the informative website Freed, “At least 20 million women and 10 million men in the United States suffer from an eating disorder at some point in their life.”
My Own Battle With Eating Disorders
Growing up, I had problems with my weight from a very young age. At first, I could not keep weight on me, but as the years went on the weight began to pack on. Especially after I was sent to a facility to get help for self-harm. I was put on multiple medications that made me into, basically, a zombie.
While I was in the facility, I noticed my weight started to increase rapidly and being 14, I began to panic. I stopped eating. I only ate when I felt lightheaded, I drank only water, exercised in my room constantly, and I would throw whole trays of food away; with the hopes of a stray finding and eating the discarded food. I remember thinking to myself many times; I don’t want to be fat because of the medication the strays need this more than me.
Months went by and I began to get smaller and smaller. Until I was smaller than I was when I had first entered the facility. By this time the nurses knew what was happening and put me on Ensure to maintain my nutrients. As well as a multivitamin. A lot of the time I dumped the Ensure and threw up my medication. Again, I thought I was gaining weight because of the medication. I wanted nothing to do with medicine.
Through all this, I remember feeling
- Irritated more often
- Constantly worried about my weight
- Very low self-esteem
- Very tired all the time
- Deep depression
Even so, I still did not want to gain weight. I could not see or understand that I was not overweight at all. I was very underweight at this point.
It was not until I was moved to another facility that I began to accept the fact I had become anorexic. I was put on more medication and I started slowly eating again. However, this time I used food as a form of comfort and began to overeat. By the time I left the hospital, I was around 260 pounds at the age of 19.
After being released from the facilities in 2011, I had to walk or ride the bus to get to where I was going. Naturally, a lot of the weight began to come off. In 2014, when I lost the majority of my memory I was around 160. However, due to the traumatic event of losing the majority of my memory for around 6 months, I ate to hid my feelings.
Fast-forward to 2016 and I’m 215 pounds. I had a miscarriage, ate like crazy, and shot up to 240. Four months after I had the miscarriage I became pregnant with my son. I lost a lot of weight in the beginning because I could not keep food down. At the end of the pregnancy, I was diagnosed with severe pre-eclampsia and gained 20 pounds of water weight in less than two weeks. I had to have an emergency c-section to save both my son and myself.
Now I am on a lifestyle journey to a healthier me. I started my weight loss journey around 250 pounds in November 2018. It is now August 2019 and I have proudly lost over 50 pounds through keto and exercise.
Through this journey, I am learning it is okay to eat and still love your body. It’s okay to have cheat days as long as you bounce back and continue on your goal. Most importantly, I am learning to accept myself the way I am.
As you can see, I have had my battles with weight, eating disorders, and the overwhelming feeling of just wanting my body to be pretty.
Do You Have a Loved One With an Eating Disorder?
If you have a family member who may be going through an eating disorder here are some of the things you can watch for:
- Not eating or skipping meals often
- Having to go to the bathroom right after a meal
- Hair becoming thin
- Nails becoming brittle
- Major weight loss or gain
- Withdrawn from family and friends
- Constantly asking about their weight and putting themselves down
Always remember to be patient and understanding. Don’t yell, belittle, or become angry if someone you care about is experiencing an eating disorder. Sit down and talk with them. Try to set up a doctors appointment and follow through. Eating disorders can become very dangerous and fatal, as they can cause organ damage.
Remember, they are already going through so much mental and physical complications. Acting rash, judging, or in anger might cause them to not reach out for help.
Maybe You Have an Eating Disorder
If you are experiencing an eating disorder yourself, please don’t be afraid to reach out and get help. I understand all to well the promise of when I get to this weight I will stop or the constant worry about what eating a small bag of chips is going to do to the body.
It’s hard to admit you need help, but that is the first step in getting better. Hun, you are causing internal harm to your body that can be life-threatening. There are many different ways to live a healthy lifestyle, be able to eat, and not gain a ton of weight.
When you give up the eating disorder for a healthier lifestyle you gain so much. Here are some of the things that I gained by taking the steps to get better:
- Clearer thinking
- Thicker hair
- Stronger nails
- Not having the overwhelming worry about weight gain (though it is in the back of my mind from time to time. You will learn how to reduce the worry with time.)
- A new love for your body
- Higher self-esteem
- The opportunity to help someone going through something similar in the future
However, I will be upfront and honest. It is hard and you have to put your all into getting better for a healthy lifestyle. There will be days you feel like throwing your hands up and reverting back to your old ways. Push through. Even if you slip up, wake up the next day with the intentions to do better than the day before. One slip up does not undo all the progress you have made. You can do it, but you have to make up your mind you want it.
Eating disorders affect millions of people every year. It can cause complications like organ failure and can even be fatal. If you know someone who is going through an eating disorder be patient and understanding, as they are going through so much already. If you can try to get them to set up an appointment with a doctor and follow-through on the appointments. Those who are currently experiencing an eating disorder can overcome an eating disorder and have a healthy lifestyle if they put all their effort into getting better.
Thank you for reading this post and thank you to those who like, share, comment on, and support Maybe Crazy Help’s mission to help others overcome some of the darkest parts of the mind while spreading light on the subject of mental health. Together we can help others overcome, understand, and pay it forward to someone who is going through something similar in the future.
Down below is a small quiz about eating disorders to help others understand more about eating disorders. By taking this quiz and sharing it we are spreading more awareness to those who may not understand eating disorders. Come test your knowledge and hopefully learn something new.
The questions are collected from various sources. Some of the terminologies are slang, but none the less they are real conditions. If you notice a question or answer that is wrong please email me at [email protected]
A Friendly Reminder
We are still collecting letters and cards of hope for those living in shelters, VA centers, women and children centers, group homes, and extended stay hospitals in time for Christmas. If you are interested in sending a small ray of hope you can find all the information in the post What Can a Letter Do?