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I don't know...


true-hope
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My son is standing here looking over my shoulder as I write this...

He insists that I have an eating disorder and he is making sure that I tell you everything.

So I guess I'll just start at the beginning...

When I was a baby my mom would have to pinch my feet to wake me up to feed.

When I was in grade 2 the doctor put me on some sort of medication to make me hungry. My teacher knew this, however she had a rule that if you didn't finish all your math you would have to sit in class over lunch and do it...no eating until you were done. It didn't take me long to realize this...and I used it to my advantage. I failed math obviously.

I don't eat breakfast or lunch...unless I'm pregnant or just plain old hungry.

Even then I feel sick to my stomach...not out of guilt or anything like that, I just feel sick if I eat early in the day.

After the whole teacher thing (my mom threatened her and the doctor called her)my mom would stand there to make sure I ate breakfast at least, and the principal would stand by my desk to watch me eat.

I started hiding food in my pockets and desk...they caught on when my desk started to stink. At home I would bury my food in my mom's fern plant. Mom had wondered why it was growing so nicely and quickly...until she caught me.

I always eat supper ( home cooked, healthy meals)...and snacks after that.

I'm a junk food junkie. I hide junk food so that I can have it all to myself.

Under beds, closets, drawers...everywhere.

I'm just a tiny little thing...short and all bones.

I gained weight a few years ago while taking meds for anxiety/depression...and I actually felt good about myself for the first time in my life. My doctor said that I was a few pounds heavy for my height and age, but I wasn't over weight by any stretch of the imagination...and I felt healthy.

I ended up losing that weight a few months later and felt sluggish and awful again. I wasn't eating more or anything else when I gained that weight...so I don't know how I gained it...water I guess.

Now I'm with a man who has me hoarding junk food again, and he has (jokingly he says) told me that if I ever get fat he'll leave me.

Don't know if he's kidding or not. He's just a tiny little thing (smaller than me) so I think there might be some truth in what he says.

Because of my past, never having been a big eater, I don't think I have a problem...except the lack of nutrition in the junk food.

Could someone please put my son's mind at ease and explain to him that I don't have a problem?

I'm sorry if I have offended anyone or have said something here that shouldn't be said.

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To be honest I really don't know either. I wish I could be of some help but on this topic I'm useless. Hopefully someone else more knowledgeable than myself happens along.

I just know how hard it is to go to effort to put something out there and not get a response at all. So I thought maybe you'd appreciate a response however unhelpful.:(

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Guest ASchwartz

True-Hope,

It is always difficult or impossible to tell anyone over the Internet whether they do or do not have a problem. But, just to venture a guess based on my work in the mental healt field and on what you wrote here, you do have a problem. From what you say you do not eat enough. The MD who said that you were a little over weight while on the anti depressant medication made a big mistake. It was like telling someone who has an alcohol problem that its OK to go out and drink all they want. Also, your boyfriend should not be telling you not to be fat because that only reinforces your not eating.

Are you still on medication? It sounds like depression might be part of your eating disorder.

Remember, what I said is simply my opinion and guess.

Allan

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No, I'm not on any meds. They only make things worse. The paxil gave me the worst anxiety attacks ever, the effexor made me look like I was on drugs, and whatever it was that they had given me for the panic attacks after the paxil made my life a living hell. I have had a drug phobia since then. The only pills I can take now are Advil and Serc...I have Menniere's and the Serc helps sometimes.

I've been to see my family doctor and told him that I can't take pills. Told him that I'm so afraid of taking anything that I would rather kill myself than to take a chance on what a new med would do to me. He told me to read a book, had a lady call me to evaluate me over the phone, and left it at that. The lady talked for about 15 minutes, told me that I suffer from acute anxiety, told me I needed to take an online course (anxiety module) and told me that they would email me the link to the site and a password. That was weeks ago. I called back and another lady said that there was no file on me. She said that she would email me the same stuff and that I should get it within the next few hours...that was almost a week ago now.

I figure that if they don't think I have that bad of a problem why should I?

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Well, do you feel like you have a problem, true-hope?

Because, really, who else could be sure?

Just because the system that you have to work with is unresponsive doesn't mean that you don't deserve a response.

This is your own "diagnosis":

"I gained weight ... and I actually felt good about myself for the first time in my life. ... I wasn't over weight ... and I felt healthy."

Now, why do you doubt your son's opinion, again?

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Well, do you feel like you have a problem, true-hope?

Because, really, who else could be sure?

Just because the system that you have to work with is unresponsive doesn't mean that you don't deserve a response.

This is your own "diagnosis":

"I gained weight ... and I actually felt good about myself for the first time in my life. ... I wasn't over weight ... and I felt healthy."

Now, why do you doubt your son's opinion, again?

Hmm...touche' ! Guess the kid wins again...I never looked at it like that before.

I just thought that because I've always been this way that it meant that I didn't have a problem. Most times it's people like my old friend that had a problem...she would get me to buy her pizza for lunch and then head straight into the bathroom to "get rid of it".

With people like that you know there's a problem.

So I guess the question now is...is there a junk food junkies anonymous? Cause I just can't live without the stuff. I know it's bad for me, I know there's no nutritional value and that's possibly why I feel like crud all the time, and why my stomach acts up...and the list goes on.

So where do I go from here? If my doctor doesn't listen and my bf insists that I stay scrawny and weak just because he is...oh wait...I'm trying to get rid of him anyway. Ok, so now what?

You've all made me realize that I do have a problem...which scares me...something new to add to my list of woes.

My son says that if I start to eat better that I'll feel better. I just don't know how. I crave sweet/salty/crunchy stuff. Can't eat carrots raw cause my teeth aren't strong enough for that.

I feel sick when I eat...why don't I feel sick when I eat junk food?

Have I made myself somehow believe that real food is bad and junk is good? How do I break this?

Does anyone else have my problem? Am I just weird?

I can't think back to a time when I was a young girl that would set this off...except when I had my adnoids out! They only gave me ice cream and jello in the hospital! I had never had that stuff before...and it was so good.

I remember two men that my dad worked with were in there. They were both very big men and were in the hospital to lose weight. They would give me their jello. Very nice men. Maybe it was because they all gave me special attention? Or did I just get addicted to sweets at that time?

Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you.

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Hope,

If you're making a list of all your problems like an indictment that you're going to beat yourself up with later, then I understand why it scares you. Like any big job, you need to break it into small jobs. Divide and Conquer.

Think of the list as your potential. This is the person that it's within your reach to be! Healthy and happy and ... whatever else makes you healthy and happy. We all have different lists; I don't know anyone who doesn't have one at all.

I would think that you could find some help with ED groups and websites. What you describe is probably related; wanting to get comfort from your food. There probably is an emotional payoff. I'm not sure whether it's absolutely required for you to seek out what the payoff is, though it probably can't hurt, either.

In particular, it's significant that you feel sick when you eat well, but not when you eat junk. Clearly, this is because your mind knows the difference (though I would also consider the possibility of a food allergy -- if the junk doesn't contain the allergen, for instance. Time to ask a doctor!). ;-)

I wonder whether you can remember why you made different choices, during the period where you were healthier. Can you set yourself up with small, non-junk meals at breakfast and lunch times? Perhaps if you eat when your children eat, they could help you make it a routine?

Anyway, there's lots of nutrition information that's widely available; I'm not going to try to duplicate all that. The key thing is to give yourself permission to be healthy, the way you felt before.

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Some years ago I met with an eating disorder specialist. He had an interesting perspective that comes to mind when read what you wrote.

I said to him -"Well, I just change my eating habits and start eating healthier and have the appropriate weight - why would I need a program?"

He said, " It doesn't matter so much - because when you have had eating issues as a child - the behavioural and psychological effects will remain with you unless you address them."

And I now agree - It is the thought process that you need to address. If you are unsure, why not talk to a specialist about it? The fact that you and others are concerned about it already proves it is an issue.

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Can you start with small steps?? Like instead of eating the potato chips try Triscuits with a slice of cheddar cheese, or apple with peanut butter? (These add nutients your body needs and still can satisfiy your cravings.) Also have you tried cooked carrots with alittle sugar, butter and cinnamon? My husband makes these for me, and it is the only way I truely like carrots. Start by just trying a few to see how it goes and once those go well, increase to more. It sounds like you want to change this behavior, so that is a step in a direction you are hoping for. You say you like salty, sweet, crunchy stuff. I don't know, just a suggestion. I also agree though that you may need to see an ED specialist so that you can find out the right way to correct this if you feel it is an issue.

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi,

What Dame says about addressing the thinking process behind the eating disorder is very true. Its not only learning to eat better but to change the thoughts and thats where a program comes in because, if its a good program, they do both.

Also, the Internet is not the way to go about handling this thing and, so, its not so bad these women did not get back to you...at least thats my opinion.

Allan

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  • 2 weeks later...

Been tons of stuff going on since the death of my dad, and after dealing with the bank yesterday, my little brother hit upon something that just might help to make sense of some of my eating problems.

My little brother is 4 years younger than me.

When we were little our parents got divorced...which was NOT the norm back then...we were outcasts...shunned because of them...other kids were told to stay away from us.

Anyway, I was helping him to fill out the life insurance beneficiary forms and he said " I love you. You've always been there for me. When we were little, and there wasn't always enough to eat, you would give me the food off of your plate so that I wouldn't cry. You let me sleep in your room when I was scared...you took care of me."

I forgot about that stuff...but he remembered.

To this day, I find myself giving my kids or bf the food off of my plate to ensure that they have enough to eat...I never really realized I was doing that.

That could explain some of it I guess. As for the allergy idea...I know I'm allergic to eggs,oranges, strawberries,chocolate,sunflower seeds/oil...had measles because I couldn't have the shot due to the egg whites. lol

I bloat up really bad and I get very sick when I eat them or something that is made with eggs. The doctor I had years ago thought at first that maybe it was gluten as well...but the tests for Celiac came back negative.

My oldest son is allergic to milk...not just intolerant...and he gets very angry, hostile, and depressed if he drinks it...not to mention he gets purple circles around his eyes.

So ya, I believe maybe allergies are part of it...and perhaps some sort of mental thing from when I was young.

Maybe I'm subconsciously killing myself the slow way by eating what I know isn't good for me...I don't know.

I know now that it needs to stop and that I need to make some changes...the only question is how? To see a specialist you need to get a doctor's note...and they don't seem too interested in doing that.

Psychologists cost too much...psychiatrists need a note from your doctor...and I'm still trying to get these "people" to set me up with this anxiety course they want me to take on line...

I've tried to get the doc to send me into see someone about a diet because I have very high cholesterol and diabetes runs on both sides of my family...my tests come back too high all the time but they still won't help me...I can't help but wonder why? The nurse gave me a diet sheet once to follow, but most of the things on the list were very expensive, I was allergic to them, or I can't find a way to eat them because of my lack of teeth. How do you eat half a cup of raw almonds when you can't chew? lol

I started eating avocados when I was pregnant with my last one, and they actually lowered the cholesterol levels! But who wants to eat nothing but avocados? lol

Ya, I know...put the things you can't chew in a blender...yuck. Would rather skip that stuff. lol

Of course with my teeth going it's kind of a good thing...can't eat half of the junk food that I used to. lol

I think I forgot to mention as well that I have IBS and acid reflux (acid being reason I'm losing my teeth)...means that I have to avoid tons of food because of those things as well.

Any change of diet and I'm sitting in the bathroom all night with pains worse than labor...and yes,to all the ladies out there... there is such a thing as pain worse than labor. lol

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Guest ASchwartz

True-hope,

Its interesting that you give others the food off of your plate to feed them while you have difficulty eating food for yourself. Its the quintessential female dilemma: they nurture everyone else but not themselves.

Allan

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