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If you suffer from an eating disorder now or have in the past, please email Joanna for a free telephone consultation.



Eating Disorder Recovery
Joanna Poppink, MFT
Eating Disorder Recovery Psychotherapist
serving Arizona, California, Florida, Oregon and Utah.
All appointments are virtual.


Pre Binge Symptoms

If you suffer from bulimia or anorexia or binge eating disorder the end of a holiday season can leave you in this fragile emotional condition.  You may attempt to use rage to wipe out these feelings. You may try to control the people around you to prove your power when deep down you feel powerless. You may want to hide under the covers or throw a tantrum.

When your gut trembles and aches with fear, when your upper arms seem to vibrate on their own, when the back of your throat aches, when what you see begins to have an unreal quality you are experiencing raw vulnerability that is a prelude to a binge/purge episode.

Please remember these are symptoms of your illness.  You can get through this.

Holiday Challenge is a Constant Theme in Eating Disorder Stories

After the holidays a quiet comes to town, which is difficult for a person with an eating disorder to bear.  Generally people use the after holiday time to rest, clean up, see how much money they’ve spent and get ready to go back to school or work.

A person with bulimia or anorexia or binge eating disorder can’t move smoothly from high-energy conditions to a calm and even state.

Other people relax after an intense time.  They rest and regroup. The person with an eating disorder crashes and feels frightened and unstable.

Steps to Cope with Instability

This instability can set off one binge/purge episode or a series of binges and purges that can last for days or weeks.

If you are near this state, please remember to be kind and giving to yourself.  Try these simple tasks:

1. Take a shower and wash your hair
2. Make your bed
3. Eat breakfast and immediately go for a walk
4. Go to an OA meeting
5. Call your therapist.  If you don’t have one, start looking for one.
6. Go to an animal rescue shelter and volunteer to walk a dog
7. Go to the library and write thank you notes to anyone you can think of
8. Look at something you usually think is beautiful – even if nothing seems beautiful now.
9. Postpone your binge or purge. Start thinking about what else can nourish you.
10. Journal, journal, journal.

Find ways to put yourself in environments that nurture healing, creativity and learning. Someday you will create that for yourself.  For now, stretch yourself in that direction because every moment of your life can be the beginning of a New Year for you.

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