Eating Disorders: More than about eating and appearance
- Category: Psychotherapy and Recovery Work
Vanity, character flaws and psychological weakness are not causes of eating disorders.
Believing they are undermines a person's appreciation of themselves, fosters shame and inhibits seeking real help. It also creates massive confusion when a person with an eating disorder knows she has a strong sense of who she is yet can't find a way to live while honoring herself.
These are the first issues that come to the fore when a woman with an eating disorder starts her recovery work. She needs to rally courage to begin.
Many cultures around the world add to her need for courage by intense laser focus on women's bodies to appraise a woman's value or character or appropriate role or intelligence.
If you have an eating disorder you may know that your symptoms cover more than your behavior with food. But maybe you think your eating behaviors are your problem and make you different from normal people. Your other disturbing feelings and behaviors you may believe are based on your inferior natural character.
Eating disorders are illnesses, and the symptoms cover much more than compulsive behaviors around food.
In addition to your eating disorder behaviors please ask yourself these questions.
1. Do you suffer from depression?
2. Do you have suicidal thoughts?
3. Do you have phobias?
4. Are you addicted to drugs?
5. Are you addicted to alcohol?
6. Are you addicted to self destructive behaviors?
7. Do you find yourself a victim in relationships?
8. In your relationships, is someone always a victim?
9. Do you experience a powerful sense of helplessness?
10. Do you experience a powerful sense of terror?
11. Do you feel isolated and unable to be accepted or acceptable as the real person you are?
12. Do you have problems in your sexual life?
13. Do you self abuse?
14. Do you have social phobia?
15. Do you experience anxiety?
Your answers to these questions can help you expand your view of your suffering. You can begin to identify symptoms of your illness, symptoms that will diminish or end as you recover.
Naming your issues as symptoms will help you increase your self awareness. Rather than judge yourself you can acknowledge your situation as deeper than anything that could be solved by a diet or exercise or body reshaping. Getting off the wrong path and on to a path that leads to recovery is a major step.