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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.


This slackliner achieves stability from a developed inner sense of fluid subtle movement to maintain sustainable balance. We need that ability now.. Pix

The eating disorder system that gave you a sense of control and protection is drastically altered during this Corona Era.

When you have an eating disorder you have developed ways to rely on it when your feelings are too uncomfortable to bear and when disruptions in your life feel overwhelming. That’s what an eating disorder is for. It may cause havoc in your

life and prevent you from developing and moving on to a more mature and satisfying existence, but it’s there for you when you want comfort and escape from what feels like too much to experience.

In this time of Corona reliable and familiar external life is falling apart. New protocols for daily life suddenly are established. Our future is unknown. No one can find the necessary balance and stability through an eating disorder.

  • You cannot binge enough to numb yourself to the reality of the news and your isolation.
  • You cannot starve enough to be small enough for the Corona virus to pass you by.
  • You cannot throw up enough to block out your awareness in the hope that when you are aware again the crisis will be over.
  • You cannot exercise enough to bring you to an exhausted altered state that lasts longer than the crisis we are all facing.

Eating disorders, drugs, alcohol, controlling people, rage, tears: none of that will bring an end to the Corona crisis. We all are in it, and we cannot avoid it.

An eating disorder will not get anyone through this time of financial, emotional, health, political, social, family, friend and freedom of movement breakdown and disarray.

Our expectations based on what we consider normal are not being met. Our external world does not have the stability we once thought it had.

If we are dependent on external stability and external forces for our own inner stability and ability to function, we are in trouble. Yet we humans are interdependent beings. We need each other, but not in the ways an eating disorder demands.

Depending on food or the lack of it will not give us the internal equilibrium we crave.  And it may be difficult to rely on other people to give us that stability because everyone is living through this disruption.

Maybe you have never been challenged the way you are being challenged now. If you have an eating disorder the basics of how you live your life and organize your internal life no longer apply.

Yet, if you have an eating disorder you have more strength, creativity, determination, life force and strategic abilities than you know.  These qualities are essential to maintain an eating disorder. Now it’s time to use those qualities to discover a new basis for your stability in life, during this crisis and after.

The first step is to breathe and know there is another way. Your world may seem unstable, and you may feel unstable. But that is because you need a new and much improved source for your inner stability.

I’ll write more about this. For now, be kind and gentle with yourself. Give yourself time and space, if you can, to stagger or sink with the blow and rise a little to face your new normal.  First we face it. Then we develop ways to live in it. This does not happen all at once.

Journal if you can. Pay attention to your dreams if you have any. This is the beginning of a new journey.  Like it or not, this unstable Corona time is pushing us all to a new way of being and caring for ourselves and each other.

Also see:  WEBMD BLOGS MENTAL HEALTH:  Don't Pressure Yourself to be Productive Right Now

Joanna Poppink, MFT, private practice psychotherapist, E-mail for free telephone consultation.
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Healing Your Hungry Heart: recovering from your eating disorder

Pix  by lunalina is licensed under CC By-NC-SA 2.0

Image attribution

//www.flickr.com/photos/8756257@N03/4286253806" style="box-sizing: inherit; color: rgb(237, 89, 47); cursor: pointer; text-decoration: none;">"Slackline" by //www.flickr.com/photos/8756257@N03" target="_blank" rel="noopener" style="box-sizing: inherit; color: rgb(237, 89, 47); cursor: pointer; text-decoration: none;">lunalina is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 

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