Here you will find articles that address various emotional, physical, behavioral and spiritual symptoms that are often part of the eating disorder experience.


To contact Joanna, to make a psychotherapy appointment in Los Angeles or to arrange a video Skype consultation, write: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone (310) 474-4165.

Portia's Unbearable Lightness and Ellen's Incredulity

Smoke_trailMy Perspective on Ellen Degeneres, Portia de Rossi, Unbearable Lightness and the lived experience of anorexia and bulimia.

As a psychotherapist with many years of working with women with eating disorders, this photograph of smoke says it all.

It's beautiful. It's light. It's beyond human grasp. It's transitory. It's graceful. It can take many forms yet always be beyond criticism because the shifting shape and barest presence is always lovely.

But it's not a human being, and it is not what a human being can be.

Ellen says she was stunned by the degree of self hate Portia discloses in her book.  Self hate can be thoroughly disguised, even

Recovery and Danger in Ending Relationships

I just finished a Dorothy Sayers novel, Cloud of Witnesses. She wrote it around 1921. In it the main character, Lord Peter Wimsey, asks a beautiful woman who is married to a brutal and jealous farmer, "Why don't you leave him?" 

She responds, "Because he would kill me before we got through the

Healing Power of a Tender Embrace


Powerful and eloquent post in Voice of Recovery tonight. She hit a disappointment in her personal life that sent her into the closet to hide.  She wanted safety. She wanted a drink. She was in agony and struggled against her cravings.

With courage and strength she pulled herself out of her darkness, asked for support and got it. She's finding her way and helping others as she goes.

The point I want to raise relates to one sentence she throws out with determination and passion. After describing the intensity of her feelings and cravings she writes:

Self Care during Relationship Upheaval

Relationships suffer when you have an eating disorder.  Deep, valuable and sincere relationships may be difficult to maintain or even impossible to establish. You want and need people in your life to help ward off isolation and loneliness. 

When a relationship ends or changes into something unpleasant you may wonder what happened. And, you may not be able to think clearly about what happened because the end or change triggers your eating disorder.  So you feel great loss and sorrow, criticize yourself and act out by binging or throwing up or starving or all these behaviors in their turn.

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