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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.


Firstly, PTC, I just wanted to say that I didn't see what you wrote, but I'm glad you feel that this is a safe place to come and write about how you're feeling. Sending you lots of warmth and positive vibes xx

As for me, well as you all know we don't have Thanksgiving here, it's just one long road that leads up to Christmas, but I'm enjoying the run up and looking forward to all that it brings :)

Life has been a bit challenging lately in good and bad ways

Challenges with really positive outcomes have been actually getting through my exams, despite my ex trying to sabotage things, and getting awarded the degree classification I wanted. Taking my girls on holiday overseas on my own 10 days after we decided to divorce as it was a family holiday originally booked for the 4 of us, and I couldn't let the girls down. I had to dig deep to find the courage to go - but it was great, very empowering, I'm glad I did it.

On a not so great level, I thought getting divorced and going our separate ways would mean I was free from the rages and abuse that come with what I believe is a hypomanic or manic state. I was wrong...being outside it all now, so I'm no longer present and potentially playing a part in the build up to things, yet I'm being treated worse than ever now ...it's highlighted and confirmed for me that it really is happening and just how abusive it is. I have felt blackmailed and scared at times, by her need to have control over me (at any cost, it seems). I know I need some sound advice and help with this, but so far my attempts to get some haven't really amounted to much - that's not to say I haven't spoken with some lovely empathic people, but I still have no idea how to handle the situations when they arise or better still minimise the chances of them arising.

And then my mother - things had been going quite well for the last 6 months or so. We visit her every few weeks, and I try to be mindful that she can't help some of the things she does, in fact she's not even aware of a lot of them, but if it gets too much, I will say something to try to draw her awareness to it, or we will just make an excuse to leave sooner rather than later. Because I'm stronger and in a better place, I can accept that's how she is, and it doesn't affect me like it used to. However she's now found herself in a place with my sister not dissimilar to where she was with me when I ended up cutting contact for a while. I find it quite sad - I fully agree with my sister that the way my mum has treated her isn't okay and that she's doing what she needs to do to protect herself, because the abuse from my mum, is as she puts it "relentless" - but I feel sad for my mum, I found out yesterday she'd been gossiping about me and my ex to people (saying some quite horrific things) and that she'd been lying to me about the situation with my sister to make herself seem like an innocent victim and seek my sympathy under false pretences, so I was quite stern with her and told her how disappointed I felt. She explained that she doesn't even know she's doing anything wrong, and that even when I try to explain to her what she's doing and why it upsets people, that it doesn't make sense to her and she still doesn't really understand why it's not okay and why it bothers people, and how much it upsets her to think she's hurting me and my sister. She looked at me like a bewildered child and asked me if what she'd done meant I was going to stop calling to see her again, like she was scared/almost begging me not to abandon her. It was quite heart-breakingly sad, and I just said "I know you don't know you're doing it, and that you don't do it on purpose, that's why I'm here, that's why I started coming round again...so no, I might come a bit less often when you do things that upset me, but I'm not going to stop coming".

So I guess there's quite a bit to take on board (there are a few other things too, but I've written quite enough), but I'm positive, I'm back in recovery (after 2 years) - which is amazing, and I have 2 small people in my life who need lots of love, reassurance, and opportunities to explore themselves and the world around them, to help them regroup, and grow, and believe that they can be anything they want to be!



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