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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.


I think many of us with EDs, myself included, have grown up, believing that whatever we do will never be good enough, and feeling we need to strive for perfection in order to be accepted and deemed good enough. I think many of us have never been shown how to set healthy, more balanced goals, or boundaries for ourselves - and it's not easy after all these years to learn how to do that, but I hope that as I work on my recovery and start to set and uphold healthier goals and boundaries for myself, that I will also set them for my children whilst they are young in the hope that they will grow to learn how to set them for themselves as they become older, and be able to carry those life-skills forwards into adulthood.

As a result of my upbringing I naturally want to support my girls in their choices and the things they want to do, I don't want to be the controlling or dismissive mum, as that's how my mum was with me and I know how that feels, but equally I am aware that so many people go too far the other way, and  would like to avoid that too. It is hard sometimes, being a parent is such a powerful influence, and there are days when I have to question how much of what my children believe in and believe is the right thing to do comes from mindsets that I have helped them to develop before I started ED treatment or when I was in earlier stages of recovery, that I didn't even realise were flawed or unhealthy. I think as an ED parent sometimes we see our children as extensions of ourselves and use them on a subconscious level to feed into how we feel about ourselves - if our children are good, well-behaved, high achievers etc then we derive some comfort and self-worth from that. I'm thankful that I can see that now, and that I'm no longer overly bothered what other people think of my children or how they are performing compared to other children in their class at school (within reason as long as there are no significant issues). I really hope that unlike my own upbringing, that I am able to help my girls seek less external verification than I have always needed, and place more emphasis on a sense happiness and value that comes from within, and from acknowledging that nobody is perfect, but as humans we are essentially good, loveable and deserving of good things in our lives.

PS Tracy - I see you mentioned having chemo in your earlier post , I'm not sure why, but really hope it goes well for you, it must be a tough time for you! I also wanted to wish you luck in helping your little one through the minefield of gymnastics and body image. xx

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