Eating Disorder Recovery
Joanna Poppink, MFT
Eating Disorder Recovery Psychotherapist
serving Arizona, California, Florida, Oregon and Utah.
All appointments are virtual.


If you suffer from an eating disorder now or have in the past, please email Joanna for a free telephone consultation.

My mom was always on a diet. I would sneak her diet "candy" when she wasn't looking. I was probably 5 or 6.I didn't know what it was at the time.

I was a plump child and teen, and I remember feeling fat and out of place among my friends. Looking back now my weight was probaby within or just above what would be considered normal on weight charts.

I was a cheerleader, a good student, a perfectionist.

I remember going days without eating as a teen. I would think about losing weight all the time, but rarely did anything drastic.

My college roomate introduced me to laxatives. I also started exercising alot. 10 years later I was still using laxatives and throwing up. I lost a lot of weight.

By this time I knew the terms bulimia and anorexia, and my psychiatrist diagnosed me with bulimia. With the help of therapy and some prozac, I was able to get this obsessive thought process under "control". I was doing pretty good until the past couple of years.

My dieting has gotten really out of control the past 6 months. I rarely purge, but don't eat more than 600 calories a day. I am not underweight so I am not anorexic, I don't purge so I am not bulimic, so I guess I would say I have disordered eating.

What concerns me is the impact I fear I am having on my oldest daughter. She is very observant of my eating habits and I have to watch this around her. I do not want her to develop an eating disorder. It would break my heart.

I don't see her talking about anorexia or bulimia or eating disorders at all, nor do I hear her friends talk about weight. She is in 5th grade. However, in my 4 year old daughters gymnastics class I overheard 3 young girls who appeared to be about 7 talk about who weighed more amongst them.

This conversation shocked me a little. My four year old said to me one day that her legs were too fat.

I think as mothers we can be as big of a triggering factor to our children than their peers when we constantly demean ourselves and talk about being fat...the magazines we have laying around the house...the diet foods in our refrigerator. I would have to say that my kids are the biggest motivator in my attempts to change my view of food.

How do I feel about having an eating disorder?

I feel out of control..and I feel controlled. It's an obsession I deal with from sun up to sun down.

It's guilt at times, it's triumph at times. I am scared to get better, but I know I have to...

I tell myself I will quit if I just lose a little more weight...then that weight isnt good enough. I promised myself I would buy a watch I wanted after losing 25 more pounds...i lost it plus more...but I didn't feel I deserved I didnt buy it.

I will be ok. I am strong and have my kids to keep me above water. One day I will be better.

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