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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.


Dear Shh,

Glad you agree.  Yes, this applies to more than eating disorder situations, but this blog is geared to people with eating disorders so I frame my writing to that subject.  Plus, sometimes it's difficult for people to relate an issue or style of behavior across categories.  That's why we have so many 12-step programs.  People have to be able to identify.

I applaud you for living a healthy lifestyle and letting the people in your life see it. I know I have an amazing impact on a few people in my life when we go out and I do not order alcohol.  I don't talk about it. But one person asks me every time if it makes me ill or if I am allergice or if I gave it up for some reason.  When I say it's just not part of my life and I don't drink because that feels best to me for me I see the amazement on her face.

It used to be like that regarding smoking cigarettes.  But now, thank goodness, most people don't smoke.

Back to eating disorders, living a normal healthy life gives the person with an eating disorder the opportunity to be in a normal world with someone who loves her.  That means you make dinner as you would for yourself with no consideration at all for the rigid requirements of the anorexic person. 

You give her love and let her cope.  Of course, you serve healthy choices, not a buffet of binge foods!

Or if you want to go to a movie and she can't go because she doesn't want to be seen in public or because she is afraid she won't be able to get past the snack bar without a meltdown, you say, I'm sorry you won't be with me. I thought you would enjoy the show.  And you go anyway.

And when she wants to talk about the details of her body shape, weight, size you change the subject. The whole formula is simple - challenging but simple - do not support the eating disorder symptoms.  Support the person.

I'm so glad you are getting that and living it in your life, Shh. Your comment may help other people see how this relates to them in ways other than eating disorders too.




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