Wednesday, December 25, 1996

How do you recover from bulimia?

I have been bulimic since I was 14 years old. I'm now 28. I have gone through periods in my life where I felt like I had completely gotten over it and not binged and purged for up to 2 years only to fall back into the same patterns worse than ever. I know about the side effects and how it can danger my health and my life. Recently I have purged every single day, no matter what I eat - sometimes up to 4 times in the same day. It doesn't matter if I eat nothing but an apple I still feel guilty for having eaten it and force myself to throw it up. The only time I don't feel the need to purge is when I go on an excessive diet and only allow myself between 200 and 500 calories a day. I know I need help but I'm embarrassed to go to my doctor. I don't want to hear the bs comments - don't throw up anymore - I already know that~! I want to know if anyone has any real suggestions on how I can deal with this on my own or a "safe" feeling spot where I can go to get help where I won't feel like everyone is judging me. My personal doctor won't do. Please help. I just did it again before writing this after breaking another promise to myself that I would stop.

Answer on How do you recover from bulimia?

I don't actually know, but my sisters went through it. It comes down to your self image and/or any special issues in your past, like abuse or some other trauma. Get counseling for either or both. I know there are support groups and programs. I searched "bulimia help" and all sorts of things came up. Call your county health line and go from there.

For now, get some one to be accountable to, someone close to you, supportive or at least someone who'll want to help you out. Someone who you can call every time you get the urge to purge.

Being conscience of it is the hardest and first step so you're ahead of it already. Give yourself more credit & power. Take it on a meal by meal basis. Baby steps.

This might be the only time i'll ever suggest being a "follower. " Eat healthy like others. Stay around people when you eat, especially those you know, so you're less available to go to the bathroom. Go pee before you eat so you know ahead of time you have no reason to go to the bathroom anymore. Maybe even announce that you're going to the bathroom before you sit down to eat and then if you go again you know everyone will wonder why you're going again.

Maybe start by "allowing" yourself to eat one thing every day without purging. Like yogurt which is very healthy and has protein. Or maybe Quinoa which is like one of the supreme grains with tons of protein and other stuff. Then after you've gotten through a couple days, maybe a week, add another item to your "allowed" list. Make sure you research the item well so that you know it's the most nutritious for you. Not eating much of anything is quite disastrous for your body so make the item(s) count! Plus doing LOTS of research for next week's new "allowed" item will prepare and convince your brain in the process and you'll be much more accepting of the new item rather than just cold turkey adding something random. Walnuts and avocado have lots of protein and are brain foods too!

You know, you should get the book called "Super Baby Food" because it teaches how to feed babies in the most natural and nutritious way possible. You could work yourself up to eating the Super Porridge meal! And actually it would be great for your stomache and body for you to blend your food. Your body, well everyone's, is able to better digest and absorb all the nutrients possible when food is ground up as much as possible (ideally by chewing something like 70 times per bite...ya right!!) Anyways, really. I think that would be perfect for you. It uses the ice cube method. You could start by "allowing" yourself a cube of the "allowed" food(s) and work up to 2 cubes, then 3 and so on. Seriously. Get the book. I got my at B&N for $20 but you can get it anywhere. They even sell used there online. I'd give you mine only I still use it a lot. Oh and it has like half the book with recipes and nutritional info on almost everything!

Do this book and get counseling. Search yourself. You could have an old issue "haunting" you. Recovering for 2 years and going back down sounds like there's something in you that's not at peace. Of course it could be like AA where they're alcoholics for life and they gotta keep in check forever...?

YOU CAN OVERCOME AND SURVIVE THIS! I may not have had this problem but I am a sexual abuse (2 yrs by my uncle ages 7-9) survivor. I made a decision one day (when I was 16) that I was tired of it ruling my life and put everything of my self to overcome and beat it. It took me about a 2 years to get over the hardest parts and another 5 years to finally get to where I am today. I'm not 100 percent, maybe that's not possible. I have 3 daughters and know it's going to haunt me, it already has. My girls are gorgeous and I can't help but to mildly question, in my head, everyone around them, especially men. I have to control my thoughts when they come up or I'll literally go crazy. I have to think that I can damage every relationship out there as well as traumatize my kids for something that hasn't happened. I just have to control my thoughts and also distract my mind and live in the moment. Focus on my kids and what they are doing and how wonderful they are and what my job is, in so many aspects. You have to do the same...control your thoughts and emotions. Keep your mind busy, even your actual self, busy, so that when the urge comes up you can be too busy to stop and go do that.

Did you know that I've read several times about how what you think about, good or bad, is the focus your mind has and goes to that thought, regardless of good or bad, because it can't distinguish, it just goes to what you keep repeating in your head. It was proven in a race car. The guy was losing control and was experienced enough to not crash but since he kept thinking of not hitting that wall, that's exactly where he crashed! Maybe you can have a default thought. As soon as the thought comes into your mind you switch channels and force yourself to think of something else. Maybe you