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Old 06-13-2005, 08:27 AM   #1
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 62
PurpleCat2 HB User
Just been diagnosed with 'atypical' anorexia - what does that mean?

Hey gyes
For those of you who don't know me I've been trying to recover from bulimia for the past 6 months. I feel I've been doing well in that I haven't binged in a long time, but my eating routine is quite controlled and 'restrictive' and I've lost some weight. It was my third appointment at the eating disorders unit, and they were reviewing my assessment and said they'd diagnosed me with 'atypical' anorexia. Does anyone have this too, or know what it means? I don't have a lot of the anorexic tendancies so I wasn't expecting this, I thought I was just recovering bulimic... I know it's all just words but it's a bit confusing...
"Let your heart guide you. It whispers so listen carefully."

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Old 06-13-2005, 10:21 AM   #2
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 67
secrets_07 HB User
Re: Just been diagnosed with 'atypical' anorexia - what does that mean?

I'm surprised they didn't explain it to you. Did you ask about it? I'm curious now too, so I'll check it out.

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Old 06-13-2005, 02:52 PM   #3
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 59
amy12345 HB User
Re: Just been diagnosed with 'atypical' anorexia - what does that mean?

Hi, I tried looking up 'atypical anorexia' on the internet, but really couldn't find many good links. If you learn more about it, can you post back and let us know?

I know I have big issues with eating but I haven't been diagnosed by a doctor w/ an eating disorder. I am a little underweight, eat very strictly controlled amounts (I use cup measures to be sure I never go above a cup serving) and my eating has become very ritualized. Eating out at a restaurant or in front of other people has become hard.

I'd love to hear any more info if you have it. Good work on your long recovery from bulimia!!

Old 06-13-2005, 04:16 PM   #4
Senior Member
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 153
tired and angry HB User
Re: Just been diagnosed with 'atypical' anorexia - what does that mean?

I think it means that ur anorexic but with one or more of the "typical" criteria missing. I havnt had my assesment with the specialist yet. Could u tell me what the procedure usually is once uv been referred??


Old 06-14-2005, 01:53 AM   #5
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 62
PurpleCat2 HB User
Re: Just been diagnosed with 'atypical' anorexia - what does that mean?

Thanks for your replies guys
I looked it up, and I think you are right Suzanne, it means I 'fit' in some of the anorexic criteria, but not all (for instance, with me, I am still menstruating). It was a quite strange 'diagnoses' for me though, because I've just been trying to recover from my bulimia and stop the binging/purging cycle. But to achieve this I have been following a meal plan, and the only foods I am comfortable with eating are very low in fat and sugar. This means that weight loss was a consequence, rather than the ultimate aim, although I cannot deny I was very satisfied this was happening . And I am now terified of gaining weight !
Amy, I can completely empathise! The ritualized eating you describe is exactly what I do. I am very careful with the quantities, and obviously types of food I eat, also at what time I eat, and I have to eat extremely slowly (usually my meals last 45 mins and then I stay sat for an extra 15mins to help diggest). I cannot really go to other people's houses or restaurants, because I feel out of control if I'm not the one cooking the food.
Are you from the UK Suzanne? Because I am, but I guess procedures vary depending on the country... It took about 5 months from the time I was refered to my first appointment with the NHS eating disorders unit! Fortunately in that time, I have been getting loads of support from my sister and a couple of friends, self help books, and Overeaters Anonymous (the best support I've ever come accross, I thoroughly recommend them!). The first appointment I found really stressful, and I would suggest if you have someone close supporting you to go along with you. It involved 3 hours of intense questioning; it was very draining! The worst part for me was being weighed... In my next appointment, they weighed me again and were comparing the weights, and I found that extremely triggering and unhelpful. When I went for my third appointment my sis came with me, so I felt less nervous, and I voiced how triggering it had been and how it had really messed up my mind and set me back in my recovery, and told them I didn't want to be weighed again! Fortunately, because I am 'atypical' anorexic, I think they don't have to monitor my weight/eating too closely so they didn't push it (I'm only a little underweight). So they have put me on a waiting list for 1 to 1 therapy to explore why I need so many ritual and control over my eating etc. I think this will be really helpful, so I'm grateful, but I must say my main support still comes from outside the NHS, and without that I don't know where I'd be right now!
"Let your heart guide you. It whispers so listen carefully."

Old 06-14-2005, 06:14 AM   #6
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: SK, Canada
Posts: 1,232
SammyT HB User
Re: Just been diagnosed with 'atypical' anorexia - what does that mean?

hey purplecat!! im so glad u are in recovery, im so proud! i am myself and i honestly think im like 90% better. i can eat nething really...except for sweets and treats, fast food, and deep fried foods. either than that its a go! i think im orthorxic now, cuz one treat or whatever ill spazz...i eat regularly, excercise regularly, but yah...i started out the same way as u...with low sugar and fat foods, but once u get going, u'lll start to become more comfortable with urself and foods and ull increase the fats and sugars. u wont be near as scared to gain weight, and ull start to look like a beauty again. hehe it was so weird, i saw a pic of me back in september., i looked HORRIBLE and i thought i looked good.."sigh". what was i thinking? well that was at my low point at 80 lbs (5'2, 14 yrs old), now i range from between 105- 110. i still wanna gain more weight but im working on muscle. i have never felt more better about myself, my energy is up, my selfesteem is up, i can now hang out with my friends! and once u get going, u will 2!

stay strong and keep it up...the ending is so incredibly worth it

dont let nething bad trigger u, keep ur head up, and go with ur heart.

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