Okay, this is my first post on here so please excuse any ridiculousness!
I am a 19 (almost 20) year old college student who has struggled with multiple eating disorders and body image issues since 4th grade. Over the spring/summer I was "together" enough to maintain my weight. When I got back to school I freaked out and lost <weight and gained again>. I'm in total freak out mode and I just don't know what to do. My bingeing has never been this bad in my life. <removed>.
Any advice on how to break the cycle? I getting fat, more depressed, and broke. I feel like I will be stuck like this forever.
Last edited by mod-anon; 11-24-2008 at 12:13 PM.
Reason: edited triggering words
Hi, I know how you feel, hang in there. I've had bulimia for many years myself and know how hard it is, the ups and downs with the weight can be really hard. What support system do you have? Maybe you could find a support group in your area.
Hey, nice to have you here mkod. I too am a college student (21 yrs old) who has experienced various kinds of eating disorders/ difficulties since about 11 yrs old. It sounds to me that maybe the stress of being at college again is contributing to things swinging a bit out of control. From my experience, bingeing/purging can be a response to stress in your life, and let's face it, college can be very stressful!! What else do you do to release stress? What do you do for down time? I feel for you, I really do, cos it SUX being in this position. But hang in there because you CAN break the cycle. It may take a bit of trial-and-error, but with the right support and advice YOU CAN do it. Is there a college counsellor you may be able to talk to? What about eating disorder specialists/organisation in your area?
Let me know how you get on!
Other than school, for relaxing I work out, I really like reading, and Im in an animal rights group. There is a support group I know of that I was going to start going to but I got kinda freaked out and wimped out of going to it. Its really hard at school because I have a friend back home who is basically my whole support system but with being hundreds of miles apart and both extremely busy it is hard to find time for the two of us to actually talk outside of quick 2 minute conversations. It makes me just feel very alone.
Thats awesome you have a couple of activities you can do to deal with stress apart from the ED! And an animal rights group? Go you! Whats that like? I know what you mean about the support group. I've often been about to start one, then chickened out last minute. There are none on in my area at the moment, but they all start up again around Febuary so I am planning on joining a couple then. I am in therapy, and it is great, but I think there is something really beneficial about being in a support group and sharing your ED with other people in simiaar situations, because having an ED can be VERY lonely, and sometimes it feels like you are the only person in the world who struggles!
When did you start college? And how do you find it? Maybe you want a break before you start the next semester or is that not an option?
Thanks for the advice!
I LOVE my animal rights group. I actually did some outreach stuff last night. People always respond differently, some people actually act scared, like Im gonna kill them for eating animals or something stupid! Its also pretty much the only thing I do that makes me feel connected to the world.
As for college, class is stressful, but its pretty fun. I love all my friends and roomates, but for the most part they know pretty much nothing about my ED, which is difficult.
What do you think about therapy? My primary care physician wanted me to start but I don't have the money bc my insurance wont pay for everything :[
Hey! Ha, that's funny! People are probably not quite sure what to expect. I used to work for Greenpeace and do some volunteer work for WSPA so I too know first hand the less-than-enthusiastic reactions you can get from people when trying to inform them of things going on in the world. I think that maybe some people prefer to remain oblivious, instead of changing their habits! I hear ya about it being difficult that your friends don't know anything about the ED. Especially seeing you are living with roommates! Gosh, that must get really difficult to hide! What do you think they would say if they knew? I'm fortunate enough to still live with my mum, who knows everything, and my friends have just generally accepted that I'm "sick" a lot.
Personally, I totally recommend therapy. Just a word of advice though - don't necessarily expect to find the first person you go to is the right one. I had one or two sessions with NUMEROUS counsellors before I found the one I go to now, but it was worth it because she is great. So don't be disheartened because there will be someone who understands EXACTLY what you are going through, and knows what to do to help. I got a directory of psychologists who specialise in eating disorders from an eating difficulties organisation in my area, so that narrowed down my search considerably. Do you have somewhere like that you can go to?
And about the money... hmm that is a problem... some therapists offer a sliding scale so if you are financially struggling they can lower the cost. Or your parents? Would they help you out at all?
Sorry for the long reply, I got a bit carried away
I have no idea what my roomates would do if they knew, I'm just glad they don't! Luckily, I have my own room so they helps a lot with privacy.
Wow, it would be excellent if I could find a therapist who offered a sliding scale, there's go to be one in a city full of students, right?
Thanks so much for all your advice!!
How have you been doin'?
Yeah, I'm sure there would be. In most Univeristies there are uni counsellors as well. I didn't find mine too helpful, but it's worth a try! And it usually costs next to nothing. I'm doing pretty good really. It's summer in NZ at the mo, and that ALWAYS lifts my spirits. I LOVE the sunshine
Still got issues and behaviours I gotta overcome, but at I'm really just focusing on the positive as much as possible, and trying to be forgiving when I stuff up.
It's funny, at times my mind is not consumed by ED thoughts, or feeling crap, and it's like "wow, what now?" I don't actually know what to do or think to fill in that space! I'll find something though I am sure
Anyways, I hope you have a happy weekend (is it the weekend in US?) and let me know how you are going.
oh you are so lucky it is summertime! I hate winter, Im acutally thinking of moving somewhere south or west of where I am now because I despise this horrid season lol!
And, that is awesome that you are doing better! Congrats on moments free from ED--how liberating :] Keep it up, I'm sure you'll find something awesome to fill the space!
Its been an interesting night, and a stressful day. Wwish me luck and have a good one.
I just thought I'd check in and see how it's all going. How are ya? You got things sorted from the stressful day you had, or are things still a bit shaky? You thinking of moving? That could be exciting!! Would you move college as well, or just commute? I don't know much about the States, I've only been to LA to visit when I was 5, so you'll have to tell me what it's like. It's raining over where you are I assume? Whats the plan for xmas - are you gonna be with your family? Does your family know about the ED? Hope all is well, hear from ya soon
Im acutally doing slightly better, not great but anymeans, but better all the same. And infact, I am thinking about moving, although I dont know if I'll have the money quite yet. Right now its just so cold here and its only gonna get coulder. I went outside this morning and it was 18 degrees (F) and I thought how warm in was!! Ridiculous! But on the brightside, I am co-hosting a holiday party tonight. Im trying to be more social so I invited a bunch of people over to get drunk and have some fun.
How are things going for you? Enjoying the summer sun?
Hey that's awesome! The party sounds like fun, and good on you for organising it. I went out last night and it was awesome to socialise and just forget everything for a little while. Or rather a long while, we didn't get home til about 6am You'll have to let me know how it went.
Moving could be fun - a new environment, new people, a new place to get to know. Would you move somewhere where you already know some people or just start from scratch? Yeah, cold weather can be pretty depressing. It doesn't bother some people but I know that for me, I am much more upbeat in good weather. It kind of affects your lifestyle really because you can do so many more outdoor things in the sunshine.
Any more thoughts on therapy/ telling someone about the ED?
I'd say welcome, but I'm new to this forum too, and glad I found it. Have you had any major changes that might have caused you to start feeling this way? Is this your first semester/trimester at college? That could have a lot to do with it. This too shall pass, not today, not tomorrow, but it will and when it does, you'll feel so much better. Do you have a list of things to do to distract you when urges hit? I have one like go for a walk, get online and type, just things I can do to stay busy so that I don't b/p and so that I completely stop thinking about it, most of the time, obviously it doesn't always work, but give it a try, if you can, just like your animal lovers club, that is awesome, but it can't take up all of your free time, when you start to worry or freak out, right?
I hope that helps a little and I'm here if you like to talk.
Wow, I haven't been on here in a bit!
My party went really well, it was the most normal and social I have felt in a long time, and it was great to see my friends that I can hardly hang out with anymore. That made me happier than I expected and it was nice to have atleast a few hours where I didn't feel consumed with the ED and I could relax.
I don't know what happened, maybe it's being busy with finals and completely broke but I've been better. I'm extremely stressed but I'm not acting on it nearly as poorly as I very well know I could be. It's pretty nice.
And, Bleeding Love--nice name by the way, I like it! And, I don't know if there was one event really that triggered my ED, maybe it was just a combination of life stressors and my naturally anxious-ness. I don't know, but I have suffered from a range of disordered eating habits since about fourth grade (I'm now a sophomore in college!) But fourth grade is the first time I remember realizing I was fat, I would stand on the edge of the bathtub so I could see my butt in the mirror....I think a lot of it started because I was starting to grow up and my mother was not around much, and when she was she didn't seem to recognize how senstitive and unhappy I was. The next time I think I had a bad episode is when my dad, sister, and I moved to where my mother had moved, this was the beginning of 6th grade and I didn't make the transition very well. Then, again in highschool, where I switched schools, again, also in highschool when I was sexually assaulted, when I started college, and then now, for whatever reason. Sorry that was really long. But, I guess thats quick-version of my life with ED and so on.
Hope all is well with everyone