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How I Fight My 'Eating Disorder Voice' During the Holidays


Since my eating disorder has been a part of my life for decades, I sometimes find it challenging to feel the truth in my recovery voice. Especially when my eating disorder voice has his volume up so high it drowns out all positive self-talk. So this year I’m trying something new. I took a moment this morning while the house was still quiet before the bustle of the day to spend a few moments acknowledging some of the thoughts and questions I find myself already contemplating in the weeks before Christmas. While my eating disorder voice is saying one thing, my recovery voice has some thoughts of its own.

You can’t enjoy hot cocoa. You’re just drinking calories and fat.

“It’s Christmas, and baby it’s cold outside! Enjoy a warm cup of cup of cocoa.”

Don’t you dare think about enjoying a roll with dinner. You don’t need bread.

“Starches are an important part of balanced nutrition. It’s good for you to have a roll with dinner. “

Make all the delicious desserts you want, but they’re only for others to enjoy.

“Just as everyone else is enjoying the treats you made, you deserve to enjoy them as well.”

If you don’t workout hard every day you might as well not even eat.

“You may not have an opportunity to work out every day, and that’s OK. However, you must eat every day in order to stay strong and build muscle for when you do have time to workout.”

Everybody at the table knows I have an eating disorder and is watching me.

“Everybody at the table are family and friends who love and support you in your recovery. If they are watching you eat it’s because they are proud of the progress you’ve made and continue to make each day.”

Sometimes putting your eating disorder voice to paper really allows your recovery voice to not only appropriately respond, but take a little bit of power out of the eating disorder’s voice. It also allows me to have a proper plan with recovery-based answers in place. If you find yourself struggling this holiday season with your eating disorder, try to be still and remember it’s one day, one hour, one moment and one meal at a time. Remember to breathe, ask for support if needed and don’t give up. Your recovery is worth it. You are worth it.

If you or someone you know is struggling with an eating disorder, you can call the National Eating Disorders Association Helpline at 1-800-931-2237.

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