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When Your Eating Disorder Has Taken Control

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My eating disorder is twisting and turning himself into my being. He is a sickness. I try to eradicate him, but he is like a leech, sucking out my life-blood. If I don’t fight him, who will? An eating disorder is not just anorexia or bulimia. He’s hatred, loathing and harm. I am not safe when I am with him. I am not alone.

I am haunted.

He’s hissing and screaming in pain. When I’m surrounded by this, I cave. I put a band-aid on his wounds, and tell him I will take care of him. I take my focus off of me, and my hurts and wants. Suddenly it’s all about him. There’s no room for my thoughts or feelings, barely any room for those who love me. His howls drown out the important parts of my life, as he tries to scare away those who care about me. The panic he instills in me. The rules and regulations he says I must live by “or else.” That is fear and anxiety. My eating disorder and I feel like one and the same. I am him. He is me. Or is he? 

I catch a glimpse of me. The real me. I almost don’t recognize her.

Who am I? What am I? I no longer know. He’s taken me, like an abductor. He has padlocked and chained me up. I live in the filth of my own lies and fear. I am so hungry, starving. Because of him. Even when I do escape, I don’t know how to properly take care of myself. Everything is foreign to me. So much has changed… he has taught me all I now know. I have forgotten my life before. Who am I? What am I? Am I him? Is he me? 

He steals my hope and joy, taking it all for himself. Should I call this self-sabotage?

I am not my eating disorder. Please tell me I’m not that monster. He gave up for a while, but I can feel his grip tightening on my heart like handcuffs. Please, no. Please. For so long he was my only comfort and companion. I hated him, but what choice did he give me? He became my savior. He told me lies I believed, he hands them out like candy. Tasty little bites and morsels that melt on my tongue like snow.

My heart hurts. My very being wants to disappear. I have taught him the best punishments, and in turn he has taught me how to implement them.

I know people are out there looking for me. Isn’t that how it always goes? A missing girl, taken suddenly. Leads and hints to her whereabouts. Will she ever be found, and if so will she ever be the same? I know about the posters and the reward. I bet my picture is being broadcast on all of the websites and TV stations. I want to be free, you have to believe me. I have to believe me. I’m still here.

I’m still here. 

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.

Originally published: April 11, 2016
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