Taking the first step - AGAIN

Having found another new and unusual way for bulimia to injure my body I finally went to see my GP this morning. (I've spasmed my jaw and/or throat apparently and it will sort itself out with few painkillers.)

Yet again I have had to go and admit defeat - this illness is not going away. Sure in the last 26 years I've found ways to live with it - sometimes we are even comfortable with each other. It is after all my coping mechanism; the thing that stands between me and the depression and anxiety which threatens to over whelm me at every opportunity. But it is getting harder and harder to ignore the damage it is doing to me and if I'm honest it hardly holds the depression/anxiety at bay these days.

You'd think it would be easy to let it go really but it isn't. It's so hard. I am so scared at the prospect of being refered on, of having to talk to someone, of having to be treated. Suppose they were successful? Suppose they made it go away? Who would I be without it? I really don't remember life without it. I was a child then, I'm a middle aged woman now. I cannot imagine life without it. Yet the thought of going on with it is equally unimaginable. I feel so torn and so alone. I can't imagine going through all this again.

13 Replies

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  • Without it you would be a strong, healthy, vibrant woman.You would be all of the best bits of you that exist while you have your disorder, but amplified 100 times. You've made the right choice in being brave and reaching out to your GP for support and even if you feel physically alone, please remember that there are thousands upon thousands of wonderful people who are suffering but still do not have the strength to ask for help. Go for it, and remember that whatever lies on the other side of recovery, however unknown it might be you will be able to have pride in yourself - because you have done it for yourself and you are worth it.

  • Hi fadedlizard

    I have been suffering with anorexia and bulimia for 30 years. I do understand your feeling and the fear of a life without ed, i have been in an ED centre since july. I am only at the beginning of my journey but please believe me it is wonderful living without symptoms. It is hard to believe but there is a wonderful world out there. You are like a princess locked in a castle by who you believe being your prince. You have the keys of the castle now just run off who you believe beeing yourrince is only a nasty monster a creepy devil who wants you to suffer. Take this opportunity dont throw it away you have a life a wonderful life waiting for you.

    Let's keep in touch

    Ludovicaxxxx

  • Thanks for your help and support.

    MayComyn I will try to hold that image of myself even though it seems unimaginable at the moment.The trouble is it has always seemed like that to me. I have had treatment in the past but it focussed largely on the physical symptoms of my illness, establishing healthy eating patterns, etc (yes, I do realize how essential this is) but I've never been able to settle to myself without the disorder so I always drift back. No matter how ill it is making me in it is still serving a purpose for me, it is still something I think I need. I have created my own monster and it is so hard to let it go.

    I was interested in your keys and monster analogy, Ludovica, as when I last had counselling I talked a lot about needing a key to release me. I think at the time I was still seeking that magic piece of knowledge that would make me go "oh so that's why I do it - I can stop now" and I couldn't t find it.( The counsellor was more interested in teaching me CBT techniques to deal with my life as it now is than in finding out how and why it all started.) I hadn't thought of it in terms of having the key already and just needing to walk out of the tower and away from the monster. I'm still not sure what that means for me in practical terms but I am exploring the thought.

    In the meantime I continue with the day to day effort of trying to believe that this time each day is taking me further away from the monster.

  • Hi everybody!

    I am new on this blog. First of all sorry for my mistakes, I am not from here.

    I need some advice. I have booked an appointment with my GP because I need help. I tried to improve by myself but its impossible.

    Besides I am living with my boyfriend and he doesnt know anything about my eating disorder. He thinks everything its ok, only that I have a strong character, sometimes mood.

    I think about talking to him about this, but Im afraid maybe he doesnt understand me.

    I am living with this disease for 11 years, but now I am feeling like a crap, just eating and vomiting.

    Should I talk with him and ask for help to my GP?

    Thank you :)

  • Hi Meryan,

    I can understand how lonely and isolated you must be feeling at the moment. The efforts we have to go to to hide our illness from the people around us is almost as stressful as the illness it's self.

    While I know it is possible to live closely with people and hide your illness it doesn't sound like you want to do that anymore. Would it help you if your boyfriend knew? Perhaps he already suspects something is wrong and it would reassure him to know what it is? Perhaps he suspects nothing but even so he loves you so surely he will want to support you? I think you do come to a point in your illness where you just want to be rid of all the secrecy as it hinders you moving forward.

    I also think it is important that you go to your GP for help. Try to be a honest as you can. I know how hard this is as I always try to play things down for the doctor but it is important he sees how much your illness is affecting your life and how low you are feeling. Persevere. Sometimes it takes a while to get your doctor to refer you for the help you need. (It's over a month since I asked to be refered and I have heard nothing from the mental health team.)

    It sounds like you are ready to begin moving forward so be strong. It is a long road but it will be worth it. Surround yourself with as much support as you can get. You'll need their strength to fall back on.

    Keep posting on this site too. We are behind you and there is a wealth of encouragement to support you. Good luck. Keep in touch.x

  • Thank you for your support!! I have the appointment with my GP next week and I want to talk, I hope not to regret later.

    This is my first blog and I am very grateful because I am not the only one suffering this desease.

    I am feelin better for two days so I tried not to vomit and I got it!!! Besides, I am planning to talk with my boyfriend...

    Have a good week!

  • Well done.

    You are doing brilliantly confronting it like this.

    Have you seen your GP yet? if so I hope it went well, if your appointment is still to come I hope it goes well for you. Try to be as honest as you can. And determined, insist they offer you help!!

    Take Care,

    Let me know how you get on.x

  • Hi Fadelizard!!! I booked my appointment for next week, on the 28. Thank you for your words, I was happy to hear this from you.

    I will let you know how it is going.

    Take care you too

    :)

  • Hi again.

    I took the first step. This morning I cried a lot and finally I told my boyfriend I have a big problem and I cant sort it out by myself so Im going to need help.

    I asked him if he can imagine what it is and his answer was "no idea".

    He is coming in a while from work and it supposes we are going to talk but I am so scared he is not going to understand me.

    I want to be honest but the words cannot go out of me. Im so ashamed about saying "darling I forgot how to eat like a normal person because I have an eating disorder"

    He thinks just I am stuck in the routine.

    Sorry, now I am preparing my "speech" and I know I have to say it but I cannot avoid to tell some lies (I cannot tell I am dealing with it for almost 12 years, Im not capable to do it).

    Even my family thinks I am a happy woman who eats again properly. That is the point, Ive been living hidden for a very long time and now, I am exploding.

    I hope everything is going to be ok. I only want to see my GP on Wednesday and talk about this black hole in which one Im hurting myself.

    Hope you are ok too

    x

  • Oh Meryan,

    I really feel for you. What you're doing is so hard but I think it is the right thing to do. Be brave. Try to say everything, then there are no nasty little details that might come out later.

    I will be thinking of you this evening and praying that it all goes well.

    I think it is so difficult. When an eating disorder has gone on for such a long time (I have had mine for 26 years) we find ways to live with it, to try and minimize it's effects and to a certain extent it is a habit, a routine. It's how we live. And it is so hard to move away from that. I've had my bulimia so long a lot of friends, etc know I have it but they think it is in the past too. It seems much easier to say "I had Bulimia" than to say "Yes, but I was sick last night". It will be hard for your boyfriend to get his head round but you can reassure him you are telling him because you are now ready to get help and to move away from this illness. What you need is for him to stand beside you and to support you through this.

    You're in my thoughts.

    Let me know how you get on.x

  • Hi Fadedlizard.

    First of all... thank you for being my "virtual friend".

    Today I feel like a liar. Finally I couldnt tell the whole true. Even more, I wasnt capable to say "I have bulimia". Just I told him I have a lot of pressure and anxiety so he thinks its because this city is stressful for me.

    I will try again this week, he has the last exam on Saturday so I dont want to worry him until then. I know I will do it soon, its only difficult because I havent told anybody before, none of my partners.

    Besides, Im going to have an interview for a new job. In this one I have to deal with food and I can put on with it anymore.

    Now, Iam doing one of my huge binges and again the cycle.

    Thank you for your support one more time.

    Talk this week

  • Hi Meryan,

    You are not a liar, You've done really well.

    You have opened up the conversation. You're partner now knows that things aren't right, that you are struggling with things. This is a fantastic first step. The next conversation will be easier I'm sure.

    You sound as though there is a lot of change and stress in your life at the moment. This won't be helping you. Perhaps it is even acting as a trigger. I know I am much worse when i am under pressure as I rely on the bulimia to help me cope.I hope your interview goes well - perhaps a new job will be a positive change for you.

    Try to be as honest as you can when you see the doctor this week. Hopefully this will open up a path of treatment for you.

    Thank you for all your support too. I haven't had a good week, binging and vomiting a lot in the evenings. I'm so frustrated that I still haven't had my referal come through. I think I will have to be brave enough to go back to the doctor and ask him what is going on.

    It has been good to have you to chat to too.

    Keep in touch.x

  • Hope you are going to have a better week as well.

    Take care

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