Coping with body changes: Hi can anyone... - Talk ED (eating d...

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Coping with body changes

Caroline74 profile image

Hi can anyone help please. I'm recovering from anorexia binge purge subtype. I was bmi 15 but after day treatment and inpatient and amazing private ED therapist I have steadily increased to bmi 16.6. As a result the crazy crisis of self harm and overdose and binge vomit alcohol has stopped so now I am solely focused on getting rid of anorexia once and for all (its been with me for 25 years ). I am currently having intense outpatient private treatment and my therapists are wonderful but I keep going round and round in circles and really struggle to keep to my meal and exercise plan. My weight had been around 46.5 for about 4 months but a month ago it jumped up to 47.4 and I just couldn't cope so I've been restricting ever since and last week 46.9 and hoping today it's lower. I cannot cope with letting go of anorexia for 2 reasons 1) who am I without it and 2) HOW to cope with a bigger body. It's already hard enough but my therapist wants me to get to bmi 19!! I feel like I will look like a chunky elephant and I want to be tiny and slight and light. Already I feel heavy and uncomfortable and my biggest problem which seems to be an unusual one is coping with breasts. I have always hated my breasts. Before anorexia I was 34D. Anorexia made me a 30B. I'm now 32C and I hate hate hate hate it. But I want to recover from anorexia but then I have to learn to accept having bigger breasts. Please can anyone help as I'm so unhappy.

Thank you

10 Replies

^ I just found this blog post and thought it may be helpful to you. Just like this post points out, your eating disorder has convinced you that being a healthy weight is something that is 'bad' and scary. This is entirely untrue and you will find once you have settled at your natural healthy weight that you feel much more energised/ stronger/ better able to function, and it is actually much less scary than you percieve it to be. I also was uncomfortable with puberty kicking in/ giving me curves. I have found that because I spent so much time focussing on my body and my illness, I ignored the other things in my life that made me happy. This meant that my perception of myself and my illness were magnified and took up way more energy than all the other things, which seems the same for you. If you try to put more energy into work/ family/ friends/ hobbies then you may be able to reduce how much you put into your illness, which will reduce how much importance you put on your appearence. It would also be beneficial to investigate with a therapist why you want to be 'slight and light', why you think you cannot be this at a healthy weight, and why it is so important to you. What do you think this will bring to your life? You have had this illness for a long time so presumably you know that no matter how low your weight drops your illness will never be satisfied. Is it really YOUR goal to be slight, or is it the disorder? Try to think about the bigger picture and how you can do meaningful things in your life to be happy, and recognise that it is highly unlikely that you can do all those things with your illness dominating. I know from experience that it is easier said than done, but your life will be put on hold for the sake of persuing thinness. Is that really what you want, or whay the illness wants? I am only speaking as a recovered anorexic so I cannot give a professional opinio, but I hope that you can address some of this with your team and that you manage to find the motivation to recover for good :)

I know a BMI of 19 sounds scary - but even that is the low side of healthy. I know from experience how hard it is to accept weight gain - your ED voice is so loud and is trying to hold you in its grip all the time. I made the decision to stick to my meal plan come what may - also cutting back on exercise - I had it written out each day and ticked off as I worked my way down (also trying to keep to the approx. times I had against each meal/snack) - whilst scary - I did get a sense of control back - and gradually my plan became the norm - and I actually found I was quite pleased when I had gained some weight - a sense of achievement. Its about turning your head 180 degrees which I know is hard - keep talking to your therapist - maybe approach ABC for a befriender - don't bottle feelings up - talk about them - always remember you have an illness - and it needs treatment - unfortunately taking the medicine - food - is the "fear" factor - but perhaps seeing it as medicine might help. I do know how you feel - I struggle as you do on bad days - but its focussing on being able to do the things I want to do in the future - which need me to be at a sensible BMI - that keeps me going. You're in my prayers.

I was like you for a long long time and it is so demoralising. The thing about anorexia is that it saps you of everything so that you feel you are nothing without it. I have gone from a bmi of around where yours was to bmi 19.5 and if my body wants to be more I will try my best to let it be more. You are still trapped in an anorexic mindset at the bmi you are now. I don't know if I'm allowed to post it here but I've written a lot about the recovery process on my blog so if you want details if it will be helpful send me a message. You can do it though. Don't let it take any more from you xx

Thank you for your helpful commenth. Yes please I'd love to read your blog x

Hi, yes of course it's :)

Katkulak profile image
Katkulak in reply to Smileitsok

Can I also get your blog? I’m interested in reading it too.

Hi, yes of course it's x

I know this post is a bit older but I also just wanted to say that I really struggle with having big boobs at a healthy weight; they make me feel so fat and overweight even though I know logically I am on the naturally slim side and most women would love to have big boobs! At a healthy weight I am also a DD cup but my ED puts me into a B and it is one of the things I dread about getting healthier. So yeah, you have a pal in that department!

Hi openmindmh, firstly I am so sorry that you too have the same problem as me but secondly thank you so much for replying - it is a huge comfort to know that I'm not alone in this department. It seems most people want boobs whereas I hate them and like you they make me feel fat and much bigger than I actually am. When I very first lost weight and discovered that my boobs finally got smaller I was SO thrilled so now trying to accept if I want recovery from anorexia I not only have to gain weight but accept my boobs could be a D or DD is very upsetting. Thank you for identifying with me. Good luck with your battle . Take care xx

I know the body changes are hard to cope with. Going from 97 pounds at 5ft. 4in. myself. The weight has to go somewhere when it is gained. It will all even out. You will get back the beautiful healthy look you once had. Keep eating. Once you get weight on you will feel comfortable with it. It took me a while to adjust to the new look as well. It is the same look I had before my illness. Just a lot older look. LOL! Remember I was 14 when Anorexia took me down that horrible path. I am now 56. The looks of mine now, I LOVE.