“Real” anorexia.

I'm feeling really sensitive and confused after trying to tackle a therapy question: what is real anorexia?

I have so many thoughts in my mind- about whether or not I have real anorexia, whether what my idea of that is right or not, whether or not I want to hold on to it. Arghhh it's all too much 😕

In simple terms, I believe anorexia is two things: thinness combined with the thoughts processes and beliefs of the ED. Sure, my thoughts aren't exactly normal, but am I thin? As ever, here I am again wanting to know. I feel obsessed with the idea of anorexia, yet to say that word aloud is a rarity for me. I find it difficult to say, because I feel almost embarrassed to even associate with me, because how could chubby, horrible me be good enough for that word?

Evidently, my mind is not feeling that great right now, but oh well. That's life…

Hope your weekends are all going well xoxo

25 thoughts on ““Real” anorexia.

  1. When it has a chance to settle my mind often retreats back into the old thoughts and unanswered questions. It’s hard, I know, when you don’t know which answer you want to the question. Yes, I would think that you’d ed is real because of the thoughts you have about yourself and the way you deal with them. You’re a dancer so you obviously eat enough to keep your energy up which likely keeps you healthy enough to keep from looking like a rail thin anorexic, however, that doesn’t really change the diagnosis at all. I know quite a few people who are anorexic and are also technically obese as far as BMI shows.

    I’ve never seen your body, of course, but if you can dance and work every day as you do while thinking you’re chubby, I suspect your ed is messing with your perceptions of yourself. But, you don’t need to prove anything to anyone….is what I’m trying to say (lol and failing miserably). Just my thoughts. Sorry for the ramble. I just dragged my narcoleptic butt out of bed and it’s 2 pm 🙃

    • Thing is, I’ve danced my whole life. I can scrape through what I have to do, but I never feel energetic. I’ve restricted for some many years and been normal weight and underweight and I’ve now lost concept of where I am. It’s so confusing and I just wish it would be straightforward to answer

      • I hear you. I wish there was an easy way to shake the perspective clear again. I’m sure you look amazing to other people and that many are jealous of your dancers body but the only voice that really counts as your own. (Hugs). Keep working at love. You’ll be okay in the end. Xox

      • I hope so. I’ve already spent a fair portion of my 23 years with this confusing condition. Ironically, even as a child I was tiny. Out of that tiny body and an intelligent mind came anorexia. People couldn’t see why when I had never in my life been big cx

  2. Ahh yes, that question. It is one reason I was so happy to find the place I go to now for treatment (php/iop). They do internal body composition and metabolic tests rather than traditional methods. They are less concerned on what a person looks like on the outside then on the inside. A person can be any size and still be severely malnutritioned.

  3. Your ‘diagnosis’ is much better than what the DSM says. If we’re plagued by those restricting thoughts about food and wrestle with our bodies I qualify the disorder. The struggle is real.

    • Even though people say I’m thin now, I don’t always see the same as them and it gets me confused. My therapist says I have anorexia,
      So therefore she must see my restriction as causing me problems

    • It can be really tricky. I was diagnosed a long time ago, and so I’m constantly assessing in my mind as to whether im bigger or smaller than that time. I often don’t the answer to that, and lately have been reliant on the fact people around me are commenting that I’m thin.
      It can definitely make it worse for you, in fact where I am in the UK, your weight can determine whether you even qualify for help AT ALL. I was offered help on two separate occasions, but due to lack of funding of the NHS, it’s all short term treatment that doesn’t get to the root of the problem

      • I had that problem. I was made to put on weight and then told I clearly didn’t have a problem at all. I lost weight again. I have now been diagnosed and have stopped weighing myself since it makes things worse, but I don’t want to end up in hospital. I think Just stabilising things is important. I hope you are ok and can manage to keep going somehow xx

      • I often wonder if it would be different now had I got better help from the start. I was a teenager, and so vulnerable to what was said to me. Unfortunately the therapist was awful, but now I’ve found somebody much much better at working with anorexia. It’s slow, but I do think I want a real life for myself xx

      • I have had several therapists, all of whom have ended up making things worse. CAMHS was a disaster and the adult services worse. They finally gave me an appointment for yet another assessment in three months, so I gave up on them. I’m actually better without since they focused me on restricting even more. I find drawing cartoons helps. But the problem is I have depression and anxiety too so they all feed eachother 😦
        I’m glad you’ve found someone good, did you have to go private?

      • I had mixed experiences with NHS- went to a really great adult service in Cambridge (when I was at dance college), but where I’m from (and where I first used the service) it was awful. My one to one therapy definitely made me worse. Those are the two experiences out of many I’ve had with the NHS services that stand out in my mind.
        Now I’m seeing someone privately, but they work on a sliding scale so I don’t pay the full fee. I also have a gp I see and I’m waiting to hear about the waiting time for another kind of therapy through NHS, so we will see
        Its such a shame that mental health treatment is so underfunded. A lot of the professionals probably want to do more for people, but they can’t because of time and money. Then of course, there are son people who just should not be in a caring job in the first place because they are no good!!!
        I take medication for anxiety and depression now, which has helped to an extent, but there’s always patches where it all feeds each other and I get into a bad place. Do you have a good relationship with your gp? I’ve found mine to be a really good support xx

      • Well my GP is nice but the service is so overrun that you can barely get a appointment! I have tried several private therapists, but one made things worse by giving me more restriction ideas and the other said she couldn’t treat my eating disorder because I was too depressed. Then I went to someone for depression, but they said the therapy wouldn’t work because of the eating disorder. So I though thanks a bunch, and now I’m pretty much dealing with it by myself. I am lucky to have supportive parents though. I’ve actually found art and now starting a blog (take a look- it’s mainly cartoons 😊) much more useful than anything else as it gives me something to live for. Mental health really needs to be talked about more, especially in young people. I’m just out of school and gap yearing and just being away from there helps as the school were more of a hindrance than a help. I didn’t find adult services great- mainly because they couldn’t decide where to send me – ED service or adult team. Also in Oxford the waits are too long! You wonder anyone makes it to the end of the waiting list. Are you still on one? Xx

      • Im going to find out how long the wait is when I go home in a few weeks and decide whether it’s worth it! I will definitely go and take a look at your blog 🙂
        Sometimes everything seems messy and it’s hard to work out the root of the problem isn’t it xx

      • Well I hope it’s not too long! Good luck. I really like your post so I’ll have a look at the earlier ones. I think recovery is a pretty slow process but it’s good to start xx

  4. Thank you for posting, this is very insightful. I have suffered from anorexia and had the exact same thoughts . Good luck on beating it! It’s a mental health problem … not focussed on weight ! Xxx

    • You’re welcome. It felt really nice to just put it all into words. My weight has varied quite a lot over the course of my anorexia, but I would say time is the factor (rather than weight) that has solidified the problem. The longer it goes on, the scarier it is to let go. Change is possible, that’s what I keep telling myself xx

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