Tuesday, November 11, 2008

My Unnamed Eating Disorder

The Great Scale Experiment is, I'm sad to say, not going well.

The blasted thing has made itself comfy on my bathroom floor once again. I keep trying to ignore it, at least, but it practically shouts at me to step on it every day.

Like I predicted, my vacation from weighing (and dieting) has left me several pounds heavier. I am not a happy girl.

I watched Ruby Sunday night. She is 474 pounds, morbidly obese and enchantingly lovely. She is rightfully concerned about her health, and with the help of a personal trainer, an internist, an obesity specialist, a nutritionist, her friends and family, and millions of Style Network viewers, she's setting out to get in shape.

No audience is watching my struggles, and next to Ruby's, they seem tiny, almost nonexistent. I am overweight, but nowhere near as much as she is. I would be thrilled to be just 10 or 15 pounds lighter. I don't need to lose over 300 pounds, like she does, but I feel I am have an equally difficult battle in my life.

Ruby says she is addicted to food, and is simply unable to stop eating. I don't feel that way about food -- I feel that way about dieting, about weight obsession.

Even though I look "normal", I feel fat and unattractive. I judge myself my what I've eaten and what the scale says. I feel my happiness is dependent on which jeans I can fit into, not on the many, many blessings in my life.

Something is wrong with me.

Ruby also has a psychiatrist on her team. I'm wondering if I, too, might benefit from therapy focusing on my weight/dieting/body image issues.

I know resources are available for those suffering from anorexia and obesity. They wear their disorders for all to see. They are so thin or so fat that the world takes notice and acknowledges their pain. There are many of us who suffer from an equally debilitating challenge -- we hate our own bodies and live daily with obsessions, confusion, and distress. Is there hope for us, too?

I don't think a TV show will be made anytime soon about women like us, the kind who try to exercise and eat right, but will never measure up to the standards we have set for ourselves. I suppose it would be a very boring show. The same episode would air day after day, month after month, year after year. If would feature an attractive woman, slightly overweight, hopping on and off the scale, trying every diet that comes along.

I want to change the channel, don't you?


*Mia Jude* said...

Cathy- You CAN get help for your eating issues. Believe it or not..you do have some type of eating disorder. Your situation sounds very much like mine, and I have been going to therapy and a dietitian (even though I am studying to be a dietitian myself!) and they do help. But what I have learned from therapy, is that they CANNOT cure you. You have to cure you. For the longest time I was looking for something on the outside to cure me..the next hottest diet pill, or exercise machine, or diet food, and even "fasting, and giving up food to God", that last one just made me feel so much worse about myself..because when I couldn't even give up my obsession to God, I felt so worthless and that prayer is pointless (again, I thought prayer would cure me). So if you feel you need therapy..i would definitely try it out. Good Luck and stay strong!

Kate Wicker said...

Nothing is wrong with YOU. It's our way of thinking that hurts us. I've also heard of something called "scale sickness." It refers to people who are addicted to weighing themselves. I know I've fallen prey to this "disease" before even when I was supposed to be "recovered" from my clinical eating disorder.

Hang in there, my friend. You are beautiful inside and out, and the scale doesn't know squat.

My prayers are with you...

Cathy Adamkiewicz said...

Thanks for the encouragement!