This morning I received an e-mail from C at Breaking Free - I need to escape this food prison. What she wrote touched me because I think more people are affected by Binge Eating as opposed to Over Eating than anyone realizes.
Without further adieu:
When people talk about how they became overweight or obese, you mostly hear about the "overeaters". There are so many of the same stories - "I mostly eat healthy I just eat too much" or "I eat healthy during the day but I fall down at dinner" or "I just cant help having a donut at 3pm".These are the stories that I listen to and want to cry. IF ONLY I could be like them. If only I had to simply be conscious of overeating that "one treat" or at that one time of day.
My life, sadly, is the life of a binge eater. You see, when I binge, I eat and eat and eat. But not just for one day. Not just for one week. In fact, from the time I moved out of home at 18 I binge-ate every day of my life for about 6 years. Whilst I studied, I spent everything I could on food. It was all consuming. My relationships werent great, its hard to sustain anything true when you live a life of shame and constant thoughts of food.
I didn’t eat a healthy meal. Every single food choice was a method of punishment. Hatred for myself, every single day. Do you know how lonely it is, to have your every moment determined by thoughts of how to get something else to eat? There arent any words.
One day I snapped and changed. I cant explain why, there was no light bulb moment, there was no great motivation. Maybe it was an act from above, I really cant tell. But I started a new lifestyle, and in 9 months I lost almost all of the 60kg I had piled on that I certainly didn’t need.
Unfortunately for binge eating suffers this disease isnt something you just get over overnight. I am coming out of a "food coma" once again now. A period of about a month where I have hidden my problem even from people who know about it, the shame is still so bad that I pretend it isnt as bad as it is. I pretend I can control it. I pretend I don’t have a black hole stomach in which I can stuff 8 full meals and over 20,000 calories a day without vomiting. I havent focussed on my studies and my marks have slipped. I chose, for another month, to put food above everything else in my life. This is why I wish I could just have an "overeating" problem. Because maybe that might only haunt me for that vulnerable moment during the day. Bingeing is all encompassing, 24/7. P.A.I.N.
I don’t know how I am going to get out of this mess, forever, and really truly beat this disease, but I do know that I am determined to. After all these years I know the triggers, I know the signs that point to the downward slope, and I am going to try, again, to beat this. I keep failing but I sure as hell keep going.
C, You ARE NOT alone. I've been there OFTEN and I know so many people in blogger land AND real life who struggle with the same P.A.I.N you write about every.single.day. The hand to mouth coma of endless emotional feeding. Whether it be to medicate, punish, celebrate or mourn. It is ever present in my life and I believe it always will be. I will, you will and probably most other binge eaters will have to always make the conscious effort NOT to binge. But in making that effort we will grow stronger. Our weak moments will remind us the PAIN of mindless gluttony; physically, mentally and emotionally. It is so much more taxing to eat ourselves to death than to say no. ((HUGS)) C and all other binge eaters out there. We can do it, stopping one binge episode at a time and getting to our healthy place mentally and physically so we can live happy and satisfying lives (without the guilt of the crap food, without the crap food itself and the mass of extra pounds that come with it)
To my readers - if you can find some time to go on over to C's blog and support her in her efforts I am certain she (and surely I) would appreciate it.