How Can It Be Stopped?

I know being bulimic isn't glamorous or sexy or even helpful.  How can being skinny and having heart and health issues be anything but?  I have been bulimic for 11 years and I know that it is not something I would want anyone else to deal with.  But, the fact remains that there are a whole bunch of us out there.   I started when I was 14 because I thought that being 5'5 and 110 lbs was over weight. Why you might ask?   I have no intelligent answer for that.  All I know is that if I could start all over, I would never have started at all.  I never told anyone about my condition because of course I didn't want all the ridicule and the "Why don't you just stop?", and "You need help!" talk.   Finally after 11 years, I got married and my husband was the first to catch on.  He is the wrong place, wrong time kind if you know what I mean.  I was hiding my bulimia and he was Sherlock Holmes.  Don't really know how he knew or why he thought to investigate that I was sick.  I never purged when he was around, always covered my tracks, and kept a weight that didn't look skeleton like at all.  Not even my friends or my family thought anything was out of the ordinary. Even my doctor had no clue.  But Mr. Sherlock sure found out quickly.  Only after we were married for 7 months did he figure it out.  Wow.  Was I really that bad at hiding it even after doing it for 11 years??  Apparently so.  I got all the riff from him that I tried to avoid from everyone else.  He tried the...."Why don't you just  stop doing it?" and "that's not sexy"  (as if I thought that gagging and puking into a toilet was sexy!!)  He even threatened to tell my dad.  I know, I AM 27 after all, but he knew the way my dad thinks of me and highly respects me and is very proud of me, so he figured that would make me stop.  I guess he figured that wouldn't work after I threatened divorce if he told my father.  Its funny how people who don't have an eating disorder can just turn their nose up at you and think that its just soooo easy to not have this issue.  Just stop???  Really??  People don't understand that it isn't just sticking your finger down your throat.  It is a habit, a sickness, a reflex (to some) , a desperation, an addiction, a disorder, a mental disease, and worst of all, nearly unstoppable.  In my case, I couldn't "just stop".  I had done it for so long that every time I ate anything I automatically had to purge.  I couldn't control the urge to throw up.  Sometimes I could even think about purging enough that I would.  If you make yourself purge enough, eventually your body will not keep anything down.  Its almost as if your body learns that when food goes down, it is suppose to make it come right back up.  So I was to the point that my husband didn't want to be around me, my kids were finding other things to do because I was so sick all the time.  My body was actually starving itself.  I wasn't getting the nutrition I needed and my stomach lining was being destroyed from the stomach acid eating away at it.  My heart was weak and I was having terrible pains like a heart attack or something.  I even began getting panic attacks and fainting all the time.  I got to the point where I couldn't even keep water down anymore.  I was admitted to the hospital for dehydration and starvation.  It wasn't until I almost died that I decided it was time to do something I should have done a long time ago.  Tell my family and get some help.  I admitted myself to a hospital for people with eating disorders.  After months of psychological counseling and learning how to eat again and eat healthy, and being diagnosed with heart disease, I was out in the real world again.  Believe it or not, the hospital I was in was just like a fancy resort and a really long, well needed, vacation.  I made a lot of friends, many of which I am still very close to and talk to everyday.  I learned how to eat healthy and work out the right way and I look better than I ever have in my entire life.  Instead of just being skinny, I had a great figure, a six pack, and very tone body.  I get more compliments now than I ever did before.  I am proud of my body and have a normal and happy family life now.  If there are any women out there who need to talk.  I am more than willing.  I have been there and I am a bulimia survivor of 2 yrs and still going strong.  I couldn't be any more satisfied with myself or my life.   And my dad couldn't be more proud of me.  I am a survivor!!!!

Nunya311 Nunya311
26-30, F
3 Responses Feb 17, 2010

Hi Nunya,<br />
I read your post and I can completely relate to what you are saying. I've been bulimic for 8 years (too long) and likewise, if I could take back the moment I started, I would. But theres really no point worrying about yesterday, or tomorrow, for what we really have is today. I'm finding recovery really hard because even though I should, none of my friends know. My parents know but they really don't understand what I'm going through and they still hold high expectations of me and think I'm strong enough to just stop, like you were saying. I have a really stressful environment at home which usually leads to me bingeing. Going to work everyday and distracting myself has worked a treat. Making little positive changes, step by step has helped my recovery a lot. Quitting smoking last year, taking control of my binge drinking and big weekends out just shows I forgot how it feels to LIVE like a normal human being. I'd get my high going out getting drunk on the weekends and then my anxiety would whirl out of control and I'd be bed stuck depressed for days/weeks on end. I stopped taking laxatives a month ago - I wasn't taking them everyday but once a week, or twice to go to the toilet. My stomach is so bloated every night and its making me really tired. Its getting better though. I just need to work on my relationship with food, and like you said learn to eat like a normal person again and get rid of those NEGATIVE thoughts before and after eating. If I can quit smoking, I can quit bulimia.<br />
Just curious, how did you recover? What and when was your turning point that made you stop completely? Because i"m sure we all say we want to stop, tomorrow I'll defnitely stop, but we might survive a few days, be distracted, stay happy.. but then we give in. Thats why most of us suffer for so long, not just a year, but 10, 20. Because we are alone and like you said, we can hide it so well. In public its all to easy to put on a brave face and pretend everything is okay. I've seeked treatment before, psychiatrist, councellors, a terrible dietician and I can't find anything that is working...

Thank you for your comments and for reading my story. I hope that everyone who reads this can see that there is hope, and being skinny isn't more important than being alive.

inspiring story :)<br />
i am sorry if my comment is so long but please read it to the end .<br />
i am also bulimic in recovery , have n't purged in almost 3 months now , <br />
i just want to say that most of us bulimics don't want to quit because , they are scared of how their life will be like with out bulimia ?<br />
bulimia makes blind u can't see any one but her , hear any one but her voices, can't think about any thing but her ,<br />
i just want to say that recovery is hard , it is like the most difficult battlle i ever had , but trust me it worth it , u just can't live like this , half of ur time eating and the other half is throwing up !<br />
after i quitted bulimia , i just found out that she used to abuse my time , so much time thinking about food , binging , purging , cleaning throwing up remains , making lies why i took so long at the bath room , why i look so pale , ...<br />
another thing when u said u learnt how to eat again , yes with bulimia or EDs generally , u forget how to eat !<br />
u need to learn how to eat again , how to eat normally , eat healthy , because u forgot that all .<br />
i want to say that recovery from bulimia is not how to live without bulimia or with out throwing up , no recovery is chance for u to think about ur life from different prespective , learn from ur mistakes , great chance to change ur life in better way , in recovery u will learn many things about ur self , u r stronger than u think .<br />
u all deserve happy life with out lies , denial , secrets<br />
hugs