Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Telling ED No! - Reflections #2

I'm reading a self-help book called "Telling ED No!". It's basically a book that helps you work through your thoughts as to why you have disordered eating. I definitely do. At the end of each chapter, there are reflection questions which help you overcome your eating disorder. I am going to post those here.

You might think the rituals and behaviors of your daily life are "normal", but whose normal are they? They may look and feel normal to you, but upon reflection could they really be coming from Ed? Is he telling you to do them, is he giving you direction?

Also, what triggers your eating disorder and throws your behaviors into high gear? Is it emotional, physical, or social factors, or a combination of all three? Write down three scenarios where you find yourself turning to Ed for comfort and list the behaviors and rituals he instructs you to do.

My life seems pretty normal. My thoughts are overcome by food though. All day I'm thinking of what I can eat and when I can eat it. How much can I eat? Should I go get some ice cream? What about that bag of cereal on the refrigerator? Can I have a bowl of that? No, I should probably try to be good today. While these are completely normal thoughts going through my head 24/7, I don't believe their normal and I don't believe they are healthy. I do believe it is Ed "helping" me through my day.

A combination of a million different things throws my behaviors into high gear, I think... But in all honesty, boredom is probably the number one situation that makes me binge. The last serious binge I remember having, I ate probably 6-8 cups of cereal, two ice cream sandwiches, and a couple of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. That is an incredible amount of food and I did it because I was bored. I wasn't hungry. I was miserable afterwards. I refuse to purge. I have never been one to purge so I'm stuck with two days worth of food in my stomach until it digests. It's horrible.

My Three Scenarios:
  1. It's late at night and I'm home alone. I'm just relaxing on the couch watching television. I have already eaten dinner, but I want something sweet. "There's a whole bag of sugary sweet cereal in the kitchen. All you have to do is get up and go pour a bowl," Ed tells me. I try to stay strong and say no to Ed, but he eventually talks me into it. I grab one of our enormous cereal bowls and fill it to the rim with children's cereal... like Cap'n Crunch Berries or Lucky Charms or Cocoa Puffs or Apple Jacks... something like that... my bowls are huge and hold probably three to four cups of cereal. After I finish the cereal, Ed says, "Hey, you still have some milk in there... another half a bowl of cereal would use that milk so it won't go to waste." Sometimes I go pour another bowl and sometimes I don't, but Ed talks me into it... even when I don't need it.
  2. I've had a tough day at work. We had a lot of truck rentals and there was just a lot of stuff going on. I don't feel like doing anything... let alone cooking. Before I leave work for the day, I think of things I could eat for dinner. Ed says, "Did you hear? Dominos has half off any pizza right now. You could get a pizza for cheap." I tell Ed that I don't need to go get a pizza, I could go home and make something healthy. Ed says, "But you don't really want to clean the kitchen, cook, and then clean again... you want something easy, you know you do." I eventually cave in and order a large pizza and eat almost the whole thing by myself.
  3. It's a special occasion of some sort and I'm going out to eat at a restaurant with the rest of my family. No one else in my family really has to worry about their weight. Before we go, I google the restaurant and look up the nutrition facts and decide which meal would be the healthiest for me to eat. When I get there, my family is all excited to be eating in public. I guess I should mention that when I was in high school, the anorexic part of Ed wouldn't let me eat in public... So, eating out is special to me too as I used to not be able to do it at all... When I arrive the waitress comes to take my order. Then she asks if we're interested in appetizers. My mind says NO!, but Ed says, "Why don't you wait to see if anyone else is interested in an appetizer. It wouldn't hurt to share something." So, we decide on an appetizer and I imagine it's fattening and greasy like fried mozzarella or something... Then Ed says, "Well, Crystal, since you already blew your diet by eating the fried mozzarella, you might as well order what you really want off the menu... You know you don't want the tilapia with rice... you'd rather have the chicken covered in parmesan cheese and breading with the tortellini on the side." I end up giving into Ed and order the dish I like instead of the dish that keeps me on the diet track.

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