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If No One Knows You Recovered does it even happen?

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Hi, I guess I'll just introduce myself. I'm 18 years old, just finished my first year of college today Smile and I first developed eating disorder behaviors five years ago, which soon progressed into anorexia. No one knew the entire time I was sick because I hid my behaviors, and my parents didn't care even though they found my appetite suppressant and caffeine pills on multiple occassions. I basically lived out most if not all of high school with anorexia, which started out with compulsive exercising and finally into not eating at all and purging whatever I ate.It was too late by the time I realized I had a problem.
In grade 12 everything caved in. I lost my best friend, and just this December my long term boyfriend and I split up because at the time I thought I was protecting him from finding out about things and I didn't want him to be "contaminated" by me. Also in Grade 12 I became severely depressed. I didn't realize but I was sleeping a lot and didn't have any interest in friends or hobbies or school. My recovery was a solo effort. I gagged and ate alone, cried and weighed alone, had supermarket freakouts and social anxiety attacks alone. But today, when I realize my immediate thoughts aren't of self-loathing, when I can honestly say I am happy to be alive, I realize how far I've come, as cheesy as it sounds. It almost makes me cry to think so many times I almost killed myself, and no one could see or notice at all. I still get depressed sometimes, and I think the eating disorder was hiding some bigger issues. I just wish when I felt so alone I would have allowed someone to be there for me. All the same problems I had before are still here and I am too, somehow. So much pain and suffering for what? Telling all my family and friends now feels like a huge mistake. My father thinks mental illnesses are for people who can't get a job and "I won't have an anorexic for a daughter. Just eat something". He said that one time as I measured 1/4 of frozen vegetables for dinner and I remembered it since. My mother is still obsessed with weight. My triggers are everywhere. I feel like it is too late to seek professional help since I am technically recovered (weight restored, fairly mentally stable and no obsessive behavior). Should I still go for it if I went through anorexia and depression and recovered alone without help?
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replied April 15th, 2013
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Hi Bumblebee94 and welcome to ehealth: No, get some help...You are still in the baby stages of recovery...I don't think I was able to say that I recovered for at least five years...Now it is near eleven....And yes, there is something in back of this happening...This is what you have to find in order to rest your mind and not let this happen again...

Parents and people do not understand the hell that we go through...This behavior comes from stress...Either punishing or filling the need for food to feed our soul...When you have someone that is obsessed with weight as both your and my Mothers were it is the trigger point in a smoking gun in our mind...We have to be thin...It's like a rule in life that was written in our mind..Then as far as the mental illness...Take a look around you...He is the one who said "I won't have an anorexic for a daughter...Just eat something"....To me that statement alone shows no understanding of life and what we face...Forget about his words...Go forward...

Try and find a group to both help you and so that you can help people...You sound like a leader...Only please stay in contact with people who are professionals in this illness...You, like I are technically recovered, but we both need emotional help to continue on this path in life...

Good luck...I think you are just great...Take care...

Caroline...
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replied April 17th, 2013
I may not be a doctor and maybe this won't help as I don't have much experience in the field of eating disorders but let me tell you something. You never said how much you weigh, but I'm willing to bet you aren't overweight enough to be unattractive. The world is a cruel place but there are tons of fantastic guys that would be happy to date you, that much I know for a fact. Most of my girlfriends I've had were on the heavyset side, none too overweight. Yes, a 250 pound woman is not an immediately attractive woman. But 160? 150? 140? Sure, I'll take that. In fact I prefer it. I think a woman with a little extra is very very attractive, definitely more attractive than someone who's starved herself down to her skeleton. In my opinion it's a lot more attractive to have a little extra than to have the body of an adolescent boy. I'm not saying you shouldn't try to keep your weight down, but do it for health reasons, not vanity. Eat healthy and not as much if you must, and exercise but for the love of God make sure you eat. Like I said there are plenty of people who would take you how you are or even 30 pounds heavier. And anyone else? Screw 'em. I'm only 120 pounds at 19 years old, you think I'm not insecure seeing a bunch of muscle men at my school? Really, if someone has a problem with the way you look, screw 'em, they don't matter one bit. You are a beautiful person Smile Just keep moving forward.

Also I would definitely suggest some counseling. The professionals know what they're talking about way better than anyone on this website does. Relax, you are perfect how you are. Smile

I hope that helped.
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replied May 4th, 2013
Thanks Smile Although my issues were more about control than weight, numbers were still important to me- my BMI was underweight or just barely met it, now its around 20. But I don't weigh myself that often anymore or care so much about seeing bones and all that. I love your attitude!I think moderation is an awesome goal and I wish you the best of luck, remember even the muscle men feel insecure sometimes.
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