There were a number of things that contributed to my ED, but the one thing I struggled with the most was expressing emotion. I hated feeling things and on days when I felt scared, alone, or trapped, my Anorexia made me believe I felt better. It helped me switch off from the outside world and after I was sexually abused it helped me channel those feelings of guilt.
After four years of living with Anorexia, I ended up in hospital. My heart nearly stopped and I had no choice. So age 17 I was admitted as an inpatient. This was one of the hardest years of my life but it saved my life. I learned to eat and more importantly, I learned how to safely feel my emotions.
There were times when I didn’t think my future was worth fighting for, but I made a list of my motivations: having children, running again, going to university and traveling. These things kept me going through the hospital and now I look back on my life with Anorexia and realize how much better life is without it. Recovery is possible! I know that Anorexia makes you think that it is your best friend, but in reality, it is truly manipulative, sucks you in and is killing you. It is okay to feel your feelings. Your answer does not always have to be “I’m fine.” Embrace those feelings and welcome them into your life with open arms.
I am a British female and sexual assault survivor.