Life without Anorexia

My motto is
'Dont let the sadness of your past & the fear of your future ruin the happiness of your present'

My life at the moment is completely different to how it once was. I spent 5 years sick with anorexia nervosia and depression as well as struggling with self harm and overexercising. I spent 2 years in different treatment centres.
And since 2012 i have been declared healthy from my eating disorder.

I have been blogging for 7 years, and my whole journey is written in my posts. I now represent healthy and happiness. I want to show anyone struggling that it is possible to recover, no matter how hard it may seem.

I now blog about recovery, my life, veganism and positivity!

If you have any questions leave them in the comment section as i am much quicker at answering there, otherwise you can always send an email: lifewithoutanorexia@hotmail.com

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Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Regaining trust and control from your parents after an eating disorder

I was asked about this topic so i thought i would do a repost ;)

As the quote goes, it takes years to build trust but only seconds to break. And that is very true when it comes to eating disorders..... Once you do something wrong it is like all trust is gone. Which can be a positive thing though as it means that those around you care for you and just want your best so they make sure that you eat what you are supposed to. But at the same time that mistrust can last a little too long and can irritating when you feel healthy but no one trusts you.
Also, having someone watch you each time you make a meal or eat can get extremely furiating after a while.
However the first thing to remember is that your family care about you. They do it because they are worried about you and want you to eat... you ruined the trust and now they still worry. It's also important to ask yourself, are you actually healthy? Can you eat all your meals when no one is watching your or no one prepares the meals for you.... Because sometimes you want everyone to back off just so that you can return to old ways, and then that will lead to even more mistrust.
I would begin with communication with your family. Tell them what bothers you and ask if they can either be less obvious about their staring or maybe to begin to trust you more. ... Because in the end, you have to be able to eat and take care of yourself. You can't have someone watching you eat or prepare all your meals forever.  Maybe begin with you making and eating breakfast on your own each day  and if that works out maybe you can make lunch or dinner a few times a week . Also communicating with your parents and telling them that the food comments aren't necessary. Food comments can  be both triggering and irritating but you also have to learn to deal with them,  because many many people comment about food or how a person eats or what they eat. Try to tell them why it triggers you and what they can say instead, or not say anything at all. If it will help you that they don't comment then mention that.
But lastly, and the most important.  Actions speak louder than wordsI know you want your trust back, you want to be more free with food and not have someone watch you each time you are going to eat. But in the end, you have to show them that you can be trusted. It's not always enough to say that you want trust and can be trusted. I know from experience, my mum was very trusting and believing of me... and I abused that very much. She would ask me if I ate and I would say yes even if I hadn't. I loved that she trusted me so that I could get away with not eating,but in the end it was me who took the consequences and it was me who failed to recover or accept the help at that time. And also, when my mum learnt that I couldn't be trusted it was 150% mistrust for a very long time and she had to see me eat and and sit with me after meals and not allow me to go to the bathroom after meals,  even when I began to feel healthier. It annoyed be, but then I realised. ... why? Because in the end she just wants the best for me, and if I am not cheating with my meals, if I am not going to purge my meal or go stand somewhere instead of sitting then why should it bother me and when I began to think like that it helped me. And as I began to show and prove that I could be trusted she began to trust me more and I got more control over my food. I was allowed more freedom and could choose to eat at 3.15 instead of 3 or to eat in my bedroom instead of at the kitchen table and was allowed to begun cooking my own meals as well. (This was when I was a day patient/during weekends... otherwise when I was an inpatient I had absaloutly no trust from the staff ever!!)
So remember, show your parents that you can be trusted. But also communicate to them, try to compromise and see how they feel, what you can do to be trusted.
And also be honest with yourself, do you want the freedom back so that you can return to old ways or so that you can begin focusing more on life ?
For some parents it takes longer to trust again, for others it goes quicker. But be patient, work hard and show that you can be trusted. In the end you need to eat the food anyway. And if they are commenting on ED behaviour such as eating too slow, leaving food on the plate etc, then ask yourself why it bothers you.... If it is a normal behaviour it shouldn't bother you so much,but if you want your freedom so much just so that you can eat slowly and leave food on the plate then how healthy is that? But of course..... If you are beginning to listen to your body and your signals then there might be times you are too full to finish your meal, but it still shouldn't be a huge deal if you are made to finish your meal anyway... you will just feel a little extra full. 
I hope this helps to those of you who asked about this or anyone else in the same situation.  But know that trust will be earned again, but sometimes it takes time :)

7 comments:

  1. I really don`t know which is worse, what you have written about in your post or the fact that some one doesn't even appear to have noticed if you have eaten or not and makes no comment/questions on how you are doing or anything about your meal plan! That is where I am at the moment, whether my partner just isn't interested or whether he`s deliberately chosen not to say anything because hes assuming everything is going ok I`m not sure ....but if I`m honest a little "hows it going?" would be nice now and again. I wouldn't want him checking up on me to make sure I`ve eaten all my meals but at the same time a little encouragement that I`m doing the right thing would be nice. May be its just a man thing? who knows.

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    1. Carol, thank you for this! I don't have the same experience, but enough to relate to this. And not least to the final sentence! Isn't it funny, and sometimes difficult, how the people we know and trust the best, often don't understand the little things where we really need or want them? Take care, and look after yourself. Keep going XX

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    2. The best thing would be to talk to him because he most probably doesn't even realise that his lack of questioning seems like he doesn't care. For him he might think that he's helping by not questioning you. .. for example when I was in recovery at first I got very angry when my mum asked me whether I had eaten or what I ate or how I was feeling. So she stopped asking and then it felt like she didn't care... haha. But she thought it was better to just let me get on with it. But talk to your partner and say that maybe it would be nice with some encouragement. .. but also remember that recovery and eating is a full time focus for you. But for him, he has other things on his life and I mean even if he knows that you have an eating disorder, most people don't ask each other whether they ate etc I don't think it's that he doesn't care. But talk to him and see what his thoughts are and how he can help you :)

      And p.s I will try to reply to your email tomorrow or once I get time :)

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    3. I guess its the ol communication thing isn't it - but sometimes I feel I shouldn't have to say these things, he should just know!
      Thankyou both for your replies, I`ll pick my moment when he isn't tired or stressed out from work and have a chat - maybe go for a nice walk at the weekend, that always inspires conversation, change of scene and surroundings. You`re right about what you said about your mum asking you, if she asked it wss wrong and if she didn't it was wrong....its finding the happy medium isn't it. I also agree that's its a full time focus for me and not for him, I hadn't thought of it like that. Maybe I`m being a little hard on him.

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  2. Good luck carol! I used to feel the same way about my partner, that he should just *know*... I have learned that this is an unrealistic expectation. I used to think that everyone thought similar things and in similar ways. This is so NOT how it is though, lol. Everyone has different thought processes, and perceptions of the same event can vary wildly. My boyfriend views the world MUCH differently than I do, like shockingly different. And if I don't actually take the step of explaining just how I feel, and just what I need, then he really has no way of knowing anything at all. The fact that he knows about my struggles does not mean he knows what I feel or think. I need to clearly tell him those things. Ever since I realized this - that nobody reads minds, and the only way to get my needs met is to clearly state what they are - my life and relationships have improved dramatically. I no longer feel disappointed or let down by others, or resentful of them for not "getting it". I feel better about myself for being clear and assertive with others. Good luck with your boyfriend, improving communication can be intimidating at first but it ALWAYS makes things better. I really enjoy your comments here, too :) Now, I hope this posts as a response to you and not just as another comment, I can't seem to make my comments behave here lol.

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    1. And, of course. It didn't post as a reply. Anyway, carol, the above was for you!

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  3. Thankyou so much for this - you make perfect sense and I fully take your advice on board. I realise now that I`m not making my feelings clear, so of course he`s not going to just "get it" is he? I think what the problem is that we are "on the same page" for so many things that I just automatically assumed, but I can see now that it was wrong and unrealistic for me to assume that he would get this too.
    I`ll talk to him over the weekend, a good chat always puts us in a better place.
    Thanks for the heads up!

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