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5 ways to stop a relapse
1. Ground yourself. Keep up your daily routines, structures, and rhythms as much as possible. We naturally need more grounding when we’re under stress. They create safety and soothe anxiety.
2. Play and rest. Consider adding some fun, play and rest, something to bring levity and lower the stress. Children, when exhausted or overwhelmed, rest and play. We tend to keep pushing, which takes us further out of balance!
3. Use the damage control tool when you’re in that tight space of an oncoming binge. It’s an effective stress reliever when you’re caught in the panicky moment of wanting to binge.
4. Grieve. If you’ve experienced loss, your body is probably crying out for mourning. Mourning is soothing – think of how cleansed you feel after a good cry, like the crisp feel in the air after a storm.
5. Soothe the judgment. We often turn on ourselves when we go back to old, painful patterns like bingeing. We discount all our growth and progress and blame ourselves.
Weight gain, weight loss and telling someone with an eating disorder they look good and how to apologise
Commenting on an eating disordered person’s weight can be really quite damaging to that person (lets call the person with the ED Jerry). Jerry is in a fragile place when entering recovery or in relapse. Any comment on weight can feed the eating disorder, you may have the very best of intentions and not intentionally be meaning to hurt Jerry but Jerry simply cannot accept/handle the comment you made.
Jerry is in recovery and has since gained anywhere between 1kg-20kg. She is nervous, she feels bloated, fat, round, sore, constipated and like this is all too much. Jerry is on the edge of underweight and healthy weight, she is very self conscious, recovery feels like she is failing her eating disorder. When you see Jerry and you tell her “Wow Jerry you look great!” “Wow Jerry you look so much healthier now!” Jerry interprets that as “Wow Jerry you’re FAT!” It makes Jerry feel like even more of a failure towards her eating disorder, she is angry and frustrated that you can’t see her pain (the things mentioned about- bloating, etc) she thinks you no longer see her as unwell, as if just because she has gained weight you now think she is cured…but she’s not. While Jerry’s body is now capable of functioning better her mind has not caught up yet so any comment on her body shape or weight is upsetting to Jerry.
If you made a comment about Jerry’s weight gain and her looking good and she got upset and offended by it, apologise by saying something along the lines of “Hey Jerry, i’m sorry about the comment i made about your body, i didn’t realise it would be hurtful to you but now that i know, what would you like me to say? Is there a compliment you feel you can accept or would you prefer me not to comment on your appearance at all? How can i support you in your recovery?” This opens up the conversation so Jerry can tell you what she wants or needs from you. If Jerry says yes, there are other compliments you can give her, consider these:
- Your hair looks beautiful today! Great colour on you!
- That skirt is gorgeous, it’s a great cut!
- Your eyes are so bright, absolutely stunning.
- Your perfume smells sooo good! Where did you get it?
- You’ve done a great job on your makeup today!
- I love your shoes!
While these are compliments on Jerry’s appearance, they are not weight related.
So Jerry has relapsed, she has lost anywhere between 2kg-25kg. She feels in control but out of control at the same time. She can make herself lose weight and that makes her feel like she has control over at least one aspect of her life even though really, it’s her eating disorder that is in charge again now. She is cold, dehydrated, dizzy, tired, afraid, anxious…but fat. She feels like eating that piece of fruit will make her gain weight immediately and it’s distressing to her. Everyone revolves around her appearance and food. You see Jerry, you may or may not be aware of her weight loss and relapse but whether you mean you think she looks good after losing weight or you are just trying to be polite, you say “Hi Jerry! Wow you have an amazing body!” Jerry could take this two ways- 1; she thinks you mean she has gained weight and that you’re calling her fat or 2; she thinks you mean she looks better sick than she does healthy, that when she was healthy you thought she looked fat(ter). Either way, Jerry is upset at you and your lack of understanding of her condition and health.
To apologise to Jerry depends on which way she took your compliment. If Jerry thinks you think she’s gained weight, you could tell her “Jerry i’m very sorry, i didn’t realise you had relapsed. I don’t think you’re fat, is there anything i can do to help you get back into recovery or would you like me to drop the subject?” If Jerry took your comment the other way, that you think she looks better sick than she does healthy you could say “Jerry i am very sorry, i am sad to know you have relapsed. You are an amazing person and i hope you can get back to health again soon. You deserve to have a body that can function properly. Is there anything i can do to help you?” You can also ask her what kind of compliments she would like similar to the dot points above in “weight gain”.
If you feel Jerry’s life is in danger, that she is suicidal or that she is at serious risk of death from her eating disorder i suggest you contact her parents/caregiver or someone else in her life in a position of power or better position of support. You could also contact your areas mental health crisis network team, they may be able to help Jerry through this tough time. While Jerry may be angry with you for doing this, Jerry’s health and safety need to be put before your friendship/relationship with Jerry. You can’t have a relationship with someone who is dead.
If you want to learn more about eating disorders, you can check out the links below:
If anyone has anything to add to this post that may be of benefit to those trying to support someone with an eating disorder, please feel free to reblog this post and add your points.
I would really appreciate it if the few followers I have took a moment to read this and reblogged it <3
Basically, two years ago I set up a support group for those suffering from, or affected by eating disorders (http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=121417701205280) ; It is currently under moderation by my best friend (although all correspondence is forwarded to me) as I temporarily deactivated my Facebook to focus on personal circumstances, as well as to review where I wanted to go with the I.A.N.A.N venture.
I have drawn up a 23 point action plan with both short and longer term goals, however, in order to make some of these attainable I’ll need to enlist the help of you like-minded interweb people (:
So here’s a list of some of the things I’ll require help with/opinions on:
- I intend to have a new logo, well more of a ‘revamped’ logo, so if anyone is good at graphics design etc, or has a suggestion for a logo, please get in contact.
- As part of the re-launch I shall be setting up a youtube account for both promotional and educational videos; video subject ideas would be appreciated, also if video making is your forte, don’t hesitate to get in contact.
- A while ago I asked members of the group what subjects they felt should be covered within an educational pack for seminars (all targeted at different age groups) however I wish to get a broader range of ideas, so any suggestions would be appreciated.
- This is a bit of a long shot, but I intend to set up a blogtv (or the like) channel, with the possibility of having live guest chats, so if you’d be interested in being involved in that at some stage, let me know.
- Also, I have some vague plans for Internet events for people to get involved in in order to raise awareness etc, but any suggestions would be appreciated.
I am fully aware that given the nature of my blog it is likely that people may be cynical about me doing this, and I had intended to keep my ‘internal dialect’ that I voice on my blog separate from what I do on a ‘coporate’ level, but I’m sure that you’ll appreciate that tumblr is a good medium of communication within a diverse community, and that it is through such a medium that it is possible for the above idea’s to be formulated into reality.
Thank you for taking the time to read this; even if you can’t contribute, please reblog.
If you’re interested in helping with any of the above, or have any suggestions, don’t hesitate to contact me via my ask box, or at email@example.com.
Thank you in advance.
I’ve been getting back into my fitgirl grind lately, and I wanted to create a blog so I could share my progress with others and find a support base. Weight loss and gain has always been a huge part of my life. When I was younger I developed anorexia from being a gymnast. I was very advanced and when I started to get taller my coach made it clear that I’d have to stay very thin to keep up with the other girls. I became obsessed with what I ate and although I was mostly muscle and only slightly under weight, I wasn’t healthy at all. A severe injury forced me to quit gymnastics and tackle my eating disorder before I left for college. The college lifestyle and lack of intense exercise caused me to gain weight quickly. I’m guessing in the past 3 years I’ve gained about 30 pounds. I’m 5’9 and started college at about 130. I’m not sure my exact weight because I’m currently abroad and there’s no scale in sight. I want to get back down to around 135 but honestly, it’s not the number that matters it’s looking and feeling my best. I’m losing for me this time. Corny as it sounds, it’s my time now.
My best friend is struggling with an eating disorder. I really want to help her in whatever way I can but don't know what I can say or do. Forgive me for being so direct and I understand it's very personal so please don't feel pressured to answer. I just wanted to ask, though, what's the most helpful thing someone has said to or done for you? Or how would you like people to react to it/support you?
I only just found this I am so sorry, this should have been answered straight away.
When Your Eating Disorder Isn’t Your Only Worry
I caught myself thinking the other day, “I wish I JUST had an eating disorder” or “I wish I JUST had bipolar.” Meaning, of course, that I wish I only had to deal with one of my many mental health diagnoses as opposed to dealing with them all at once.
How much easier would a major depressive episode be if I didn’t have to worry about falling out of my weight range if I missed a meal or two and finding my brain completely overtaken by the dictator? How much easier would it be to recover from this eating disorder if I didn’t simultaneously have to contend with periods of depression and hopelessness so profound that I can barely move from my bed.
I imagine it would be a lot easier.
Unfortunately, this isn’t the way of the world. There have been plenty of studies done on psychiatric comorbidity in eating disorder patients. (Comorbidity is the term for a person having multiple diagnoses at the same time.) Some studies estimate the rate of comorbidity between eating disorders and other Axis I diagnoses (psychiatric diagnoses, excluding personality disorders) to be as high as 89%.
To put this into real figures, let’s say that 10 million Americans (men, women, boys, and girls) have eating disorders. This means that almost 9 million of them are also suffering with anxiety, depression, bipolar, schizophrenia, substance abuse, etc. etc. etc. That’s a lot of people suffering from eating disorders and something else.
It’s not pleasant — in fact, at times, it’s downright miserable. It’s frustrating. It’s maddening, really. However, I have discovered that there are a few ways to make things a little easier.
Tips for Dealing with Eating Disorders Plus a Comorbid Diagnosis
Take your medication: As prescribed, every day. This is non-negotiable.
Eat enough: Follow your meal plan. Have others help hold you accountable if you’re struggling. (Inviting yourself over for dinner usually works for me.)
Avoid mind-altering substances such as alcohol and drugs: Your poor brain is working hard enough to stay on an even keel without your throwing something else in the mix.
Be honest with your support team: Your friends, family, and treatment team can’t possibly help you if they don’t know what’s going on.
Know where your eating disorder and comorbid diagnosis intersect: For example, are you more likely to binge and purge when you’re depressed or when you’re manic? Are you more likely to overexercise if you’re experiencing high anxiety? Knowing these things can help you to head them off before they result in behaviours.
Do something nice for yourself at least weekly: It’s doesn’t have to be something “big” like a mani/pedi. (Though if you’ve got the financial means to do that weekly and enjoy it, by all means, do it!) Buy a nice bubble bath and soak with a good book or magazine. Treat yourself to a Starbucks latte. Take 20 minutes out of your week to go to the park and swing. It doesn’t have to be expensive. It does have to be something you enjoy.
Have a little grace: We’re all going to slip once in a while. One of the silliest, most anti-productive things I’ve done in my recovery is to start beating myself up about slipping. “Oh, I skipped a meal, I’m relapsing, I’m disappointing so many people, I’m terrible!!!!!!!” That’s not helping anything. Remind yourself that recovery is a process. Remind yourself that you did the best you could in that moment.
Then get back on track. Do the next right thing for your recovery.
Written by:Surviving ED Blog
How to Help Someone With an Eating Disorder
New Post has been published on http://calorie-count.us/how-to-help-someone-with-an-eating-disorder/
%Treatment for people suffering from an eating disorder requires much more than the care provided in professional mental health facilities. Support for the individual must come from all aspects of their lives both while they are in treatment and when they return to their daily routines. Family…