My eating disorder recovery was very different than most of those posted on instagram, tumblr, Facebook, etc. I’m not saying yours is better mine was worse, vise versa. But I feel weirdly like my eating disorder and recovery has been invalidated because it wasn’t broadcasted on social media, so this will be a rant. Feel free to stop reading.
ED recovery blogs/ Instagram accounts are full of cliff bars, yoga, screen shots of texts between friends who are struggling, posts about discussions with therapists and dietitians, meal plans, “trigger warning” tags, organic veggie burgers, pictures of new athletic gear, pictures with friends for smoothie dates, pictures of adorable girls who yes are struggling, but who are making progress, “little victories” of eating a tiny fucking vegan coconut soy whatever the fuck ice cream cone with vegan sprinkles on top. All of that is great! I’m glad people are getting support from others on social media, because that is the world we live in. I’m glad that those struggling with EDs can seek treatment, get good nutrition, exercise, etc. I’m glad that they feel empowered through their recovery, and I hope that every day they choose recovery. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t want it to sound like I’m hating on ED recovery blogs.
BUT my struggle with anorexia, bulimia, laxative abuse, over exercise, and my entire recovery was much, much, much, less shiny. I didn’t have an Instagram or tumblr, for fucks sake, I didn’t have a cell phone. I didn’t get through recovery on organic tofu, smoothies, bars, free range this and that, and didn’t challenge myself with fancy cheese cakes with my parents. I gained my weight back on mashed potatoes, plain cheerios, store brand yogurt, and school lunch. THATS RIGHT HIGH SCHOOL LUNCH PIZZA. I gained my weight back bawling at the kitchen table eating spaghetti (no not whole grain! not organic! not gluten free!) while my my mom was shit faced across the table.
My recovery wasn’t full of texting conversations with others who understood what I was going through. I didn’t know a single fucking person who had an ED. When I tried explaining what was going on to my friends, their response was “yeah I went on a diet once!”. I spent most of my days eating my lunch in my car because my friends were uncomfortable with my illness. I wasn’t asked to go out and go on coffee dates with people to catch up. I spent every night writing in my journal (yes a paper journal!), taking care of my alcoholic mom, and wishing my life would be over. I had a boyfriend, but he wAs a piece of shit. He was the cause of it all.
I didn’t have the opportunity to go to treatment. Again, don’t get me wrong. I am glad those who post on tumblr/instagram about treatment are able to receive treatment. But I was a fucking burden to my mom. I weighed 73 fucking pounds and IT WAS A BURDEN TO TAKE ME TO A DIETICIAN. I should have gone to treatment. I’m glad I didn’t. But when I see people saying how “it’s so unfair” that they might have to go to IP or IOP, some part of me feels like if I would have had the opportunity, it wouldn’t have taken me 7 fucking years to be okay. My mom constantly told me I “needed to get over my ED” and “I was ruining everything” meanwhile she drank herself to sleep overnight (and by night I mean at 4 pm). I had no fucking support. The friends I had to support me are amazing and still my friends, but no one understood and so many people tossed me out when they found out about my ED.
College was a fucking joke. Until the last semester of my senior year, I purged multiple times a day, took handfuls of laxatives, over exercised, restricted. I somehow made it through though and am going into grad school, behavior free. My life is great now because I DON’T FUCKING NEED THIS.
But somehow, I still feel like my eating disorder and recovery wasn’t as real as everyone elses who has the pictures and posts to show it. I have two pictures of when I was sick. That’s it. I guess I’m glad I don’t have more, but part of an ED is needing to feel validated, and I don’t feel it.
28 Days: Are you going to use the default appearance or create a custom Ryder? If custom, describe your Ryder’s physical appearance (hair color, eye color, skin color, height, weight, facial features, any scars or tattoos, racial origin, etc). If you have art and/or a face-claim, feel free to add them here.
Custom all the way! Aji is Japanese (possibly mixed because “Alec Ryder” doesn’t really sound like a Japanese name, but hey it’s the future, so who knows? I’ll figure that out closer to release), with short black hair, black eyes, and medium-tanned skin. She’s very smol, only 5ft, with a solid, athletic build.