Sorry y’all, this is gonna be a little long. I struggle with talking about weight loss and BED with people in my life — so I’m here. I needed a place to put all of this. I’m so proud of myself, but it’s been such a fucking journey.
I’m officially one year out from my last planned binge. I’ve overeaten in the time since then and accidentally scarfed down half a bag of tortilla chips. But it’s been 365 days since my last proper binge. It was a rock bottom for me, though in the depths of my eating disorder, I didn’t see it that way. I was temporarily living with my parents. They left the house, and I realized I could binge while they were out. I ordered two sundaes. Ate them in quick succession. After I was done, I saved the trash in my backpack to dispose of it by job as I was scared my dad would see the containers and know it was me. I literally travelled on the subway to work one morning a year ago with rancid, days old ice cream trash in my bag.
To set the stage for my history of eating issues: Growing up in a Latino household, I was always celebrated as “thick” or “curvy”; however, I relatively fit and athletic since I was a dancer. In college, I developed a persistent H pylori infection and the treatments fucked up my eating habits and gut flora. I lost a lot of weight quickly. I developed anxiety and IBS. Food went from something I didn’t think of much, to something I obsessed over — would this food make me sick? Would I get H pylori again?
Then I went to law school. My first year of law school was the first time I lived completely on my own. I discovered that this meant I could eat whatever and no one would know. I gained 15 lbs my first year. The summer between the first and second years, I found this sub and downloaded MFP. It was a revelation. Most days I ate around 1200 calories. I LOVED it. I felt so in control. My IBS was gone. I lost the weight and then some. Still curvy but snatched.
Two years ago, my relationship with my mother went haywire. I came to the realization that she wasn’t a strict parent with quirks, but an emotionally abusive narcissist. I started seeing a new therapist. And then …. came the binging. It’s not that therapy is the reason. My therapist is incredible, and I am still seeing her 2 years later. But therapy brings up all the stuff you buried. I craved comfort. Binging… it felt like my insides were giving me a hug. I needed that hug so badly. It became a nightly ritual. I gained approximately 35 lbs.
A month after my last binge, I moved in with my partner. I had nowhere to binge privately anymore. The urges began to go away as I had quit cold turkey, though I still craved the sensation. At the start of quarantine, my partner and I were discussing how I’d gained weight and was unhappy. Idk what came over me, but I told him about it all. The binging. The nightly two pints of ice cream. That my weight gain wasn’t some diet issue. That it was an eating disorder.
Weirdly, talking about it for the first time alleviated the lingering cravings. I suddenly had so much clarity. The shame and secrecy lessened. I finally came clean to my therapist.
In early June, I felt ready to lose some of this weight. I re-downloaded MFP. I started checking this sub again. I set a very moderate caloric limit, calculated using the methods of Jordan Syatt (video here). The weight is slowly inching off. I’ve lost about 15 lbs since June 6th. Do I wish it were quicker? Fuck yeah. Nothing beats the weight loss of a 1200 calorie limit. Sometimes I get discouraged and wonder if I should restrict more. But I am pretty lucky to be where I’m at. It’s a gift to do this so slowly, to heal my ED. And in reality, I’m like 1/3 of the way to my goal!!! I can eat some ice cream without polishing off the whole pint or pack of bars!!! I’m not singularly focused on the destination — I’m trying to enjoy the journey.
Author: “/u/ellemonte — www.reddit.com “