“It’s Time To Talk About It” | #NEDAwareness 2017

💚💙My photos may cause you confusion. But I’ll continue to use that to my advantage to raise awareness – especially during this week – National Eating Disorder Awareness Week. This year’s theme is, “It’s Time To Talk About It.” And our voice is the most powerful tool we have.

First – my weight. Eating disorders have nothing to do with weight! Weight is merely a symptom that manifests because of the behaviors one might engage in due to their mental distress. I struggled with anxiety, depression, OCD, and low self-esteem that led me to cope with an eating disorder. An eating disorder can affect anyone, no matter their age, background, race, gender or socioeconomic group. But an eating disorder is never your fault!

My journey has been long and extreme. I share it because I have found the priceless gifts recovery offers and if I can fight this battle – anyone can. I struggled with anorexia, exercise addiction and madness you wouldn’t believe. My weight fell to 56 pounds. I hated myself. It had nothing to do with my body. Only 1 and 1/2 years later I gained 165 pounds due to binge eating disorder taking the place of anorexia. The scale flashed 221 pounds. I never left my house. I hated myself. It had nothing to do with my body. Bulimia came next. Binging – restricting – laxative abuse – the cycle never ended. Slowly I reached a more normal weight, but not in a healthy way. I hated myself. It had nothing to do with my body.

I needed my eating disorder (I thought) because it was still masking my anxiety, depression, OCD and low self-esteem. My battle was nearing 10 years! Who was the girl I lost so long ago? But ultimately you fight for yourself or against yourself.

There are no prerequisites for needing help. Get help now! All eating disorders are deadly and valid. I am still strengthening my recovery each day and it’s a choice I am beyond proud to make and speak about.

I struggled in silence for nearly a decade and almost lost my life on many occasions. Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of all mental illnesses. That won’t be you. Here’s to the most inspiring and courageous thing you can do – taking back your life. ~Britt💜 #NEDAwareness