Beyond Food and Weight

🧁”I’m so fat! Oh my gosh did someone just bring fresh donuts? 100, 200, 300 —how many calories did I burn at the gym? I need to eat less! Wait, what just happened? How could you have binged —again? Throw up, take laxatives, run 5 miles —now! Just 10 more pounds I swear. Once I weigh X I’ll be happy.”
If you didn’t know much about eating disorders, it may be easier to conclude they are about food and weight given the statements above. But the easy explanation is often the wrong explanation when it comes to eating disorders and mental health. The hidden reasons which drive the disorder are often counterintuitive, illogical, and complex. Eating disorders are not about food, nor weight. Underneath the weight obsessions and orchestrated drama with food, is an attempt to numb pain and regulate emotions. 
—You may see someone who is too thin. You don’t see how eating less quiets their anxiety.
—You may see someone who eats absurd quantities of food. You don’t see how bingeing allows them to temporarily escape life’s problems.
—You may see someone who has a stash of laxatives, three bathroom scales, and cupboards of junk food. You don’t see how a binge-purge cycle enables them to bury past traumas so they can function in life.
You may see certain physical manifestations and behavioral abnormalities, but this is only a byproduct of the deeper issue at hand. Fixating on food and weight provides an effective way to distract yourself from more difficult emotions. The temporary relief is addicting —quite literally. These feelings and emotions that you may have trouble discerning quickly vanish when you turn to eating disorder behaviors.
It’s easier to let your body speak about the pain you cannot utter. This is what lies beneath the veil of food and weight compulsion. It doesn’t matter how your behaviors manifest, or what you look like. It does matter why. And once you have this awareness you can begin to heal. ~Britt💜
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