Control is the Key

I haven’t written much in the last week because I have been in the middle of a rather major relapse. Sad, but true. My boyfriend and I hit a rough patch over why we aren’t engaged yet. I feel that he moved the goalposts and betrayed my trust and of course he doesn’t feel that way at all. The ensuing anxiety over our relationship sent me on a major binge and it’s been downhill ever since. Yesterday at our summer show my colleague’s wife told me how thin I was looking. I felt happy. Sick, but happy.

It’s all about control for me. The less control I feel in my life – at work or home – the more I control my food. Before this relapse I had been (I think), doing much better. I was on an extreme health food kick (see the previous article on orthorexia), but I was eating regularly and exercising. I hadn’t starved, binged or purged in 2 months. Now my boyfriend’s step mother has come to stay for a week and the relapse is out of control. I need routine to eat what I went when I want and she has taken over our kitchen and is trying to force feed me. My reaction is to starve. I know she is doing it from a well-meaning place but I have to control what goes in my body. We went grocery shopping and I tried not to cry. All she talks about is all the meals she is going to feed us this week. “Do you like beans with butter on them? Do you like pie? How about white rice? I like to cook with packet soups they taste so good. What do you think?” she asks. I’m repulsed. I don’t eat butter or dessert and I loathe white rice. I abhor processed foods. I can see how the rest of the week is going to unfold.

I can’t get into my kitchen to prepare my safe foods and make sure that I have food ready for the week which means I will revert to starving. I am panicking. I explained this as gently as I could to my boyfriend but he has been powerless to stop her. I’ve told him its going to be a rough week food-wise and that if I can’t eat what I want I just won’t eat. He will look at me badly for that decision but I think he doesn’t understand because he doesn’t care what he eats. I wish he would do something about the situation to make it easier for me instead of being mad at me for not eating. He knows how anxiety affects me. He knows that I refuse to be force-fed. I guess at the end of the day my food issues are not his problem.

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3 thoughts on “Control is the Key

  1. I remember preparing foods to go to parties. That was so embarrassing for me. The funny thing was that people would complement me on how controlled I was to eat such healthy foods. I HATED eating that crap. I want PIE, I want HAMBURGERS, I want anything that tastes GOOD and isn’t grilled chicken and veggies! I envied anyone who could just pick up a donut and pluck it in their mouth so casually. To this day I am unable to do that! Does your boyfriend know that you are struggling? Because if he doesn’t, he may just not understand why you are acting so stressed about your mother making all this food around you. My life changed (for the better) as soon as my husband knew of my disorder. I could at least talk about my anxiety and he helped me slowly move towards recovery. SLOW and STEADY is the key. Tell him. Talk to him about your struggles. You will be happy you did.

  2. Genuinely feel for you, it can’t be easy. I hope everything sorts out for you.

  3. Tt in nyc says:

    Yikes- what a difficult situation! It is never too late to stop a relapse or to turn around a bad day/ meal. Right now, for the time she is here you need to put yourself first. Her and your bf understanding is secondary. Tell her that “i have a strict meal plan from my new nutritionist that i need to follow and so i will take care of my own meals”. Or, Make dinner plans with a friend, “work late” and take yourself to a healthy dinner you are comfortable with, or insist she “takes a night off” and either you make the meal or choose a restaurant or bring home take away. Dont let this be an excuse to slide backwards- she doesnt have that kind of power over your recovery!!

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