So as not to hijack the MPSIMS thread, I’m starting this one to answer a question and any others that might come up.
I had some fairly serious body image problems anyway and often would only eat once a day anyway. Also being a computer geek I would spend my time at home on the computer and food would slip my mind for a couple days. From there my body got conditioned to go without food. I honestly don’t recall the exact point where it went from “Hmm, I haven’t eaten in two days, how did that happen?” to “I just ate 48 hours ago, I really don’t need anything or I’ll get fat.”.
For a little perspective, I was 5’7" and maybe 120 pounds with a 26" waist at the age of 26. I regularly shopped in the boys department or womens for things like shorts because I couldn’t find mens clothes that fit. (in pants usually a boys size 10-12 or womens shorts in a 2-3)
I can’t honestly say I’m out of it now. Though I have had a healthier weight for quite a while. I could even stand to (legitimately) lose a few pounds! Part of my weight struggles now go back to that time, because I think I screwed up my system by putting it through all that.
I don’t think I will ever be comfortable in my own body. One of my fears is that I’ll start to lose to get into a truly healthy weight and not be able to stop. I don’t want to go back to that place again. It’s a constant fight to keep the thoughts of hating my own body away and reminding myself that food is not the enemy.
I’m sorry if this was a little incoherant, it’s difficult to get things like this clearly into words.
No, perfectly coherent. It’s very interesting to someone who has no more than the normal amount of “body image” problems.
I mean, I know quite realistically that my weight is 15-20 lbs. above what it needs to be. And I also know that I may never get there again, because I’m not willing to put in the work. So how someone can starve themselves to get to such an unhealthy weight while thinking it’s all normal is beyond my understanding.
Somewhat, yes. The fact is that the vast majority of people dealing with such issues are female. It’s about a 90/10 split female to male and about 40% are females between age 15 and 19. I think that makes it harder for guys to even realize they have a problem, as in “that’s something that happens to girls.” and even if they do realize it there just isn’t much help out there.
An additional complication can come in for gay guys. The young, very thin look is very much prized in general and considered a good thing. It’s easy to get stuck in that rut where you think that the only way to be considered attractive is to be small and take it to an extreme.
Right, yeah. Are you also gay? (Sorry, don’t mean to be getting so personal…) And did you feel like your issues came from similar places as other anorexics–need for perfectionism/control, or from things like body image issues? Or was it something else entirely?
Yep, I am. (It’s ok, I think I’ve mentioned once or twice in my 6000+ posts )
It was partially control, it was partially low self esteem and feeling like I needed to be that young, thin ideal to get any action. That became a little self fullfilling because I did get plenty of action which probably fed into the feeling that it was because I was small. I’m not honestly sure which came first, the above mentioned or the body image issues. I would look at myself in the mirror, at the 26 inch waist and visible ribs and think to myself, “Ugh, look at that gut.”
Like I said, I don’t think it’ll ever go away. It’s just a matter these days of rising above those thoughts and trying to maintain some sembalence of being healthy.
I completely agree and relate. I would never say I’m cured or over it. I will classify myself as being in remission but staying there takes vigilance and awareness of both my triggers and the thought patterns that can lead me down that path.