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Re: Does an ED require a mental component? trigger

Posted by Racer on January 22, 2008, at 1:52:42

In reply to Re: Does an ED require a mental component? Racer, posted by CareBear04 on January 21, 2008, at 18:24:26

I do have a few thoughts...

First of all, let's make a distinction between two things: Eating Disorders, as defined by the DSM; and eating disorders, which I think you've pretty well described -- your eating patterns are disordered. In that sense -- which, really, is what counts as far as health goes -- you're exhibiting disordered eating patterns, which means you've got an eating disorder, even if it doesn't exactly match criteria set forth in the DSM.

For what it's worth, I've known a number of women who swore up and down they didn't have an eating disorder -- they just weren't hungry, and when they did eat, it just made them sick. No eating disorder, since they didn't put their fingers down their throats. The very first step towards doing something about their problem was to recognize that it was a problem, and sometimes that's the hardest part.

In fact, denial is a huge part of many eating disorders. In my own case, I can say, "I am anorexic," but I don't entirely believe it. (Of course, right now it's absurd to say it, since I'm fat as a cow, but that's beside the point.) When I first entered treatment, I truly thought that I'd be found out as a fake, and that I could just -- eat. It took quite a while for me to recognize that I couldn't just eat, that I wasn't just fooling everyone, that I really did have an eating disorder. Even now, I still go through that -- it's actually harder, since my weight is up, because now I know no one would believe me that I have an eating disorder.

At any rate, one thing I know is that eating habits affect mental health. At my thinnest, I think I was close to psychotic -- I remember some of the things that I thought at that point, and they all seem really crazy to me now. I also know that not eating properly leads to all sorts of other psychiatric symptoms, none of which I recommend to anyone who wants to feel human.

I hope that this is helpful, and by helpful I mean that it starts you thinking about getting treatment. I hope that you'll discuss this with your pdoc, and see what he has to say about treatment for it. Even if you don't fit one of the classic categories, you certainly fit EDNOS, and your eating is disordered, which isn't to your benefit if you want to find remission for the bipolar. (Medications will work much better if you do something about your eating...)

Good luck, and I hope that helps.




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Psycho-Babble Eating | Framed

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