My anorexia faded to the background when bulimia came into my life in college.
Both disorders existed alongside each other, one to complement the other, but bulimia quickly became my greater love.
A common myth about eating disorders is that they’re just part of a phase or diet.
“It’s just an eating disorder, it’s not that serious,” is a sentence I‘ve heard all too frequently. So serious, in fact, that the reports that the mortality rate due to eating disorders is the highest of any mental illness.
I’ve always thought of my eating disorder as an addiction, but instead of drugs or alcohol, my vice is food.
I can’t escape the thing that is killing me because it’s also the thing that keeps me alive.When I go to dinner with friends, I feel shame looking over the menu.It’s as though the others can read the desire for a cheese board and brownie sundae on my face, and I am instantly ashamed.All day, I am either thinking about what I just ate or what I’m going to eat.I assess every situation I’m in based on what types of food will be there, where the bathroom is, and how easily I can purge.I have to go, too.” I pray for a single stall so I can be free of the anxiety of another patron or friend walking in.If someone accompanies me to the restroom, as women are ought to do, I burn with rage both at my friend and at my failure to execute my plan.I wish I could stop killing myself to be thin, but I’m not always the one in control. Each night, I select an outfit for the next day based on how I feel about my body.If my midsection is my main concern, I set out loose-fitting jeans; if I’m extra self-conscious of my arms, I select a thick cardigan.My roommate taught me how to induce vomiting when I got too drunk, and after a few tries, I was a natural. Soon, my hair began to fall out and I was spitting up blood.I was light-headed, pale-skinned, and underweight, but it wasn’t enough.