irrational anorexic rationalizations

Just a quickie update since I’m getting ready for a small get together this evening. I’m looking out the window, lit with colorful holiday lights, and find it quite enchanting. Snowflakes are blowing in all directions in a lackadaisical manner. The rooftops are white and I can see white spotted in and out of the woods. Yeah, winter – meaning FREEZING! Okay, back to my post.

I don’t understand myself sometimes. I’m sitting there with my therapist last Friday. She is affirming I am full on into eating disorder mode and I’m denying it. Why am I denying it? Because I’m not emaciated. For some ignorant reasoning, my ED brain denies the possibility of anorexia unless my body matches. Of course, even if my body did match, how would I know? Have I ever seen myself as anything but fat? No. Have I ever thought to myself that I’m a petite person, small even? No. No way. I know, I know… my perception is simply askew but it is so hard to accept that when it is all I know, all I’ve seen. Can the whole world be lying to me? Chances are, not.

Another reason I think I deny it is because, sitting face to face, with her I feel my age and it simply seems silly to have anorexia at my age. And yet I do!! Having the following conversation…

“Why are you restricting? What are you getting from the behavior?”

“I need to feel in control, or rather, it gives me a sense of security, safety.”

…just seems so, well, juvenile in a sense. But then when it comes to anorexia I am just a kid, aren’t I? And there it is. It is extraordinarily difficult being 52 and acknowledging that I’m acting like a child; petulent and rebellious. Maybe it’s pride, maybe it’s embarrassing. I really don’t know what it is, just that saying what I’m doing in front of her is damn difficult!

The truth of the matter is that I am engaging in some behavior. Do I want to go down this path? No, absolutely not, but it seems like once I step on to it, I have no choice.

I called and left a message with her. I said that while I was having a moment of conscience I wanted to let her know just what I said above, about being embarrassed to say it in front of her, and that I was making a list of behaviors in my notebook that I bring. The reason I called is that I know I would not bother telling her what I wrote down. Or I would say that it was stupid and discount it. No matter what, I’d avoid owning it.

What is it about anorexia that is so hard to own?!

On my own I know I’m getting obsessed with exercise, with my caloric levels, etc. But in therapy or in my nutritionists office I minimize all of it, making it sound like it is no where close to what I’m really doing. I don’t understand why I can simply say, “I’m doing this, and this, and this….. what shall we do about it?” How hard can that be?

My therapist asked me if I wanted to destroy my GI system worse than it already is, if I wanted to go to treatment because that is where I’m heading. But it’s meaningless because I’m simply not in danger. Plus, with my already terrible GI problems, there isn’t a treatment center in the world that would take me. Problem solved, right? Sigh….. Besides, I always bounce back so I’m not too concerned. I don’t think I’m destroying my body and I’m fairly certain I’ll come to my senses eventually.

My therapist wants me to find the rational voice within but when anorexia takes over there is no rational voice. I’m thoroughly convinced I’m fine which probably proves her point…. that I’m already enmeshed.

8 thoughts on “irrational anorexic rationalizations

  1. I relate so well to much of this. It’s really, really hard to ever admit you’re sick when the ED voice is so strong. I always will use some other method to show how “not sick” I am too. At this points your thoughts aren’t going to be the truth. You can trust your therapist, she knows you and can determine if she’s talking to the ED or not. Hang in there ❤


  2. I can totally relate too. I think most of the time I am still in denial. I’m not underweight… but have most of the behaviors. I over-exercise and restrict as much as I can (I compete on a team so have to factor in enough calories to maintain performance)… is it still dangerous if you’re not underweight but muscular with low body fat? My therapist I am seeing for depression has no idea so we’ve never talked about this… But when I’m in sitting in front of anyone, my denial about having any problem whatsoever seems to be at it’s highest! 😧


    1. Chances are you are underweight. I never had a concept and thought I was perfectly normal since I was in the weight standards for my height. However, they don’t take into account muscle mass. Eating disorders cause depression. Food, fat, all that is needed for normal mood stabilization. I know this and yet… Have you ever considered seeing a nutritionist? One that specializes in eating disorders that is. Sports nutritionists would probably excuse everything as athletic. There is something called Anorexia Athletica and the Female Athlete Triad Symptom:

      I only lost my period when I was first starting out so used that as a reason that I didn’t have a problem.


      1. Really? I am 10 pounds above the limit for being underweight but have massive amount of muscle to weigh me down (haha). I didn’t know they didn’t take lean muscle mass into account… I guess I am still mostly in denial or at least still OK with what I am doing since I have no obvious negative effects. To make matters worse, I am getting more compliments from my male friends which motivates me more to continue. I guess I realize I am going down a dangerous road but I feel like I haven’t yet reached that danger zone… How do you know when you’ve crossed that line? I haven’t even told my therapist about these issues and he hasn’t mentionned it so I assume it’s not obvious to other people?


      2. You’ve probably crossed the line quite awhile ago or you wouldn’t be wondering about all this. Attention is nice at times, I thrived on it when I was in training, but the truth of it was that I was only happy when I was in training. I now have myofascial pain syndrome from over exercising. That never goes away. I will never not be in pain. Sadly it doesn’t always stop me psychologically but it certainly stops me physically. You may seem okay but damage happens over time, it’s cumulative. I had no idea how much stress I was putting on my internal organs. I’m not trying to scare you. I just want to share what happened to me as a cautionary tale. I was actually kicked out of the gym after I admitted restricting and the obvious weight loss, which was the best thing at that time that could happen since it helped with the denial. The weight on the scale is higher then normal for me too because of muscle mass but it is under because of body fat. I’m due for a bone density scan in 2017 so who knows. I’m sure it’ll be fine but I always say that. In truth I’ve got osteopenia.

        If you’re questioning yourself it wouldn’t hurt to get checked out. Even if you’re physically okay, which I was for a long time, you might want to mention it to your therapist or find one that specializes in EDs. My previous therapist had no clue. I’m glad I changed to the one I have now. I can’t get anything past her, lol.

        Liked by 1 person

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