To the bone, a mistake

I just watched the To The Bone movie. Here is my advice if you have an ED whether struggling, in recovery, anything:

DONT WATCH IT

Omg, it was so triggering!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

After 5 minutes I knew I should have deleted it but did I? No! 

What do I want to do now? 10,000 sit-ups! Ugh

Wow

I just had a huge argument with my therapist this last week about labels and definitions of EDs, etc. I’ve been diagnosed with anorexia nervosa by two different treatment teams but she said “you’re not anorexic”. Why? Because I’m no longer weight restored? She also said I was bulimic. What? So I looked up the diagnostic criteria for everything. I fit exactly zero for bulimia, 100% for atypical anorexia (because I’m weight restored) and purging disorder which is purging without binging although it’s secondary since I just restrict and exercise. I dont even use laxatives, diet pills, anything. So I asked her if I even had an eating disorder?!!!! 

Maybe this has all been a figment of my imagination! Oh wait, when I went into treatment it was because I had, hmmm, lost too much weight and yeah, was severely malnutritioned but no, I’m not anorexic. 

What the hell am I???

Well, I guess I’m not because I’m not thin enough. I don’t have extra hair growing all over me. Watching this movie rammed that fact home. Nope, I clearly don’t have an eating disorder.  I’m a moron. I must have everyone fooled because they are letting me to go an eating disorder iOP. My taking an hour to eat dinner yesterday must have just been my trying to get attention… because, you know, staying after was my goal making the two hour drive home even later, right??? 

Tomorrow I’m going to the ranch from 8am to 5 or 6pm. Yeah, got my cooler out to bring food but now? Well, if I don’t have an eating disorder than not eating all day is no big deal, right? The staff there don’t eat so why should I? I’ll have breakfast then have something when I get home, just like them. If it’s normal for them then it’s fine for me. 

Also, if I don’t have an eating disorder then I can go back to exercising, right? After all, all the stats say exercise is the best thing for chronic pain. I’ll just disregard the fact that a part of my chronic pain is from, you know, exercising. 

We’ll all be happy and everyone can go home. 

Oh crap, this is an eating disorder blog. I guess I’ll have to start blogging about tulips and puppies or something. 

Shit

I suck. 

I must be a mental case… delusional. 33 years of having an ED, oops, must have made it all up. 

Wow

14 thoughts on “To the bone, a mistake

  1. I totally get what you mean. I know I have a huge problem in my head (ok and body) but the criteria would exclude me from having any problem based on my physical stature. And of course my doctor looking far worse off than me…

    I am tempted to watch that movie but will take your advice and skip it.

    So, I don’t know what the answer is… as long as you are getting the help, maybe the labels are unimportant. I am sure my therapist has a long list of illnesses he could label me with but has avoided talking about them except in letters he has to write to my doctors or insurance company. I am sure the next dsm will have more changes in this department, or at least it should…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. After some thought I realize why the label is important. Because my mind works in trouble shooting mode (my job back in the day) it helps to know what the problem is in order to find the solution. For example: bipolar = mood stabilization, chronic pain = altered activities and outside stimulus. The other thing is I was bulimic in the 80s, yeah 1980s. It was coupled with several suicide attempts so if I were to be labeled as that, even though I don’t fit any of the criteria, I fear what I would do as far as suicidal association. It’s quite clear I’m anorexic but I’m still greatly affected by what other people think. It is awful. I’ll talk with my nutritionist, who is actually qualified, on wednesday.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Fuck the DSM.
    I get that diagnostic criteria are helpful and important in many ways
    AND
    They are also unhelpful in a lot of ways too.

    I relate so much to the “I’m not sick enough (yet) for treatment” . I too have been diagnosed with bulimia when atypical anorexia and purging disorder were more fitting. But you know what? It doesn’t actually matter.

    What matters is how much of your life is affected by your eating disorder. How is your time spent? What does your quality of life look like? Do you even have any quality of life? These are the important questions of whether or not you need or deserve help/treatment.

    In my experience most professionals know that (afterall,they are the ones who helped me validate my struggle) AND they still keep my diagnosis as one that I don’t think I fully have. Go figure.

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    1. Too true. I wrote in another comment how, for me, I prefer a label because I think in terms of problem/solution. Here is the problem, here are the parameters for reaching a solution, here is what managing a solution looks like. I use it for other issues I have like bipolar and chronic pain and it works wonderful. Few people have a brain like mine and I do have to correct my therapist at times. Fortunately she operates as a team member with me, so to speak, rather than her trying to force her ideas on me. I’ll see her tomorrow and now that I’ve had time to sort this all out, we will be having a discussion about this. Sometimes she simply doesn’t agree but allows for that and try to meet me where I’m at. Ugh, such a process isn’t it?

      It is so nice, though, getting comments like yours. It encourages me that people understand and not only that, but are able to move forward despite this system we have to recover in. Thank you!

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  3. As with everything else, maybe there is no one right way to approach treatment. The fact that we agree that we need it is often a big start! And then how we go about it, that’s probably a judgement call the therapist makes, from what they can gather from your needs and personality.

    I hate to use this example, but it was the first thing that came to mind…when my husband was diagnosed with cancer, the oncologist never came out to say it was terminal. He would have probably answered truthfully, had we asked straight up. He was right though, ultimately we knew deep down but we didn’t want to hear it. I think he knew that. My friend’s mother was also a patient of his and he was very up front about her odds. She wanted that too, and I think he knew.

    I’m not saying that the therapist may with some people NEVER give a diagnosis/label, but maybe they don’t need to refer back to it for the duration of the treatment… (not sure if I expressed myself correctly. Sorry if I did not!)

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    1. I’m not sure what you were trying to get across. My therapist admitted she doesn’t do nor ever wants to do diagnosis. So, hmmm, are you saying I should accept her judgment even if it is wrong and unqualifiedly made? I’m confused. I’m sorry. I don’t do well with figuring out analogies.

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      1. I guess I mean every situation is different. Not saying you should accept her judgement, especially if you strongly disagree but I guess I mean labels are neither good nor bad, and the therapist is the first to make the decision to use it in therapy or not but we can have our say in the matter too and it should count for something…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. In my case, we never actually discuss it but when he had to fill out insurance forms, he put a “label” on the issues I am having. If I bring it up as something I need (label), he would certainly take it into account and explore that.

        Liked by 1 person

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