karen header 3

Karen's Blogs

Blogs are brief, to-the-point, conversational and packed with information, strategies, and tips to turn troubled eaters into “normal” eaters and to help you enjoy a happier, healthier life.Sign up by clicking "Subscribe" below and they’ll arrive in your inbox. 

[No unsolicited guest blogs accepted, thank you]

What I Wish I Knew During My Eating Disorder

What-I-Wish-I-Knew-During-My-Eating-Disorder

My days as a chronic dieter, emotional/binge/over-eater and person with bulimia were more than half a lifetime ago. At 73, that’s more than three decades gone by and it seems like it. The eating patterns I have now are chosen consciously and with an eye toward health and well-being. I’m both a “normal” eater and a nutritious eater. 

Some background. A chubby child, I had to finish all the food on my plate as per my father’s edicts and snuck food whenever I could. I dieted and binged my way through adolescence and my 20s. After discovering purging, I did that for about 18 months. In my early 30s I discovered that I could, with effort, become a “normal” eater. 

Here’s what I wish I’d known when I was in the throws of my food and body struggles. 

  • No therapy or therapist or program would do the work for me. I actually went to only one therapist about my food problems (and others earlier and later for other issues). I wish I’d known that all the things she set out for me then would remain what I had to do to recover. I could do them then (improve my self-talk, raise my self-esteem, manage my thoughts) or later on, but one way or the other what she pointed out was what I eventually had to do to get healthy. And so will you have to do these things.
  • I should have focused on my food problems in earlier therapy. I was so busy working through issues with my parents like separation and individuation that I kept putting off talking about food. Everything else seemed more important (like boyfriends). Maybe these things were important, but maybe I wasn’t ready to tackle eating problems because then I’d have to give up my dysfunctional relationship with food.
  • The difference between choosing to be with healthy and unhealthy people was huge. I wished I’d moved on earlier from binge-buddies and people I hung out with who were equally unhealthy. You can’t move forward if your friends are dragging you back. You need to break free of friendship shackles and find people you aspire to be like, then practice being like them by being with them.
  • I had to expect more from myself but not perfection. Sadly, some of my clients think that a crummy relationship with food and their bodies is all they deserve. I don’t know if it would have made a difference, but I wish I’d pushed a bit harder back in the day rather than thinking I had all the time in the world to change. Looking back, my eating disorder took up too much of my life and too big a toll on my self-esteem. I wish I’d recovered earlier, but know that wasn’t possible.

My hope is that someday you’ll look back and give others your best advice to recover from an eating disorder from your vantage point of full recovery.

 

Best,

Karen

 

So What If Change Takes Effort
Choices Beyond Abuser or Abusee

By accepting you will be accessing a service provided by a third-party external to https://www.karenrkoenig.com/

shelf new

EBProfessionalBadgeLarge

This website is owned and operated by Karen R. Koenig, M.Ed., LCSW. It contains material intended for informational and educational purposes only, and reasonable effort is made to keep its contents updated. Any material contained herein is not to be construed as the practice of clinical social work or of psychotherapy, although adherence to applicable Florida States, Rules, and Code of Ethics is observed. Material on this website is not intended as a substitute for medical or psychological advice, diagnosis, or treatment for mental health issues or eating disorder problems, which should be done only through individualized therapeutic consultation. Karen R. Koenig, LCSW disclaims any and all liability arising directly or indirectly from the use of any information contained on this website. This website contains links to other sites. The inclusion of such links does not necessarily constitute endorsement by Karen R. Koenig, LCSW who disclaims any and all liability arising directly or indirectly from the use of any information contained in this website. Further, Karen R. Koenig, LCSW, does not and cannot guarantee the accuracy or current usefulness of the material contained in the linked sites. Users of any website must be aware of the limitation to confidentiality and privacy, and website usage does not carry any guarantee or privacy of any information contained therein.  Privacy Policy