Dating & Eating Disorders

At age 16 before [the spiral went down][1], I avoided relationships at all costs. I’ve heard the drama of my friends all the time, yet I was the one who they asked for advice.

I didn’t want to get dependent on someone and lose my freedom. I sure had some experiences with guys but nothing serious.

When I was trapped in anorexia, I lost all interest romantic relationships, dating, sex etc.

I was too busy destroying myself and wasn’t good or enough at all. And asked myself “who could ever like (someone like) me?”.

You see, I had non-existent self-confidence.

After being one year in recovery from my eating disorder and done with the first year of my apprenticeship training for a few months I met my first boyfriend or better said the first guy I trusted and ever showed my body.

I experienced the feeling of being in love for the first time, and from this moment on ED thoughts came up again.

I must stay skinny and perfect & be the perfect girlfriend, so no one could be in competition with me.

Everything about me needed to be perfect.

More or less, I barely made more progress and I eventually relapsed to stay skinny aka maintaining an unhealthy weight for my body.

But the butterflies in my stomach overlayed the feeling of weakness and being controlled by the demons in my head.

You see being in a state like this can be dangerous. Feeling happy but also lost at the same time.

In the first 2 years, he supported me & made sure I eat and said he’d love me no matter what size (tell this someone who measured her worth from her weight/body since years).

I was 21 around that time.

We were together for almost 4 years, yet in the present I know he sort of manipulated be.

I made myself completely dependent on him. So, he knew he could play with my feelings and use my weaknesses for his benefits. I often cried and took every fault on me?

He often went to parties, also with my friends because they got along well together while I stayed at home playing video games or taking care of his cat.

I didn’t see how toxic this relationship became and only realize this now being single.

Found out he cheated on me multiple times, but I always focused on the positive sides (good to use the law of attraction, hehe)

Now I’m here catching up what I’ve missed the last years. Living in another city on my own. But also set me under too much pressure which caused some lapses in the ED.

Where I’m currently recovering from & focusing on my dreams and goals. If you’re interested in a monthly recovery update, please let me know!

I don’t want you to experience something similar. Especially if you’re suffering from eating disorders too.

So, today I wanna share 4 tips if you’re dating someone but also making sure to protect your recovery.

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#1 Be transparent

Sure, it’s the last thing you want to talk about with someone who you’re interested in as you fear to push them away.

But let me tell one thing, the more serious your relationship gets the more open and honest you should be. Both sides.

If someone loves/likes you, they will understand and don’t define you.

It’s important to talk about your struggles and how insecure you are.

I would talk straight about fearing to gain weight and losing attraction as I want to be beautiful, not only for me but also for them. Or how you want to be healthy and enjoy every moment with them.

Having an ED and dating is possible, but you need to be honest with yourself and push yourself further.

#2 Talk about your triggers

Even people who seem healthy tend to have some unhealthy habits, like only eating in the evening.

Others aren’t a breakfast person. And as you tend to compare yourself with others, especially other's eating habits, this could be dangerous.

Tell them if something about them is triggering for you. It’s crucial to protect your recovery and focus on yourself and your health!

You’re in recovery and different standards are applying to you. (More about this here and here)

After a time they will understand you more and can help you. As everyone has different triggers and raw points.

#3 Do some "Non-ED" activities

Things like going to the cinema or on vacation can be scary. But those are parts of a normal, healthy life.

And since you don’t want to be defined by your struggles, it’s a great chance to tackle that.

What could be cooler than collecting memories with someone you love?

They can support you and you don’t have to do this alone.

Always ask yourself why to do you feel scared/other emotion. So, you can understand more and know the next time how to act more different and healthier.

Imagine yourself being recovered and being able to have a healthy relationship, not only with yourself but also with your partner? That’d be awesome, wouldn’t it?

#4 Put yourself first

Sure, you want to spend every minute with your new flame.

I think it’s important to spend time with yourself alone. This way you make sure, you don’t depend yourself too much on someone else.

Realize you’re the only one who can make you happy. Thinking otherwise isn’t healthy nor helpful.

It could even destroy a relationship. As your opponent don’t want to be reliable for your wellbeing.

Both of you still have their own lives.

You’re the most important person in your life. This isn’t selfish! You can only give love to others if you have more than enough for yourself.

Take this time to figure out what you love, maybe trying new hobbies or revive an old one.

I can’t stress enough how important it is to do something your passionate about while recovering.

Focus only on food and getting healthy physically isn’t the only thing, it’s one half. The other half is mental recovery.

Part of that is reconnecting with your true self. You spend months or even years making the eating disorder your personality while “losing yourself” (hint: you didn’t lose yourself, but it’ll take some time to figure out who you are).

I think this is the most crucial thing.

Now past recovery...

where I realized I can reach all my goals, I feel much more scared of my future (but my dreams are louder) than I feared weight gain, as I only have this one life and want to live it until the fullest.

So, I dare you to work through your feelings and fears, as they will lead you to your path.

Go where the fear is. It’s worth it, I promise!

 

 

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