The person I’ve become hasn’t been someone I’ve wanted to be.
After talking with my counselor nearly two weeks ago, I uncovered this idea about how I’ve been in this abusive relationship with food, for 20 goddamn years! She encouraged me to look at abusive relationships, and break it down into categories. She sent me home with a sheet of paper that had different categories on it and what makes up an abusive relationships?
I have been wanting to explore these anyway so it was a perfect opportunity to do so. These categories are Psychological, Emotional, Physical, and the Illusion of being something different. After a few bubble baths, tears, and intense writing later I came up with a lot more than I even imagined I would.
I will first write what I discovered and conclude with the bigger picture of what came out of this exercise.
Psychologically my relationship with food has been abusive because….
- My weight feels like i’m different from others, and not in a good way.
- I will compare myself to others.
- It brings out jealousy of what others have, because what others have is always better than what I have.
- I constantly second guess myself.
- Isolate myself from others.
- Compares my body to others, not just weight, the whole picture.
Emotionally my relationship with food has been abusive because…
- It makes me think negative things about myself: That I’m fat, ugly, heavy, boar.
- The negative reel runs through my brain without permission.
- Trained to want what others have.
- Trained to think no one will like me unless I’m something else.
- To feel sad or depressed, anxious.
- Need to feel and be perfect.
- Afraid to make mistakes.
Physically my relationship with food has been abusive because…
- It stretches my skin.
- Makes me feel bloated.
- I pick my skin…
- I have scars over my body from picking my skin.
- History of internal damage.
- Stomach hurts.
- Clothes don’t fit.
- Grind my teeth consciously and unconsciously.
- Face hurts.
- Shoulders hurt from tensing up.
- Keeps me fat to disappear.
- Punishes myself.
Illusion of what food has brought:
- It’s great.
- Brings light and friendship.
- Feels safe.
- Fills anxiety.
- I know what to expect from it.
- Makes me feel safe when I don’t know what else to do.
- Becomes inviting and warm.
- Feeling of relief when eating it.
After crying in a bath of my own tears, I realized that not only are these things connected to food, but they were developed into a part of me. Into a personality trait I hadn’t expected to uncover. I have developed this twisted persona inside that was full of jealousy and judgement. I wanted to be or have what others have and if I couldn’t control it, I would react in a negative way. Coping through controlling things around me, mostly coping through food addiction. I realized this piece through re-visiting all of the past years negative interactions with my friends.
I had several friends this past year who had shared with me positive things that were happening in their lives. My reactions were less than ideal, and pretty bitchy. I pretty much almost ruined a friendship after reacting the way I did when a friend told me she was getting married. I’m actually fairly embarrassed of my behavior and after reflecting on these incidences I realized how judgmental and jealous I had acted. I wanted whatever they had. Weather it was they were getting married, or they bought a new car. I wanted the romance, I wanted the money, and I thought that it would make me happy, because it had made them happy.
The person I had become has been selfish, unhappy and overly judgmental.
I have become everything I never wanted to be. A selfish asshole, blaming others and things and really myself and body for my unhappiness.
I never thought I would or could ever be like him. I never thought that I could do that or that he would have that much of an impact on me. It wasn’t my fault. I was just a child. A child who absorbed everything. A child that didn’t have control over her surroundings, a child that didn’t have control and found a way to cope and gain some control in a world where she had none. As an adult I’ve continued this.
With that said, it’s hard to accept this dysfunctional self I created. I spent a week, laying in unhappiness, and watching tv. Letting my body melt into the couch. I came to a point of “welp, this is who I am, and have to accept it.” Using this, “lashing out at my friends” has been a coping mechanism in addition food which has been a form of punishment. Food in this case has become a pawn and used as an excuse to not improve and move forward. It is used in a way to cope, and to fulfill and ease pain, joy and used to bond with people or to hide from bonding with people.
So friends, hang in there with me. I am happy for you, just show it in really dysfunctional ways. More to come.