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I knew I was there. I was myself again. I still had a lot of work to do but I knew now that I was more in control than the eating disorder. I was on my way to recovery.
I had all these people around me who supported me. I had the support of my children as well as close friends, my psychiatrists, my therapists, and my GP. I felt accepted by these people and that helped me to accept myself. I had to learn that I was an OK person. They helped me to repeat over and over again that I deserved to be treated with respect.
Working towards recovery was a long process. I learnt that most people live automatically, but people recovering from an eating disorder need to live manually. Everything needed to be done consciously. I had to learn that starving myself did not mean I was in control. I had to learn that starving and bingeing was not the way to cope with my feelings. I had to let the control over the food go, which I always knew at some level was always doomed to fail.
I was becoming self aware and would ask myself, what bothering me right now? I going to deal with this right now. I learnt to listen to music, or walk my dog, or talk to God, call a friend. It was very difficult. I used to despair that I would never be able to look forward to a meal or eat three meals a day. At first I would worry that I wouldn know when I was full or when to stop eating.
Her memoir of her journey to recovery, A Girl Called Tim, is among five personal accounts from survivors of anorexia selected for a world first study to assess how such accounts can be used in the recovery process, with the aim of finding a definitive treatment for the disorder.
I made it through some really awful times. So many different, hurtful things had happened, but I had survived.
Geelong author June Alexander reveals her struggle with anorexia
robbed me of so much of my life and I still catching up, says the 63 year old who blames the illness for her failed marriages and estrangement from her parents and sister.
Diagnosed in her mid 20s with anorexia nervosa and bulimia, she waged a ceaseless battle against the illness until finally reclaiming her eight years ago.
let these behaviours go was very, very scary. Even though I knew they were wrong I did not know any other way.
Anorexia overwhelmingly affects young girls and women, mostly at ages 14 and 18, and has the highest mortality rate of any mental illness.
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Having lived with an eating disorder for so long meant that I felt like I had this big, black hole within me.
Her previous research focused on people who had recovered from anorexia to assess Yellow Adidas Tracksuit Womens their crucial stages of recovery.
scary because it had such a hold on me. To let that go, and start working towards recovery, felt like I was jumping off a cliff. I had to find a whole new way of living, of coping with life.
24/7. The good thing about finally getting through an eating disorder is that you just love life. All those years I looked for peace in my mind, my heart and my soul and I have that now. her recovery, Alexander, a journalist and newspaper columnist, has researched and written books on eating disorders and mental health issues.
told their stories and now we asking is it helpful for others to read them, she says.
I had to let everything go. It was as if I lost an arm or leg as I had to relearn to do things that other people do automatically. I had a hole in my mind where my eating disorder had been. So healing and adapting took time.
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It was my Everest. I come this far, I thought to myself, I not going back. And I haven This time was different because everything was starting to come together.
Psychologist and PhD candidate at the University of Sydney, Lisa Dawson, is leading research into how the personal accounts of sufferers can help others.
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That moment was a turning point for me. It was like winning a marathon.
Researchers are still seeking people with anorexia or an eating disorder for this unique study which is conducted online and remains confidential.
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