Dear Binge Eating Disorder,
I have to let you go. It has served me in the past to have you near, but I can no longer run to you to hide from my emotions. You and I lived together for many years, and I know you started out with good intentions, but I’m becoming another person, and those intentions are now holding me back from who I want and need to be.
The person I want to become no longer needs a crutch, no longer needs a distraction and to hide from uncomfortable emotions. I have to sit with those feelings and grow into them.
Oddly enough, I appreciate you and everything you’ve done to protect me and help me. I know you tried hard to protect me, to give me comfort when I was in pain. You saw me through depression and anxiety. And so much more.
But things are so different now. You’re hurting me; I’m hurting me. Lately I’ve been turning to you everyday because things have been hard, and I’ve been struggling. It’s easy to turn my higher brain off and plan a binge. And so easy to enjoy the first few bites of food and forget what made me sad or mad in the first place. I love shoving food in my mouth — but wait, it’s not food I’m shoveling in, it’s my emotions. I can’t keep doing that.
I’ll miss the feeling I get when I binge, that high that makes me forget. I’ll miss the anticipation of a binge; the feeling that I’m about to feel happy and full.
But I won’t miss the pain that bingeing brings. The indigestion and guilt. Oh the guilt, is so strong and partnered with shame. I won’t miss the scale going up, up and up even though I’ve had weight loss surgery. I won’t miss hiding food from my family. I definitely won’t miss eating so much that I throw up (because my stomach is surgically smaller, or was).
As I write this, tears are streaming down my cheeks. There’s a huge part of me that doesn’t want to let go. You’ve been a security blanket to me. I always used you to feel safe and comforted and now it feels like I’m losing it all. Like we’re breaking up.
I’m scared. There’s so much fear inside me that I’ll never feel safe and comforted again — that you’re irreplaceable. But my higher brain tells me you’re not.
This is will be hard, and I will likely stumble along the way, but that’s OK. The need to be a new person propels me forward, whether I’m ready or not.
Again, I’m grateful to you because you helped me survive. I’m just not that person anymore. I’ve been surviving; now it’s time to thrive.
Goodbye, old friend. I wish you no ill will.