Whenever you find yourself trapped in the world of eating disorder treatment, whether it be inpatient or outpatient, the medical team treating you seems to continuously remind you about how deadly eating disorders are. They explain in detail how all of your organs can just throw in the towel. They describe how you can push up daisies just about anywhere since your heart to give out at any moment. Oh and let’s not forget about how your esophagus could tear one day due to one’s never-ending purging marathon. Though these gruesome threats of death are meant to scare an ED patient into eating properly, I have found that I was never greatly affected by these words nor did I really care about whether or not Ed murdered me.
In my eyes, my ED began to slowly kill me long before I was treated by the idiotic eating disorder “professionals” (HA!) at Rogers Memorial Hospital. Actually the moment Ed began to end my life was the moment I looked in the mirror at nine years old and begged God to give me a figure that I could actually smile at in the morning. Right after that, everything seemed to go downhill. Weighing myself became an obsession and once 4th grade came around, Ed had introduced me to a new method of weight loss – the vomit-half digested-food-into-the-toilet method (aka purging). Two years after Ed had taught me how to purge, I graduated the 6th grade and by then Ed had taken my soul and destroyed it in the furious fire of his incinerator. At that time, one could of just signed my death certificate because to be honest, I was as good as dead. There was no part of me left, because every ounce of my thinking power went to wondering how fat I was, counting calories in my head, and plotting how to trick my parents into thinking I actually ingested a food above 100 calories . I was just a living corpse of the girl I once was, following Ed’s orders like a powerless slave.
So now I hope you can see why those “how-you-can-die” spiels conducted by Rogers’ apathetic medical and therapeutic staff never really hit me hard. Like I said, I had already experienced spiritual and emotional death, so the thought of experiencing physical death didn’t frighten me. Honestly, there were many times throughout my eating disorder journey where physical death sounded more like a blessing than a horrific consequence of my disease. I believe that many ED victims have felt the same way about this and I also believe they would agree that physicians, mental health professionals, dietitians, and nurses need to throw-out their heartless “death threat” tactic. Believe me, ALL people with eating disorders KNOW their disease is dangerous and that without help, it will lead them to their grave. They don’t need to be reminded time after time about this well-known fact! What ED patients need is a great deal of love, kindness, and a hell of a lot of unrelenting support. They need to be told they a worthwhile, that there is hope, and that their care team will hold their hand throughout this difficult quest and never let go. Why don’t these so-called eating disorder “professionals” understand this? This is not astrophysics folks, this is COMMON SENSE.
Today I am asking all ED patients who are being treated by professionals who lack this common sense to stand up and TELL THIS PEOPLE WHAT YOU REALLY NEED. Tell them that constantly being reminded how your illness could result in your demise is NOT helpful, because we all know that when Ed has taken you prisoner, physical death seems to be only way out. If they don’t change their ways, get on the internet and start looking for someone new. Find someone who not only has a brain, but a heart. You DESERVE the best, most evidence-based treatment possible. You DESERVE to not be ruled by your eating disorder. For goodness sake, YOU DESERVE TO LIVE.
Websites that’ll help you find a treatment provider that is right for you!
- Eating Disorder Treatment and Reviews (AN AMAZING SITE that has detailed reviews written by patients for a countless amount of ED treatment centers!)
- How to Choose a Treatment Provider
- Academy of Eating Disorders Member Directory (helps you find certified ED professionals)
- International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals Member Directory (helps you find certified ED professionals)