Summergirl88’s Recovery Challenge - Day 9. What do you think caused or contributed to your eating disorder / BDD? What are some steps you can take now to work through these issues?
- abuse (as a child and then in treatment)
To clarify 3 & 4, the treatment I received was inappropriate because it treated my problem as an eating disorder when in fact BDD is my primary diagnosis. I have equal BDD problems with my hair, face, and other non-ED-related body areas. Treating this as pure ED was not only unhelpful but damaging.
Also, I am autistic. Therapy was harmful because it treated my neurological differences as psychological problems and then, because they weren’t ‘fixable’ by the usual psych treatments, blamed me for not trying hard enough or not wanting recovery.
Also, the treatment teams had people in who were power-hungry and vindictive. I guess these people gravitate toward this field because there are so many vulnerable people on whom they can play out their issues. I was abused by some of them and it was horrible.
I have read shitloads of books on therapy, psychology, etc etc. I have had therapy till I could therap the therapists. I don’t feel I need any more of that. I know what I need to do. It is a question of support, paitence from them and from me, and fundamentally of loving myself and learning to be kind to myself. It sounds so cheesy, but I am realising that it is simple but extremely difficult and truly is the real solution.
I need to process some of the trauma. I am working through a book with my mum for that.
I have transferred the traumatic feelings about events onto feelings about my body. The advantage is that if I control my body, I control the feelings. The disadvantage is that I cannot control my body to the necessary degree, and now ‘bad’ body days trigger those traumatic feelings. So in the end, I am experiencing the trauma over and over through unrelated triggers.
I guess the trick is to reattach the appropriate triggers and to somehow deal with the real causes.
Exposure therapy has been damaging for this reason. My triggers are so firmly attached that exposing me to the things about my body that I hate was so traumatic that the therapists decided I was a poor candidate for the therapy of that type. It was actually retraumatising me every time and sending me the message that I could not even protect myself and was now complicit in the abuse.
Anyway. WHat I need to do now is
- Learn to view myself and my life through a positive lens. Look for what is good, safe, might go right, etc. and look at myself through best-friend glasses.
- Be patient and stop pushing myself through pain in an unhealthy way.
- Allow myself to process the traumas in a real way rather than transferring the feelings onto a ‘safer’ surrogate, such as my body.