July 18, 2011

Do You Like Yourself?

There is a profound relationship between people feeling good about themselves and their being able to control their eating disorder. If the relationships in your life are making you feel bad, the eating disorder is exacerbated. When there are irritations in our lives, in terms of relationships, our ideas about our physical body change and the desire to lose weight, one way or the other, emerges.

The important thing to realise is that the person who is feeling that there is something wrong with her is simply internalising the anger generated from the relationship. The person then doesn’t know what to about their feelings, and in an attempt to improve their mood they turn to their physical body. We have been trained in Western society to think, “It must be my body”, and, “My problems would be resolved if I lost weight”.

As I have said elsewhere it’s looking for resolution of the difficulties in the wrong place. It is not the weight; it is not the absence of discipline to diet. It’s that these relationships are making you feel bad about yourself. Once you address these relationships, the eating disorder tendencies will recede.

What we are advocating is that one has a support, a person who supports you as you address these relationships. Eating disorders often increase social isolation. Gaining the support of one person is an important step that addresses the social isolation that makes eating disorders worse.

2 Responses to “Do You Like Yourself?”

  1. Seems like a downward spiral of self. I do not feel good about myself, so I eat, do not eat, or eat and vomit. With each cycle a lose of self worth is had and that makes you feel bad so you overeat, undereat to get that emotional or biochemical high.

    Love can pull people out of this complex addiction through 4 phases.
    1. Sex and violence love. Sex means an act of making one self feeling good be that through eating food, bungy jumping or scoring points on the sports field. this level of love relationship is followed by a violent habit such as overeating, starving (one of the most threatening acts to the body) and vomiting. It becomes a strong bond and a balanced approach could be the next step.
    2. Conditional love. Love comes in a contract. Such as love is rewarded for non-violent acts. A gap of isolation needs to be endured and supported by others – professionals such as Charles Fishman.
    3. Empathy and compassionate love is the next progression, here love is given without a judgement, a detachment thats says I don’ need your love to love you back.
    4. Unconditional love. Love no matter what.

    It seems that the world is getting more into violence. This is seen with MMA, UFC and cage fighting and the relationship to Hollywood stars and bikini clad females. Tarzan get Jane. In the world of overeating obesity or uneating disorders the need is to like self more. Steps 2 and 3 need to progress to rid the self-destructive relationships often bonded by co-dependancy or brain-body chemistry.

  2. Dear Ross,
    Thanks for your very thoughtful comment. Separately we are going to add a blog on thoughts on choosing a partner. The early stages, the step before the potential love patterns you describe.

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  • Hello Charles! I am unsure if you will even remember who I am haha, but this is [name withheld] – I saw you in (I think) 2017 with anorexia.

  • My wife and I felt quite emotional last Monday after our short Zoom session. All three of us hugged. It felt like the end of a relatively short but profoundly enriching journey with you which started in June at your home office on Waiheke Island.

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