Pizza. Ice Cream. Chocolate. All of these foods are so tempting that one is almost frozen in space until the urge to eat their trigger food is accomplished. People with Binge Eating Disorder (BED) live in a world in which food is not just on their mind; it is often the only thing they can think about. Read on to learn what people with BED wished others understood.
- Lack of will power-People with BED do not have a lack of will power. It is so common to judge someone based on his or her weight. We will say, “maybe they are fat because they are weak or lazy.” We add this moral judgment to it and it is laughable and gross. BED is a real psychological disorder and getting appropriate treatment is key. Early intervention is very important to increase the likelihood of a successful recovery.
- My “fatness” is not a crime-Sure, I am desperate to control my eating habits. And I am sometimes embarrassed by how much I eat but this disorder is out of my control. What can you do to help, you ask? Please do not use body-shaming comments about others in front of me. In my practice, I tell individuals shame and self-loathing are something that can be overcome. When one begins to look at their body as beautiful and change their own inner hate scripts, then one starts the process to self-acceptance. Shaming one-self is not the answer.
- The loneliness-It may not seem like I am trying, but I think about food and struggle with recovery, daily. Ask me how you can support me! In my experience, people struggling with BED are shameful and can sometimes feel worthless in the fight to overcome this disorder. If you are a friend or family member, ask your loved one, “How can I help?” Maybe it is as simple as asking, “How did you do today?”
According to National Eating Disorder Center, BED occurs in 3.5% of women and 2.0% of men surveyed; this makes BED three times more prevalent than Anorexia and Bulimia combined. The first step in the BED recovery journey is to be more self-aware. As hard as it is, you may start by reaching out to a licensed professional who specializes in Eating Disorders or maybe you attend a support group. Whatever you decided to do as your first step, remember, you deserve recovery. You are worthy!