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Fighting against the Eating Disorder at Christmas

To a lot of people, I'm sure the above spread looks fantastically mouth-watering, but to me it looks like hell. I dread Christmas because every social event seems to involve stuffing my face with rich food.

You may know this about me, but if not, when I was a teenager I had an eating disorder, I had anorexia. I've had people say to me 'but you weren't super skinny' when they find out, but eating disorders come in very different shapes and sizes. Since then, I have definitely recovered for the most part, but sometimes I find myself falling back into old habits. When I saw my counsellor, she said that due to my Perfectionism and low self esteem, I also have Body Dysmorphic Disorder which I spoke about more here. Generally, I find myself going back to my old ways when I'm in situations that I can't control because the only thing I can control is what I eat.

It's hard around Christmas to not let myself go backwards. It's also my birthday in December, so there always seems to be an event every weekend where there's mince pies, sausage rolls, cakes, and of course the big Christmas Day dinner itself. I'll be having a Christmas meal with work where I've paid £26 for 3 meals, but I already know that I've spent £26 to eat half of each plate, I already know I won't eat it all. Sometimes I have so much guilt when I binge (or indulge as others may say) on 3 course meals, but I don't want to be the one ordering a salad, or only having a main; I don't want to draw more attention to myself when it comes to eating time; even when I'm eating with other people, if everyone else is finished before me, I'll just stop eating because I don't like to be the only person eating, the one that everyone is watching. So when I do eat out, I just do what is expected, and then for a couple of days after, I won't eat much, I sometimes punish myself for eating so much. Especially at the minute because I'm trying to lose weight, so I'm having to make a real effort to lose it the right way.

I love Christmas, I love the whole festive period, I love spending time with family and friends, I just wish it didn't all have to surround meals out. I'm being careful, I'm trying to make sure I always eat at least lunch and dinner every day (I know people will say 'breakfast is the most important meal of the day', don't shout at me), and trying just to plan my meals across the week if I know I'm going out for food one night so that I don't feel like I have to punish and starve myself the day after.

I know this is a pretty short one, but maybe someone reading this will see that they're not the only one. I always used to think it was just me. Hopefully I'll be able to push my thoughts to the back of my head this year, let me know any methods you use to overcome the struggle if you experience this too!

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