Personal account of ED recovery, in the healthcare industry
British born, living in NZ, outspoken introvert, tea loving, outdoors seeker.
The healthy woman writing this blog is a stark contrast to the person I was even 2 years ago. I am someone coming through the other side of the grips of anorexia and I want to share my story to raise awareness.
I did not experience trauma, or have an unhappy childhood. I was a happy normal child who never cared what she looked like, didn’t read magazines and was basically a “Tomboy”.
My unhealthy relationship with food started when I was a teenager. I was very sporty as a teen. I competed in athletics and I fit the bill of being a perfectionist.
I would train hard. But as a fragile developing teen, comments about my muscular masculine physique made me want to shrink. My dieting began. I developed problems with over exercising, purging and restriction. Later, as is so common in society I would be complemented on my will power, slender appearance, “healthy behaviours” until I believed this was who I was, what was normal.
Throughout my college years, my medical training my perfectionism helped me strive for success. But I never felt successful. I hid my behaviours and set myself new targets in every aspect of my life that I was never satisfied with. The ever raising bar was exhausting.
I work in medicine, so I felt ashamed by many of my behaviours and was terrified of the stigma associated with “being a sick doctor” . So I continued for 15 years. Until I couldn’t.
Rewind 18 months. My Eating disorder had spiralled. I was still working full time. The positive comments were no longer positive and people were showing concern. I felt shame and embarrassment I could no longer hide.
I was no longer driving. ”Hitchhiker”, ( this is what I call my ED)had taken over completely. Because my work has always been so important to me I started to think about seeking help. I didn’t want it. But I didn’t want to lose my career, family or “unravel”
I entered into treatment in May 2019. I met with a psychologist who helped me start recovery. I was ambivalent but used my “positive perfectionistic” tendencies to commit.
My path has not been linear. NO ones is. But with each slip/ relapse I have learnt. I now feel strong enough in my recovery to own it & share it.
I am a medical doctor. However the purpose of this site is not to provide medical advice, diagnostic information or guidance. I write my personal opinions and experience from a non medical approach. The aim is to provide insight and support in eating disorder recovery.
I’d love to hear from you. Email me with your questions