When you’ve battled with eating disorders and have anxiety and depression almost all your life, you kind of forget how to live without them. And then for those few moments when you can smile and laugh and be happy for real, you forget that you ever had problems in the first place.
I made myself throw up for the first time when I was in 3rd grade. I guess I was just tired of being made fun of all day by girls in my class because I looked different than they all did. I just wanted to be accepted, and I thought that was the best way to do so. I don’t even remember where I got the idea from, but wherever I learned it from, it worked. I have battled with bulimia ever since that afternoon.
The first time I contemplated suicide was when I was in middle school. All the people I thought were my friends the year before had decided that I was no longer worthy or something, and I had nobody to talk to or sit with at school. I was incredibly lonely and sad and I didn’t really know what else to do. Plus, I was getting really tired of crying myself to sleep every single night for almost a year.
This isn’t an article about bullying or anything like that. I think that there’s a lot of articles about that and I don’t really want to write about that at the moment. I wanted to write something about how these so-called disorders can affect you even long after you’ve fought your battles with them and when everyone is telling you that you’ve supposedly won.
I haven’t made myself throw up in a little over 2 years. I also haven’t tried to kill myself or thought seriously about it in about a year. I think that’s an accomplishment for me, and it is definitely something to be proud of.
However, at the same time, just like with other illnesses, there are always side effects to these. I have developed a horrible social anxiety. I can only handle being around so many people for a little while before I start to freak out. No, I don’t necessarily go crazy but I start to get exhausted really, really fast and I am afraid that I will say or do the wrong thing and embarrass myself or the person(s) I am there with. I’d much rather stay inside or do things by myself, honestly. I used to like attending parties or throwing them and I used to always be with a huge group of friends and now I can’t really handle that too well.
I learned that a lot of people who have suffered from eating disorders and have been plagued with suicidal thoughts are very susceptible to developing anxiety disorders and depression. So, at least I know that I’m not the “strange” one, or the only one.
I have my good days and I have my bad days. Sometimes it seems like my bad days outweigh the good days, but it’s just something you learn to live with. There are days where it hurts so much to even get out of bed and I can’t be around people and it takes so much energy to even talk to people. Then there are days where it seems like I have endless supply of energy and I am bouncing off the walls and I want to do so much and I want to go to parties and be around people. However it seems like that for every good day I have at least 2 days of bad days.
I think the worst part of having all of these “problems” is that I know it affects the people around me. I’ve lost a lot of people that I thought were my best friends and I don’t talk to many people in my family anymore, and when I have my bad days it’s so hard to even talk to me and I just fight or I just don’t say anything at all (which my friends say is worse).
I guess what I’m saying is that even when you think the worst is over, it doesn’t necessarily mean it is. I know that a lot of the stuff that I’ve done, I’ve done to myself and no one else has made me do anything in particular. I know that everyday I need to work on myself and make sure that I don’t focus only on the negative or the difficult parts that I am going through.
And I’m getting better, I honestly believe that. Even if it’s just the baby steps, at least it’s something, right?