Disorder dating love
Eating disorders come in all shapes and sizes, so don't assume you know someone's story before they've told you it themselves.
People who suffer from eating disorders can’t just, "get over it." If that were the case, it wouldn't be called a "disorder" now would it?
For any of you dating one of these brave, strong girls, here are a few things you should know...
1. Just because she’s at a healthy weight, doesn’t mean she’s “cured".
An eating disorder is more mental than it is physical; the outside tells you nothing about the battle within. The body-hate and overwhelming fear of losing control will always be – on a good day – in the back of her mind.
So if you catch her staring at the menu with fear in her eyes, just place your hand on-top of hers, and remind her that you’re here for her.
2. It's not that she doesn’t believe you when you tell her she looks great.
She may trust that this is your honest opinion; however, that doesn’t change how she sees herself. When she looks in the mirror and rotates to catch a glimpse of every angle, she holds back her tears because what she see’s is not what you see.
She see’s more than just a body she’s unsatisfied with, but a person who has failed and a person that she wants so desperately to love and accept.
3. She just wants you to listen and try your best to understand.
If she decides to open up to you and talk about her struggle, it’s a huge deal–so make sure you recognize this progress.
She just wants you to hold her tight, acknowledge that it must be hard, tell her you’re by her side, and that she will get through this.
4. It’s not all about being “skinny".
Eating disorders are disguised in a relentless desire to be thin. It may seem like her tight grasp on this disorder is all about how she looks, but secretly that’s just a coping mechanism for something that she has yet to even discover herself.
5. She redirects all her emotions to words of body negativity.
Instead of feeling sad or lonely, she’ll take one look in the mirror and feel “fat".
Fat is not a feeling, but to her it is. It’s the feeling of anger, heartache, failure, disgust, and fear all wrapped into one word that others, simply, cannot understand.
6. As much as she may beg you, NEVER give her your exercise advice.
Unless your answer is, “babe, listen to your body" no other words should come out of your mouth. When you give her your “amazing" workout plan, It’s not long before she falls down harder.
If she can’t complete your plan perfectly, she’ll feel like a failure. If she does complete it perfectly, she’ll think you underestimate her.
7. You can try to push her outside of her comfort zone, but if she’s not ready, let her be.
It’s always easier when you spontaneously ask her, “Do you want to grab some ice cream?" because she’s less likely to do so on her own.
Also, be careful not to say, “I’m shocked that you just ate that!" I can guarantee she's just as shocked as you are, so announcing it will only scare her more. If anything, later that night feel free to kiss her on the top of her head and say, “I’m proud of you babe!"
8. She’s stronger than you know.
She doesn’t just choose recovery once; she chooses recovery each and every day. Despite the thoughts in her mind, the feelings of disgust, and the heartache of pain, she’s continually choosing to fight the battle….and there is no doubt that she’ll win.
9. The word “grateful" will never suffice.
She knows that this disorder affects more than just herself. She knows that it affects your life as well, and “grateful" doesn’t even begin to explain how thankful she is that you stuck by her side.
She appreciates every time you’ve let her pour her heart out to you, and every time you held her hand as she conquered her fears.