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Heliopath 02-02-2019 08:07 PM

Weight restored but not mind restored
Hello. Iím hoping someone might have something to say to help me out. Or relate to me. Or I donít even know. I think I just need to get this out.

For years I swung between borderline obese and borderline healthy weights. Iíd go into hospital for unrelated MH issues and restrict quite heavily and lose to a healthy weight. I never managed to maintain this and the weight would creep on again. Iíve struggled with restriction and over eating for a number of years. 15 in fact.

In 2017 I was in hospital again and lost to a healthy but lowish BMI and I got out near the end of December. I was readmitted in January 2018 and Iíd gained a bit but my BMI was still very healthy. I then started restricting heavily and lost a lot of weight very quickly. I was supposedly underweight but this depends on which standard of healthy BMI you go by.

Anyway. I ended up in the high observation unit as my bp was all over the place and they wanted to monitor me 2-1 and follow instructions set out by an eating disorder Ďspecialistí (sheís a mouldy **** who refused to help me when I was overweight). I was there for three weeks before I consented to eat a bit more and gain weight. Three weeks after that they said I could move back to the regular ward but I had to continue gaining weight or Iíd be sent back there. Now. The reason I did it was to get out of there. I wanted my phone. I wanted my freedom. I wanted to piss in a toilet instead of a cardboard pot so it could be measured. I wanted to see my partner.

So. I was linking in with a dietician and had my meal plan and I gained the weight and the other issues I had were resolved and now Iím at home. The problem is Iíve gained over my target weight and though my weight is stable right now my head is all over the place. I desperately want to restrict and lose weight and skip meals and basically everything I was doing before. Only I canít because my partner insists on my three meals and three snacks a day. And then I find myself picking at junk food and I detest myself.

I donít know what to do. Iíve not had any therapy for this. I donít even know if Iím diagnosed with an eating disorder and Iím too scared to ask. There is no ED therapy in the area other than the woman I canít stand who dismissed me years ago because the number on the scale was too high. Sheíd insist on weekly weigh ins and doesnít even deal with the psychological stuff just the physical. I donít know what to do. I know what I so desperately, desperately want to do but I will literally be thrown back into hospital if I refuse to eat and they will only let me go so far before itís back to high obs.

Iím really sorry for the long post, I donít even know if anyone can say anything to this.

Pi.R^2 11-02-2019 10:04 PM

ED treatment sucks. Too often professionals judge the severity of an eating disorder solely on weight and too frequently there isn't enough money/understanding to help people before it reaches a stage when your brain is too starved to really engage in therapy properly. I was 'lucky' to get some help long before hospitalisation would have been needed and even then, the second my BMI went above the anorexia criteria the community nurse discharged me, because clearly 0.1 BMI point makes all the difference between anorexia and fully recovered not needing any help *rolls eyes*

What mental health support do you have? I would use whatever support you do have to talk about food things and work out where these urges to restrict and lose weight are coming from and work on ways to challenge it. Talk to your partner, talk on here, see if there's any charity services in your area. But keep talking until you find someone who will listen and support you because tempting as it may seem, restricting and other eating disorder behaviours never lead anywhere good.

Do you have any ideas what is behind these cycles of restriction and over-eating?

I'm glad that your partner is insisting on sensible meals and snacks. It sounds like at the moment you don't have many reasons to resist the disordered thoughts so at least you've got your partner's support to nudge you towards recovery and hopefully you'll find many more reasons along the way. Are you involved in the food preparation at home very much? It's so silly but I can't tell you how much my relationship with food has improved now that I've got into cooking etc. I love trying out new recipes and ideas and eating stuff that I've made feels good. I don't even know what it is, maybe I enjoy the creativity, maybe it helps with feeling 'in control', but it's helped me enjoy food.

Sorry for this ramble, I hope some of it will be vaguely useful :)

Heliopath 12-02-2019 05:39 PM

Oh clearly that’s how it works! I don’t think I was ever an anorexic BMi but they made sure I was no longer underweight before backing off a bit. Tbf now they did take it seriously at the time and refed me and all that but I was only eating to get out of there and they didn’t actually give me any psychological support to deal with the mental side of it.

I have a CPN and therapist. When I tried talking to my CPN she quite helpfully said ‘well no one can force you to eat’. So that was a mistake. Began talking about it in therapy a bit last week but that in itself is complicated because it’s more like family therapy - my partner comes in with me and we’re doing a joint approach to keep me out of hospital. Which isn’t working because surprise surprise I’m in again.

I don’t know what’s behind the restriction but I know the over eating is because of the restriction. When all this started as a teenager I was a healthy weight but bullied for being fat so I used to starve all day and be so hungry when I got home that I’d just eat everything. Then when I was more successful at restriction I’d binge and that’d be it ruined and then because I was ‘allowing’ myself whatever I wanted I’d eat it all in vast quantities so that I wouldn’t miss it when I’d starve again. Only the binges would sometimes last weeks/months and then I’d be heavier still.

Now I’m back in hospital the food intake has lessened a little bit and I’m trying so hard not to let it because I don’t want to be in here for months but it’s so hard. At home I do most of the meal prep/cooking these days as my partner is in ill health. It’s just not something I particularly enjoy. Especially as I don’t want to eat it’s like why bother?

Pi.R^2 16-02-2019 08:20 PM

Sorry to hear that you've ended up in hospital. Are the staff there aware of your food difficulties?

I hope that in the long run talking about it in therapy will be helpful. Could you ask for some therapy that's by yourself as well as with your partner if that would make it easier to talk food-wise?

Heliopath 17-02-2019 10:02 PM

Thanks for replying.

Yeah they are. They’ve been monitoring what I eat apparently. Which has made me even more hyper aware of everything I’m putting in my mouth. It doesn’t help that I’m pretty sure they’re trying to poison me too.

I don’t think therapy with this woman will help the food thing as she’s already said she’s not a specialist. It doesn’t bother me if my partner is there which is something I suppose.

Pi.R^2 19-02-2019 05:58 PM

What makes you think that they're trying to poison you?

Heliopath 19-02-2019 09:54 PM

Government agencies have taken over all the hse operations and they’re testing new drugs on unsuspecting patients. Only I suspect them.

Pi.R^2 20-02-2019 06:07 PM

Have you ever had beliefs like this before?

I know this isn't what you want to hear but thinking things like this are very 'typical' thoughts of someone with a mental illness and so I am confident that you do not need to be worried. The government has no interest in testing drugs in this manner; if they wanted to test a new drug they would do it through the proper channels otherwise their findings wouldn't be credible.

Do you feel able to share these concerns with someone you trust, such as your partner or a particular member of staff in the hospital?

Heliopath 13-03-2019 09:44 PM

The staff know, yeah. I’m asking to go home tomorrow.

Really struggling with food. My weight is going down slowly and I don’t care.

Pi.R^2 17-03-2019 09:34 PM

How did it go with asking to home?

That sounds worrying about your weight. Could the risk of a longer hospital stay or increased observation maybe help you to care about your weight going down?

Heliopath 23-03-2019 03:16 PM

I’m now sectioned. So asking to go home didn’t work.

This last week I’ve tried to eat a little more but I’ve gained weight today so now I’m panicking. I don’t want to gain weight and don’t understand how I have with what I’ve eaten.

Pi.R^2 30-03-2019 04:52 PM

Sorry to hear you're sectioned :(

Remember that weight fluctuates all the time so a small gain really isn't indicative of anything. I hope you can continue to try and eat a little more.

What support are they offering you?

Heliopath 01-04-2019 12:30 PM

With the eating I have no support other than my dietician. I saw her on Tuesday and she’s put me on a maintenance plan so hopefully no more weight gain. I’d lost the little bit I’d gained last week so that was probably because I was due on my period. I’m really trying to stick to my meal plan so that’s something at least.

Pi.R^2 06-04-2019 05:58 PM

So pleased that you're trying to stick to the meal plan. How's it going?

Heliopath 06-04-2019 09:44 PM

I’ve stuck to it pretty religiously. Only had one blip. I lost weight this week though which she said she wanted to be informed of if it happened so I’m not sure what’s going to happen there.

Pi.R^2 08-04-2019 08:30 PM

Well done, that's great to hear. How are you feeling?

Heliopath 10-04-2019 09:56 PM

I’ve not been doing so well and my meal plan has slipped.

Pi.R^2 11-04-2019 10:43 AM

Oh no, sorry to hear that. Do you want to talk about it?

Heliopath 11-04-2019 07:02 PM

Thanks. I’ve lost my appetite and just want to lose weight. Idk. I get so far and then I **** it up. I don’t even feel like I have an ED. Everyone keeps telling me I don’t want to lose back to where I was last year but I do. I just don’t want the drama associated with it.

Pi.R^2 13-04-2019 03:24 PM

Do you have any idea what caused the loss of appetite and/or slipping in terms of the meal plan?

I think it's quite common for people with an eating disorder to not feel as though they have one. But losing weight in an unhealthy way and/or to an unhealthy extent does indicate having an eating disorder.

Have you ever done a 'pros' and 'cons' list of losing weight? Sometimes that can be helpful in working out where you're at and where to go from here.

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