Beginning Anorexia Recovery
I'm a 21 year-old male who is home from college indefinitely due to serious mental health issues which have been exacerbated by an eating disorder. I've been falling deeper into anorexia for about 18 months, and am at the point of serious restriction and am highly attached to a diet with virtually no variety.
I am seeing a therapist weekly for my depression symptoms, and a nutritionist/dietician/psychologist twice a week to discuss my feelings involving food. I am finally at the place where I have truly admitted I have a problem, and I want SO BADLY to get back to a state where I can just eat normally without thinking about food constantly. I want to be able to join in on family functions that involve eating together instead of being the one isolated odd man out who can't eat with everyone else. I want to be able to call up a friend and just go get a burger, or order a pizza on a Friday night. I miss mac and cheese and PBJs and spaghetti and cream cheese and so many other foods.
My life has become an endless routine of waking up with extremely high anxiety, then making this "meal" and watching TV while eating it, then feeling super tired and falling asleep into the afternoon.
This behavior has been going on for a few months. Before that, I was eating during the day, and I was biking/hiking obsessively. Over the course of anorexic experience so far, I have had either extremely restrictive patterns or insanely specific and ritualistic patterns with NO variety in my diet whatsoever.
For those of you who have recovered or are in recovery from an ED like this, what are the first steps you took in actually changing your diet? Did you make a meal plan with a ton more calories right off the bat? Did you gradually add calories, protein, fat, etc. to your diet? How difficult was it to continue and not fall off the wagon?
I am super anxious about gaining weight very rapidly even by adding a little bit of calories or variety into my diet. I'm afraid to even start making changes because I fear I am just going to explode right off the bat.
I miss my old favorite foods SO much, and I just want to be back at the point where I can eat like everybody else, not fearing foods, being able to enjoy great meals without shame, guilt, or residual self-hatred.
I want to do this while living life, and not going into a residential program. I have already been through a 4-week outpatient daily program for depression and suicidality, and I want to be able to work my new eating habits into my lifestyle so that they are sustainable and ingrained into my life. I feel fat all the time, even though everybody says I look emaciated and bony.
Any guidance, specifically in the practical first steps of changing food habits, would be greatly appreciated. I know this is going to be a difficult road, but I also believe it can be ENJOYABLE if I let it, because I will be able to experience foods I haven't let myself have for so so so long.
Thanks, any advice is appreciated.
Last edited by Aardbei : 22-11-2015 at 02:35 PM.
Reason: removed food lists and calories eaten - please see ED forum rules