Surviving Christmas with an eating disorder...

Hey beautiful's
For most of us, the Christmas period is about indulgence and eating whatever the heck we want and, not worrying about it until the new year. Approximately 1 in 5 people suffer from a form of an eating disorder in their life time (that's 6 people in every class room of 30).
www.beccasloveforlife.blogspot.co.uk

For those suffering from eating disorders (i'm included), Christmas can be a very troubling time. A month long nightmare, as shops get into the full festive swing and the build-up to the Christmas dinner begins. The anxiety stirs in our bellies, to the build up of Christmas dinners and parties.
This can be a very overwhelming feeling if you struggle with an eating disorder. the changes in routine, the expectations around socializing and food all contribute to stress and pressure. 
It's not about eating all or nothing. It is about listening to your body/ cravings and knowing that it is OK to have what you want and remembering that it is only one day and nothing awful will happen if you change the rules, and remembering that Christmas is not just about food. Food is only a part of it. Remember this is something that you can enjoy, but will require some planning.
Christmas is a time, that eating disorder thoughts/ feelings may punish you. The nature of an eating disorder, is such that it wants you to feel afraid and anxious so that you stick to its rules. Trying to quiet the thoughts in your head by not allowing it to take over, and think about what you need to do to help with this. It could be that you need someone to plate up your food or make sure a "triggering food" isn't around. 

Things to be mindful of:

  • Time alone can bring up a mixture of feelings. Be mindful of becoming isolated and try to stay in touch with someone if you can
  • Try not to let the idea of Christmas dictate the days and weeks running up to it, and don't compensate because you know that Christmas day you will have a bigger intake as at the end of the day, one day wont effect your weight long term -as much as your eating disorder will tell you it will, it WONT-
  • The post-Christmas period can also be stressful and isolating, in part due to the emphasis on diets and New Year resolutions. Think about having a support structure in place and try to plan for potential stress that may arise.
  • Understandably, you may become very anxious about talking to someone. Try to keep lines of communication open. Acknowledge that this time of year may heighten your stress around food and let others know this can be difficult for you. Try to speak to someone you trust and they may be able to help you rationalize your thoughts and create a plan of action for Christmas day/ the lead up.
Some of you may know that i am recovering from anorexia and this is actually going to be my second year in recovery around the Christmas period. I thought that this may help some of you and it has also helped me myself think of ways i can help myself while writing this post. 

Last Christmas i was only four months into my recovery and i can say Christmas day didn't go as well as i was expecting. I cried in the kitchen during our meal while mum had to help me rationalize the thoughts. I have learnt my lesson to not expect things to go perfect and in fact this year i will probably not try over analyse it nor say "its going to be amazing and i will challenge myself to everything" as this only sets us up to fail. I'm just going to have what i want and not try beat myself up for having "too much".

If you have any other tips feel free to share them in the comments to help me and other who will struggle this Christmas.

lots of love 
Becca xx

3 comments:

  1. You are so right about the days leading up to Christmas. Most os us start eating more than we should because it is December. With office and family parties it is hard not to get caught up in overeating.

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  2. Thank you for sharing!! Lovely post and some great points xox

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  3. Thank you for sharing this post. As a recovered anorexic, I can completely relate to this and think this information is truly relevant and needed. Have a Merry Christmas -enjoy <3
    xx, Marie

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