Ever since the time I was diagnosed with my eating disorder, I kept it a secret. I did not want anyone to know. I thought they would think I was crazy, unable to handle life, weak. You name it, I thought it. I guess, I also thought some of those things about myself. Keeping my eating disorder a secret for so long, gave it so much more power. More power then it ever deserved and ultimately kept me stuck. I even pulled my parents into secret keeping for me. I would only allow them to tell their siblings, but only certain ones. I carried this secret with me everyday wherever I went. My shoulders were always so weighed down.
This past February during NEDAwareness Week, I decided it was finally time to tell my secret. I didn’t start small by telling a few friends here and there. No. I chose to go big and post it on Facebook. I wanted everyone to know. I was terrified not knowing the reactions of people, but excited to finally put it out there.
My FB post:
This week is NEDAwareness week. For those of you who don’t know NEDA stands for National Eating Disorder Association . The theme of this years week is “It’s time to talk about it”. It’s time to shed a light on eating disorders and discuss them. Eating disorders are a life threatening mental illness, not just a diet gone wrong. I should know. I have been struggling with my own eating disorder for the past 5 years. Although mine started as a diet it quickly became a way to control that which I could not control and calm my anxiety. After being in and out of treatment I can finally say that I am in recovery and feel amazing. I no longer fear the very thing that provides by body with the sustenance it needs to survive and have the tools to manage my anxiety. It’s finally time I talked about it and you should too. If you suspect someone you know of having an eating disorder encourage them to reach out for help and check out the NEDA website if you are struggling. #NEDAwareness
Everyone had such positive reactions. I even heard from people that I hadn’t talked to in years about this post. I felt so free after doing this. I think I even stood up a little straighter without the weight of a secret bearing down on me.
My advice to you is to tell people in your own way. Slowly the power the ED holds over your healthy self with being to diminish making your healthy self the powerful one.
What has your experience been like sharing a secret like this? Share your experience in the comments section below.