health

"You make it hard to function in this world." An open letter to my eating disorder.

This post deals with eating disorders and might be triggering for some readers. 

Dear Eating Disorder,

You make it unbelievably hard to function in this world. You’ve taken away social outings, holidays, friendships and tainted the relationship I have with myself.

The problem is, I think you might be my ‘best friend’. My best friend of 10 years, how do I get rid of you?

How do I get rid of you when you have the ability to make me feel empowered, safe, beautiful and somewhat special amongst all these people in the world?

Watch: Kasey Chamber on what it’s like to have an eating disorder.

Video by Mamamia

Ten years is a lengthy friendship. You’ve been around longer than most of my friends and you know me better than anyone else, better than I know myself.

You excuse my “bad” behaviour because you fuel the intentions behind it. I’m still unsure though, what was our goal in this friendship? Weight loss? Power? Beauty? Strength? Or death?

Have we got there yet? When will we achieve “our” goals? It has been 10 years, after all, that is a long time, just under half of my life.

I don’t know about you but I’m tired, exhausted in fact. But you won’t let me give up, you won’t let me rest. You push me to be the best I can be, like any good friend does. So, how can I get rid of you?

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I want to live, I want a career not a life full of obsessive behaviour, violent mood swings, hunger and emptiness.

I want to marry my beautiful boyfriend and feel amazing, I want to raise good humans with healthy self-esteem and eating habits. How can I do all of this with you as my best friend?

I love you, I know that it is morbid and a reckless mentality to have but you’re my best friend.

People say friends come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. I am still unsure after all this time as to how we became friends. I also really hope this isn’t a lifetime friendship. So, maybe it’s a season…. maybe it is time for our 10-year friendship to end?

Listen: When Your Child Has Anorexia. A Mother’s Survival Story. Post continues below.

I’ll miss you but my boyfriend, friends and mental health won’t.

Just like any toxic friendship, I know I will be able to rebuild and lean not on you, but on the people around me that I know don’t demand of me the things that you, my toxic friend, does.

So, I think we should stop seeing each other. You might be my best friend but there is no place for you in the world I want in my future.

I love you, but I love me more.

Love,

Your Best Friend

The author of this story is known to Mamamia but has chosen to remain anonymous for privacy reasons. The feature image used is a stock photo.

National Eating Disorder Awareness Week runs from February 24 to March 1, 2020. 

If you or anyone you know is experiencing an eating disorder we encourage you to reach out for support. You can call the Butterfly Foundation National Helpline on 1800 33 4673 or via webchat or e-mail: [email protected]

 For more information about eating disorders please visit the Butterfly Foundation website.

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