“But Red Wine Has Antioxidants”: Navigating Alcohol And Anorexia In Today’s World

Every time I sit down to write about eating disorders, I ask myself “what needs to be said, that most are unwilling to share?”

Sometimes, that leads me down a rabbit hole with an unclear end. Occasionally, a seed of perspective develops.

More frequently, a truth emerges (or reemerges) that I’m conveniently escaping.

This share is one of those, and took me two months to write.

Continue reading ““But Red Wine Has Antioxidants”: Navigating Alcohol And Anorexia In Today’s World”

Thanksgiving Recovery Reminder: Diet Talk

Continue reading “Thanksgiving Recovery Reminder: Diet Talk”

It’s True: You Probably Aren’t “Sick Enough” To Have An Eating Disorder

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Yo, hold up. Put down the pitch forks, please.

I write headlines to get your attention.

This is one of them.

Continue reading “It’s True: You Probably Aren’t “Sick Enough” To Have An Eating Disorder”

“To Exercise Or Not To Exercise”: 6 Hard Eating Disorder Situations You Will Absolutely Face In Recovery

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In the process of moving this month from Denver to Boulder (wahoo!)

Between periods of biting my partner’s head off because he didn’t like the same rug I did – to eating at strange times because I’m in between homes and packing boxes, etc., it led me to reflect on some of the initial recovery situations we face in the beginning- throughout.

Continue reading ““To Exercise Or Not To Exercise”: 6 Hard Eating Disorder Situations You Will Absolutely Face In Recovery”

5 Tips If You Wanna Start A Blog About Eating Disorders And Recovery

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Comin’ off 10 days on the east coast – and booooooy did I miss my NYC life.

Sometimes, I don’t know why I left. Sometimes, I know exactly why. It’s a forever battle – so I’m forewarning you that you’re probably about to see an excessive amount of NYC pics.

ANYWHO.

Every week, I receive a message along the lines of “HAAAAALP. I’m so and so and I have an eating disorder. New to recovery, I’d like to start writing about it. I want to help people and feel like I need that community. How’d you do it?”

In pure honesty, I rarely answer these emails or DMs. Not because I don’t appreciate them – but because it’s quite difficult to pinpoint or understand exactly why my blog seems to resonate with people. If I do answer, I usually say something along the cheesedick, admittedly unhelpful line of “I was lucky – and I wrote with little regard to other people because I didn’t actually think other people would read it. That, in turn, made all the difference.”

Eyeroll. I know.

Continue reading “5 Tips If You Wanna Start A Blog About Eating Disorders And Recovery”

The Biggest Bullshit We Tell Ourselves About Recovery

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*Currently listening to: Michael Franti & Spearhead – Hey Hey Hey*

I have this tendency to write with a specific “flavor of the week” song on repeat (I try headphones so my partner doesn’t feel like he’s being sound-waterboarded lolz.)

Thought I’d start noting them in the case that you have interest in listening to my beats – or relate to the music.

This song’s got me in one of those evening shines.

“You gotta live for the one that you love you know
You gotta love for the life that you live you know”

Oh Michael Franti, you’re a babe. Going to see him June 1st at Red Rocks, which is the most magical music pavilion in all the USA land.

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Anyway, I digress.

Last week, NEDA published a letter I wrote to kick off Eating Recovery Center’s #MyRecoveryLetter campaign for Eating Recovery Day. (More details on the campaign here…. also, how many times can I use the word ‘recovery’ in two sentences?)

It reminded me: sometimes, I think one of the only reasons I’ve remained so dedicated to writing is the accountability it forces me to maintain.

Continue reading “The Biggest Bullshit We Tell Ourselves About Recovery”

My Eating Disorder Documentary Went Live This Morning!

 

This morning, a lil mini-documentary about my eating disorder, and recovery aired on Barcroft TV, and what a unique moment in life.

There’s always something to note (like LOLZ on all the “looking into the distance” shots or HEY check out some of the laughable YouTube comments), but I’ll keep it simple.

A reminder today that:

Eating disorders come in all shapes and sizes. My story is common because I am a white, small, cisgender female who grew up engulfed by “diet and beauty” culture, and the insecurity and expectation that it breeds. That is not to be ignored, but there are millions out there who do not have the same background. Men, women, ethnicities, nationalities, class. I am not the sole representation of what an eating disorder looks like, and will never pretend that I could be or am.

You will never be “sick enough.” You deserve help, no matter your circumstances, religion, shame, or weight.

I had a strong support system when I went to treatment. Most don’t (or they do) and it still means that sometimes they go back to rehab a few times before they get their shit straight. I am still working on what that means in my own life.

Recovery is ever-changing, ever-evolving. That’s why it’s flexible.

It is okay to live with an eating disorder. Recovery is accepting its presence in your life, not ignoring it as “fixed.”

Thank you to my best friend Kim Dyer for being in this, and Kristina Doelling for watching it from her apt in Brooklyn. Thank you to my parents Joanna Byers Hall for putting themselves out there, and being vulnerable to millions as parents of someone with an eating disorder. Thank you to The Renfrew Center for inclusion in the documentary, and taking time out of their lives to participate. Thank you to the camera crew and the producer for not making this salacious. Thank you Bradley’s parents for raising a beautiful child. His life has been the inspiration for so much of my recovery. Shout out to my partner for helping me get through that day, and waking up at 6am.

I am feeling many things, as one does when they see their sniffling face on film. Mostly, I am grateful for the life I have led – in all its ups and downs and side doors and mirrors.

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What To Read RIGHT NOW During National Eating Disorder Awareness Week

For the sake of the headline, I left out the ‘read AND listen to‘ because it seemed too long. (It’s the public relations career in me.) So, to clarify, I thought it might be handy if I put a little list together of resources I’ve seen circling around the web this week, speaking to eating disorders and recovery.

I asked some of you who follow my Instagram to provide suggestions as well, so below is a group of responses. Please feel free to comment your own pieces as well! Continue reading “What To Read RIGHT NOW During National Eating Disorder Awareness Week”

Think Your Friend Has An Eating Disorder?: 4 Tips On What The Hell To Do Next

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So, your friend has an eating disorder. 

Or, at least, you think she/he does.

You don’t know because it’s not like they’re telling you. I don’t know anyone that just goes and is like “I’m gonna vom now for the x time today. Will you hold my coffee?”

You just sense it.

I say I have eating disorder telepathy. I can watch someone from a mile away, and have this intuitive knowledge if they struggle.

Maybe, that’s the majority of the country and I’m giving myself too much credit.

But, it’s the way I watch their discomfort unfold around food. The way their eyes narrow; breathing appears tighter.

It’s the way they avoid looking at food – or talk to someone a mile a minute to escape having to actually eat.

It’s the slight comments “Oh! I ate before I came.” “I’m not hungry – I’m on a diet.” “I can’t eat that!”

Nobody is the same, so I’m generalizing here.

But, I just … I know.

Possibly ’cause I lived it. Possibly cause someone’s discomfort automatically makes me uncomfortable (It’s the empath in me, I’ll say – as I pat myself on the back for being such a “giver.” lolz)

Anyway, so you think your friend has one?

Now, what the hell do you do? Continue reading “Think Your Friend Has An Eating Disorder?: 4 Tips On What The Hell To Do Next”

Eating Disorder Community Responds: What’s The Hardest Part Of Holiday Season & How Can A Loved One Help You?

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Thought it might be a helpful post, this time of holiday year, to remind everyone struggling with eating disorders and recovery and this and that mental illness –

That there is a wide ole’ community in the world that is struggling with you.

That every few people you pass in an airport or on the street, one of them has thought or felt the same way that you have felt. To some degree. In whatever way their reality shapes for them.

I posted a question on Instagram: “What’s the hardest part of holiday season & how has a loved one helped you?”

The responses are varied, but the sentiments are similar.

Continue reading “Eating Disorder Community Responds: What’s The Hardest Part Of Holiday Season & How Can A Loved One Help You?”