Have you ever considered what it might be like to deal with bulimia nervosa?
You feel the need to step on the scales practically every day. Achieving size 0 does not satisfy you – in fact, you might often try to have a smaller measurement than that if it is possible. An increase in your weight by half a pound, therefore, can drive your mind off the edge and choose to either abstain or not stop eating to appease yourself. But then again, the latter action will undoubtedly upset you even further, so how you see your body might worsen.
Eating disorders reflect complex psychobiological stressors. They also occur with complex nutritional imbalances and may be understood as efforts to regulate affect through food and food-related behaviors. — Leslie E. Korn Ph.D., MPH, LMHC, ACS, NTP
The cruel truth is that many people had similar issues at one point, yet only a few will admit, “Yes, I had bulimia once upon a time.” The condition is a symbol of weakness for some, you see, so patients cannot bear to imagine what will happen if others find out about their bulimic past.
For this reason, in case your partner comes up to you one day and tells you that he or she is on the recovery path for bulimia, you should first thank the heavens for the revelation. It most likely took everything from that person to open up regarding the illness. However, they did it since you earned their trust and love.
Now, you must focus on how to help your significant other heal from bulimia.
Because patients deny the severity of their condition they cannot accept the effects of malnutrition on heart, brain, organ and bone health. — Judy Scheel Ph.D., L.C.S.W., CEDS
It is vital to comprehend from the get-go that no one likes to listen to a harsh-talking fellow. Your partner already knows that carrying the condition is not good; hence, they are working on removing it from their system. Instead of blaming them for acquiring the disorder, therefore, you ought to assure your better half that you are with them throughout the healing journey and that you feel proud of their decision to defeat bulimia.
Assuming you want to help your beloved in overcoming the illness, you need to watch their behavior carefully. That is the most straightforward technique you can use to identify the symptoms or trigger factors for bulimia without forcing the truth out of the person. It will then allow you to assist your significant other more until they finally eliminate the eating disorder.
Although you two are partners for life, the health condition remains a problem that only your significant other can solve. You may push the patient often, get therapy with them, or go on a hunger strike yourself, but your efforts will still fall short if the individual has no motivation to fight the disorder. Thus, you have to think of ways to make them realize that it is better to get rid of bulimia now than later.
A usual reason why someone becomes bulimic in the first place is that he or she has a distorted perception of beauty. In their head, you are gorgeous if you are as skinny as Barbie or the typical runway models. It may be challenging to wash that idea down the drain, but that does not mean that you should throw the white flag in quickly. Just work through every obstacle with them, and the excellent results may soon follow.
The healing process when it comes to bulimia can take weeks, months, or perhaps years, depending on the patient’s drive to beat it. By all means, you can try overcoming the eating disorder with tips from other survivors online. In case you want to get advice from a professional, though, you may look into psychotherapy, couples counseling, et cetera.
When it’s clear that the issue warrants professional attention, loved ones can still feel helpless in their attempts to intervene. But if you suspect a loved one is engaging in an eating disorder- express your concern lovingly and without anger, identify the specific behaviors that worry you, and encourage them to get the support they need and deserve by making resources available to them. — Lisa Ferentz LCSW-C, DAPA