Shame. Isolation. Fear.
When I have asked women to describe their experience with bulimia, these are the words that are most common. Shame seems to be at the core and the others stem from that, which is why, once you are comfortable with me and we have built trust I will want to start there. We'll do this when you're ready, and at a pace that makes you feel safe. You will learn how to identify your shame triggers and the thoughts and feelings that precede a shame attack. With new, effective skills the healthy part of you will become empowered against the eating disorder.
This seems so easy when written, like a+b=c, but I know it's not easy. Bulimia is often referred to as a monster that overtakes the client and controls them. Monsters are scary, but with the right armor and the right weapons, monsters can be defeated. I want to help you defeat your monster.
I want to help you defeat bulimia!
food rules and rituals
eating in secret
eating a larger than normal amount of food
feeling out of control
vomiting after binging
abusing laxatives, diuretics, diet pills
denial of hunger
drugs to induce vomiting
swollen salivary glands
scrapes on knuckles from teeth
Diagnosing bulimia nervosa
According to the DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders 5th Edition, 2013)
Recurrent episodes of binge eating characterized by BOTH of the following:
Eating in a discrete amount of time (within a 2 hour period)large amounts of food.
Sense of lack of control over eating during an episode.
Recurrent inappropriate compensatory behavior in order to prevent weight gain (purging).
The binge eating and compensatory behaviors both occur, on average, at least once a week for three months.
Self-evaluation is unduly influenced by body shape and weight.
The disturbance does not occur exclusively during episodes of anorexia nervosa.