Comparing myself to others is one of the hardest things I have had to deal with throughout my recovery. I walk into a room, I stand on the tube, I walk down the road and I compare the physique and appearance of every female around me. Without a doubt I will come off as the fattest and ugliest girl there. Some might say this is part of being a girl, but for me it is a daily struggle. Sometimes I can fight those thoughts, but more often than not I can't. When I was in the midst of my anorexia, she would always tell me I was the fattest and I had to lose weight. I would work out more, or eat even less. And then feel momentarily better, better until I saw another girl.
Five years in to my recovery, these comparisons are still made, some weeks more than others. But instead of not eating, I plough on through these feelings. This was so hard at first as I felt guilty for ignoring them, and guilty for eating, but like with everything it gets easier. Regardless of how I am rationalising it in my head, and how I feel it is the people around me who get the brunt of it. My boyfriend has to sit and listen when I moan about my weight, or about all the "really skinny" girls at the gym and whatever he says is wrong! There is no telling how I will respond to what he says and to be honest, I am not even sure what I want him to say. Do you want someone to turn around and say you are skinnier? Or for them to say the other girls look disgustingly skinny and that you look better?
When I had anorexia and even throughout my recovery I became so self absorded that when I had a bad day its always someone's fault.
I remembered my little brother once had to watch me eat breakfast but instead of thinking of him I hid it, lied and then got so angry when he confronted me about it. It took me four years to realise how he felt and to apologise for my behaviour. When I have bad weeks now, which I still have from time to time, I return to my self absorbed nature and it's a living nightmare for my boyfriend. He becomes worried, he loses sight of the girl he loves, and instead sees a self obsessed girl controlled by calories. But he doesn't give up on me. When I come out of my bad days and have kept going through them I realise what I momentarily came in that time. The people around you care so much that they get annoyed because it worries them not because they don't care! Try and see how frustrating it is for them that you can't see yourself how they see you.
There is quite often nothing that can be done to rationalise when the anorexia fights to get me! But it is possible! And it is certainly possible to fight it without taking it out on those around you?
Why don't next time you have a bad day try and think about those around you who are worried about you? Tell them how you feel without getting cross. When you are having a "non-fat" day tell them? They won't think you are completely okay, but it gives them that glimmer of hope that you are still working hard to beat it!
Stand tall little girl, remember my story and be strong.