Struggling with an eating disorder can seem like a miserable life sentence. But effective eating disorder treatment can lead to long term eating disorder recovery.
As the founder of Eating Disorder Hope, I daily hear from people who have recovered from anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating disorder. I also hear from just as many who are “in recovery” from an eating disorder. Both are legitimate and meaningful recovery journeys.
Whether you are just starting out in the eating disorder treatment process or a longtime veteran (like me), proceeding with this path to greater mental, physical, and spiritual health will immensely benefit you and those you love.
In the midst of practicing any form of an eating disorder, one is generally experiencing:
- Poor health
Additionally, in the midst of an active eating disorder, we usually find ourselves having strained relationships with those who are most important to us. Our work, schooling, and other obligations are also likely suffering.
In recovery from an eating disorder (anorexia, bulimia, binge eating disorder, ARFID, orthorexia, etc.,) one is generally experiencing:
- Hope for the future
- Greater emotional stability
- Greater peace and freedom from turmoil
- Closer relationships
- Health & vitality
The increased quality of life in long term eating disorder recovery is reflected in every arena: physically, emotionally, academically, socially & spiritually. It seems like a no-brainer that we would all choose recovery over practicing the eating disorder – but, disordered eating recovery is very hard work and fraught with challenges.
Often, recovery from an eating disorder is a two steps forward, one step back process. It can be frustrating and discouraging to fall back into old eating disordered behaviors such as binge eating, purging, restricting, etc.
However, it is imperative to be compassionate and affirming with yourself when slips or relapse happens. For many, it is just a part of the overall healing journey. You can always begin again, as often as needed, when slips occur.
Many in the throws of an eating disorder feel hopeless about their future dreams and goals. They feel beaten down by the emotional, physical, and social effects of their eating disorder. It can seem like holding down a job one loves, finding a mate, finishing college, etc. is not in the cards for you.
But, I assure you with recovery comes renewed opportunity to develop your gifts and talents and meaningfully contribute to the world. We have many inspiring stories of recovery on Eating Disorder Hope to encourage you – check these out!
It is possible to put the eating disorder behind you and live a fulfilling and healthy life. You can do this with the help of a team of eating disorder experts to help you navigate the journey to recovery from bulimia, anorexia, or binge eating disorder.
About the author:
Jacquelyn Ekern, MS, LPC founded Eating Disorder Hope in 2005, driven by a profound desire to help those struggling with anorexia, bulimia and binge-eating disorder. This passion resulted from her battle with, and recovery from, an eating disorder. As president, Jacquelyn manages Ekern Enterprises, Inc. and the Eating Disorder Hope website. In addition, she is a fully licensed therapist with a closed private counseling practice specializing in the treatment of eating disorders.
Jacquelyn has a Bachelor of Science in Human Services degree from The University of Phoenix and a Masters degree in Counseling/Psychology, from Capella University. She has extensive experience in the eating disorder field including advanced education in psychology, participation, and contributions to additional eating disorder groups, symposiums, and professional associations. She is a member of the National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA), Academy of Eating Disorders (AED), the Eating Disorders Coalition (EDC) and the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals (iaedp).
Jacquelyn enjoys art, working out, walking her dogs, reading, painting and time with family.
Although Eating Disorder Hope was founded by Jacquelyn Ekern, this organization would not be possible without support from our generous sponsors.
The opinions and views of our guest contributors are shared to provide a broad perspective of eating disorders. These are not necessarily the views of Eating Disorder Hope, but an effort to offer a discussion of various issues by different concerned individuals.
We at Eating Disorder Hope understand that eating disorders result from a combination of environmental and genetic factors. If you or a loved one are suffering from an eating disorder, please know that there is hope for you, and seek immediate professional help.
Reviewed & Approved on July 15, 2019, by Jacquelyn Ekern MS, LPC
Published July 15, 2019, on EatingDisorderHope.com