To feel completely hopeless about this(14 Posts)
This is something I have never admitted to anyone, ever.
I am very overweight (5 stone) and have spent my entire life trying to shift this weight and although I’m about 4.5 stone less than my heaviest weight, I’m not able to lose any more. The reason for that is that I am addicted to food. I don’t mean in the ‘oh I love a bit of chocolate’ sense but in the ‘it consumes my every waking thought’ sense. I have lived in this fog since childhood and it is ruining my life. From the moment I wake up until I go to sleep all I can think about is food. I put a brave face on in front of people and they have no idea how much I eat. I am obsessed with nutrition and know exactly what I should be eating but it’s like an itch that has to be scratched, constantly. Once I’ve eaten something it’s relieved for a second but then my brain instantly goes to thinking about my next ‘fix’.
I feel disgusting. I absolutely hate that my whole life revolves around thinking about food and then feeling so disgusted with myself for having no willpower. I already have obesity related health problems and if I carry on I’m going to die very soon and leave my young dc behind. I don’t know where to turn.
That is hard. Have you trued overeaters anonymous? Have you spoken with a GP? You may be entitled to therapy sessions or sessions with a physician who specialises in compulsive overeating. There may be a lot of different things you could try like CBT, group sessions, etc.
Wishing you the best. Give yourself credit that recognising the problem is the first step and often hardest step.
Thank you. I have told the GP on one occasion and it was the hardest thing I think I’ve done. She just mumbled something about therapy not really being available on the NHS and that was it.
I will look into OA though, thank you.
I have been 3 stones overweight in the past which crept up over a few years and like you I focused on food. The thing was, I used it as a comfort because I was unhappy and I was unhappy because of my weight so it was hard! In the end I realised I needed another thing to focus on and I chose walking, fast walking, it gave me a little lift each time, I aimed to go for a brisk walk for say 20 mins a minimum of twice a day, but longer when I had the time. Also on days off dh and I would go hiking.
At first I didn't really change my diet but then as I mentally felt better I started eating better, then finally controlling calorie intake, I made sure I had a day a week off where I relaxed about it but didn't go absolutely crazy on those days. I lost the 3 stone then another half, I've put the half back on but I've had 3 kids since so not too bad.
Can you pick yourself a new focus?
Something that gets you out the house would be good and if exercise related even better.
If there are certain times in the day where you know you over eat, can you schedule something to do around these times?
Another thing to consider is could you be type 2 diabetic?
Dh found out he was and was put on metformin and the weight fell off him plus it sorted him out mentally because his blood sugar is more stable.
I think if you are more than a few stone overweight your GP can give you a free gym pass in some areas as well where your can access the other activities in a leisure centre as well for either free or reduced cost, you might find something that takes your fancy!
Good luck, you can do it!
I am so sorry for you, OP, it must be hard, and it must also be hard to admit. It sounds like you have an unhealthy relationship to food. Have you looked into hypnotherapy?
Also, read up on positive thinking. At the moment you are telling yourself how bad and terrible you are, and you are fuelling your own obsession. What we give attention, we get more of! Try to change your negative self-talk. Here is a really good one that has worked wonders for me: Every night before bed I write down 3 good things from my day. It can be anything - it was sunny, I had a lovely dinner, I paid off a debt, work went great, I had a nice time with a friend etc. After about a month you will begin to feel different, you will be noticing the good things more than the bad. And it will affect your eating and your self-image.
Oh OP, how awful for you. I'm so sorry.
You have an addiction. It is no less or more deserving of help than any other addiction. It's the same impulse, the same illness - just a different symptom.
Can you print out this post and take it to another GP? Counselling has been shown to be very effective for compulsive overeating.
You are worthy of help. You deserve help. And there is help out there.
I am not at all a medical professional, so please take this with a grain of salt (or a spoonful). My mother, a senior SEN consultant, had a case where something along what you describe was also part of the issue. The child in question was quite literally in danger of eating himself to death.
Here's why I'm sharing this: in his case, the reason was some sort of a neurological issue - IIRC, and it's been a while and I have never been directly involved, it was something to do with him not 'processing' the state of having had enough food. I have no further details except that it's something that apparently can happen. Could you ask your GP to screen for potential problems in this area?
I'm so sorry that you are suffering. Very often, when compulsive overeating begins in childhood, it is due to having experienced some form of serious trauma. Food is used as a security blanket, and breaking free of that emotional connection to food can be extremely difficult. If this scenario applies to you, I think you will need to acknowledge the reason WHY you overeat, and confront the pain that drives this behaviour.
Thank you everyone. I know it started because I experienced a lot of loss as a child (5 very close people by secondary school) and I think my very well meaning dm tried to comfort us with food. I saw food as a constant, something that would never leave me. I used to worry constantly when I was away from my dm that she would die suddenly like everyone else seemed to, so I used food to numb the pain I think. That has now turned into a full blown addiction that is going to kill me one day, but I’m not sure what practical steps to take to break free from this?
You have to fully acknowledge that you use food to fill an emotional void and then learn to comfort yourself with a non-destructive replacement. That could be exercise, therapy, art, journaling, whatever works for you. Actually, I think it might be helpful for you to write in a journal every single time you get an overwhelming urge to eat when you know your body does not require food. I think it's possible that you have conditioned yourself to stop thinking and not reflect on your emotions, and instead busy yourself with eating.
Thank you Aqua I will definitely try that with the journal. I would have to have it with me constantly as the desire to eat is constant.
Does anyone have any advice about how to find a therapist/counsellor and roughly how much it costs?
There's some good resources on the binge eating disorder thread here: www.mumsnet.com/Talk/eating_disorders/2652882-Binge-Eating-Disorder-Support-4
I think the bit about comforting yourself with food is similar. Be gentle but hopeful. I wish you luck
I completed this questionnaire and it was a revelation
I scored very highly and after more research decided to follow the plan. It has been amazing and as far as I can tell not a fad but science based solution to my problem I think.
It might be worth trying a different go as it should be possible to get help on NHS but waiting lists might be long.
Alternatively the is some info here about finding it privately
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