Monday, February 8, 2010

Letting People In

I was talking to one of my roommates over the weekend and she asked me "How do you do it alone?" It really got me thinking a lot - because I do try to do it alone. I know I shouldn't, my therapist is always trying to encourage me to reach out and let people help me. But I can't seem to do it. I am so used to just being alone with my thoughts, with my struggles. And I also think I am a lot more guarded too because in the past when I have tried to reach out - I have been hurt, and I have been embarrassed (because people don't know how to help or what to do with the crazy-making my ed brings to the table). I tend to just feel more safe(?) being alone with my thoughts and my struggles. I am not saying this is the right way, because I know it's not - I am just saying that this is the way I feel safe from the hurt, rejection, embarrassment, shame, and guilt that I have felt in the past when I have tried to open up and reach out. 

Pretty much, the only people I seem to be able to fully let in are my treatment team, treatment & support groups, and the friends I have met throughout the years (and in the blog world) who also struggle with ED's. I feel like I can open up more to them because they understand and they "get it". But I realize that I need more support than this. I need support in my everyday life. I know there are people out there who love me and care about me and truly do want to help me... but I just can't seem to let myself open up. I even have a difficult time opening up with close friends and even my family. -------- And it's not them - it's me! I don't want this post to be misunderstood. I am the one with the problem here, it's not my friends and family's fault because they are amazing! It's me and my trusting incapability's. -------- : ( I can't do it. And it's frustrating because it ends up keeping me very isolated and lonely. ED's are a very lonely illness and that's why it is so important to let people in. So why can't I do it!?!? 

It's tough to go out and be social with people because I am so worried about fitting in and being accepted. I worry that they will think certain behaviors I have towards food are weird, therefore, making me weird. I worry that my ED thoughts will be in my head too much and that I will have a hard time being present in the conversations. I worry about whether they will like me or not (insert here: all my self-esteem & self-confidence issues). I worry about what I am going to eat if there is food there and if I can even force myself to find something I feel comfortable eating in front of other people... Let's just say... I worry... about everything! I can't be myself because I don't even know who "myself" is anymore! All I know is the person that my ed has molded me to be and that is not the person I want people to get to know!

I don't want to leave this post without a positive goal firmly in place so: I am honestly going to try to open up more to friends and family who love me and want to help me. As I am trying to figure out who "jenn" is, I am going to try to allow others into my world as well. I know this is going to take a lot of hard work and a lot of time - but I am willing (I think) to give it a try. I might not be brave enough today to let people in - but hopefully, in time, I will be able to and my life can be a whole heck of a lot less lonely place to be.


  1. ED does that. It makes you feel bad about who you are and it makes you worry about whether you can fit. It isolates you. I don't have a lot of friends, but I managed to go to my local craft shop and I did some clases there on how to make cards. I did meet some people and no it is certainly not easy but I did meet one person there and I do have to force myself to contact her and it's tiring but I do feel better for it. It's baby steps, one step at a time. I think we need to do this to get rid of ED fully. Thinking of you!
    Sarah :-)

  2. Awe Jenn... I hope that you always know that I totally adore you, and that I am there for you, rain or shine! I heart you!

  3. Hi, just came across you :-)

    It's hard letting outsiders in, so to speak, but sometimes if you take a risk and give them a chance, they can be more understanding and helpful than you anticipate.

    Sarah x

  4. hey Jenn
    thanks for your super cute comment!
    I know what you mean, it sso much easier and i feel less frightened to keep it all to myself, and i really struggle with people and talking to them. Kinda why i started my blog-cos i got to the stage where i like forgot HOW to say how i was feeling, yknow.and wriring about it was the first stepin being able to talk about it.
    theres no rush to figure out who you are...i think it just sneaks up on you bit by bit:)
    take care of yourself
    vic x

  5. We can do this hunni.... God will provide for you in so many ways with people, with his comfort, his peace... accept it hunni. I know that you don't feel worthy enough, good enough... but HE is the judge, not you so trust him in that and just accept those things he sends your way.

    I love you so very much

    *gentle hugs*

  6. AWW girl. I may not personally relate to your ED issues but I know what it feels like to not feel like you know yourself. We've never been "best friends" before but for whatever reason you're back in my life and for that I am happy. I mean it when I say if there's ever anything I can do for you or to help you I'm here for you. :) Take care of yourself.


  7. Thanks girls! I appreciate all the love and advice!

    I guess I have just been struggling a lot lately with the whole "feeling lonely". I think maybe it's because I am starting to CARE more and I am trying to NOT depend on my ED to "comfort me and be my friend" if that makes any sense.

    I realize that I can't let the hurt from past relationships affect what I do now with new relationships but it's just so damn hard!

    Anyways, I just want to thank you and tell you that I love all of you so much!