Wednesday, May 16, 2012

fat is NOT a feeling!

We spend SO long in our eating disorders internalizing our emotions and it manifesting itself through "I feel fat," that we start to become out of touch with what we are really feeling.  And while it might be true, we might feel fat... why do we feel that way?  What is causing those feelings?  What is underneath those feelings?  Those are the real questions we need to be asking.  What lies underneath those words is what needs to be uncovered, recognized, and dealt with.   

I know for me, it was easier (safer I thought...) for me to focus on my body and how I felt about it, then to deal with what I was really feeling.  To cope with my feelings (anger, sadness, anxiety, ect) I turned it outward and focused it on my body.  Because that was something that I could control.  That was something that I could use to numb out those feelings.  But the longer I was in treatment, the better I started to understand the actual feelings that I used "I feel fat" to hide behind.  And I was able to work on them.  I was able to vocalize what was really going on inside.  It was hard though.  Really hard.  Feeling my feelings was so uncomfortable (and sometimes overwhelming or scary) that it took a lot of time for me to really believe that those kinds of feelings are healthy, that they will come - but they will also go, and that feeling them won't kill me.  But it took time for me to get there.

I have to admit that there still are those times when I find myself thinking or saying this, but it doesn't happen as often and I am a lot more aware of it.  I understand now that when "I feel fat" starts to come into my thoughts - I know it's because I am feeling some kind of emotion (like anger, sadness, anxiety, ect.) and I am able to ask myself "Why am I feeling this way?  What's going on that is causing these feelings?"  What am I really feeling?  And I am able to express my feelings in a more healthy way.   


  1. you said it all girl :) the real feelings beneath these words are sometimes so hard to identify and it's easier to just let those emotions where they are, safely stored away. learning to understand the feelings is a long process but it can be done and it's what will make us stronger.
    love, tess =)

  2. Terrific post - the rehab I was at treated all addiction issues from alcohol, drugs, gambling through shopping, eating, exercise, sex as simply the preferred method of choice of the sufferer to deal with the emotions they wanted to suppress. I glad I was taught that then early on, I've met many who stopped taking drugs for alcohol to take over and so they stop alcohol for gambling to take hold etc. All the time running from feeling... I still don't really "do" emotions well at all.

  3. amen! I had no idea until last week how much we, as humans, tend to project our emotions on our physical bodies…. they are two entirely different entities and it takes so much awareness and intuition to realize that and separate what we can touch and control from what we cannot. Thank you for this reminder this week. xoxo, C

  4. I totally get you. Numbing to cope was my deal all the way. So glad to share recovery today! :)