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Possible TW having an eating disorder and being overweight.

I am overweight but have struggled with an eating disorder my entire life and I find it really hard because even health professionals don’t take you seriously and ignore you if you ever dare bring it up. They also say really rude and upsetting things if you even mention losing weight to them and just generally I feel so embarrassed because of the stereotypes attached to eating disorder and me not being any of them. I know that statistically there are MORE overweight and healthy weight people with eating disorders than underweight people, but it is just like no one believes that it is an issue and it is constantly getting ignored with the professionals I work with even though it takes up so much of my life. Does anyone else relate? Or have a similar issues? 

Re: Possible TW having an eating disorder and being overweight.

Hi @Eden1717,

 

Thank you for starting this discussion, I think this is a really important conversation for our community to have- so many people can relate Heart I am looking forward to hearing from the rest of the community here!

 

I would also be interested to hear how we can better communicate to health services and more widely across the country for the voice of people with eating disorders to be heard Heart I might tag a few builders and mods who might be interested to share their thoughts and offer some support Eden.
@Bee @mrmusic @Hozzles @drpenguin @Sam9631 @queenP @scared01 @MisoBear @recharging_introvert 

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Re: Possible TW having an eating disorder and being overweight.

Hi @Eden1717,

 

I just wanted to introduce myself and let you know that what you're facing is real and you are worthy of being heard by medical professionals.  You are correct in thinking that many people with eating disorders are at a healthy weight or are overweight, but I think many people just think of people being severely underweight as the 'face' of eating disorders. My own sister has an eating disorder, and she is at a healthy weight but has struggled with her weight her whole life. She has a very hard time accepting herself as she is and it makes me very sad to see her go through so much pain. However, she is working on it with a psychologist and health professionals now and is getting better, slowly. 

 

Is there at least one person who believes you and supports you in what you're going through?

____________________________________________________
“Your now is not your forever."
― John Green, Turtles All the Way Down

Re: Possible TW having an eating disorder and being overweight.

@Eden1717 this is a really big problem..

I've had seriously disordered eating dismissed because I was a "healthy" weight, though I was lucky enough to escape that kind of rudeness.

 

It sucks because not everyone's body reacts to stuff in the same way, but that doesn't change how serious the issue is even though doctors act like it does.

 

Have you ever looked up Health At Every Size?

There's an Australian branch of it, and their website has a list of HAES doctors. Their approach to EDs and weight tends to be a lot more constructive so they might be worth checking out if you have the time. 

Re: Possible TW having an eating disorder and being overweight.

Hey @Eden1717

 

I am really sorry to hear that you've had such a difficult time with your health practitioners. Unfortunately there is a lot of stigma and misinformation around eating disorders, even in the the health field (which can be incredibly disappointing and disheartening to experience firsthand). I really want to strongly outline that you aren't alone in this, and many individuals who are recovering from eating disorders have experienced this prejudice in the past

For the moment, the best way to defend against some of the ignorance that you may face from health practitioners (and others!) is to arm yourself with information. Reach Out and Recover (ROAR) is an amazing Australian resource for those who are questioning whether they do have an eating disorder, or are struggling with communicating exactly what is wrong to their doctor. On their website they have a "Create a Report" page. This report asks a series of questions around your behaviours/thoughts/feelings and other things related to body dysmorphia/eating disorders. At the end of the quiz, it gives you the option to print out a personalised report for yourself, or a doctors report for them to read. This can really help cut down on the confusion, frustration, and stress that can be part of explaining an eating disorder to others. 

Another really good strategy is, when you are looking around for a GP you can always call their practice before you have booked an appointment and check if they have experience in treating anyone with an eating disorder. While this may not guarantee a good experience, you may have better luck with them understanding the many difficulties that are associated with eating disorders and body dysmorphia. 

Re: Possible TW having an eating disorder and being overweight.

@Andrea-RO @Tiny_leaf @MisoBear @Jess1-RO  thanks for the replies. I have tried telling doctors but gps have been useless and I just am not sure I can take the rudeness and mistreatment another time like I really don’t think I am strong enough for that. I am just so tired of constantly fighting with it in my head but there is nothing I can do to get a break. 

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Re: Possible TW having an eating disorder and being overweight.

That sounds so difficult @Eden1717. It can be really hard to get treatment for eating disorders in Australia, especially because some hospitals and services only decide to treat the more 'severe' cases. It's so unfair. Smiley Sad If you ask me, I think there should be more resources and support available to help people before they get to that stage.

It's awful that you've had to go through so many doctors and still don't feel as though you're being heard or taken seriously. Smiley Sad Do you have anyone who can come with you to an appointment? Sometimes I feel that doctors take me more seriously if a family member comes with me.

I think the resources that have been suggested so far are really great. Another resource you might find helpful is the Butterfly National Helpline. They have people trained in providing support to people with eating disorders. They can also help you find health professionals with experience in eating disorders.

Another thing you can try is referring yourself to a psychological service instead of going through a GP. University clinics tend to provide cheaper sessions and you can usually refer yourself to them. Some of these clinics see people with eating disorders, though it depends on where you live.

Re: Possible TW having an eating disorder and being overweight.

Hi @Eden1717,

 

I'm sorry you are going through this, no one deserves to be treated like this by their GP. GPs are there to help you, not to judge you. The only thing I could recommend is having a good self-care strategy in place for when you go and see a doctor (things you can do to help yourself feel better after you go through a tough time at the doctor). Here's some info about self-care if you'd like some ideas on what you could do.  

____________________________________________________
“Your now is not your forever."
― John Green, Turtles All the Way Down

Re: Possible TW having an eating disorder and being overweight.

@WheresMySquishy @MisoBear  thanks I have tried the butterfly foundation but it is not super helpful. I just am not really able to deal with it right now I am trying but I don’t really know what to do. 

Re: Possible TW having an eating disorder and being overweight.

Hey @Eden1717, I am sorry to hear you have not found that service helpful. It must be difficult to not be in the position to deal with it right now. It sounds like it has all been quite exhausting and draining for you. It is hard to reach out for help as it is but then to receive judgement and mistreatment just makes it all so much harder Heart It sounds like you are trying your hardest in what is a very complex and difficult thing to navigate. Please know we are always here to listen.