Cassie's Story: 3 months into recovery

My Bulimia began after I had anorexia for 2 years at age 14. I really believed I would never recover. Only now, I’m beginning to believe I can.

Giving up bulimia (MIA) has been like ending an abusive relationship. The more I think about my relationship with it and how I have struggled to rid my life of its presence, the more it resembles an abusive partner.

I was convinced I could never recover

For the past ten years and up until around 4 months ago, I was convinced that even if I really wanted to part with MIA, I couldn’t. I had tried and ‘failed’ so many times stooping lower with each defeat.

As a result I convinced myself that for all the harm I was doing to my body, my mind, my social life and my chances of being happy, the positives of my addiction outweighed the negatives. ‘It’s not that bad’ I would tell myself. ‘I can usually control myself’ I would whisper to myself in those desperate moments where my secret came crashing down on my ‘normal’ life throwing it into disarray.

I was so certain that it gave me control and helped me cope as I sacrificed one aspect of my life after the other to be able to have the time to shop, binge, purge, hide and lie.

I was too afraid to tell anyone what I was going through

I never told anyone because I knew they would ask ‘why don’t you just stop’… ‘why don’t you just leave MIA’. But they didn’t understand my MIA or my relationship with it. They couldn’t.

The one person in my life I finally did confess to tried to tell me that I didn’t need it, that I am a beautiful, intelligent and amazing person. I didn’t believe him. The only version I saw of myself was through the eyes of MIA. That was overweight, incompetent, weak, boring and most importantly, not the person that everyone thought I was.

Starting recovery...

My recovery began about 4 months ago. I hadn’t reached rock bottom at this point (I had done so many times in the past) but decided to try again after I confirmed that every decision I had made for the past ten years and the decisions I am now trying to make about my future, have been influenced by and dictated by MIA. I wanted to do a Master degree… but what would that do to my bulimia?? I wanted to live with friends… What if they found out?? I had had enough.

I also have a friend who was tragically diagnosed with skin cancer. This was something that shook my world and put my obsession with my weight in perspective.

We never know how long we have in this world nor can we decide. One thing I knew for sure: if I knew my time was limited, the last thing I would be thinking is ‘I wish I had have been thinner in my life’.

I imagined the regret I would (and do feel) about having lived a life dominated by MIA. This is something I still reflect on whenever I think that maybe recovery can wait until after this lot of exams, after I finish uni, when the holidays start etc.

I started to make gradual chances

I began my recovery telling myself that I was only trying to ‘cut down’ and resolved to restrict my B/P to every second day. I told my partner who was completely supportive.

Telling him was the hardest thing I had ever done. I had to cry hysterically for 2 hours with him guessing what was wrong before I could even begin to talk!! But it was also the best thing I could have done.

It felt good to tell him about my small successes and see how happy it made him.

Bulimia Help gave me the support I needed

As Bulimia has always been something incredibly private for me, I could never completely open up to my partner. Also, for all his best efforts, he couldn’t possibly know what I was going through. That is where Bulimia Help has offered me support.

I read through the bulimia recovery stories and through accounts of people’s experiences, all of which I could relate to.

I found people who seemed like amazing individuals and it made me realise I was not the problem - there are thousands of intelligent beautiful men and women dealing with this problem and it is a tragedy that we blame ourselves!

One of the most important aspects of Bulimia Help is that it made recovery seem plausible

Everything I had previously encountered presented recovery as being this soul-searching process whereby you have to discover ‘what is wrong with you’ struggle for years, possibly for life.

Anyone who has ever felt the pain and desperation of those first weeks/ months in recovery would know that the idea of living in such a state would put anyone off recovery.

Bulimia Help was different! It promised me that I could recover and gave me concrete steps that I would take to put me down that path. Most importantly, it made sense.

I didn’t believe it at first. I followed the structured eating plan certain (and prepared) that I would gain weight. I felt like I was eating so much but was still getting hungry and ‘slipping up’.

I really noticed a complete reduction in my urges to binge when I introduced previously ‘forbidden’ foods such as chocolates and sweets into my eating plan. It felt amazing the first few times I was able to eat chocolate without binging, have an ice cream or cake with friends.

It took time, but it has transformed the role of food in my life from a fear to a pleasure

I have not put on any weight and after 2 months of eating pretty much what I feel like, when I feel like (still trying to be reasonably healthy but never restricting) I still can’t believe how much my life has changed for the better.

I have rediscovered spontaneity!

Before I would never go out with friends spontaneously, join people for lunch at the last minute and if anyone interfered with one of my many carefully planned binges, it would seem like the end of the world.

In the last few months I feel like I have gained hours of my day and the freedom to just relax and be a fully participating member of my life again!! I had forgotten what it felt like.

I feel like my life at the moment is more ‘normal’ than it has been at any point in my memory.

It’s strange; most days I think about how proud I am of how far I’ve come. Of how much better my life is. Nevertheless, there is still the shadow of my MIA. I still think about it. I have to remind myself of how horrible it was.

I had been so wrong about everything that I thought MIA gave me

There is still the shadow of my MIA. I still think about it. I know I can live without it but sometimes I still ask myself if I can really live my whole life without it. I have to remind myself of how horrible it was.

Each week it gets easier - some are better than others

I have had to learn to feel emotion, pain, exhaustion and frustration all without the support of MIA. I know it will take a little more time but I also know I had been so so wrong about everything that I thought MIA gave me.

I want my life to be my own! 

- Cassie


Sass's picture
Thank you for writing this -

Thank you for writing this - I find it really inspiring! I'm 6 weeks into recovery and finding it hard - but unlike all the other times when I've tried, I don't feel on my own.


Lors's picture
Hey Cassie, Thanks so much

Hey Cassie,

Thanks so much for sharing your story, truly inspirational :) you should be so proud of yourself! I hope that in time I have a story like yours to share.

Wishing lots of happiness without MIA :)

Take care,
Lor x

Have fun, be kind to yourself and be happy :-)

Mouli's picture
Hi Cassie, thank you SO much

Hi Cassie, thank you SO much for writing this post. I want to be where you are desperately. I have started seeing benefits as well as challenges in my recovery which is one month, one day today!!! I am proud of myself for coming this far I didn't think it was truly possible. No major binges or no purges and it has shown me how strong I can be. Along with the sound advice we've been shown in the e book and the fantastic support on this site. Reading inspirational articles like yours gives me even more hope. Thank you and congratulations on your recovery. How better we are without it!!!! take care, m x

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