National Eating Disorders Association
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Recovery

Ah, summer. No school, no deadlines, and no obligations. In their place: cookouts, pool parties, beach trips, vacations, etc. Life is easy-breezy, a two-month-long, Instagram-worthy holiday. 

But—what if your summer isn’t this? What if your summer is actually a story of unstated (but ubiquitous) pressures? The pressure to be easy-going, fun-loving, and spontaneous. To socialize all the time. And of course, to show off that mythical “bikini-body.”

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I know how anorexia makes you feel. You think she is your best friend; you think she can solve everything. She holds you in the night when you feel alone. She walks down the road with you reassuring you that you are valued. She teaches you how to miss meals and you become a team. A team with a unique bond that no one can break. A team that you believe will lead to an amazing life. A team that completes you. But no – the team will fail! 

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Day 28: Tuesday “I forgot how miserable I really used to be...I want my life. I want a personality. I want hobbies. I want love. I want feeling, I want confidence. I can’t have those things along with ED. So goodbye ED. Goodbye forever. I want recovery more than ever.”

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“Be sure to eat your vegetables.” For me, this saying was an everyday staple of my childhood, and although it has been nearly half a decade since I last lived with my parents, I still try my best to follow a healthy diet and lead a healthy lifestyle. During my freshman and sophomore years in college, though, I entrapped myself in this philosophy to the point that I was becoming withdrawn from my friends and creating a relationship with food that was devoid of enjoyment at both the social and sensory levels.

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With the anticipation of celebrating Independence Day growing every day, people all across America seem to be getting ready, picking up paper plates and plastic cutlery, standing in long lines at the supermarket, or stocking up on red, white, and blue clothing to be extra patriotic this year. Among all the excitement of rejoicing in the independence of our country, we may be less attentive to our own needs and sometimes reject our personal cues to re-energize and uplift ourselves.

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If you or a loved one is struggling with an eating disorder, there are a variety of NEDA resources available. From directories of treatment professionals to personal recovery stories, our resources speak to a variety of audiences. Here are a few ways to access support today:

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I spent many summers in fear and trepidation. I felt like this was a season that I didn’t fit in.

There’s good reason because leading up to the warmer months, magazines told me how to get the perfect beach body. When swimsuit season was upon us, I was mortified that I never achieved a body with shipshape abs. 

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“Healing comes in waves and maybe today the wave hits the rocks, but that’s okay, darling. You are still healing.” - Ljeoma Umebinyuo

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Teen Mom OG is a favorite guilty pleasure and it's been one of TV's highest-rated reality shows for years now. The cast invites us into their lives every week as we invite them into our homes, celebrating their highs and supporting their lows. The cast uses their hit show to bring awareness to everything from teen pregnancy to single parenting, adoption, and mental health struggles. Sharing these intimate and personal struggles is very admirable and I applaud them for their bravery. 

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In the wise words of the High School Musical 2 cast, “What time is it? Summertime!”

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