National Eating Disorders Association
Blog
Recovery

For many people, dieting begins with a promise of a new life with better health and a feeling of euphoric lightness. We learn implicitly and explicitly that we are more desirable when thin and that our lifestyle should be directed toward keeping the body within a very narrow definition of an acceptable and healthy-sized body. 

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To an athlete, an injury or illness, change in coach, or retirement from sport may feel like a traumatic event. These are three factors in which the athlete has the potential to go off the grid from their usual support systems: teammates, coaches, athletic trainers, or strength coaches.

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The #MeToo movement—originally started by social activist Tarana Burke in the 1990s—was the story of 2017. Fueled by a moment in which women were coming forward to tell their stories of assault and abuse by men in power—and seeing those same men lose decades-long careers as a result—a door opened, seemingly overnight, for people to tell their own stories of assault and harassment. Finally, a light was shining on the pervasiveness of this issue.  

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When I started @iamdaniadriana five years ago, I never thought that I would amass nearly 100,000 followers on Instagram. My dream when I started @iamdaniadriana was to give a voice to those who have felt marginalized from the eating disorder community, people who have felt let down or ignored in the past as they didn’t fit the “typical” look of someone with an eating disorder. 

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Waking up at 2am thinking about food. Surfing the internet at work, looking up new recipes when you have a deadline coming up. Planning and stopping at fast food restaurants between every meal. 

This isn’t a buildup to a funny meme about loving food. This was my life until I was diagnosed with binge eating disorder (BED) at 28 years old.

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Mike Marjama currently has a successful career as an American baseball catcher for the Seattle Mariners, but he once struggled with an eating disorder that threatened his ability to play the sport he loves. As a teen, Marjama attended Granite Bay High School in California and later played baseball for California State University. While in high school, Marjama developed an eating disorder that eventually led to inpatient treatment. 

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I began my career as a psychotherapist when I was 24 years old. I was not yet a year out of graduate school. I was eager, ambitious, and ready to start this next chapter in my life. And like many social work graduates, I had grand plans to save the world. 

I knew I wanted to focus on eating disorders treatment, which was born out of my own struggle with bulimia, but at that time, it felt too soon out of my own recovery, and honestly, I felt too wet behind the ears as a clinician, so eating disorder treatment needed to take a back seat. 

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Stages of Recovery

Stages of RecoveryUNDERSTANDING STAGES OF CHANGE IN THE RECOVERY PROCESS

My journey to diagnosis for anorexia started when I was 20. I’d had enough of feeling the way I did and being controlled by emotion and intrusive thoughts. During this time, we discovered it had started at 10 years old due to issues at school and weight-related family traits. 

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When I entered residential treatment at age 21, I did not believe I deserved love. I had struggled with an eating disorder for almost a decade at that point and was tired, depressed, and frustrated. I didn't re-admit to treatment with the hopes of recovery necessarily. I didn't want to continue living in the hell of my eating disorder, but I felt hopeless about my future. 

In treatment, I listened to my dietician and put one foot in front of the other. I went through the actions of recovery because the prospect of staying the same seemed unbearable. 

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