National Eating Disorders Association

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bagnja1
Helpless

Hello,

I hope everyone is doing well.

I have read through a few posts, and I am sorry for being repetitive by asking probably the same questions as someone else, but it always feels better when you get a response to your own issues. Especially since everyone has a different story.

My wife has struggled with her image since she was a toddler. She told me that even as a kid she didn't like the way she looked. Along with that she has suffered with extreme social anxiety since birth. She does not function well in public and when at work she has to fake being who she is to succeed. When she was 13, she started purging and limiting food intake. We started dating at 18 and she told me about the eating disorder around 19. We are now both 32 years old.

Over the years I have done more and more research, and found that as she gets older her body is going to more than likely fail. This worries me because she is my soul mate. Divorce to me is not an option, because I love her so much. This one issue is pretty much all we ever fight about.

As far as what I have done to try to help. I probably haven't been the best support, to be honest. I started off by chastising and fussing at her once I found out. This is due to my own moral compass issues where I get probably a little too angry when people lie to me. So, when she lied to me about it or she actually purged I would raise my voice and just make her feel bad. At the time I felt she was being selfish and she didn't care. On top of that she has promised to go to therapy for years but has never gone. She states that she gets major anxiety having to find a doctor to go to, and doesn't like being rejected. She said that she has reached out but the doctor either wasn't a good fit or they were full.

Now I know the way I acted above is not good. It's wrong. I did wrong. Recently, she has been opening up to me about her disorder. She has had no traumatic event. She says that she is the way she is and she has grown accustom to it. She wants me to talk with her about it, but I don't know how to help her. I do not know what to say.

My question: What should I say to help her through dark times? I can definitely tell that she is in a phase of binging and purging. I caught her and it opened the flood gates and this is what triggered me to really change tactics. She keeps putting off a therapist; so i need help with how to get her to go.

Please help,

JB

_admin_moderator
Hello bagnja1, and welcome to

Hello bagnja1, and welcome to the forums. We are glad you are here and seeking support. Your post was edited slightly because of mention of specific numbers and behaviors that may be triggering to other forum members. You can find the community guidelines here: https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/forums/community-guidelinesAdditionally, we just wanted to post up some signs and symptoms of a medical emergency since it seems like you're concerned about her body failing. The following are just some of the signs of a serious problem that demands immediate medical attention:• accidentally or deliberately caused themselves a physical injury• become suicidal• confused thinking and is not making any sense• delusions (false beliefs) or hallucinations (experiencing things that aren’t there)• disoriented; doesn’t know what day it is, where they are or who they are• vomiting several times a day or has uncontrollable vomiting or diarrhea• experiencing dizziness or fainting spells• too weak to walk or collapses• painful muscle spasms• complaining of chest pain or having trouble breathing• blood in their bowel movements, urine or vomit• a body mass index (BMI) of less than 16• an irregular heartbeat, and fast heartbeat, or very low heart beat (less than 50 beats per minute)• cold or clammy skin indicating a low body temperature or has a body temperature of less than 35 degrees Celsius/95 degrees FahrenheitOr any other serious medical concerns If you notice her struggling with any of these, we highly recommend seeking medical attention as soon as possible. Another option is 911. 

BobJ48
JB

The one thing that stands out to me in your note is the fact that for some reason she wants to discuss her situation with you. This is a very positive development. And honestly, despite the fact that she has talked about her problem finding a good therapist, it does sound like she is open to seeing one. Sometimes people do need help making that first appointment,so perhaps you could look and see who is available, and make her appointment for her? If that is possible where you live ?