National Eating Disorders Association

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Inner conflict/ urges

Hello, I usually post in the maintaining recovery forum, but I’ve found myself back to struggling to fight off urges recently. I made a post in the other forum too but will add a little more here.

I’ve really had to take some time to reflect and think about why I’ve had such strong eating disorder urges and thoughts after doing so well with it for a while, along with urges to use drugs again. While I haven’t given in to the eating disorder urges, they are steadily becoming stronger. I’ve been engaging in behaviors recently that jeopardize my recovery from addiction as well. The slope is feeling too slippery to ignore.
I realized it isn’t necessarily one thing. Things have been building since this spring when my grandmother died, grandfather having second and third degree burns from an explosion with his oxygen and stove and continuing even now to need more surgeries, have a medical issue that stirred up trauma and prompted an exam and upcoming test that are very triggering. Along with unbearable facial pain, and knowing I have until next spring to have to have surgery and the surgeon saying I just have to endure it until then because there’s nothing else that will help.
These things have been very trying, but I have struggled greatly to have any connection to my higher power since my grandpas oxygen exploding and burns. I have been on the receiving end of cruelty and known people, one coming to mind in particular, throughout my life who have suffered unspeakable trauma. Never in my life have I seen up close another person, let alone the one I love most in the world, suffer as much pain as a burn victim. A 92 year old burn victim undergoing the procedures that people much younger than him can hardly tolerate. It makes my stomach churn thinking about it.

Though I only attended NA meetings in residential, I adopted the 12 steps into my life ever since to maintain my sobriety over the last 4.5 years. My definition of a high power, or rather specifics of my beliefs, has changed a couple times since first getting clean. Luckily I found through it that as long as I have some type of faith in a higher power, whatever it may be, the 12 steps work for me. I’ve found it necessary to adopt the 12 steps into eating disorder recovery as well. However since I’ve had a crisis of faith and been unable to have a connection with any higher power on any level recently, I find myself back on step two and needing to work to resolve this inner conflict; because it’s clearly an issue for me and I find myself too close to paths I don’t want to go back down.

I also will my talking to my psychiatrist about trying a different antidepressant until I can attend the trauma IOP she wants me to but isn’t possible until after surgery in March (due to not being able to function well with the pain and only holding the basic pieces of my life together). I see no reason to just let my depression be so severe for months to come without at least trying something else. I have got to learn to advocate for myself even if it’s hard (due to trauma history). It’s something only I can learn to do for myself.

I’m sorry this was long, and thanks for listening.

It sounds like you've been

It sounds like you've been through a lot. Keep fighting,whatever you do,don't give up. That's what my therapist told me last week. I too have been having urges,some I've acted upon. It's such a hard battle we fight against are you doing now

Hi, thank you for replying.

Hi, thank you for replying. Today is a little better after seeing my therapist. She validated that I’m making progress with trauma and that the IOP can (needs to) wait until after surgery in the spring because it’s a big commitment. Urges wise, I’m still having panic around a certain type of food and been avoiding it but not exactly restricting even though I know this fear is irrational and avoiding it long term isn’t good. I’m still trying to work on step two of the twelve steps and make peace with what’s happened to my grandfather but it’s difficult. I’m trying really hard to stay on track and not let my urges get the best of me.

How are you now?

How are you doing since your post? It's great that you are working on the various steps and also that you are able to recognize what is irrational thinking. How does that make you feel though? Are you able to get past the feelings and just stick with wise mind? I know with myself that's the hardest part because my feelings are so strong. Sorry I haven't replied to your posts prior to this. I've just been in such a funk I've been having a hard time responding to anything. Hope you continue to improve and I'm glad that your therapist agrees that the IOP can wait


No need to be sorry, I’ve been keeping up with your posts too and you need to take care of you first!
My mood goes up and down a lot during the day (every day pretty much) so I’m a bit lower now but had the type of food I’ve been avoiding at dinner and I feel really guilty about it. My anxiety is pounding in my chest but I’m trying to breathe through instead of compensating or numbing out with a tv show right away. Rationally I know it’s okay that I had it but like you said, the strong feelings make it difficult to listen to wise mind.