National Eating Disorders Association

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Relapse and Adjusting to Recovery

Hello there, I hope you are well.

If you've not seen my other posts I want to tell you a little about my ED experience. I've dealt with anorexia off and on for almost ten years. More on than off. I also dealt with purging both oral and laxative types for about 1 year.

The past two years have been very rough. My 4th(?) relapse started the end of 2017 into 2018 and had gotten to it's worst point the beginning of 2019. I had reached my lowest weight ever and that was quite frightening. This was only exacerbated by the death of my grandmother around thanksgiving 2018.

Earlier this year after almost six years being vegetarian I decided to go vegan for ethical reasons. This actually quite helped my recovery which started after my doctor visit revealing no medical reason for my weight loss. I was trying, and still am, lots of really delicious vegan food and found keeping up with calories increasingly difficult when buying things from vegan bakeries or restaurants. It's weird but my excitement for food overshadowed my anorexia.

But just as I thought I was doing better, the anniversary of my grandmother passing came around. Something I've dreaded all year. I am typically depressed, and I had worried I'd struggle throughout the year with that added depression following the event. I did end up turning things around though which was strange.

If it makes sense, I was almost too depressed to obsess over food. It has drastically shifted what I previously thought my depression could be. I struggle to get out of bed or to shower or care for myself. I'm not completely gross but I'm not good about stuff like I used to be.

I'm not recovered by any means. I still restrict and worry about what I'm eating but I no longer log in my calories obsessively. Though I've almost gone back to that a few times.

Lately though, I've considered stepping back into it. I'm not at a weight I hate but I am desperately scared of gaining. I can't blame the anniversary for my problem as it has been there always. But I feel as though I do not have the strength I thought I did. My grandmother and I were close and I still love her deeply. I just feel like I'm trying to control my feelings about her passing with focusing on my ED. Just as I did last year when she passed.

I'm in a much better place this year than last in terms of my anorexia. Just not in a great place emotionally still. I have yet to process the event even a year later. And relapsing and giving up becomes more tempting every time I even attempt to start acknowledging it. Especially when I have such self loathing thoughts.

If anyone reading this has experienced the death of a loved one I am so deeply sorry. It is such a painful thing to go through and I genuinely wish for you to recover from this loss. I hope you feel better. Know you are loved.

I am very sorry

that your Grandmother can no longer be with you. I am also very close to my Grandparents.

Thank you

I appreciate your kind words. I'm glad to hear that you have a close relationship with them. Those types of bonds are very special <3

I’m so sorry you’re going

I’m so sorry you’re going through this. I lost my grandmother in May this year, and I relate to so much of what you said. Especially the being too depressed for the anorexia to take over. I’m in that place now.

Sending You Love

I'm also sorry to hear that you are going through this. It is such a strange difficult place to be in. I hope you take comfort in good memories. Please remember to take your time and acknowledge your feelings. And be gentle with yourself. We all grieve differently and I think that's something I've had to come to terms with myself. Don't feel like you should feel a certain way at any given time. I've had to remember that as well. I appreciate your condolences. I send you much love and warmth.

Thank you

Thank you so much. I’m so close to my grandparents on my moms side of the family, they were the only loving and safe place I had growing up. Because of them I still got to know love without violence. My grandpa was a better father figure to me than my own father. So losing my grandmother hit so hard and I find grief still hitting me when I least expect it. Thank you for validating that it doesn’t just happen and then it’s over.

I Know The Feeling

It's hard growing up without those important figures in your life. My father wasn't much of a father figure either. I know how important it can be to have someone fill that roll. I'm so happy your grandparents gave you a sense of comfort. It's something that really does make a difference when you're having a hard time. I know it did having my grandma in my life.

I struggled for so long thinking that because something had happened that it meant I couldn't do anything about it. So it felt unjust to be upset. But that's so untrue. Feeling grief and being hurt by things doesn't have an endcap. It's a process that we may never truly move on from. But the good part is that we do start to heal. I thought I couldn't reach this point a year and a few months ago. But I am here, still grieving, but aware that it won't always feel the same. Everyone's time spent healing is so very different. So we shouldn't push ourselves. But know, as I've had to remind myself, that whenever grief feels like it might be taking over your life, that you have the strength to move forward. Never ever forget that pain you feel. It is such a normal human emotion. Let it drive you to be better every day for those you love and hold dear. I send you love and hope you are well.

I'm Sorry

I hope you feel better! I just hope you won't give in to ED in your sadness. Wishing you strength and happiness. We are here for you.

I'm doing better

Hi there, just wanted to give an update since I haven't replied recently. I am doing better as of now. I've had a lot of ED thoughts pop into my head but have tried to resist giving into them. I've slipped up here and there but feel I've made so much progress these past few months. Seeing family over the holidays helped. Knowing that my grandma is still well remembered relieved a lot of stress around her death. I have not been counting calories or obsessing over workouts which is great progress for me. I do hope to re-enter a regular workout routine soon because of digestion issues and I am reminding myself that it is to help me feel good internally.

I'm so happy to have received such warm, encouraging support. Talking to others has been a key part of me making a strong push towards recovery and I'm thankful for every response. I'm so sorry that anyone is able to relate to my post, as I know how painful these things are to deal with. I hope you are doing well and if not that you feel better soon. Sending love, and thank you again for your support.

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