National Eating Disorders Association

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Fruitninja
My husband has an eating disorder. Glad I found you all

Well, I guess I'm not alone. During a difficult period in our marriage my husband lost a significant amount of weight. He was slightly overweight to begin with (no big deal), and once the stress passed and things improved I thought he would put the weight back on. Wrong. Over 3 years later and it's worse and our relationship has been deteriorating over it. I spotted this pretty early on, as I am a nurse and had briefly dealt with anorexia myself as a teen, so I know a lot of what he's thinking. I'm reasonable, supportive and he respects my opinions in all other areas, but the denial seems insurmountable. He has tried to pass his starvation off as "being healthy" and food conscious, but there is nothing healthy about this. He restricts his calories so much, has lost most of his muscle mass and smells of ketones half the time. I live a healthy lifestyle, am fit and know quite a bit about health and nutrition. I've asked if he would include me in his goals and we'll do this together but he is completely unwilling to maintain a normal weight in a healthy manner. He's sneaky, lies to my face, angry, defensive and even told me that it must be me. He acts smug, like I'm an idiot and has told me I must be the crazy one. Who is this man? We are 40 and have 2 young children and an amazing life aside from this. I've asked him to get help, found a Dr., begged, pleaded, cried, bargained, threatened, ignored it. All of it to no avail. He won't even admit he has a problem. This is ruining our (previously great) sex life, our intimacy, trust... and I'm out of ideas and at the end of my rope. I'm going to try the hotline. Thank you guys for sharing. I feel a bit better knowing that I'm not alone in this.

wakeuptohope
We both have eating disorders

I am so sad and confused. I am a man in his early 60's, my wife of 6 years in her mid 50's. I have been a compulsive overeater for over 40 years and have have been in and out of recovery throughout. Two weeks into our marriage I walked by the bathroom window and saw my wife over the toilet with her hand in her mouth. Suddenly, it all made sense. The frequent bathroom visits, the constant smells, the huge amount of food disappearing, the skeleton body, the pills, etc. Uneducated that I was, I confronted her in a supportive way and suggested counciling. She denied having a problem. Fast forward 5+ years, I have tried talking, ignoring, research, therapy, Intimacy (even hugging) has not happened once, she sometimes does not clean up the bathroom messes, she wants more money because the food bill is so high and the stress has contributed to my disorder and I have gained weight. I cry every night. I want to leave but feel guilty. I tell her about my trigger foods and she responds by buying huge quantities for me. Most experts say to offer support and love, but she is still in denial. If she dies from this, I feel like I should have been able to do something to help. I do not want sympathy, but I cant live like this for the rest of my life. I just dont know what to do. A former bulimic friend even took her to a specialist and she walked out halfway through. Thanks for listening. I know I am not alone.

wakeuptohope
I know how you must feel

Fruitninja, I posted my comments under yours by mistake. Wanted to start a new topic. But I wanted to say you inspired me to tell my story. I have a strong faith, but I dont know why we are being tested like this. I know this much for sure- I cant fix anyone but myself. I pray that your husband recovers form this terrible disease so that he can once again be the husband and father you remember. Take care.

Fruitninja
Well it was good to see your

Well it was good to see your reply, even if it was accidental. I'm glad you have faith, me too. I practice yoga and meditation, which is helpful. I finally came to the conclusion that this is really wearing on my well being. And I hate to be selfish, but I can't let his disease slowly kill us both. My stomach gets knotted when I can see he's lost more weight. Or when a friend or family member makes a comment. Daily things. And I want off the roller coaster. Of hoping and fighting and pretending and all of that. So, I'm going to try to get us help and turn it over to God. I can't go through this like this, so I'm out if he doesn't get treatment.

And please, try to take care of yourself. You deserve some enjoyment and peace of mind in life yourself. This is a good start for us. The support groups sound good.

Adage
Well said Fruitninja. Its

Well said Fruitninja. Its important to take care of ourselves as well as our loved ones. That being said, NEDA's hotline is available during the weekday from 9:00AM-9:00PM most days at 1-800-931-2237. The volunteers who man the hotline are trained, and I've found that just having someone to talk to realtime is a good way of feeling supported.
I also like to check out this page: https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/stories-of-hope when the going gets tough. I think that it is important to have hope but like you two have said, there is also only so much we as people can do. Best of luck to you both.

Adage

wakeuptohope
Thanks, both of you. I tried

Thanks, both of you. I tried the helpline but got so emotional dialing that I hung up. Trying again today. Thanks for your support.

kelsey207
Hi wakeuptohope,

Did you end up calling the Helpline? It makes sense that it would be an emotional experience. Please know that they're trained to be there for you.

You can also click-to-chat online with the NEDA Helpline. There's a link in the sidebar on the left, and more information here: http://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/information-referral-helpline .

Good luck! Please keep us updated!

wakeuptohope
Helpline helps

Thanks, kelsey207, I did call the helpline and it did help. I continue to get hope from knowing I am not alone.

Adage
You're never alone. We'll

You're never alone. We'll always be here for you.