National Eating Disorders Association

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"Not sick enough"

After another week of avoiding the forums, I'm taking the time out of my day to vent.

I still feel conflicted, I'm somewhere in between, "this has been going on for too long and you need help" and "you don't look that sick. No one knows.No one ever needs to know. Everyone has always seem you at this weight your entire life and assumed it was good genes. Why change it now?"

I can't be the only one out there who struggles with this, right?

Part of me knows that I should be making more of an effort towards recovery. I want feel alive instead of exhausted, I want to run around with my child without feeling like my heart is beating out of my chest after 10 minutes. I want my hair to be full and my teeth to stop chipping...

However, I still feel disgusted with myself. I feel as though my eating disorder isn't worth recovering from because I have room to lose more weight, therefore, in my own thoughts, I am not sick. I tell myself that if I ever get back to the point I was 5 years ago, (my boss threatened my job after customer complaints of me looking "sickly") that I may consider getting help. But I'm not there. I feel trapped in between wanting to get better and wanting to continue losing weight.

No one who hasn't been here could possibly take my eating disorder as a serious complaint right now. I have a lot of friends who are of average weight, or are overweight, so constantly compliment my figure. But I don't want it. I feel that without another drastic weight loss that my ED will be brushed aside as me being dramatic, or as not a big deal because I look healthy.

I don't know where to go from here.

Is there anyone else out there who can relate, or has any suggestion on how to move past this?

Hey Sly, I'm on public

Hey Sly, I'm on public transport right now so will prob need to add to this when I get home. You are not alone - I feel like this regularly. I have a few things to say - you deserve help. You have taken a wise, compassionate & powerful step in reaching out here. I'll post more later but I hear you & I feel like this too often, I hear it again & again from other people in recovery in my support group - you're not alone & you deserve help, Luci

Just hearing that there are

Just hearing that there are other people who have struggled with this stupid, conflicting emotions makes me feel a bit better. However, not having any real person to talk to, face to face, who understands makes it a daily struggle against myself.

I don't have anyone to talk to about this. As previously stated, no one I know knows, or would understand, if I bothered opening up. I don't know anyone who has an ED (mostly because I hide myself away at home if I'm not at work, and i work alone) and I know from past experience that trying to tell someone how hard this is, when they have never been there, is nearly hopeless. All I got from it was a guilt trip, "you think YOU'RE fat. That's stupid. I can't imagine how huge you must think I am". I learned the hard way not to bother trying to make anyone who hasn't been there understand how much of a fight it is against myself every day.

I need to start scouring the internet for someone else who is trying to recover, or a group, that I can talk to over the phone or Skype. Living in a small town (and without a vehicle right now) means that a real group (or treatment) isn't a real option for me,

Hey Sly,

Hey Sly,
I'm glad to hear it has been supportive for you to hear that you are not alone. Connecting with others and learning to listen to others has been a great source of support for me too in so many ways.
And your reaching out has helped me because now I get to speak out against the ed a little! and that is good practice for me for speaking out against the ed in my own head too!
Something that really jumped out at me and struck a chord was when you say that you say that you feel your eating disorder "isn't worth recovering from" because you feel you have "more room to lose weight". This is a trap - this is actually not true - your weight is not an indicator of how entrenched you are in the eating disorder - listen to your feelings - you mention feelings exhausted, that you want to run around with your child and not feel like your heart is bothering you, you also mention how the disorder has effected your physical wellbeing in terms of your hair and teeth. These are really reasonable things to want - energy, health and vitality - both for yourself and for your child :) It is wonderful to hear that you want those things and its a good sign that you can identify things that are important to you and worth fighting against the ed for. And I believe it is worth fighting for.
I have to tell myself this so often, and today a few hours before I read your message I was having a heated debate with my therapist that my current weight means that I'm not valid to participate on the eating disorder program I'm on. I realised in the debate that I was trying to generate self-worth from controlling my weight. I was turning to the eating disorder to validate my having a place in treatment. I realised later that this was a dead-end argument. My weight and my ability to maintain the weight that I'm at means I have energy to put into my recovery and participation in the program - which is demanding and draining and confusing. I think that far from meaning that you do not deserve to pursue your own freedom - you deserve more than ever and will be at a good advantage by going for recovery support now. You do not have to manipulate your weight to prove that you deserve to recover. Feeling that you do is a flag that you are in need of support now.
I think that your instincts are correct on two other counts in your message;
1) you say that you can't be the only one who struggles with this conflict and no you are certainly not, as I said earlier its a conflict that comes up regularly and strongly for me and its a conflict I hear echoed again and again in my recovery support group.
2) other people who haven't been through this might not understand and be supportive - this is sadly true. You aren't responsible for educating them, just seek out the people who will support your recovery and focus on building relationships there.
I hope you can find an online support group if there is no face-to-face in your area. Do you ever use the online chat here? I have found it very helpful. There is also a helpline and a referral support.
Take gentle care, take the time you need and I wish you all the best, Luci

Not Sick Enough

Lucia is an excellent source of advice and wisdom.
Personally, I know where you're coming from. I received more compliments about my figure when I was at my sickest (ER bound) then when I got back to my healthy weight. Knowing that I needed to gain weight was terrifying to me, but I want you to know the feeling of being healthy (the energy level, the focus, the positive mood) is all worth it!
Just like you, I would get into this horrible cycle of eating and tell myself, "That's it! I've had it! I'm changing my ways and talking to someone tomorrow." But tomorrow would come and I would convince myself I didn't have a "real problem" and that I should be able to "fix" myself.
Sly, do not down play your emotions and go at this alone. Resources are out there. Some employers (like mine) offer a limited amount of free psychology visits with contracted therapists. It's worth calling your insurance. No insurance? Look toward the community. Some hospitals host support group meetings and don't turn anyone down. Be aggressive with this. You deserve to be happy and healthy.

Thank you all for your kind

Thank you all for your kind words and support. It truly means a lot. This has been a 14 year battle, and it's just so ingrained into my every day life and thoughts now that I'm not sure how to go about living without it.

Even after 14 years, I don't have any family who knows (and my family is limited to my sisters since I grew up in foster care) and they are some of the least understanding and most critical people I have ever met. I love them all the same, but it makes it hard.

I live in a VERY small town, at least an hour from anywhere that may even have potential of therapy. I didn't grow up here, and therefore, also do not have any friends to confide in about this. Talking to my boyfriend never goes well, since he doesn't understand and tell me to "just eat" and only knows how to handle it angrily. (He has told me before that he doesn't believe ED's are a real psychological problem and that it is "as simple as just eating". So, to recap: no friends, no family, no possibility for therapy (and no insurance) and a boyfriend who just doesn't understand. This alone is stressful enough for me, and it makes me feel trapped in this cycle of knowing that this has gone on for too long and I'm going to cut my life short, and thinking that after 14 years I've still made it and I still have every chance to hit that ever diminishing goal weight and that since no one knows, that there's no point in getting better.

Just today I was complimented "Wow. You're so thin. I'd kill to look like that. You're so lucky." I just nodded, and smiled and kept walking. Thinking of telling a complete stranger that in order to look like this that you would have to be willing to kill, and that this is nothing to be envious of. The same could be said for my boyfriend, he constantly tell me how attracted to me that he is, but he also says he wants me to get better. Isn't this contradictory? He couldn't possibly still feel that way if I put on a "healthy" amount of weight.

I'm sorry for the rant, I am just in such an awful place between knowing that I should get better for my daughter, and feeling as though I'm alright and don't need help. Without anyone to talk to about this, I just don't know where to turn.

Hi Sly,

Hi Sly,
No need to apologise for ranting - it is your post, you're going through an extremely tough and confusing time with the eating disorder at the moment. I can really hear how you are swinging between listening to your own voice; recognising that you've been suffering and wanting to get better, and then how the eating disorder comes in and confuses everything telling you you're 'alright and don't need help' or that 'there's no point in getting better'
It is very confusing to try and sort this out by yourself. I have a lot of respect for the strength and clarity you show in being able to get it out there in your post.
As another person with a long history of eating disordered behaviour I relate to your feelings of confusion and I personally think you do need and deserve help.
You mention your daughter as a strong motivating factor for finding out about possible recovery options :) that's a great inspiration and I'm sure she would gain a lot through your recovery. You will also gain a lot of insight to your own heart and mind - its a very personal journey, and this will in turn help your relationship with your daughter.
I'm sorry to hear that your family and boyfriend aren't supportive or understanding.
In terms of family - I have very limited contact with my family. I'm sad that my mom in particular couldn't give me the support that I needed but I am grateful that I have found support among other people.
I'm just saying that so you know you're not alone in trying to go there without the support from your family.
Your boyfriend is wrong when he says that eating disorders are as simple as just deciding to eat.
If it wasn't so tragic it'd be laughable - I've heard this attitude from a lot of people over the years but thankfully there are people who do understand and who will be able to support you.
I live on the outskirts of a small coastal village so I totally hear your commuting pain! It takes me a three hour roundtrip to get to therapy - and that is when the buses and trains link up - most of the time it takes even longer!! I am starting to be able to use the commute time a little bit more productively, I really enjoy the New York Times Fiction podcasts! Do you think you'd be able to get to the nearby town if there was a therapist there you could work with?
If not are there online therapists you could work with?
Have you contacted the Neda Navigators here to see if they can suggest anything?
Best wishes and thinking of you,

Hi Sly,

Hi Sly,
I know this is an old thread but I thought I'd respond anyway. There were many times I thought I wasn' t "bad enough" to get help. I was never very thin, I've struggled with my weight, binge eating and Bulimia. I went to an Overeaters Anonymous meeting years ago and someone who didn't understand the program asked why I was there since I wasn't heavy. She clearly did't get it. (There are some great OA meetings if you want to check them out for support. )

Struggling with disordered eating is about our behaviors, not just how we look. It is the constant thoughts about food, our weight, if our eating habits and our obsessions affect our lives.

You deserve help, regardless of how you appear to others. I hope you're doing well and giving yourself the help you deserve.


not sick enough

I completely understand what you wrote, since I too struggle with this daily 24/7. I've had ED for 20 years and now I'm 40. I'm currently underweight but have been much "sicker" in the past, so I always compare my current weight to my lowest. Therefore, I don't think it's legitimate to seek help, even though my doctors tell me I need hospitalization.

But the reality as you are probably aware, is that there is no such thing as "sick enough". If we had cancer or diabetes, we wouldn't tell ourselves to wait until the worst stages of the disease to get treatment. Of course, we would want treatment right away from the first signs of the illness. Maybe this would help you and I tell ourselves that no amount of suffering should prevent us from feeling better. It's ONE life we have. We need to take it seriously and I tell myself that even one day lost to ED is not worth it.

I hope you find your way and I thank you for expressing your thoughts as well.

I really need help

Ok I'm probably the oldest person here. I'm 71 yrs old and have had an eating disorder for 25 years. I'm not in the danger zone with my weight yet but I'm very close to it. I can't stop wanting to go lower. Everyone I know says I need to gain weight but I get so many complements on how slim I look for my age. I do have a nice figure and look much younger then I am. I'm so scared that this would not end. The thing is I'm not scared enough and I'm in denial about what it's doing to my health. Ever time I decide to make changes I hit a wall. This disorder rules my life. I think about it all day. I weigh myself multiple times a day and count calories in an obsessive way. It scares me so much to let go of it. I think the control I have is what keeps me going with it. I want to overcome it on one hand and the other hand I don't want to change. I think it's like a war I'm having with my self and the eating disorder is winning. It always does. HELP !!!!!

You are not alone

Dear Dottie and Sly 1996,

Thank you both for sharing your stories. It shows your strength since you are willing to take the first step to overcome your ED. I agree with some of the points mentioned by the participants in this topic. It is important that you don’t give up. Support is out there, but you need to seek it. The NEDA hotline is a great resource that provides support and information about what options are available near you: 1-800-931-2237, M-R 9-9, F 9-5 EST. Best of luck!

- NEDA Forum Moderators

Once again, thank you all for

Once again, thank you all for your thoughts and input.
I'd like to say that I've continued taking steps toward looking for recovery since I posted this, but I'd hate to be dishonest. I feel like I've plateaud at wanting help and knowing that need it, and knowing that right now it's unattainable. It's been a very stressful (emotionally and financially) past 2 or so months. I know that I shouldn't be making excuses, but those sorts of things weigh heavily on my shoulders and end up taking priority. Last month, however, I did take a huge step. After another argument with my long term boyfriend, he told me that I can either accept that he is trying to help and that I need to find help or we can part ways. He's has been the only one who has, ever known and it is a huge weigh in his shoulders to spend every day doing all he can to help, watching my ED destroy my life and our relationship and that he cannot even talk to anyone about it. I was so angry at him for it, which was very selfish of me. I had a grown man pleading at me to save my life and I basically laughed on his face about it. After a very long day (another argument, a comment about my weight from a stranger, another chipped tooth), I decided that he was right and that I needed to come clean and tell someone and look for help. Unfortunately, I had no one in particular to tell. I have spent years driving away every friend I have ever had, and I am without any close family. I decided to make a bold move and tell everyone I knew at once. I made a video coming clean, asking for understanding and support and posted it to Facebook. It was terrifying but I wad desperate. The responses were mostly supportive, thankfully. But here I am now, wishing I had never gone through with it. The options are close to none where I am. I don't have insurance. I can't afford help. I live in a tiny town, hours from the nearest town city that even had a treatment options. I don't even have a vehicle to get to a doctor of any sort. feel like I came clean, and now have people expecting my recovery and it's never going to happen. I've tried doing it on my own. I can't. The ED will win every time if I try to keep doing this on my own.
I'm so lost...

Stay Strong

Dear sly1996,

It is great to hear that you have support and it was very brave of you to upload a video to tell everyone you know. I highly recommend that you contact the NEDA hotline as stated before to see if there might be support groups that are more accessible for you. Don’t forget YOU ARE NOT ALONE! You have taken the first step to recovery by acknowledging that you have an ED and attempting to seek help. It is important to not lose hope.

These links might be helpful:

Sharing with others:
Positive body image:
Recovery and relapse prevention:
Stories of Hope:

Happy holidays and stay strong!

- NEDA Forum Moderators


I don't know if this is where I am supposed to post this haha.

(Note: I originally wrote this to a specific person I was reaching out to. I just figured I would post it here because I am really looking for help now, and "not sick enough" is something I feel like I can really relate to).

I am a highschooler, and a recovering anorexic/orthorexic. I guess when I first starting developing negative behaviors I didn’t even think they were a problem. As a child and early “tween”, I was always complimented for being naturally thin, though I ate whatever the hell I wanted. In middle school, I started learning about diets and weight loss, and it began to interest me, even though it still wasn’t anything I would consider doing. However, I am a pretty quiet person (a senior once asked if I am mute haha), and I started to notice that people recognized me for my thinness. It was around this time that I had my first panic attacks, and I developed my anxiety, depression, and OCD. Fast forward to freshman year of high school; I was taking challenging classes, making some new friends, and felt that part of the complete “high school package” was joining a sport. Unfortunately, sports and I do not mix well, but I had always liked running. So, I decided I wanted to join spring track.

The ironic part is that when I first joined track, I thought “wow, I’ll be running so much I can eat even more than what I eat now :)”. However, I started doing the opposite for a few reasons. My dad had just started dieting, and had gotten a calorie counting app (can you see where this is going?). Also, I had signed up for track alongside one of my best friends, who was severely anorexic. I found myself determined to “eat healthy”, so I got the same calorie counter app as my dad, and started obsessing over everything I ate. What started as a certain caloric intake became gradually less. What started as track became cross country when the season ended, and I was running a lot, plus additional activities outside of that. I started to lose weight, but I couldn’t see it. I still thought I was being healthy, that everything I was doing was like people told me: admirable and good for me. I became an expert at creating low-calorie concoctions, and ate less and less regular food. I was getting deeper into my illness and didn’t even know it.

I distinctly remember going away that summer to cross country camp as a moment that I now see as, to say the least, really bad. I was rooming with my anorexic friend, and unlocked a side of myself I was ashamed of. The side that wanted to be thinner than her, to restrict more than her, and to compete with her in a silent but deadly battle. Every meal became a war fought over the illusion of smiles. Essentially we competed to see who could restrict more. By the start of sophomore year, I was eating a lot less than before and exercising more than ever. I hated anything that was not low calorie, and grew anxious when I couldn’t plan my meals. One night, my parents made a last-minute decision to have my biggest fear food. I started hiding it in my lap, and when they caught me doing it I started crying. That was when they knew.

I was sent to a new therapist, who told me I was anorexic. I had lost a certain amount of pounds over the summer and was decidedly underweight. I started seeing a dietician. I started learning about what had tormented me, and I slowly started healing. But I didn’t want to heal. I tried to motivate myself, but would always resort to resisting my meal plan in some way, even if it just meant skipping one snack. I remember standing on the scale one night, a few weeks after I had learned about my illness, and reading my specific weight. I couldn’t possibly be anorexic, I felt I should weight a specific weight. I hated myself for “giving up” on my ideal body, and for getting help.

I was always honest with my nutritionist, and knew she just wanted to help me. It wasn’t that I wanted to resist her, I just wanted to resist getting better. I would see how much I could restrict without being scolded, then go back to “trying” for a while. However, I started to take it too far. I had just joined spring track again after not running for the winter season, and was being very carefully monitored. My depression was also getting worse, and I was stressed from school and other activities. I started going back to my old behaviors. One night, when I was feeling very low, I started overdosing on pills. I didn’t want to kill myself, just hurt myself, make myself pass out, anything to make the pain go away. I ended up in the ER, and my parents found out about how I had been restricting badly for the past couple weeks. I was placed in a partial hospitalization program, and spent the next summer there, focusing on recovery and not allowed to exercise.

By this point, I had deleted my calorie counting app, I had put the scale away (I haven’t known my weight for two years), and I had started to realize how anorexia had haunted me. However, I always find that I want to help others more than I want to help myself, and I was always told that I gave the best advice without ever taking it myself (I’m still guilty of this, unfortunately). I was still hesitant to commit to recovery, and found myself in a state of limbo: I followed my meal plan without challenging myself, and still tried to restrict in little ways. However, I did get better enough to be released by the end of the summer, and was put back into my junior year of high school.

I had been in such a safe environment that high school was a bit of a shock to me, and I can still remember the diet talk and weight discussions giving me anxiety. Long story short, I had a sever anxiety attack less a quarter of the way through the year, spent 3 days in the ER where I refused to eat, and was placed in a in-patient hospitalization program. I spent two months away from school, and saw people younger than me, older than me, and skinnier than me who I loved dearly, but still compared myself with. I remember thinking that I didn’t deserve to be in a hospital. But once again, I got well enough to be released, and returned to my state of limbo, where I think I have been ever since.

The person I am today is not the same person I was when I was 14. I have grown, have learned about my eating disorder and my mental health issues. I have been taught DBT, CBT, mindfulness, and positive coping strategies. I have made friends who are near and dear to me, and speak openly about my eating disorder. I care deeply about mental health issues, and want to help other men and women who are struggling. I want to change the world, and I have dreams and ambitions. But my eating disorder still haunts me, and this is my long-winded (sorry) way of asking for help.

There are some thoughts that I have noticed for a long time now that seem to always stick around, and was hoping you could offer some advice or feedback. A lot of times I feel really lonely, and don’t know who to talk to. I am writing this for myself as well as for you, because I don’t think I have ever written all this out before. I hope it will help clear my mind, even if only a little. I don’t even know if I can say all that has been troubling me, but I want to try.

1. I still don’t feel skinny enough. The truth is that there is still a big part of me that wants to look really really sickly. It is tiring, but I do it anyway. My nutritionist recently told me that I am underweight again, but I feel ashamed for only being a little underweight. I feel like there is still room for me to lose a lot, because I want people to look at me and think “she looks really sick”. I feel ashamed that I am eating enough to be out of a hospital. There are things that I want to do, like go to school and run and sing in my choir, that I can’t do if I don’t follow my meal plan. But I feel disgusting for following it, and like I don’t deserve to.
2. I feel like I haven’t been anorexic long enough. It started when I was 14, and its only been a few years. I feel like in order to deserve to recover fully, I have to have had it longer. I met people in the hospital who had eating disorders for 20 or more years, and feel guilty and disgusting when I think about myself. I used to say “I have to have it for at least 2 years”. Its been two years, and now I want more. And I feel guilty for even being in recovery, like I haven’t even been fully in the eating disorder this whole time.
3. I feel like I have to meet all the symptoms of anorexia in order to be sick. I remember when I was in the hospital, a man came to talk to me about my illness. He asked me if I had ever gone a whole day without eating, and I was shocked to find that I hadn’t. I felt like I had to in order to be anorexic, so a few weeks later I didn’t eat for 24 hours. I hear about people eating an exceptionally small amount of calories a day for years, and it makes me want to cry. I feel like I can’t even be in recovery or call myself anorexic because I ate too much. So, I started restricting and eating a superbly small amount of calories a day. That was last week, and my nutritionist threatened to send me to another hospital, so I stopped. Now, I feel guilty, like it wasn’t enough, so I started throwing away food again. It never feels like anything I do is enough. I was crying last night as I read about people who recovered after struggling through so much. I feel like I haven’t suffered enough, lost enough weight, or had the disorder long enough to deserve to recover. And there is a strong part of me that feels like I already am recovered, at least weight-wise, and I am so ashamed and guilty. I probably don’t even look that skinny, and I just got my period back after losing it for almost 2 years. I feel like I am just being dramatic and that I don’t even look that thin, so I don’t deserve to say I was ever anorexic.

I feel really conflicted right now, because I feel like the part of me that wants to recover is at war with the eating disorder. I have friends, family, and two beautiful cats (haha I’m basically an old cat lady) that I care about. I have dreams and hopes. I recently got into two auditioned summer college-programs for music, and have the opportunity to go away for a few weeks to express myself with/work on my singing. However, I also have a desire to be sicker, and there is so much guilt in me for never being enough. This part doesn’t care if I miss school, disappoint my family, and sacrifice opportunities. It is also scared that if I do go away this summer (the first program starts early this July) people will think I am “normal” or “fat”. I keep telling myself I will start intuitive eating, challenging myself, and working on accepting myself when school ends, or just before I go away to the programs, or after them. Never now. Always just a little bit later. But isn’t that what I deserve? Because aren’t I not really sick now?

I understand you

Hi there. I know it has been a long time since you posted this but it resonated so well with me that I wanted to reply. I hope you receive it!
Your story is so similar to mine. I was always naturally thin, and I also liked running. I didn't develop an eating disorder until I was about 20 (about a year and a half ago) but I do think I started some disordered eating habits as a pre-teen. I never liked the sensation of being full and I hated the thought of overeating (so continued to eat kid-sized meals when I should have been eating more, since this was supposed to be a time of development for me. Looking back I think this really affected my development). When I was 14 I had a doctor that was very worried about my weight and prescribed a medicine to help me gain weight. Although I didn't really restrict my intake, I did not take this medicine because I didn't want to gain weight. Slowly my identity became tied around my small figure, so I became terrified of gaining weight. I censored my meals, only ate during mealtimes (no snacks, etc), but still was getting enough food to support my body. However, my obsessions took a hold of me my second year of college and I started severely restricting. I have had OCD since I was a child and knew that this obsession was getting out of control, and decided to get help when my body and my mind began falling apart. However, I often think that I didn't suffer long enough to "deserve" recovery. I was physically ill when I began treatment, but not enough to need hospitalization. I constantly want to cut back on my meal plan to prove to myself that I have a problem. I am underweight but not severely. I actually never completely lost my period, so every month it returns I feel like a failure for not being "sick enough." There are so many things that I want to do with my life. I am preparing to graduate from college in December, hope to spend a semester abroad next year, and then begin graduate school. I want to have a family someday. I want to be healthy. I want to be able to live my life to the fullest. But I keep doing the same thing--I keep saying I can recover "later." I have been trying so hard recently and I do think I am making improvements. I went on a road trip a couple weeks ago with my little sister and so enjoyed the freedom and love of life I was experiencing! It gave me a glimpse of what living life without an ED would be like! But the week after I came back I started wanting to restrict again. I typically am a logical person, and I hate how illogical this disorder is. Anyways, I just want you to know that I hear you. You are sick enough. You are worthy of recovery. You will love life so much more once this disorder is gone. I am praying you find the strength to pursue recovery in spite of what ED tells you.
Much love.


Hello brennam_9876.Your post has been edited for content so as to adhere to the community guidlines. Users are discouraged from posting the specific numbers associated with weight as well as calories. This is to ensure a safe and non triggering environment for all posters on the forums. The community guideliness can be found here: additional reading try Thank you and please continue posting.

Hey brennam_9876,

Hey brennam_9876,

You've shared a lot with us here on the forums. I appreciate that that takes a level of courage and self honesty to do.
I'd like to preface this by saying that I am not at all a health professional. But its good to hear that you're seeing a therapist and also being honest with him/her. Having a rich support network composed of professionals, friends, and family very often help on the road to recovery.

But it sounds like you're dealing with a lot of complex emotions. Throughout your post you talk about your very complex relationship with your ED, stating several times that you 'don't feel sick enough' and 'feel guilty for not being sick enough'. I'd like to point out that at the very end of your post you did say that did want to get back to intuitive eating signaling, in my opinion, your desire to recover.

It may not be easy, but recovery certainly is possible. It may very well take time but its doable as many others on the forum will tell you. As far as being sick enough what would your parents say? What would the people who have taken care of you in the hospital say? What would your body say? The fatigue, the inner conflict, the exhaustion, can that at all clue you in to the severity of your ED? Have you asked your therapist if you are sick enough? What did he or she say? And can you take the time to seriously consider there expert response as maybe holding some validity?

I also wanted to mention that this thread has been inactive for a number of years. It may be to your advantage to stare your own thread to potentially garner more posts from other users. As you can tell, this thread has moved to the front page of the board, but like I said, you may have better success by starting your own thread. Just a thought.

At any rate, I hope that some of what I said has been useful. There are a lot of great users here on the forum that are more well spoken as well as learned than I. Best of luck and keep us updated if you please.

And check out these NEDA links if you've got the time:

- Adage


Hi! I had the exact same feelings. I was my most sick at my normal weight. I wrote a bunch of blogs about it.

A LOT of people struggle with eating disorders but are not technically under weight. This happened to me and now I'm in recovery and it is very difficult. Eating disorder are more mental then anything. You could be seriously harming yourself. At my lowest weight I wasn't as sick as I was at a normal weight. My metabolism basically stopped and I gained weight eating almost nothing. At my normal weight I was starving myself, over exercising and ended up have heart problems, bone issues, malnutrition...all at a healthy weight. You don't have to be too thin to have a problem and it is your eating disorder telling you that you aren't thin enough to get help...

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Hi this is late

I get you. I've had people turn around and tell me my disordered eating is fake because I'm eating more than i use to quickly (still on diet territory but its recovery i guess??) I want to get better but at the same time, I don't think I need to.
I've been trying to not fall from my meal plan (self made) but not a day goes by that i dont think im not sick enough - eventhough i still have my other tendencies like counting calories and avoiding certain things.
I think its really common, because that how the behaviour controls us. Denial. Sorry this is so late but its understandable. But know that you are "sick enough" and you need help and you are strong enough to get it :) <3

I Identify

“Not sick enough” is something I sooo identify with! I have been in therapy for years for a variety of reasons and have not once brought up my disordered eating, though I’ve wanted to. My fears are two fold: that I can’t possibly have an ED bc I’m not underweight (I know that’s not true and my thought processes and behaviors ARE problematic) OOORRRR it IS possible that I have a problem and I fear my therapist is gonna “dump me off” on someone else because she doesn’t specialize in the disorder. Everyone says I should see someone who specializes in the behaviors and disorders but I can barely afford one and I don’t want to lose my therapist now. I’m honestly so scared right now and quite lost. On one hand it feels like there is no issue with what I’m doing, while on the other it feels like I have to hide in shame bc I know it’s not healthy but I’m afraid of what my therapist will say or do if I talk about my behaviors


If your therapist is well trained and worth her money, she won't just dump you. My counselor is an intern with no experience in ED but she's great with helping me figure out why I'm using an ED to cope. I strongly encourage you to talk to your counselor. Youre paying her to listen and help you with anything you wish to share. Also, don't give up on finding a specialized ED therapist. Maybe reach out to the NEDA hotline for some options or talk to your doctor?

I have a list of support

I have a list of support groups im going to try out. I can’t go until next week or maybe the following which just seems really far off and I don’t have another therapy appt for another week too and I really want to get in and talk about last night with my therapist. I’m afraid in a weeks time I’ll lose my nerve.


Its ok to feel that way. Sometimes a week can feel long. Keep posting here in the meantime! If you feel like youre losing your nerve, let us know and we will support and encourage you the best we can. You got this!!!
I have an ED eval next week so I totally relate. Lets touch bases next week before our appointments. Help is right around the corner!

Thank you so much. You are so

Thank you so much. You are so encouraging for me and I really need it right now!! We should definitely touch base next week before and/or after our appts

How are you doing? I know you

How are you doing? I know you are anxious about your Eval. Be honest and know they are there to help you and that you deserve this help! I’m still anxiously awaiting an appt with my therapist. I was a bit more hopeful about eating this afternoon but once I had the chance I fell back and used something else to prevent myself from the urge of eating. I’m thinking of you! You are strong!!!


Thanks so much for checking back with me! I am definitely still nervous...eval is on Friday...fingers crossed! I'm hopeful that they can give me support and help, but unsure of what that looks like. Hang in there as you wait for your appointment! You got this!!! This moment is not your forever. We are warriors and survivors!

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