First off I have to give a huge shout out to our writer Danny for putting this week together.
He did an amazing job gathering stories, poems, and research to present to everyone about the battles, struggles, and ultimate strength found in those who are fighting an Eating Disorder.
And a special thanks to all our contributors this week. You make our community so strong, and I am eternally grateful.
Here’s what people had to say on Dear Hope this week:
Monday: What Are Eating Disorders?
“More plainly stated, this isn’t just something that is easily changed by saying “I need to change my diet,” or “I need to feel better about myself.” Just like the aforementioned depression and anxiety, awareness of illogical thoughts or hurtful self-talk is not enough to overcome the mountain of struggle formed by media influence, gender stereotypes, and constant microagressions that “thin is good,” and so on.”
Tuesday: He Called Me The “T” Word
With one word, that “friendly” frat boy sent me back to my freshman year body. #tbt to the feet that broke all the mirrors in the bathroom, the monstrous voices of self ridicule screaming to destroy the distorted reflection. #tbt to the skin, the brushed, red, puffy, wrists, from the snap, snap, snapping of rubber bands in a futile attempt to tame a growling stomach. #tbt to the hands that opened the pill bottle, slimy leeches of depression sucking out any hope I had left. #tbt to freshman year homecoming.
Wednesday: An Empty Home & An Empty Stomach: My Lifelong Struggle With Eating Disorders”
The summer before I started 8th grade, the shell got really tired. My words, I think, were sick of being just words. I began to obsessively restrict, measure, count, and record everything. Exercise was not for fun anymore; it was to burn off the minuscule breakfast or lunch I had eaten. It consumed me like nothing else ever had. I was delighted as weight fell away. I had never looked this good! I quickly became a master at hiding food, finding excuses to miss meals, and avoiding events where I had to eat.
Thursday: Poems “The Fine Print” & “Doubt: Sarah’s Poem”
They stopped your food intake
causing nausea and induced vomiting
when so much as a cracker passed your starving lips.
You said would stop though once you met your goal, you made a promise
a pinky promise we made long ago
under the tree house that Uncle Joe built by the road.
But your expectations kept growing
into increasingly higher goals
standards that could never be met
at least not while breath still filled your lungs.
Friday: A Journal on The Imperfections of Perfection
It didn’t start the way you normally hear about these things starting. I was never bullied about my weight. No one ever called me “fat”, and I actually always considered myself skinny growing up. It happened completely out of the blue one day when this demon awoke inside me and decided to make me think that I wasn’t good enough. Little did I know that this demon would follow me and take over the next three years of my life.
Look at me, we are dual TV screens,
Look at me, the new me,
It’s been years…. a few years.
Sometimes people lose touch, break tree branches,
Bark turns into pieces- it’s slow.
Careful now, don’t touch,
Side step the crackling leaves.
If you fight an eating disorder or know someone who does, feel free to share some of these pieces with them. And if you have been silent in your struggles and are thinking of a place to share your story, feel free to contact us about contributing.
Always remember you are not alone.
You are loved.
Want to submit to this site and share your story, art, or article related to mental health or mental illness? Email firstname.lastname@example.org