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Positive Action, Self-Harm Prevention, and Recovery Club!

Welcome!
This is a space for VWers of all walks of life to come and share their experiences as We work toward recovery from self-destructive behaviours, such as eating disorders, substance abuse, and self-injury.
Of course, this thread can't replace the help of medical professionals, but I think a lot of Us would benefit from this little bit of therapy. YOU set goals for Yourself, share Your progress (and setbacks, when/if they happen), and We'll all be here to cheer You on!

This is also a place where You can come when You're tempted to do something self-destructive (like self-injure, binge/purge, get drunk, etc.) and You need some distraction. Even if no one else is online, come and vent and just type away/post pictures/whatever instead of engaging in harmful activity.

Don't be ashamed if You're struggling with meeting Your goals or keeping Yourself out of the cycle of self-harm.... We've all been there, and this isn't a place for judgment. But be ready for advice and maybe even some tough love--We want to see everyone through their struggles, but it's important that We all remain open to absolute honesty and constructive criticism.

So if You're new to this discussion, feel free to share some information about Yourself--however much/little You want--and tell Us what exactly You want to change. We'll help You set up some goals, p'raps give some advice on how to work on them, and cheer You on as You work toward self-betterment.

;)b

yay danni, glad you took something from what i posted... church has really helped me these days, it's changing my focus and what i consider important... and i believe it is helping bring me closer to the human i want to be...

danni, i'm glad you were able to break your normal routine for a day and deal with it... i know how hard this is and i am very proud of you for getting through it... i'm glad you want to change, that makes me happy :) keep taking those baby steps love <3

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danni,
Sounds like you are working hard to take better care of yourself.  Though your changes may seem small, they are indeed significant.  I know how hard it is to break out of the chains of an eating disorder.  I'm so glad that you are also exploring your spirituality and finding something that works for you.  That is so important.  I wish that eating disorder treatment centers would include this aspect of recovery in their programs, exploring ones spirituality.  I was involved with Celebrate Recovery when I began one of my recovery attempts, and have also explored my spirituality in AA in the past with other addictions.  It made a difference.

The reason I put other for my christian denominatin is that I struggle with traditional "christianity" and what a lot of churches teach.  In fact I am turned off more and more by it and I feel like I am almost in a crisis of identity as I have questioned so much of biblical interpretation and what I have traditionally been taught in the church.  I can not and will not fathom a God that approves of ruthless killing of animals for our appetite and survival.  It simply isnt necessary.  There are other things too...slavery, sexisim, violence, intolerance to others beliefs, politicizing christianity to manipulate votes and involving the church on "political" issues.  I just finished reading "The Myth of a Christian Nation" by Gregory Boyd and it resignated with me.  It did not occur to me until recently when talking with my sister that I really know nothing about other religions...hinduism, buddism, others.  I would like to learn about them.  I am drawn to the idea of Ahimsa.  I also find the most peace when I am out in nature, away from the hustle and bustle of city life.  But I understand that spiritual peace comes from within, not ones surroundings.  Still there is something about being out in the elements away from material possessions that helps me  understand my vulnerability and brings my senses to life. 

amy,
I tried that link and it said the particular article was no longer available.  I will explore the site more and see if I can find it.  I am familiar with that church and pastor as I went through Celebrate Recovery.  Thank you for sharing that!

My Dad left yesterday to go visit my sister for a few days.  I feel sad but am happy I got to see him again.  It always unnerves me to see my parents aging.  My Dad seemed so frail.  He is almost 70 now.  Today I took the day off work to get some stuff done and ready for school next week.  It is also the sixth anniversery of the day I had my hysterectomy...August 15, 2005.  So I am a bit emotional today.  It's just a silly date, nothing more I tell myself. 

I believe our collective strength, intelligence, compassion, and willingness and desire to live meaningful lives will help us through these hard times.  I am so glad to have this place to share.  Blessings to you all!

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amy,
I tried that link and it said the particular article was no longer available.  I will explore the site more and see if I can find it.  I am familiar with that church and pastor as I went through Celebrate Recovery.  Thank you for sharing that!

i just heard about celebrate recovery this past weekend and was planning on going to it... do you recommend it? i like saddleback's style of christianity, it is very laid back in my opinion, which i appreciate. there are going to be hypocrites and morons in every aspect of everything... not just religion unfortunately.

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I would recommend trying Celebrate Recovery!  The program is somewhat similar to the steps and principles of Alcoholics Anonymous but it is based on 8 beatitudes and is obviously Christ centered.  You go at your own pace and generally work with a small group on the steps.  It is open not just to people trying to overcome chemical addictions, but for people with eating disorders, depression, going through divorce etc.  The Celebrate Recovery I went to had a dinner, then an hour of worship, and then broke off into small support groups.  We even had a group just for people with eating disorders.  Most were struggling with binge eating but there was one bulimic in my group.  You find that underneath the particular disorder we are all struggling with the same things.  I would also go to a step group once a week.  It was quite helpful because it works on your spiritual self which most treatment programs for eating disorders lack.  I had a lot of support at the meals because I was open about my struggles.  of course that was when I was an omnivore.  I was also able to volunteer to do little things like reading introductions and steps at the beginning of the worship service.  It really helps you get outside yourself.  And it's all FREE!  I say you have nothing to lose!

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Glad to hear that NB... Sounds exactly the same as the one here... They have many different groups... The ED, chemical dependency, and codependency ones I wanna check out and ya the structure sounds the same as well: food, worship, groups... How awesome that you have been :) ill let you know how it goes <3

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I had my first acupuncture session. I briefly told Timothy about all the crappy things going on and he agreed that a stress focus should help. I must say I feel more like myself this evening. :)
Hugs to all.
Eric

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yay eric,

i am glad you are feeling better :) how much did that cost to do?

amy

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Eric, I'm glad you're starting to feel more like your awesome self.

I hate feeling optimistic about feeling better. I really hate living in fear of my brain letting me go again. For now I'm feeling good. I'm pushing myself to not be so introverted all the time. According to personality profile, I am a 100% introvert. Talking to people and learning names is so exhausting for me. Just being around people drains me. It's hard, but I'm making myself do it. I'm trying to make myself smile more, because I've been told I have trouble outwardly expressing how I feel, and apparently that unsettles a lot of people.

How is everyone else doing?

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Eric that's great that you found something that helps you!

Courth you sound so much like me.  I am 100% introverted also and struggle around other people.

I am really really sick.  It started Sunday with nonstop vomiting and diarrhea all day.  It has gone on all week, although the vomiting has gone down some.  I have unbearable nausea and no appetite at all (in fact I hurried to the forum page so as not to be triggered to vomit by seeing pics of food).  I have not been able to keep any food down at all, just water and watered down apple juice.  My weight has dropped significantly.  All this while I just started school again Monday for the first time in a long time.  I am so utterly frustrated I could scream.  In just ONE more week from today my health insurance will be reinstated but I can not wait that long to get some help so I am going to have to shell out of pocket and go in today.  I havent been able to work and studying has been hell to concentrate.  I am going at least 20 times a day and all night too.  Has anyone else had a stomach virus that has lasted four or five days like this?  When does it end?  I tried to go into work yesterday but it just made me worse again.  At least one other person at work has been out sick so there must be a virus going around.  The coworker who is out sick also happens to suffer with anorexia nervosa.  I imagine both of us have weaker immune systems than others. 

I better run off to the bathroom again.  Ugh...

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i'm glad to hear you're feeling better courth, i hope it continues <3 maybe just find more people you don't mind conversing with and it will become easier from there... or join a group that has people of similar interests (like how you are in band)... most people i find mildly irritating but there really is no avoiding them...

NB... you said you went out to eat with your dad right? maybe you accidentally ate something bad? i dunno, just a thought... the other girl at work told you she was A or you could just tell? i never tell people about my B in fear that they will tell everyone or something... i really hope you feel better soon! how did your doctor visit go?

eta: i'm going to celebrate recovery tonight with my sis i'll let you guys know how it goes <3

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It's by God's grace that I didn't have to drink whiskey today. For that I am truly grateful.

That said, glorious day until tonight before dinner, then sort of a regretful night so far. How can you only have a dog in your life and all your relationships are still all F'd up?! I won't bore with the details - wrote them out but they seemed too petty, so I deleted them ;)

Thanks everyone for being here!

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celebrate recovery was kinda "nar nar binks" status... i am glad my sister went with me... there were a lot of groups to choose from and i went to the "chemically dependent" one...

it being my first time in the share group session, i wasn't expecting to be put on the spot right away, but sure enough, right away i was supposed to share with a group of randoms "Hi, I am Amy and I am... fill in the blank... being the second one to say this, i said, "I am Amy and I am not sure yet"...

Anyways... at the end of everyone sharing in the circle what they "were" i got called out pretty rudely and said i wasn't allowed to be in this group unless i had a "chemical" problem... thankfully, i think since my sis was right next to me, i said "i'm sorry, this is my first time, i suffer from all sorts of things including alcohol and prescription drug addiction, and i have an eating disorder"... thinking, thanks for making me stick out like a sore thumb when i am just getting the feel for this! witch!

well that was done with, and the "wicked witch" piped down... i really want to get involved with this, but that was pretty rude and unwelcoming in my opinion... people should not force you to speak out until you feel comfortable, geeseeeeeee!

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Amy I am so sorry your first experience was so horrible!  Wow that was terribly uncalled for, putting you on the spot your first time there.  You shouldn't have had to share anything at all.  I can see on the one hand that a lot of the people there (due to the nature of the program) are going to be emotionally a mess and maybe socially they lack some skills, but on the other hand it is the responsibility of the program and group to ensure that no one is judged harshly or forced to share before they are ready.  The groups I was involved in, there were group rules and guidelines that were shared before the group so people knew what to expect.  And there was a moderator.  Did this group have any of that?  You have a right to complain to the director of the program so that this doesnt happen again.  What a bummer.  I know any time I have started in a new group I am VERY scared and extra vulnerable and it is ten times harder when you arent welcomed or treated nicely.  I'm so glad your sister came with you. 

celebrate recovery was kinda "nar nar binks" status... i am glad my sister went with me... there were a lot of groups to choose from and i went to the "chemically dependent" one...

it being my first time in the share group session, i wasn't expecting to be put on the spot right away, but sure enough, right away i was supposed to share with a group of randoms "Hi, I am Amy and I am... fill in the blank... being the second one to say this, i said, "I am Amy and I am not sure yet"...

Anyways... at the end of everyone sharing in the circle what they "were" i got called out pretty rudely and said i wasn't allowed to be in this group unless i had a "chemical" problem... thankfully, i think since my sis was right next to me, i said "i'm sorry, this is my first time, i suffer from all sorts of things including alcohol and prescription drug addiction, and i have an eating disorder"... thinking, thanks for making me stick out like a sore thumb when i am just getting the feel for this! witch!

well that was done with, and the "wicked witch" piped down... i really want to get involved with this, but that was pretty rude and unwelcoming in my opinion... people should not force you to speak out until you feel comfortable, geeseeeeeee!

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Thanks shea!  Sorry I still don't know first names here.  :-[  I went to the urgent care Thursday in desperation.  The doctor ruled out a bacterial infection and thought it was indeed a virus.  No surprise.  My intestines were basically spasming so he too recommended Immodium.  I was reluctant to take it because I have a VERY sensitive body when it comes to drugs (I havent even taken an aspirin for three years) but at this point when you cant even hold down a saltine you have to give it a shot.  And it DID help!  It made my nausea worse but stopped the diarhhea and gave my body a chance to rest.  I was able to go back to work Friday although exhausted.  Today my appetite is coming back and nausea has gone down.  This is one of the nastiest viruses I have had in a loooong time.  I initially thought it was food poisoning because I went for a hike last Saturday and thought I was picking and eating wild blueberries until my partner showed me a blueberry patch.  Oops, I had been eating darker colored "blue" berries.  But when I think back I was more tired than usual even the day before that and had been so tired that day i took a nap in the woods which is HIGHLY unusual for me who can usually hike for many miles with a lot more energy to spare.  So my guess is viral infection.  The foreign berries probably didnt help.

Awwww.. ((((Naturebound)))) That sounds rough.

I haven't had that happen to me before. Not for that long at least. I usually keep Immodium handy and that fixes it immediately. Bananas, white rice, applesauce, and toast is all I can suggest!

I hope you get better by the time your classes start!

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Quote:
NB... you said you went out to eat with your dad right? maybe you accidentally ate something bad? i dunno, just a thought... the other girl at work told you she was A or you could just tell? i never tell people about my B in fear that they will tell everyone or something... i really hope you feel better soon! how did your doctor visit go?

About the coworker.  Our department merged with a medical records department from another hospital and she was from there.  We met through a mutual friend who shared with both of us the struggle of the other because she knew we both struggled with the same issues and thought we could help each other.  So I finally got together with this coworker and we talked for some time.  She has struggled with this disorder for over 40 years (in her fifties now).  It is still quite obvious she has anorexia although she is in better shape than years ago.  Ditto for me.  I was in very rough shape when we first met.  She has been supportive of my recovery but all the same it's still hard because when I see her not doing so well it feels triggering for me and hard to watch her get sick and vice versa I'm sure.  She is still quite restrictive in what she eats but not to the point of starvation.  Due to the nature of our illnesses it's no secret to the rest of our department (and both of us put up with comments like "I wish I had your will power" bla bla).  I was so bad for a while my coworkers were begging me to get help and there was a rumor outside the office that I had cancer.  I had to miss work for a treatment program some of the time and my weight has gone way up and down several times from refeeding.  Talk about humiliating.  When I started in the department I work in I was a normal healthy weight and then I got sick, stopped eating, and my weight dramatically dropped so they witnessed my disorder playing out first hand.  We are a close knit department which is both a blessing and a curse.  Not much you can hide.  needless to say all my treatments have been at outside facilities lol.

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Good for you for choosing sobriety charlie! 
It does get better.  Trust me.  I too am a recovering alcoholic.  I made a terrible mess of my life in my twenties.  I won't go into details either.  I had nine years of sobriety from 2000 to 2009 (then just a small slip in 2009 and sober since) and was finally able to develop relationships and goals.  it takes time to heal and to learn to live in a different way that's less destructive.  Most of my relationships were broken even BEFORE drinking. Sometimes you end up trading problems to cope (as I did with anorexia).  Sometimes its a lifelong battle and it may never be perfect.  Life may not give you what you want (if ever).  But we make the best of it.  I still can not look at the big picture without getting overwhelmed.  But I will tell you I have had a wonderful series of individual days spent sober just doing things I love...alone or not.. and its those little quiet moments of enjoying the small details that make life worth it. 
I understand though that coping with pain and heartache is awfully hard sometimes.  You made a great decision to post here even if you deleted some of it.  It shows strength inside. 

It's by God's grace that I didn't have to drink whiskey today. For that I am truly grateful.

That said, glorious day until tonight before dinner, then sort of a regretful night so far. How can you only have a dog in your life and all your relationships are still all F'd up?! I won't bore with the details - wrote them out but they seemed too petty, so I deleted them ;)

Thanks everyone for being here!

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NB the chick that did this was the group leader!!!!!!!!!!!

she did all the things you said, like reading the rules and such...

what i hated about how she led things too is that she was constantly setting and messing around with her timer (since you were only supposed to share like 4 mins tops)... that timer alone just gave me anxiety, like if i dare did speak i better hurry the hell up

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yikes!  That timer thing would scare me too.  Maybe that's not the group for you amy.  What a shame your experience with Celebrate Recovery happened to be with a group of people who werent at all considerate or compassionate.  Sometimes its not the program but the particular group of people.  Maybe you could try another Celebrate Recovery group in your area if there is one before throwing in the towel on that.  I know sometimes CR or other church groups tend to take a "tough love" approach to the program and that doesnt work for a lot of people, me included.  I delt with the same crap in alcohol inpatient treatment programs and AA but did not see it too much in the CR group I was in.  I am not and never was a hardened street girl.  You know?  Please don't let it get you down though.  At least you tried and that took serious courage!  I still struggle with the whole church thing in general.  I have drifted in and out of so many churches and in and out of the one I have gone to for 12 years.  I can not NOT believe in Christ but I also have very liberal views on many things and they clash often with the Christian faith.  Sometimes a "take what applies to me and leave the rest" approach has helped me but not always because sometimes I just can not sit back and listen to some of the bullshit I hear and not say something.

Have you ever tried an Eating Disorder Anonymous or an Anorexics and Bulimics Anonymous group?  I used to do phone meetings through them.  Not sure if they still have them.  Some larger cities have in person groups.  They are similar to AA but focused on eating disorders and not usually as "tough love" as AA.  The EA groups are more laid back than the ABA groups.  All are free.  You can find info about them online.  Or maybe a group that isnt focused on recovery or illness would be better, like a healing yoga or meditation group or something.  Last year I took a yoga class through community ed just for fun and it was so healing for me, at least at the time, to accept my body more.  IDK, just a thought. 

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thank you NB,

i don't plan on giving up on CR but i am not happy that i am still bothered by what that lady said... i was under the impression from the worship and testimony part, you did not have to admit to something, you could just sit and listen... apparently that isn't the case with this group of ladies... many seemed to already have strong bonds and know each other... i did see a few other girls similar to me and my sisters age that might be more releatable... unlike these older ladies who control the group...

i don't like ED groups, especially if i am actually in the process of getting better... the last one i went to i hadn't B/P in 3 freakin months and so proud how far i had come... i went to the group and my counselor and the others still pointed out all of my other issues and made my progress seem so unimportant, i relapsed quickly after that

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So I went a while feeling okay about myself. Then I was asked when my baby is due. Contentment bubble burst.

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