Wednesday, May 22, 2013

I Get So Frustrated!!!!!

Writing about myself is one of the hardest things I've ever tried to do. Yet I can't stop trying. I need to get my words out, if for no one other than myself. I get so frustrated when reading others blogs. I love to read them and enjoy the content of their posts, but I find myself getting lost in envy over their fluidity of total expression. I wonder, do they struggle like I do? Do they sit at a little wooden desk and fret for countless days, months and hours...agonizing over every word, writing and re-writing...walking away and returning? Whenever I'm not in front of my computer I feel like I am about to burst at the seems. There is so much that wants to come out. Why is it so hard?!

Just when I think that I've figured it all out and am ready to open up the flood gates I go dry again. Where is inspiration? Isn't it enough to live the story that I want to tell? My words feel emotionless and sterile. Yes, that would best describe it. Perhaps I'm trying to hard. Perhaps it just me and my disconnection to life. My mind won't allow me to feel the fullness of my emotions. I guess it would be too much. Maybe I should just close my eyes and breathe... All I can see are words floating around in space...taunting me...haunting me. Memories flash before my eyes, yet I still feel nothing. I think I want to cry and scream, but I can't. There's nothing there...

I looked into the mirror once and saw a women mentally bludgeoned. I've been violated in every possible way. My spirit battered, broken and left for dead. My girth increasing and decreasing...increasing and decreasing...increasing and decreasing... I am OBESE!! I am UGLY!! I am UNWANTED!! I am UNLOVABLE!! There's no escape. I'm going crazy, I need to release. Please God help me!!!!

I can walk through a house of mirrors and never see my own reflection. Conditioned to ignore the obvious. I live an illusion. I always have. Where there should have been love...there was none. Where there should have been protection...there was none. Where there should have been comfort...there was none. Where there should have been laughter, joy, fun, adventure...there was none. I have been imprisoned by life, my parents, my conditions and even my own mind... Flawed from head to toe...inside and out. I am queen of the misfits...discarded like a broke Christmas ornament. I want to see beauty, but I can't. I know beauty lives inside. I want to be beautiful on the outside. I can't see myself because I don't want to. I don't want to face the ugly truth. My friends, they tell me I'm beautiful, but they are just being kind.

I crawl out of my hole and begin to pick up the pieces. I try to make sense of what's left of my life. I put on the face of strength for my child. I don't want him to see me broken even though he already knows that I am. You see, he knows first hand the pain that is mine. When he was a toddler we used to visit my parents on the weekends. It would take most of the day for me to manage the thought... Hours of crying and vomiting and then slowing getting ready to face the beast. My dad, never satisfied, would always criticize me. One day it had gotten so bad that my precious little one ran over to me, jumped onto my lap and wrapped his arms around my neck...screaming and crying. He turned to look at my dad as if to say...leave my mommy alone. I hugged and kissed him and told him it was okay. We went home. There were many occasions like this, but I dare not miss a weekend. My parents insisted that we break bread together every Saturday. My mother still presenting the face of perfection. Still perpetuating the lie. Will it ever stop?

My parents are gone now. Would it be wrong for me to say that I am grateful? Should I feel guilty for feeling this way? My son can since that I am still haunted by my past. It is on those days that he hugs me and rubs my face to ensure me that it's okay. I look at him in think how precious he is. He is perfect. He will never know the beatings, ridicule, disconnection, blame and hate that I endured. If only I too had been so precious to my parents.

I relish the joy and peace that we have in our home. My son will never have to question if he is loved. He will never feel the pain I felt. I thank God for that. I thank God that he made me strong enough to break the curse. I thank God for the blessing of my son and the gift of motherhood. Thank you God for showing me what parenting should be... How love should feel... What peace is...

It is because of my love for my son and my quest for healing that I take this journey. I want my son to have the absolute best of me. I want to be free. Not stuffing my pain, but releasing and letting it go...completely. That is my goal. And I will achieve this even if it takes me one letter at a time...

Food: A Link between Discomfort and Dysfunction

Many disorders are born out of dysfunction.

I grew up in a highly dysfunctional family. I'm sure you've heard stories like this before. I was trapped in the middle of my father's absolute control and my mother's need for perfection. An illusion forced upon the meek. On the other side of the door was our audience. No one knew the happenings behind the closed door. No one except a cousin who occasionally saw more than she bargained for.

My parents were entrepreneurs. They owned a barber shop and a convenience store. Dad worked and mom was a homemaker. We had two cars, but only one worked at any given time. My mom in her eternal quest for perfection, would wash and shine both cars so they looked brand new. It didn't matter that her car wasn't drivable as long as it looked good. It was perfectly acceptable that there was no leaving the house without permission. Mom would lobby for cab fair whenever she needed to run errands. She was allotted a small of time to get everything done. There was always a mad dash to clean the house, which was never dirty, run the errands and have dinner ready before dad came home...and then we'd wait. Dinner was never to be served before dad's arrival. Sometimes we'd have to wait for hours.

In the beginning...

Around the age of ten life took another terrible turn. It was at a routine well check where I was deemed obese. A word I had never heard before, but knew it was something bad. I weighed in at 101 pounds. Nothing much was said that day. A few days later a new routine was set. Get up, get ready for school, step on the scale and then breakfast. If a pound or two was gained that potentially earned me a beating before school. If that was the case, mom would apply alcohol and salves to the whelps and cuts, then have me change into long sleeves if necessary.

Meal portions were dramatically shrunken. I was always being hungry. Every evening, my parents would enjoy having desert after dinner. For obvious reasons, I was denied this privilege, but had to remain seated at the table until dinner was done. On weekends dad would bring candy, soda, cakes and chips home from our store. It was a welcomed treat.

An opportunity has arisen. My parent's room was right next to mine. On Saturday nights they'd close the door. Late night in the quiet of dark I'd sneak to the kitchen to steal treats. I had to be fast and always have an alternate plan should one of my parents come out of their room unexpected. There were many areas between the kitchen and my room where I could quickly stash the goods and act as if I had gotten up for a glass of water. Sometimes I'd say a quick prayer in hopes that they not find my wares before going back to bed. A binging hoarder in the making and my

My focus on the consumption food became one of the links between heightened levels of discomfort and dysfunction.

Food is now my enemy and my fixation.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Where do I begin?

A few years ago I was forced to make some hard decisions about my eating disorder, Night Eating Syndrome (NES).

At present time NES is not in the DSM IV/V.

The three main components identifying NES are Morning Anorexia, Night Binging and Insomnia. There is hope for us. Binge Eating Disorder recently added to the DSM-V under (EDNOS) Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified has given way to the possibility of two new additions to the DSM-V, Purging Disorder and NES.

I have been ignoring NES for 25 years. Three years ago my health took a turn for the worse. It quickly became evident that I needed to change my ways or else I would surely die. So I claimed my dirty little secret, frequent night time binges, and began looking into steps I could take to make positive life changes.

First steps toward recovery:

Acknowledge having an eating disorder.
Increase awareness of my own eating patterns. Note how I feel before/during and after meal times.
Identify possible beginning of NES behaviors.
Assess feelings, emotional state and reasoning behind late night eating.
Contact Psychologist to begin work on underlying issues.

No matter if you binged last week, last night or just a few minutes ago, it's not too late to get on the road to recovery.


Related Articles:
Night Eating Syndrome: Should it be Included in the DSM-V 

Night Eating Disorder

Issues for DSM-V: Night Eating Syndrome

What is Night Eating Syndrome?

Night eating syndrome, or NES, also "midnight hunger", is an emerging eating disorder diagnosis, which primarily characterizes an ongoing, persistent pattern of late-night binge eating.[1][2] NES was originally described by Dr Albert Stunkard in 1955[3] and is currently proposed for inclusion in the next edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.[4] The diagnosis is controversial; its validity and clinical utility have been questioned[5] and there are currently no official diagnostic criteria. -

More information on the Characteristics of NES

There are several night time eating disorders listed in varying resources. So while looking up more information you may want to check into these...

Nocturnal Hyperphagia

Nocturnal Eating Disorder

Parasomia (SRED) Sleep Related Eating Disorder (also linked to NED)

EDNOS Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified

Exert from

According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, 4th Edition there exists a category of eating disorders that do not meet the specific criteria for the two defined disorders, Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia. When people exhibit behaviors in the spectrum of disordered eating but do not meet all the criteria for Anorexia Nervosa or Bulimia, they are given a diagnosis of an Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (EDNOS). Over one-half to two-thirds of people diagnosed with eating disorders fall into the category of EDNOS. More people are diagnosed with EDNOS than Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia combined.

Binge Eating Disorder (BED) is the only type of eating disorder under the category of EDNOS. A person meets the definition of having EDNOS if they have exhibit all the criteria for Anorexia Nervosa but have regular menstruation or a normal body weight, or if they exhibit all the criteria for Bulimia but purge less than two times per week or for a duration shorter than three months, or if only small amounts of food are purged, or if a person spits out food rather than swallowing it.

People diagnosed with EDNOS can experience the same negative psychological, social, and physical consequences as a person diagnosed with Anorexia Nervosa or Bulimia. The seriousness of their condition is no different than that for people diagnosed with specific disorders. The only difference is that the person may experience a spectrum of disordered eating behaviors and these behaviors may change over time.

Although BED is the only one of the types of eating disorders categorized under EDNOS, people who are considered to have Sub Therapeutic Anorexia Nervosa or Sub Therapeutic Bulimia are also given a diagnosis of EDNOS. To have Sub Therapeutic Anorexia Nervosa or Bulimia means that a person displays some but not all of the criteria for the full-blown condition.

Read more about EDNOS

Huffington Post

Educate yourself

It's going to take some time before NES enters the realm of legitimized eating disorders. In the meantime you will need to education yourself on the subject and take carful not of your relationship with food.

Have your information handy when approaching medical professionals for help. NES is not commonly known or spoken off in general medicine. If your medical professional is not familiar with the term Night Eating Syndrome, you may want to try a couple of the other terms listed with exception the EDNOS which umbrellas only one eating disorder, Binge Eating in the DSM-IV/V.

My Experience

A seemingly lack of interest of the subject has been my experience with medical professionals. Though my concerns duly noted, they are still unaddressed. There is no definitive diagnosis so it is simply put into my file as a general note.

Medical professionals can be rather harsh when dealing with weight related issues. They don't understand for many, "obesity" is a band aid for internalized emotional scars. A self made barrier of protection. Obvious distain for one's heaviness and harsh words do not help the situation.

NES is very real and can be a debilitating disorder. I have lived with NES for 28 years and it has taken me until 3 years ago to figure out ways and strategies to begin helping myself.

I strongly recommend seeking council to help with this process. NES has a root and one of the ways to combat any problem is to find the root source. Having a psychologist to help you strategies your way back to a healthy relationship with food is key.

More Reading Materials about NES

Overcoming Night Eating Syndrome: A Step-By-Step Guide To Breaking The Cycle
by, Kelly C. Allison, PH.D., Albert J. Stunkard, MD, with Sara L. Their

Night Eating Syndrome
by Frederic P. Miller (Editor), Agnes F. Vandome (Editor), John McBrewster (Editor)

Night Eating Syndrome
Research, Assessment, and Treatment
Edited by Jennifer D. Lundgren, Kelly C. Allison, Albert J. Stunkard