Anorexia can never be cured, do you agree?

@Pigglies (9336)
United States
February 7, 2007 8:48pm CST
In therapy I was told, "Anorexia can never be cured, you'll always be in recovery." I agreed with it at first, because thoughts would still often come up and I still wished I could weigh myself all the time. But now I'd have to say I really disagree with that statement. I am still a woman, so I freak out a little bit if my clothes no longer fit. But I don't really care so much anymore that I'd do anything about it. I'm far from perfect and don't even strive for perfection anymore. I often wonder how I could even be considered anything but an average person now. No more bad habits, no obsession with food, I can take the scale or I can leave it, etc. I think I'd say I'm cured. What do you think, can you be cured or will you always relapse? Or at least risk relapsing? The first time I ended up relapsing. But I didn't consider myself cured in the in between time there. I was just trying my hardest to shove food in my face. And I still looked fat in the mirror. Now I am probably close to my highest weight, and I see a thin/average sized person in the mirror. I think that's how I know that now I'm cured, not just in recovery.
3 people like this
19 responses
@byfaithonly (10716)
• United States
8 Feb 07
Well, I'm no therypist but I suffered from an eating disorder for nearly 20 years. Praise the Lord I eat much better, am a healthy weight, and feel FAT. I may be doing what others think I should be doing and look the way others think I should but I don't believe I am "cured". I still even 15 years later still have to fight the urge to purge at times and there have been times I've back sliden. I know I'm healthy now but don't think I'll ever be cured.
1 person likes this
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
8 Feb 07
I'm sorry to hear that you've suffered so long. I didn't mean to imply that everyone can be cured, just that I think some people can. Before I slid back into old habits, I still felt fat. Now I am lucky I suppose, because I don't feel fat anymore and have no desire to really get back into old habits. I can't really say I did everything the therapist said to, and really, I didn't feel cured until years later. It really just felt like a drastic change and one day I just sort of realized that hey, I don't feel fat anymore, that's so odd. But while many people are never truly cared, I don't think the generalization works to say that no one can be. It may not even be the norm to be cured (probably isn't), but there are always exceptions.
• United States
9 Feb 07
can it never be cured just go on a diet
• United States
8 Feb 07
You are not doomed to keep relapsing! I think the reason why they say that anorexia can never be cured is because they don't fully understand the disorder. I think that some people can come out of it fine, and yet I've seen some people never truly recover. I think it all depends on the person. If you are truly strong enough to overcome it, and you take the right behavioral or medical routes to do so, then you CAN be cured. I think it is really devastating to a person to tell them that they will NEVER recover. Doctors should never say that. I think it's a big let-down to their paitents. I applaud you on your success and your ability to share your story with us. I know it can be difficult, and you should be so proud of yourself.
1 person likes this
@Catkin (480)
• United States
8 Feb 07
Good for you, managing to bring about a change that many struggle for. It seems that in the last 6 months, I have become increasingly aware of anorexic women with whom I am aqcuainted, two of whom appear nearly daily in my life. One is struggling right now to reverse the ill effects anorexia has taken on her, another seems to be doing fine (though I have not seen her recently), and the third is still very aware of her eating habits, but isn't starving herself. I think the degree to which a person may be able to overcome anorexia depends on the person her/himself. What we mostly hear about are those who may have tried and been unable to be "cured", but imagine there are a certain number of success stories about which we know nothing. Thank you for proving that anorexia can be overcome. :)
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
8 Feb 07
That's a good point. Perhaps it is because therapists see only those who do not recover (which is why they keep coming back), that they tell you that you'll never be cured, only in recovery forever.
• United States
8 Feb 07
I agree with you. I think you can be cured of anorexia if your head is in the 'right' place. As long as you are completely confident and content with your body at any size I think it's completely cured. It's really great that you got help with it and was able to overcome it. I think it says a lot too with you coming on here and talking about it. Hopefully those who suffer from it will be able to have the strength to follow in your foot steps.
1 person likes this
• United States
9 Feb 07
i think anorexia can be cured, well, i wouldn't use the term "cure", more like overcome. i see eating disorders as psychological problems, not diseases. it's all about perception. of course, like all girls, you'll probably always look in the mirror and pick yourself apart and see problems with yourself. as long as you don't get to the point where you'll put yourself in danger to lose those extra pounds, you're just fine.
• United States
9 Feb 07
Are you kidding me? How can a body issue be considered a disease? You give it to yourself! When was the last time you got the flu from yourself? Or got a sore throat from yourself? All this new age nonsense does is give people excuses for problems they can handle themselves in order to generate pity for an unbalanced society where someone HAS to be a "victim" in order to gain credit as a human being. The real victims of "eating disorders" are the people in Ethiopia, and Kenya, and Honduras where there isn't ENOUGH to eat, anorexia and bulima digusts me, and insults the people who are forced to be skeletal, people who have no choice but to eat crumbs.
• United States
9 Feb 07
first off, you seem a bit upset, so i'm sorry if i offended you. once again, this is only my opinion and i'm just as entitled to it as you are. i don't think anorexia is a disease, that doesn't mean it isn't. it's just what i think. anything that can be overcome isn't a disease in my mind. it's more like an addiction. a herione addict doesn't have a disease. they use heroine for the first time and quickly it gets more difficult to stop, that doesn't mean they have,,heroinism...it means that it's their lifestyle and anything that becomes a part of your lifestyle is going to be hard to stop.
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
10 Feb 07
Nope, I don't get upset about messages online from strangers. Sorry if that disappoints some people here. You can have an opinion on something, but the fact of the matter is, if you look in a psychology book, anorexia is considered a disease.
• United States
27 Apr 07
I'm not sure if it can be cured. I always relapse for some odd reason. I've been battling anorexia for about 9 years now. I've never been in rehab or in the hospital for it though, so maybe I can cure myself if I seek professional help. I really don't know though. I mean, is it worth the trouble and pain to go through rehab or just keep on having this problem. What do you think?
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
27 Apr 07
I think it's worth it to at least go to therapy and figure out the root cause of the problem if at all possible. It must be awful to keep relapsing for so long.
• United States
27 Apr 07
It is aweful, and I know what the cause of it is. I just don't want to hurt my parents and friends since I've hid anorexia from them for so long. Know what I mean?
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
28 Apr 07
Definitely. My parents actually never really had to find out. My friends did though, and they were surprisingly a lot more supportive than I would have thought.
@Cephoozee (374)
• United States
9 Feb 07
What is this? There is no cure for anorexia because it is not an ailment, it's self-consciousness taken too far by insecure girls and boys who are too lazy to exercize 'nuff said. And I"m so sick of people saying that they've "suffered from" or are "dealing with the effects of" anorexia or bulimia. If these lazy slobs don't care enough to change their diet or exercise or simply accept who they are, then they deserve getting ultra skinny, they made a choice, it's not like they got anorexia forced upon them. It's just crap.
• United States
9 Feb 07
jacob rivas!!! stop being such a guy and be a bit more sensitive. come one now.
• United States
9 Feb 07
Being such a guy? Are you serious? Read the other comment I left, you'll understand where I'm coming from. ^.^ Love you!
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
9 Feb 07
Too lazy to exercise? Bulimia isn't always purging by vomiting, in some cases bulimics will over exercise. You can deal with the effects of something even if you want to believe that you did create it yourself. Let's say you drive your car into a telephone pole. It was your fault. But after that, you're dealing with the effects such as back pain and perhaps a head injury. You can't tell me that anorexia and bulimia don't have side effects, some of which are very dangerous.
@rainbow (6763)
8 Feb 07
Hi Pigglies! I think it can re-occur at times of stress because food is something we can control. Maybe when you stop worrying about whether you are over it you will be. I used to make myself ill about food, even last year I made myself really miserable and poorly because I decided to be really strict and loose weight, I just lost self-respect and awareness. Now I have given in, I am fat and will never get my body back form having my boys but I love them and so it's ok. I feel a lot happier not worrying about what I weigh or look like and the strange thing is I've not put any of the weight back on even though I am still really overweight.
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
8 Feb 07
That's a good point. I guess I'm not really worrying that I'm over it, I just thought about it when I was reading another discussion. And that made me think of what my therapist had said. I'm been through some pretty stressful situations since I've felt like I was over with it, and it didn't bring back anything. For me, my friends all tell me there was a huge turning point. Not when I left therapy, but instead when I came out of the closet. Ever since then I have basically been okay with everything about myself.
• Israel
8 Feb 07
i am sorry abouyt it...
• United Arab Emirates
26 Mar 07
This is a tricky discussion, as I've also heard you can never completely recover from an eating disorder, in some ways this gives me no hope at all. Why would I try to recover when it has been stated that you never FULLY recover? It's a never ending circle, whether I should try, or merely give up. I do believe that if you get to a point where you are fed up with restricting and purging that you may want to seek help and be pro-active towards recovery. I think then if you get a good therapist you can continue to establish normal eating habits. Will the eating disordered thoughts every vanish into thing air? Maybe not noticeably, but however over years I do think that they will become to greatly fade until it will no longer be an issue. Hope this helps.
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
26 Mar 07
Exactly. It doesn't give much hope to anyone to hear that they can't actually recover. If I was just eating for the sake of eating now, but still having past thoughts, I would go crazy. Thankfully, for me it's not like that. One day I just kind of realized that I had finally recovered.
• United States
9 Feb 07
i know you have recovered but it is a mental alliment. there will be times where you will be good, times that you will be bad. just freaking out about clothes not fitting, thats saying its not cured.
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
9 Feb 07
I think all women freak out about clothes not fitting. One time I was buying pants and I told my girlfriend I didn't find any, because size 8 didn't fit. She says, "Oh, they didn't have size 10?" "They did. But I don't want double digits." She just laughed and told me, "Hehe, you ARE a woman!" I really don't "freak out" though actually. I have several clothes of several sizes. Size 6 through size 12 (I donated anything under a 6 to charity pretty much, as I figured that just wasn't happening). My weight fluctuates a bit I guess because sometimes I'm doing nothing but working at a desk, other times I am walking all over campus, and sometimes with volunteering I'm pretty active and getting a ton of exercise. I disagree. I don't think there have been times where I've been bad. The first time where I thought I'd be okay, there definitely was. But I had a whole different mindset then and was doomed to another failure because I hadn't solved the real issues.
@camar_lyn (1028)
• Singapore
9 Feb 07
Hi, from my late teens to my mid 20's i was bulimic. It was terrible especially when my mum keep harping to me that i am fat. My waist was 24inches and my weight was about 100 lbs then. I thought its over when i got married and stayed away from my parents. But the psychological effect doesn't go away. Right after having my first baby, i fell into depression because my weight increased and i have stretch marks. So i went on a diet instantly. I collapsed after 1 week. Now, I'm much healthier. I just watch what i eat. My secret? I eat very little carbohydarates, a lot of fruits and vegetables, fish and chicken. Hope this helps. God bless!
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
9 Feb 07
I don't watch what I eat really, unless you count reading the ingredients to make sure things are vegan watching. I did get stretch marks when I was recovering, because I had to quickly reach 110 pounds from 90 to avoid being hospitalized. I at first hated those stretch marks, but now I don't care. I realized that everyone has them somewhere it seems. I guess you're right that I don't really know what would happen if my weight ever increased drastically. If I woke up 300 pounds one day, I might not know how to go on a real diet before because I've never done a healthy diet before. I think if I started to notice myself getting fat, I'd try to go out and ride my bike more though rather than even attempt to diet. I used to ride 100 miles a week or so, and wow, I could eat anything then. So I'm not completely unequipped to lose weight if needed, and I'd probably just have to get a book to go on a diet correctly or something (not like most women know how to diet anyhow). For the time being, I don't need to worry about dieting. I'm definitely not going to restrict carbs, I need them too much. :)
@n4rt0n (12)
• Bolivia
9 Feb 07
i dont agree, is a psicology problem, so need be trated in the begin with one doctor of the area, all the problens have cure
• United States
9 Feb 07
i agree anythigns possible
@wiccan (348)
• Australia
9 Feb 07
Well done you sound as if you are doing really well. Your therapist is putting out a really negative attitude.I do think that any addiction can be cured IF the addict wants it enough. You sound as if you're winning when you talk about your body image. I wish you great luck and health.
• India
8 Feb 07
On a sweltering evening in July of last year, I sat at the end of my daughter Kitty's bed, holding a milkshake made from a cup of Häagen-Dazs coffee ice cream and a cup of whole milk. Kitty (the pet name we've used since she was a baby) shivered, wrapped in a thick quilt. "Here's your milkshake," I said, aiming for a tone that was friendly but firm, a tone that would make her reach for the glass and begin drinking. Six-hundred ninety calories — that's what this milkshake represented to me. But to Kitty it was the object of her deepest fear and loathing. "You're trying to make me fat," she said in a high-pitched, distorted voice that made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. She rocked, clutching her stomach, chanting over and over: "I'm a fat pig. I'm so fat." That summer, Kitty was 14. She was 4-foot-11 and weighed 71 pounds. I could see the angles and curves of each bone under her skin. Her hair, once shiny, was lank and falling out in clumps. Her breath carried the odor of ketosis, the sour smell of the starving body digesting itself. I kept my voice neutral. "You need to drink the milkshake," I repeated. She lifted her head, and for a second I saw the 2-year-old Kitty, her mouth quirked in a half-smile, her dark eyes full of humor. It was enough to keep me from shrieking: Just drink the damn milkshake! Enough to keep me sitting on the end of the bed for the next two hours, talking in a low voice, lifting the straw to her lips over and over. The milkshake had long since melted when she swallowed the last of it, curled up in bed and closed her eyes. Her gaunt face stayed tense even in sleep. Kitty's anorexia was diagnosed a few weeks before, at the end of that June. My husband and I knew something was wrong for several weeks; we just didn't know what. She'd started reading Gourmet and planning lavish dinner parties. She called me at work several times a day, needing to know what dinner would be the next night and the next. She exercised for hours each night, doing situps and push-ups in her room. On Mother's Day she worried that she might have obsessive-compulsive disorder, because she couldn't stop thinking about meals and food. My husband and I told ourselves, She's 14, we can't be overprotective. We said to each other, I wouldn't be that age again for anything. Kitty didn't want to see a therapist; we didn't want to insist. Yet. She was thin, too thin. She ate fruit and vegetables, turkey and low-fat yogurt — healthful choices. But as she crossed the floor at her eighth-grade graduation, we saw that something had changed; suddenly she looked emaciated. I called the pediatrician the next morning. The day anorexia was diagnosed, the doctor told Kitty to eat more and told us to find her a therapist. Two weeks later we met with an eating-disorders specialist who talked to Kitty as if she were 3 years old. That's when we panicked; we'd been pinning our hopes on the therapist, but clearly she was not going to save the day. So we tried to get Kitty to eat: we encouraged, we reasoned, we yelled. Kitty cried, said she wasn't hungry, her stomach hurt; she would eat at her friends' houses, at camp, tomorrow.
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
9 Feb 07
I'm so sorry. I hope she's doing at least somewhat better now.
@tamyhmc (11)
• Italy
8 Feb 07
I agree with your affirmation!!!
@Pigglies (9336)
• United States
8 Feb 07
Which one? The one posted for the title or the message itself?
• Malaysia
25 Apr 07
i think it can be cured.. it's just about your mental strength.. how you actually overcome it..vast amount of research has been done on the subject of eating disorders and their causes. Many eating disorders have been proven to emerge during adolescence and often serve as the foundations to more serious problems like anorexia and bulimia. Let's explore the development of eating disorders in adolescent girls. It will show that these disorders are closely connected to the biological and psychosocial changes that occur during the Many teen girls suffer with anorexia nervosa, an eating disorder in which girls use starvation diets to try to lose weight. They starve themselves down to skeletal thinness yet still think that they are overweight.All of these young women who suffer from this problem are considered to suffer from a psychiatric disorder... don't you think pyschiatric illness can be cured just by the patient themselves? :)
@missyd79 (3438)
• United States
12 Feb 07
anorexia is a mental disorder where your brain is so set on picking out your inperfections. so you can only retrain your brain to think otherwise, but as with any mental illness, you never cure yourself of it, you just go into recovery. so yes the chance of relapsing is always there but it is up to the person to rise above it.
• United States
11 Feb 07
I'm not an expert but I don't think you are ever fully cured. I think there are long periods even years when the anorexic gets better but I think a life stressor could manifest itself again as an episode of anorexia. Anything could happen though. Perhaps some will be cured and others will go back to anorexia.
@joelofcow (193)
• United States
9 Feb 07
they r supposed to be helping u niot putting u down and yes that can be cured with hard work or almost cured..