Melissa's Story Disordered Eating

-----I don't think that I have an eating disorder...I do believe that I have an unhealthy weight problem, but I am not like others. Every recovering anorexic that I talk to says, "I just couldn't stop myself. There were voices telling me I was fat, and I must lose weight." But it is not like that at all for me. It started about nine months ago, at the beginning of my senior year. I wasn't happy with my weight, but I realized that I was not fat...I was 5' 5" and weighed 150. I did realize this was above average for my age and height, but I also realized that I was very muscular, do to my participation in school sports, and other extra curricular activities.

I had gone school shopping the week before school started, and was a little upset that a pair of shorts that I really liked, didn't look good on me. But I just told myself that I would have to watch what I eat a little more than I did. About a week after school started, a boy in my chemistry class asked me out. I was very excited and said yes. Shortly after we started going out he started commenting on my weight (in a joking way) but when I asked him if I was fat he said, "no, not fat...just proportional." That was the turning point for me. I said to myself, "ok, I'm going to lose weight. I don't want to be proportional." So the next day I just stopped eating. I had a couple of saltine crackers, and some carrot sticks, but that was it. I went on this way for about three weeks. My stomach hurt, I was getting weak, and very tired all of the time. But that didn't stop me.

I wasn't losing enough weight in the time I wanted. So I thought about it, talked to people who suffered from anorexia, and came up with a new plan...Starving myself was no longer good enough, now I had to add in exercising. So I started to eat a little more which still wasn't nearly enough, and I started to run four miles a day. Then at night when I was watching TV, or listening to music, I would run in place. When doing this I wore big baggy sweat pants, and two to three sweatshirts. I thought that I would sweat more this way, and lose weight faster. All this time I could have stopped anytime I wanted to. But I didn't want to stop! Everything hurt, and my mind was telling me to stop. But I pushed myself to go on, and I'm still pushing myself. I now weigh 109, and I'm happy with how I look. I'm not afraid of being fat, but I don't want to be large again. I did this by myself, and I am healing by myself. I still don't eat the way I did, but I eat more, and exercise less. My only goal is to stay below 115. If I go over I will just start again, until I get down there again. I still feel that I am in control, but I can't be certain. I sometimes wonder "Is this what everyone does? Or am I different?" As I'm writing this my stomach hurts from hunger, but I know if I wanted to, I could cure the pain. But the thing is, I don't want to.