Why do I go to food for comfort? This seems like a simple enough question right? But for me, and I think a lot of people, its a much more complex answer.
Growing up the only answer to me being upset was to give me food. As soon as I was old enough, the only solution for any emotion was for me to eat. If I felt sad, scared, upset, even happy, I went to food. Pretty much every emotion brought the craving for food. As time went on I started going to food when I wasn’t feeling emotion. When I was bored, when I had nothing to do. Food became my best friend and my worst enemy. It was like I had worked myself into an abuse relationship with my own mind.
I can remember leaving school on lunch and going to the grocery store down the street and buying these pre-made cake slices, maybe 4. And a package of mini cupcakes, and Oreo’s, maybe a loaf of bread. The list goes on and on. I would eat all of that, most of the time in one sitting. I did this day after day. Looking back now, I realize why I didn’t have many friends, for the most part, because I spent most of my time eating. It’s not like I was proud of it. These binges were all done in secrecy, I would walk through the isles of the store, but before I would commit to walking the isle, I would make sure there was no one around that would recognize me. The register was a whole pit of anxiety, I probably looked like I was crazy because of the way I was spinning my head, watching for people and thinking of an excuse, any excuse for me buying that food, that wouldn’t make me look like an absolute glutton if I happened to be recognized. I think a big part of me didn’t think I deserved friends, and food was my way of blanketing the pain that those feelings brought up.
This became more than a behavior, it became my life. When I wasn’t thinking about what I was going to eat and how I was going to hide it, I was in my own head. Consumed by the worry about what was going on at home or desperately wanting the life of my peers, wanting friends, and not wanting to care about anything. These feelings eventually lead to more binges, and the cycle continued until eventually I broke free of it. And was in a healthy enough mindset, able to see that I was slowly killing myself.
It’s really hard writing all of this down, I am realizing how deep in the hole of addiction and depression I have spent a lot of my life in. Sometimes voluntarily digging that hole deeper because going back to those behaviors was easier than fighting them at some times.
I still struggle with food every day. This past week has been very hard, and lends an explanation to why this topic is on my mind. The past 4 days I have been on a binge, not a horrible or massive one. I still was actively hurting my self by eating bad foods that gave my body no energy or nourishment. Now I would be lying if I said the negative and thoughts about my self didn’t surface. But I was able to work through them and not let those thoughts drive me into a more destructive binge. And here I am, revealing my habbits and behaviors to who ever is reading this, hoping that doing this will help me with my relationship with food and with my self.
Overall, despite the fact I have been having a hard time this week, I am actually feeling good! Probably because I am working to not cloud my emotions and actually feeling them, and because I am actively working to improve my self. Do you have any experiences with binge eating? Let me know in the comments!
See You On Friday