What Are You Losing?


Often, after having an eating disorder for a while, it becomes part of your identity. The problem is that eating disorders are jealous things—they don’t like to share you with anyone or anything else. Your disorder doesn’t want to just be a part of your identity, it wants to be your whole identity. Before you know it, you’re wondering what happened to all the other parts of you…or maybe you’re noticing those parts slowly slip away and it scares you.

I hope it does. Because you are not your eating disorder. There’s much more to you and so many more—better—things that make you special.

I was chatting with a girl the other day who was feeling a lot of anxiety after eating an entire meal for the first time in a long time, and she said she felt like she’d betrayed her eating disorder. I reminded her that she is not her eating disorder, but she said it feels like they are the same. I asked if she is also a dancer (her passion in life!) and she said yes. But the sad truth is, she can’t dance right now because she isn’t healthy enough. Her eating disorder is consuming that part of her. She is also a mother and wife who desperately loves her family, but she’s away from them so much because of all the treatment she’s been in for years… Another part of her lost to an eating disorder that promises so much, but in reality gives so little when you really weigh the costs.

What if she looked at recovery differently…not as betraying the eating disorder or the eating disordered part of herself, but instead, saw it as nurturing the dancer, the mother, and the wife parts of her? Those parts need to be well fed, emotionally and physically, to thrive.

What about you? What parts of yourself are being sacrificed to your eating disorder and which are most important—which are you most willing to fight for?

much love,



DPP_0015bCherie Miller, MS, LPC opened Dare 2 Hope Counseling to help clients all over the country get free from their food, weight, and self-confidence struggles. Her specialty is eating disorders, including anorexia, bulimia, binge-eating, orthorexia and other unhealthy eating patterns. Contact her here.


2 thoughts on “What Are You Losing?

  1. For me everything really. Though health wise I am still only starting to deteriorate I have lost work. I still have one family I work for but the other two I have , one decided it would be best if I get healthy first and the other one I asked to pulled off because I physically am struggling to do such long shifts.

    Family. I have a surrogate family who have loved me unconditionally but they are struggling with this as this is my second rounds and they get frustrated I am not changing fast enough. So about a month ago we came to the conclusion things are not working out. So I shut the door between us. No I have No family

    I have cut off all friendships because I won’t ask people to watch me die.

    I have lost my consistency and stamina. Used to be people knew when I said I would be somewhere or so something there was no wondering. Now a lot of times I cancel or just don’t show.

    Life. I have lost the things in life I enjoy because I no longer have the desire or energy to do them. When you say an ED comes to steal your whole life you are exactly right.

    I have one friend
    One family I work for
    My doctor
    My psychiatrist
    And my therapist

    That’s what my life involves.

    I have allowed my life to be robbed for the lie of a number and the desire to disappear.

    I have lost much and continue to do so everyday

    • That is a lot of loss and heartache! Thank you for being open and sharing. The good news is that as long as we’re alive, it’s not too late! Recovery is still possible and you can rediscover all the love and happiness your eating disorder is stealing from you. Don’t give up!! XOXO, cherie

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