18 September 2013

False promises, empty words and little lies

False promises, empty words and little lies, the very nature of anorexia means that whether we like it or not, recovery is littered with them. 

It's probably what I hated most when I was ill, repeatedly lying to friends, family, boyfriends, colleagues and even the women behind the counter at the pharmacy. It became totally normal and acceptable to lie about anything and everything to do with (lack of) food and (too much) exercise. I despise lying.

But I liked it too. It made me feel like I had a 'special secret', the 'key' to happiness. It was mine and the secrecy kept it that way. It's what makes anorexia so damn dangerous. You end up lying to yourself about the illness itself.

Recovery is no different, but oh-so very different at the same time. 

I'm no longer whisked away on the fluffy clouds of denial that Ana convinced me was her happiness, so life is real, recovery is real and the false promises and lies are real. And I know it. 

"I'm going to hit my calorie targets" - Yeah right. Tomorrow? 
"I haven't restricted on my meal plan at all" - Really?
"I don't weigh myself any more." - Puts scales back under the bed 
"I don't LIKE chocolate/butter/cakes/crisps" - But REALLY I do
"I've rested and not exercised today" - Takes off trainers**

They just roll off the tongue don't they? Let's be honest, far too easily sometimes.

It doesn't mean we haven't got the best intentions, it doesn't mean we haven't got our sights set on fully beating our eating disorders. It doesn't mean I don't want full recovery and freedom from anorexia. 

But WHY do some of the false promises and empty words continue this far into recovery? 

I hate that I do it. I hate how some times I still make promises and with the best will in the world, I have no intention of doing them. But there's still something addictive or attractive about saying one thing and doing the other. 

The empty words, like 'I'm okay' or the other auto-pilot reposes I've developed in recovery just roll off the tongue. It's easier than explaining sometimes, but it's the lies I don't like. 

I continue to tell people there are foods 'Sarah doesn't like' when really it's Ana who doesn't like Sarah liking them. There are still days when I exercise and don't make up the calories. There are snacks and meals I know how to 'cut corners' that no one will pull me up on, so why not try?

The only explanation I can pin down is that it's Ana keeping her claws in my side, keeping her foot in the door, refusing to release the final rope from around my hands and tape from my mouth. 

It's so easy to let the white lies slip through the net by not speaking at all. I'd call them 'her' lies, but I think in recovery WE need to take responsibility for them, not lay all the blame on our disorders. That's the easy option, but it's easy because it means the eating disorder's won. 

Lying our way through recovery WON'T lead to 'RECOVERED'. I am aware of this. But why does it get to me so much when I know other people still lie for their eating disorder? I do it too.

I guess friendships with other eating disordered (or recovered) people are always going to have a certain level of secrecy aren't they? We don't mention weights or reveal all our food rituals or old anorexic habits and BMI is often a no-go subject. 

Or maybe it's just me being me, competitive and comparing. 
But in sickness and in health. In anorexic terms and in recovery

I want to be the 'most recovered' and an 'inspiration' but I have this weird jealousy of people who are still counting every calorie and 'giving in to anorexia too. As recovery has gone on and as I've moved away from anorexia, it's less about the latter, I'm aware it's not helpful.

But I still spend far too much time working out if people with eating disorders are lying to me or speaking empty words and firing off false promises.

Maybe I just need to stop thinking about what they're thinking and start considering if it is me who still needs to fill my words a little more. 

We're only ever lying to ourselves and that's never going to hurt anyone but ourselves. 

**NB. I don't weigh myself, use a calorie counting app. The others are still debatable 

1 comment :

  1. You're right - by lying about what we eat or how much exercise we've done, we are only EVER hurting ourselves. It's irrelevant if someone else is lying to you, it doesn't affect you or your body. At the end of the day, if they are lying, then it's them that will still suffer from the eating disorder. YOU, however, will be free x