Last night I met some of my girl friends out for dinner and drinks. We were all catching up when I told them, “I have some big news! I was contacted by a television show”. They all looked up at me with such puzzled looks before the, “Why were you contacted?” came out. Perhaps they thought I’d been contacted for being Mom of the Year 2012, kidding of course. Long story short, I could have sworn that I mentioned my binge eating disorder website to them before, but I guess I hadn’t.
So I started the whole story… I used to have this eating disorder called Binge Eating Disorder, went to therapy, then helped myself, wrote an eBook, have a website, and now I enjoy helping people. They were shocked. One of my friends even said, “Wow, and I thought I knew you!”
Another friend asked if I was talking about bulimia because she didn’t know what binge eating disorder was. I told her the difference and shared some of my past with her. No one had any idea.
And that’s the “thing” about binge eating disorder, it’s private. You don’t want people to know. It’s a secret and you want it to stay a secret. It can feel embarrassing to open up to people about the binges. So even though I haven’t binged in many years, it was strange opening up and feeling so vulnerable.
Obviously, these are my friends and they aren’t going to judge me, but, I’ll admit it, I did wonder (for just a second) if they would think different about me. Then I came to my senses and realized that I was being ridiculous. Friends are friends and they love you for who you are. Period.
That night, when I got home, I started thinking about how different my life could have been if I would have opened up to friends while going through binge eating disorder. Maybe some of them would have been going through the same thing. Or maybe one would have been my “go to” girl when the times got tough and I wanted to binge. Maybe I wouldn’t have felt so stuck, like there was no way out. I’m sure I wouldn’t have suffered and struggled with food for so long.
So if there’s one thing you take away from this post, it’s this: Having someone you trust to talk to is really important. It’s a really big step towards the right direction. Your trusted person could be a friend, your grandmother, or a counselor. They don’t have to struggle with bingeing – just lend an ear so you can talk or a shoulder if you need one.
I walked away from my night out feeling really happy. Happy that I got to go out with my friends. Happy that I got to take off my “mom hat” and just be “Kristin” for the night. And happy that I opened up to my friends. It felt really good to be able to share what I’m doing with people that mean a lot to me.