Friday, June 3, 2011

Sneaky ED

No one ever sees an Eating Disorder (ED) coming. Really. I mean no wakes up and says "OK, today I will try out an ED, let's get started." Well maybe this happens for some but most likely not. It starts s-l-o-w-l-y and really at the beginning you are not even aware of its existence. ED starts out small and I mean very small. And then, over time, it begins to grow, and fester and linger around, all the while growing some more. Ironically, the more ED grows the more control it makes you think that you have. You think you can dig out its nasty roots at any time. Not so much. ED likes to be sneaky. The kind sneaky like Satan in the Garden of Eden. You know, back in Genesis when Satan disguised himself as a serpent to slowly & sweetly manipulate Eve into eating that forbidden apple (most likely a honey crisp b/c we all know those are the best apples e.v.e.r.). Let's take a look at Genesis 3:1-7. The beginning stages of ED and that serpent have a lot in common, at least in my opinion. And no, I have no idea what type of apple Satan used to get at Eve but whatever your favorite is, just assume it was that.) Let's take a closer look...

(This is based on my experience only and obviously can vary from person to person as we are all unique. Although I do believe that the following is a common experience when thinking of the beginning stages of ED behavior). 
  • Manipulates/Lies- Perpetrators use manipulation & lies to gain trust with their prey. In the garden Satan uses manipulation to convince Eve that if she would just take ONE bite of the apple, she would be like God & her eyes would be opened to greatness. In the same way, ED lies by telling you that after one restriction or binge/purge episode (depending on the type of ED) you can & will walk away, like it never happened.  For anyone who has struggled with an ED a common thought pattern is "Once won't be bad. Loosing 5 more pounds isn't a big deal. I won't do this for long." Yet walking away is never as easy as we think. It sure wasn't easy for Eve & it sure wasn't easy for me at the beginning stages of ED.   
  • Rationalizes poor decisions - I wonder what Eve was thinking the split second before she took a bite of the forbidden fruit. I have no idea what was running through her mind but I am sure there had to be some type of rationalization going on. Don't you think? She rationalized enough to take a bite and then pass the apple on to Adam. Satan helped Eve justify her decision. At the beginning of my ED I participated in a lot of rationalizations. And with each small rationalization and poor decision I gained nothing but...
  • A false sense of confidence - Or aka the "rush factor." ED has a way of giving off a rush of feel good endorphins. The first time you restrict, the first time you see the scale drop, the first time you turn down that dessert when everyone else is eating it, etc your endorphin levels skyrocket and you feel that rush of excitement, confidence and power. I remember feeling the "rush factor" when people started to notice that I had lost some weight. This was very early on before my ED was in full swing. As people would comment on my new figure it made me feel powerful and as though I had control thus boosting a false sense of confidence. I am no scholar but my guess is that Eve felt that same rush as she bit into that delicious apple. 
Are you familiar with this story in Genesis 3? Have you ever struggled with an ED? If so, were the early stages filled with manipulation/lies, rationalizations and/or a false sense of confidence? Was Satan feeding this to you? Thoughts? 

1 comment

  1. AnonymousJune 04, 2011

    This is such a good reminder for me to be aware of Satan's sneaky ways as he tries to manipulate me. How nice to know that while Satan is powerful, God holds the ultimate power! Our only sense of true confidence is in Him.



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