child of God, wife, mother, recovering anorexic who longs to see the beauty in herself that she sees in the world around her

Thursday, May 20, 2010


I'd like to say that it is incredibly difficult to want to take care of yourself when for the past 2 months everything you eat, healthy or unhealty, no matter what time of day, makes you feel incredibly sick for at least an hour after eating.  My husband decided a pregnancy test was in order because of my extreme nausea, it was negative.  I am legitimately trying right now.  I am trusting God.  And I feel awful.  I'm tired of feeling sick to my stomach after every meal and snack.  I still eat when I am hungry, just saying it's been hard especially when I know I'm going to feel yucky afterwards.  Yes, I am eating.  Yes I still trust God is bigger than my battles.  No, I am not pregnant.  And, yes, I am going to see the doctor next week.  Hopefully this will pass quickly, it is making everything in life, including desiring to eat, much more difficult.

Sunday, May 16, 2010


I'm going to jump you around again because I feel strongly that the present also needs to be addressed. When the Lord laid it on my heart to share my story, I was battling.  My question was how can I say my journey through anorexia when I clearly wasn't completely on the other side of it.  The Lord still told me to write and still told me to call it the journey through.

So here is what the present looks like.  Yesterday I woke up with a headache and a decent amount of stress.  I could feel the old familiar tug.  I started my morning with prayer.  God give me the strength to make it through breakfast.  I opened my fridge to see no milk (that rules out cereal or protein shake), no bread (that rules out pb&j), and only 1 egg.  Hmmm, that seemingly ruled out breakfast for me.  I knew I needed to have breakfast so I prayed again that God would give me the strength to make it through breakfast.  I contemplated the 1 egg but the thought of eggs yesterday made me feel seriously queasy.  Again I prayed for strength to make it through breakfast and finally I decided on instant oatmeal.  I forced myself to look past the fact that it wasn't much of a nutritious breakfast and allowed myself to eat it.

Later in the day, sitting in the drive-thru of a fast food restaurant, I was rear-ended while ordering lunch for my kids.  I was so frustrated and frazzled.  I prayed again, God give me the strength to make it through lunch.  I'm not going to lie, if my husband wasn't waiting for me to have lunch with him, I probably would have skipped lunch.  My prayer yesterday was almost hourly, give me strength for the next meal.  He did.

Some days I can go the whole day without any thought of food struggles.  Some weeks I can go without any issues.  Some months and years I can go with no struggles.  Some days I can only go minutes before feeling the old tug and those days I cover in prayer from start to finish.  I don't know how many times yesterday I prayed for God to give me strength to get through the next meal.  I do know He is faithful and did indeed give me the strength for the next meal. 

Sometimes the lie wins.  Some days I forget that God is my strength and I try to make it on my own.  Some days I desire to believe the lie because I want to feel numb again.  Some days I hurt deeply, and on those days I have no desire to eat because all I can feel is hurt.  But most days, I am an overcomer.  Most days, I am a survivor.  Most days I am through, as in on the other side of anorexia.

Today, I have little resemblance to the aching little girl who starved herself.  Today, I actually like myself (most of the time).  Today I see my true identity as a daughter of the King, valued and loved.  It wasn't always that way.  As I walk you through my dark days of anorexia, I want to remind you that this is a story of hope, not one of despair.  Please don't look at the dark days and wonder if I ever rose above.  Know that I did indeed rise above anorexia.  While once anorexia defined my life, now it is an adjective describing a part of my life.  It went from being the subject in the sentence of my life to an adjective in the sentence of my life.

Yes, the path I walked was dark.  At times it was unbearably dark, but there is a light at the end of the story.   There is a light of hope and redemption.  There is a light of grace and healing.  There is a light that has allowed me to enjoy life again.  There is always hope, even when it seems hopeless.


I'm not eager to be at this point in my blog.  This is another one that I have agonized over for days before posting.  This is another one that makes me squirm and makes me feel like I could throw up all at the same time, so be patient with me please!

When I was 19 my parents had been through some counseling with a very dear woman.  My mom one day told me to take her appointment to share something that she felt was important knowledge to this woman.  I agreed and a wonderful counseling relationship began.  I loved (and still do, very much!) this woman.  She validated me.  She explained me to myself when I couldn't understand why I behaved the way I did.  She started and ended each session with prayer.  I dreaded and looked forward to my weekly sessions with her so much that I was a pile of nerves each day I had an appointment.

At some point in our sessions, near the time of "accountability" and "my cry for help"  we started discussing my intense aversion to all things food.  I was suddenly unbelievably uncomfortable talking about food.  I cannot even express how uncomfortable I was but it was more so than any other thing we had talked about.  She helped me to this realization that I really did NOT like.

When I was younger, during the abuse years, I, like most people, had physical symptoms of emotional hurts.  Not only did I feel afraid and dirty, I always had a stomach ache afterward.  I always felt, for the lack of a better word, full.  Not just full, but- like you ate at a smorgasbord and couldn't consume one more bite or you would surely explode- kind of full.  Simply put, that was the only way in my young brain I could physically describe the yuckiness that I felt.

Now fast forward several years to the 19 yr old me.  I DESPISED feeling full and could never understand why until this day.  I just thought it was because for years I had not eaten properly and was not used to feeling full.  I cried for the rest of the day.  I was supposed to lead one of the break off groups at our Bible Study that night.  I couldn't pull myself together enough to do it.  I cried.  I cried some more.  I wept.  I sobbed.  I couldn't talk, I couldn't eat, I couldn't even drink.  All I could do was cry and ache.  I sat with my knees pulled tightly into my chest and I didn't say a  word.  People asked if I was ok, I couldn't answer.  I wasn't and I didn't know how to make it ok.  I didn't know if I'd ever feel ok again in my life at that point.

I was certain, with this newly realized pain, that I could never eat and feel full ever again.  It would just hurt too much.  As I thought about food and how I felt when I ate, I was bombarded with very graphic and painful memories.  I knew that I could never be whole, that I could never feel full without hurting, that I would never be able to run far enough away from those nightmares.  I knew that for my entire life I would remain slave to the thing I thought that moving far away from had saved me from.  I was forever broken and could not be mended. 

I was wrong. God somehow carried me through that night and through the next several days at work where I was simply going through the motions and in a huge depression. I wasn't eating and I knew why I wasn't eating and I didn't want to feel it.  I tried to be numb again, it had once been easy but now was nearly impossible.  I didn't attempt to kill myself again at this point but I dreamed of the relief that death would bring. I dwelled on thoughts of ending my pain but for some reason, this time it was only a dream not an attempted reality. Once again I was so consumed with hurt that I could barely breathe. 

God so graciously carried me through.  I don't even pretend to know how.  I went through the motions for some time.  Work, church, Bible Study, out to eat after Bible Study and then back to work at one of my 3 jobs.  I functioned, kind of, but I didn't live. I truly didn't think I could ever eat enough to be full without severe emotional whiplash.  The next months were less than pretty as I struggled to find worth, to find healing, and to (unsuccessfully) forget the extreme memories that now plagued not only my sleep but my waking hours as well.

Friday, May 14, 2010

something to ponder

My last post was starting to get a bit long so I decided to make a second entry to share the thing I was given yesterday to ponder.  I was informed last night by someone who I love an awful lot, that it was presented to him by someone else that I have control issues.  The exact wording, I believe, was "She has trouble handing the keys over to someone else."  The hearer of this statement had to think about it and finally agreed.  These are people who love me unconditionally, one who knows me inside and out and one who is very observant and all too often hears what I don't say.

My first thought when I heard this was, "Well, duh!  You are just now realizing I have control issues?"  But for some reason I couldn't verbalize that so I instead denied my need for control.  I asked for specific examples.  I work so hard to cover up my intense fear of letting someone else call the shots and yet these two people could see through my mask.  That is something to ponder! 

The theories of why I prefer to be in control (it was clarified that I want to be in control, not that I am controlling. whew, that's a relief!) were interesting.  I think there was an amount of truth in the theories to add to the things that I am now thinking about.  Hmmmm, new things to wrap my brain around and to surrender to my Savior.  This will be the story of my life forever.  I will always be finding things in my life that I need Jesus to be Lord over.  This time it is my desire to control my life instead of giving Him the control.

I love both of these people who brought this to my attention.  I love how they often unknowingly challenge me in my faith.  I love that they don't allow me to be comfortable.  I also sometimes despise it.  I still have control issues.  I'm just not exhibiting it in the dangers of anorexia right now.   God be my strength as I journey through this!

not perfect

I know I jump around a bit in my blog, from the past to present.  Sorry if it is confusing.  I jump because, simply said, I am not perfect.  Today I write because yesterday I was given both something terrifying to me and something to ponder.  The thing that terrified me was discovering that someone reads this for answers in their own life.  Someone reading this is actually being affected by a horrible battle with anorexia.  I don't need to give more detail but I am now aware of someone reading for help not just to hear my story and know me more.

It seems like a suddenly overwhelming responsibility.  What if my answers aren't right?  But on the other hand, isn't that what my prayer was in starting this blog, that even one person would be ministered to?  I am praying for a person I've never met and people who love that person.  I'm praying for someone who the Lord has lead to me in an indirect way.  Isn't that the reason I share?  Isn't the reason I tell the gross details of my life so that the Lord can use my life, my story and His redemption to draw someone to Him?  Yes, indeed, that is the reason.  And I must now trust that He called me to this for a purpose.

You want to know the blunt honest truth?  When the Lord started asking me to tell others my story, I was in the middle of the worst anorexic battle that I have had in at least 10 years.  I argued with God simply because I didn't see how He could use me to help others through when at that moment I was deeply in the thick of it again myself.  I'm not perfect, I still sometimes struggle with something that hurts me.  I once read that it takes 7 years of being healthy to say that you have overcome an eating disorder.  For some that may be true.  For me, it has proven to be a lifelong battle so far.  I was healthy for 7 yrs before I had any inkling of a struggle.  I thought I had conquered it and was shocked when it reared its ugly head again.

Over the last 3 years there have been a few times that I have struggled.  Most of the struggles have been fairly minor until this last one.  The last one lasted for a longer time than the smaller struggles and was much more emotionally charged.  I think I'll blog the details at another time because that isn't really the direction of this blog.  The direction of this blog is that someone else is struggling and looking at my broken life.  It's not a perfect life but I see God's redemptive hand so much in my story and my life.  There is a chance that I will struggle for my entire life, but I know that God is faithful to me.  I know that in the midst of my crazy and changing life, He is unchanging.  He carries me when I don't have the strength to carry on.

As you read my story I pray that you find the courage to look to God and let Him be your strength.  I quit asking God to give me strength several years ago when my friend said she prayed that God would be my strength as opposed to asking Him to give me strength.  That makes so much more sense to me.  My strength is not near big enough, His strength is perfect.  As you read my story I hope you realize that it is my story, not everyone's story.  I hope that through it all you see that even though I don't know all the answers, I have faith and hope in the One Unchanging Creator of all.  It is because of Him alone that my story is even worth sharing.  Had He not redeemed me from the pit, I would still be a broken little girl with no trust in humanity who was searching for anything to dull the emotional turmoil and pain I was in.  Only because of His great grace and mercy is there anything of beauty in my life.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Around the same time as talking to the pastor (though I genuinely don't remember if this was right before or right after) I must have talked with two of my guy friends.  I don't remember telling them, but I do remember them worrying about me.  Their worry and subsequent "accountability" were well intentioned though not well executed.  Every time they saw me they would ask if I had eaten.  The focus was always on what, how much and when I ate.  Too much focus on food! Mental note to those of you walking alongside of someone struggling with food issues, *do NOT make the focus about the food!*  Because all that they focused on was food with me, I focused on it more myself, but not in a healthy way.  I obsessed even more about not eating because food was suddenly the thing most on the forefront of my mind.  I finally started lying, just to get them to quit asking.  Yes, I did eat, this morning with the girls.  One day one of them asked me what I had eaten.  I am a terrible liar so I didn't even attempt.  "A tootsie roll," I responded. 

Of course they were horrified and promptly took me to Denny's and asked what I wanted to eat.  Nothing!  I didn't want to eat a single thing on that menu!  I was willing to compromise on a salad but they wouldn't hear of it.  I had to get some "real food"  in me.  They ordered me a burger.  I ate about 3 bites and then was legitimately full.  Not eating causes your stomach to shrink.  They didn't understand and forced me to finish the burger.  This cycle only made matters worse because I felt so sick after eating so much that I had no hunger pains or desire to eat for several days.  They had the best of intentions and yet they made the cycle even harder to break by constantly barraging me about food and then forcing me to eat more than my body was ready for.

Let me tell you a little secret about eating disorders, if you deal with the root causes and hurts, you will have much more success with dealing with the symptoms.  Not eating is a symptom of a much greater pain.  It is different reasons for each person who deals with it.  For me, not eating was a symptom of needing control in my life, a way to express my extreme emotional hurt, a way to make my body obey me, a way to feel a little less unworthy, a way to prove I could be gorgeous, a way to show that my body could be used in a way that didn't involve sex.  The list goes on, I'm sure you get it though.  As the hurts of the past started to be healed, the eating gradually got easier. 

So again, please remember that when you encounter someone who deals with eating disorders.  The eating disorder is not the cause, it is the symptom. Like any disease, treating the symptom will not make the disease go away it will only mask the outward devastation of the disease.  Do NOT make everything focused around food!  Focus, instead, on getting to know that wounded little girl.  Focus on loving her when she is difficult to love.  Focus on protecting her when she feels attacked.  Love her unconditionally.  Eventually love and trust will break down her walls.  When you get past those walls to the real issues, help her tackle them.  Don't for a moment think that food is the issue, it isn't.

Friday, May 7, 2010

my cry for help

I don't really know why I picked the number I did. I had done my research though and I knew what average weight was for someone my height and age was and my number was significantly connected to the research that I had done. When week after week was not making a significant dent to my goal to the perfect number, I upped the use of the diet pills. I was now taking more than recommended dose after meals and sometimes before meals as well.

I finally got to the point where I had to get rid of food completely again and keep the metabolism boosters to try to achieve my own perceived perfection.   On a retreat with our church's youth group and college/career aged group I had too many.  Way to many.  I started feeling dizzy and I didn't like the way I felt.  I locked myself in a ladies restroom and took more pills.  I was afraid that the dizzy feeling meant that I was going to want food and that thought terrified me.  I didn't realize at the time that it was actually because I was racing my metabolism with nothing to fuel my body.  An hour later when I still couldn't numb the emotional pain yet, with my head still pounding and spinning, I took more pills.  I ended up passing out in the same ladies room I had previously used to hide my pill usage.  I'm not really sure how long I was out but I didn't think it was very long.  I somehow managed to make it to the main room where evening services were being held.  I could barely walk and holding my head up was getting more and more difficult.  I found a corner, sat down and buried my head in my knees and cried.

Crying made my head hurt worse.  I remember nothing of the service that night other than there was a very funny skit early in the service before the sermon.  I only remember one tiny part of the skit but I have heard from many friends and my husband how funny the skit was.  I remember nothing at all of the rest of the evening and have no recollection of how or when I got back to my room for the night.  I think my friend, who several years later became my husband, came to check if I was ok but it is all blurry.  I probably did what I was so good at and said yeah and then buried my head to cry some more.

The next day I knew I needed help.  I still used the pills, but not in the rather large excess that I had the day before.  After the service that evening I sought out the pastor.  In retrospect I should have sought out his wife or pretty much anyone besides him.  I pulled him to the side in the auditorium and told him of my struggle.  I confessed my not eating and I confessed the use of the pills.  I also confessed the amount of pills I had taken just the day before.  I finally wanted the help that I had known for some time that I needed.  I wanted to get better.  I wanted to live a life to glorify God and I wanted to find the peace I had been searching for my entire life.

 Unfortunately, he was not the person to help me find help. His response was devastating to me.  He informed me that it was just a matter of making up my mind to stop sinning.  It was just that obvious, I was sinning and I had to stop.  His words, though not intended this way, told me that I was in this battle alone, that God didn't care about my pain but rather about my actions and I would only hope to see the grace of healing.  I felt myself fill up with anger.  I knew that if I had come to him with a drug or alcohol problem, he would have done everything in his power to get me help.  If I had come to him pregnant or even in a gay relationship, he would have moved mountains to help me.  But I didn't.  I came to him with a what he felt was a perceived problem not a real problem.  He didn't understand that I was equally addicted to starving myself as I had once been to alcohol.  My addiction was one of denial not of excess, so of course it was just a sin not an addiction.

I guess I'd like to put in a disclaimer.  This pastor, was not a bad guy.  He is actually a really good guy, he was just clueless about this particular struggle.  His wife however was amazing and I still say has been one of the most influential people in my Christian walk.  She showed me the love of Christ in such an unconditional and beautiful way.  It was through her influence that I chose to stop drinking, and through her influence that I had the realization that I needed to break up with the abusive boyfriend.  Not to glorify the woman as the cause of these things, it was truly the hand of God.  She was just the instrument He used during that season of my life and I will be forever grateful that she pointed me to Jesus and loved me when I was unlovable.

Thursday, May 6, 2010


I'm not sure how or when it happened, but slowly I began to un-numb enough to be part of the life going on around me.  I don't remember when I started eating but I do remember when I started feeling guilty about eating.  I think I may have passed out and that was what made me realize I couldn't always starve myself.  The problem was that by this point, every single time that I ate ANYTHING I felt unexpressably guilty.  How do you cope with food guilt and the, mild though it was, desire to eat again??????  I answered my guilt in an equally unhealthy way.  I started taking diet pills to speed up my metabolism anytime I had to eat.  I thought I had found the perfect answer.  I could eat on occasion and still not feel guilty about the food I had eaten.

The problem with this was, I was wondering if the pills were really working or just a placebo so I stepped on the scale.  It was actually the first time since I had been so sick at the very beginning that I ever got on a scale.  We never had a scale in my parents house so I didn't bother with a number so much but rather a size.  Suddenly I had access to a scale 4 times a week and became obsessed with the numbers on that scale.  Suddenly it was a specific number that had become my goal. 

* I once heard Tracy Gold do an interview about her eating disorder and she said that she never talked about numbers because it is a challenge to those still struggling to be even thinner than that person's numbers.  I am grateful for her wisdom and insight because she is absolutely right.  I know, I was in the midst of my own severe battle when I heard her say that. To pay forward the same respect to others who still struggle, I will never talk about my personal numbers in either my weight or my own perceived perfect number.*

The guilt I felt was increasing rapidly.  Originally the pills shut up the guilt, but like anything that you use to cover up an emotion, it eventually takes more and more and more to do the job that you need.  That is how drinkers become alcoholics, drug users become addicts and little anorexic girls find new ways to starve their bodies.

unhealthy and exhausted

After breaking up with that guy, I "rebelled" for a few weeks and ate.  It was just too much work and soon I just didn't have the energy to keep trying.  It was a slow downward slope.  I ate when I went out on dates because guys were always complaining about girls who wouldn't eat on a date.  Besides, they were paying.  Other than that, eating just took too much emotional energy.  I went out with friends every week after our home Bible study.  There were always a lot of people.  I would still not eat but no one realized it.  I would order something to "share" with a friend.  The food would come to the table but I would disappear to another table to chat with friends.  I payed for an obscene amount of food that I never ate just to keep the questions at bay.  Even the people who went in halves on food with me didn't catch me until one day I finally confessed what I was doing.  The confession was another year down the road though.  I was emotionally exhausted all the time and not eating was making me physically exhausted and being physically exhausted made me have no energy to eat.  It was a vicious cycle, one that only sometimes did I care how unhealthy it was.  I was more concerned with keeping my brain and body numb.  I was wounded, an bird with a broken wing, but I wanted nothing more than to not have to think or try. 

It worked for a while.  I wasn't drinking anymore but I was somehow completely numb.  If I thought about it, I knew there was hurt down inside, but I didn't let myself think about it.  I just did what I had to do to survive.  At that time it meant not eating because as I've said, eating meant concentrating and acknowledging there was hurt.  Not eating had  become a habit.  I didn't have to think about it, I just did it.  I thought I was protecting myself.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

more like "her"

In high school I dated a guy who I was sleeping with.  He would regularly cheat on me with his ex-girlfriend and then tell me that it had happened.  While we were in the middle of "the deed" he would proceed to tell me all the things that she did that I didn't do.  Talk about a blow to your self image!  The only thing I knew for sure how to do, turn a man on, I was suddenly being told regularly that I didn't do it right and I should be more like her. 

That was a devastating relationship.  He was verbally and physically abusive.  I, like most who stay in abusive relationships, thought I deserved the degradation.  I felt like I was very unbeautiful anyway so I felt like I deserved the comments about my weight, my bedroom abilities, and my looks.  The physical abuse didn't really bother me, it embodied the emotional hurt I already felt.  At that time, I would have much rather hurt physically than emotionally.  I had already learned to drink away the emotions and when I quit drinking I had already long since become a pro at making sure those emotions  weren't seen.

Food again became about my body image.  I wanted to be the girl of his dreams but I couldn't be because she was someone else.  She was the girl who did everything right in bed, who had everything he wanted.  In retrospect, I find it kinda weird that weight was an issue because the girl I was constantly competing with was very overweight.  I now realize how incredibly insulting it was that he would make comments about my weight (that was once again in the range of underweight) while at the same time praising the other woman whose weight was definitely in the range of overweight.  But that didn't occur to me then.  Apparently I was fat.  I just wanted him to love me and I thought that changing my perceived "fatness" would make him indeed love me. 

Unfortunately I didn't know then what I know now, that nothing I could have changed about me was going to make him love me.  I came to a point that I just wanted to have sex with someone who loved me and his words said that he did.  I had never heard those words from a person interested in my body so I thought he must have meant them. No one else had ever even bothered to disguise their true intentions so I couldn't fathom that his intentions were sexual not loving.

It finally happened.  Someone asked me about food.  Someone noticed I wasn't ok and that I was looking a bit too thin.  I lied, said I had already eaten.  When asked again a few weeks later I lied again and said I was waiting till he got off work so that we could eat together.  I actually didn't care that people saw me getting thinner, it had to mean that he also saw that I was no longer fat.

Fat, what a horrible perspective, especially to a girl who was underweight before she was labeled fat.  What a cruel thing to say to anyone at all.  What a cruel thing to inflict on a girl, or on anyone for that matter. If I wasn't "fat" anymore, maybe he wouldn't be angry with me and not try to hurt me?  WRONGO!  Losing weight only succeeded in one thing, the bruises on my legs showed up quicker and darker.  I didn't understand why he couldn't love me, I was doing everything he asked of me.

I'm not exactly sure when I realized that he didn't love me nor could he ever love me.  I think it was when he started trying to humilate me in front of people at church but I'm not entirely sure.  At some point I realized that I couldn't stay in that relationship and I finally had the courage to call it off.  I had learned something, the words of love don't equal the actions of love.  His intentions were the same as others before him had been, to make his body feel good no matter what it cost me.  His only difference was that he claimed to love me.

I was no longer running from God but I was afraid that He also couldn't possibly truly love me.  I accepted that He had made me and the world around me.  I accepted that He sent His son, Jesus, to die for the sins of the world so that people could live forever in Heaven.  I didn't accept that He still would have done it if I had been the only one in the world who needed a savior.  I was feeling like I was getting into Heaven someday based on the fact that God loved the world, not on the fact that God loved me.  How could He possibly love me?  I was a broken disaster.  I was fat (or so my perception at the time told me and as my husband says, perception is reality), I wasn't pure and never even remembered my life before impurity entered it, I was unbeautiful, and I was so hurt that I could barely breathe at times.  I knew God couldn't possibly desire me personally.

parental influence

I have come to realize my biggest discomfort in blogging about my journey is that I have to face the fact head on that there is a possibility that someday my parents will read this.  That honestly makes me squirm more than any of the sharing I have done.  They don't know that anorexia was ever an issue at all for me much less a consuming issue for a time.  Well, I should say that if they knew, they never let on to me that they did.  There is a lot that I have typed or will type that they have previously been unaware of.  Another reason it makes me uncomfortable is that I don't want them (or you my reader for that matter) to ever feel like I am blaming them for my decisions or even saying that they weren't good parents.

My parents were good parents.  They did the best they could and they introduced me to Jesus and prayed for me daily.  They had the best of intentions and never intended for any of their actions to hurt me.  I would, however, be covering up a pretty significant portion of my journey if I did not include how my home life and family affected my life and decisions.  It is very very difficult to do, again simply because I don't want to make my family sound like they were calloused or uncaring or bad parents.

There were several factors that had to do with my home life that played roles, some large, some small, in my choice to not eat.  One factor that was a fairly recent realization to me is the overbearing fearful way that my parents reared me.  I was always told how to think and what I should feel about things.  I have recently realized that my parents strictness with me, especially as I got older, actually fueled my intense desire to have one area of my life that I was absolutely in control of.  In my parents deep desire to shelter me from all things bad (rephrased, all things they perceived to be bad) they actually made those things seem even more appealing.  I could never make my own choices and decisions so when the time came that I physically could make my own decisions, I didn't know how to make wise decisions.

I have already mentioned the refusal to help me get help in another entry.  By the time my parents did help me get help, the bulk of the damage had already been done and I had an awful lot of baggage.  Not to say I didn't start with baggage, but years of poor choices from food to boys to life in general only greatly added to my counseling needs.  I grew up in a family where Christianity and God's Word should be enough for you.  Physical conditions such as depression, stress, thyroid issues, and post-tramatic stress disorder should easily be treated by more Bible time and more faith.

 Now some of this is my fault that I didn't get help, I never shared with my parents the trauma that I did indeed go through.  They didn't find most of it out until I graduated from high school.  And even then it came about because I confided in my sister-in-law during an angry venting session and she was worried and told my brother.  My brother didn't know what to do with the information and was also worried and thought that telling my parents about my past would get me the help I so desperately needed.  There is quite a bit though that they still to this day do not know. (Well, I guess that's one thing.  If they do ever end up reading this, they will instantly know way more about me than I think they may ever want to know!)

During the height of my depression, my parents could not understand chemical imbalances and would ask what I had to be depressed about.  I didn't even  fully realize what I had to be depressed about for a couple of years.  The abuse had stopped so I didn't view that as a current and valid reason to be depressed.  Add all of that to the INSANE hormones of puberty and I was a walking, breathing, emotional basket case!  I think I may have been one of the most needy people on the planet at that time.  God bless those who loved me anyway, I'm not sure how they did unless it was just simply for the grace of God.

Pretending that root issues are not there is not the way to heal, in case you didn't know that.  Hurt and depression were not ok emotions to feel in our home, so I felt them in the solitude of my bedroom instead of sharing my burdens with my family.  It was ok to be happy and angry was ok too.  None of us knew how to deal with other emotions.

I think that for today that is enough of my parents involvement.  I'm really not comfortable having an entire gripe fest about what my parents did or did not do.  They tried, they just didn't understand what I was going through.  Hey, I didn't understand what I was going through, it's hard to expect others to if you yourself don't.  I love my parents dearly and I am so very grateful for the fact that they did give me the greatest gift ever, they introduced me to Jesus and taught me to love the Word.