Molestation caused compulsive eating at age 5


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I would just like some help with information on this type of root cause for obesity and anyone who has overcome the problem. Any help will be greatly and gratefully appreciated. I spent over 20 years in counseling with licensed counselors with this degree : LCSW. I was not helped whatsoever by any of them. My insurance would not pay for psychology and would pay very little for psychiatry. So, I never got THE ANSWERS that have eluded me. I am almost 55 now. I weighed 389 at my known highest weight and am now at 284. All but 20 pounds of loss was due to illness (gastroparesis). I've known a lot of obese women and a few men who admitted that molestation was the beginning of their weight problem. But none had any answers and were just as blind as me on how to overcome this problem. Please help...😕

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Posted (edited)

Hi, nomoremimes, I'm really sorry that you've had this experience, and that none of the counselors you've seen have helped you. Have you ever read "The Courage to Heal" by Ellen Bass and Laura Davis? There's a workbook that goes with it too, and that can help you work through your feelings. "The Courage to Heal" is heavy-hitting at times, and personally I wouldn't choose to wade through it without having a counselor in my life to help me process the emotions that come up. If you feel like you have no good counseling options, it might still be helpful if you go it alone, though.

As for how to stop using food as a coping mechanism, I have no magic wands there. I weigh about 350 myself, so I'm no role model. I can tell you that my therapist and I have been working on what triggers my emotional desire to eat, and how to substitute healthier coping mechanisms instead. This is kind of an individualized process, so what works for me might not work for you, but one thing I've been working on is finding ways of "treating" myself and celebrating without resorting to unhealthy food. It's hardest when I'm going out to eat with people or if there's a party where people are indulging. (I have a particular weakness for beer and pizza.) It turns out I like crushed ice drinks a lot, and it's okay if the drink is sugar-free. It's the crushed ice that makes it special. It's kind of okay if I bring my own Crystal Light slushie to an event and just munch on the ice while everybody else eats mozzarella sticks and cheesy garlic bread. I'd definitely rather be pigging out, but that's a bad idea for obvious reasons.

Maybe if you went through the same process of finding non-fattening special treats you can have it would help? Obviously there's a lot more to recovering from an eating disorder than that, but if I had easy answers for recovering from an ED, I'd sell them and make a zillion dollars. :P

Edited by G33kg1rl
misspelling

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Thank You, G33kg1rl, for your help. I have not gotten The Courage To Heal workbook yet, but I need to try it. I have read two books by different authors on the subject and tried to apply the info but it didn't help. I watch My 600 lb. Life to see what the therapists tell the difficult patients, hoping and praying that it will resonate in MY head. Because I have no idea why I learned to use food to not feel guilt and shame for what two adults did to me at the age of five. Food was the only thing available to me at that time that would distract me from feeling scared, guilty, dirty, worried, etc.

Though I'm getting old, I just want peace with food for the rest of my life. I can't stand the way it seems to control me still. The doctors say I'm not a surgical candidate because I have a blood clotting disorder. But I will never give up my journey to overcome the thing that has ruined my life for so many years.

Thank You again for helping me. 💕

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I would just like some help with information on this type of root cause for obesity and anyone who has overcome the problem. Any help will be greatly and gratefully appreciated. I spent over 20 years in counseling with licensed counselors with this degree : LCSW. I was not helped whatsoever by any of them. My insurance would not pay for psychology and would pay very little for psychiatry. So, I never got THE ANSWERS that have eluded me. I am almost 55 now. I weighed 389 at my known highest weight and am now at 284. All but 20 pounds of loss was due to illness (gastroparesis). I've known a lot of obese women and a few men who admitted that molestation was the beginning of their weight problem. But none had any answers and were just as blind as me on how to overcome this problem. Please help...

Hey! I go to a holistic counselor and have experienced similar things they help body mind and spirit there's also trauma exercises you can do! if you want to talk pm me!


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Hello- oh I can relate and I really am touched and appreciate the courage it might have taken to write all this stuff. I do think there have been two things that have helped me along the way. DBT (google it if necessary). It's dialectical behavioral therapy. Excellent set of skills to practice better coping and less self soothing with poor choices. Also the books by the author that wrote Healing the Shame the Binds You. They were a life changer when I read them a few decades ago. Hang in there. Don't give up. You have a path and you are walking it.


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I can also relate, and I second the advice about Courage to heal as well as DBT. There are also other therapies that some find useful, and many women's shelters hold support groups for sexual abuse survivors that can be very helpful. But I think the reason you're not finding "an answer" is because no therapist our doctor on earth had those kinds of answers. The brain and our bodies are enormously complex things, and researchers have barely scratched the surface of why we do the things we do. I've come to the conclusion, after 30 years of therapy and personal seeking, that while I might have originally started overeating as a response to trauma, that is by no means the whole story. Environment, behavioral reinforcement, and genetics had parts to play too. There's probably other things in the mix that I haven't got a clue about. That's not really the important part -- the important part is figuring out how to change my future behavior. And that will be a work in progress for the rest of my life.

Sent from my SM-G930V using BariatricPal mobile app

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JR, I appreciate the comments and information that you gave.

I recently received a healing from this childhood trauma. I am much better able to move on with my life. I was thinking about what had happened to me and wondering why these things happen at all. Then thoughts, totally foreign to me, began to enter my mind. The message I got was: "It IS NOT for you to understand why, but it IS for you to forgive." So, I began to fully forgive these things and have not been consumed by them since. I'm doing okay now. I no longer feel the urge to eat to stifle my emotions. I hope I continue to use food properly. I Hope my experience may help someone else who has spent years wondering "WHY" to move past that point (because there is never an acceptable answer as to why we suffered child molestation) and let the Creator of all living beings separate the wheat from the chaff on Judgement Day. ❤️

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