Hi Guys. This is me, Janelle.The writer behind The Sweet Scene Blog.
In my “About Me” section of my blog, it doesn’t really give you a full idea of why I actually started food blogging. So, I figured I’d write a post on why I started pursuing food blogging as a possible career and a way to inspire other girls who are going through what I went through and continue to keep under control.
About 5 years ago I developed an eating disorder, specifically bulimia nervosa. It was a scary time for me and I was way out of control. I was a full blown bulimic.
I used my disorder as a coping mechanism for a lot of other issues I didn’t want to deal with. About 1-2% of adolescent and young adult women suffer from this disorder. That’s a big number of women and girls.
I thought I was being secretive and hiding it from everyone, but when I went from looking vibrant and full of life, with my trademark chipmunk cheeks, and full breasts, to literally a bag of bones, everyone around me knew something was up.
When I got to college and joined my sorority I suddenly was in this bigger bubble than my suburban, Catholic school girl bubble back home in Connecticut. I felt overwhelmed.
I didn’t like the fact that not only did I stand out because I was a minority amongst my mostly all-white circle (which I’m not new to, most of my friends and school mates back home are white) but I was also curvier and (in my eyes) a whale compared to the other girls! It’s sad to say, but I felt uglier as well.
Now,in hindsight, I see that my thinking was all wrong, and toxic, but I truly believed I wasn’t good enough. So I took matters into my own hands; I controlled everything I ate and what I allowed myself to keep down and digest…which was nothing.
I began to lose weight and began to get more “attention”. When people would say “wow Janelle, you look so skinny” whether it was out of concern on their part, for me, it was validation that I’m doing it right. Justification to keep going with my disorder.
The 4 years I lived in my own shell filled with binging and purging and partying, I wasn’t my normal self, I wasn’t truly happy. I began to push away a lot of my close friends and my parents. All I cared about was losing more weight (mind you, at my lowest, I was under 100 pounds and size 00 was too big) and partying.
It took graduating, and starting a relationship with my boyfriend (who I am still currently dating) for me to snap out of it.
One night, I confessed everything to him. He was there for me 1000% and convinced me to tell my mother my secret.
I wrote my mom a letter telling her everything and from there it was mission: GET BETTER.
I went to a treatment facility in Greenwich, CT called Renfrew. I went through 3 months of intensive out patient therapy. I met with top notch professionals to help me sort through everything and find ways to cope with life in a healthy way; and through the process, I found out that I have high anxiety disorder.
I began to really love myself from the inside and out. I reached out to all those I hurt while I was going through my “rough time” and rekindled friendships that I smashed to pieces during that 4 year period. I began to feel alive, I felt like Janelle again. It was all due to me wanting to accept help and to the support from my family, boyfriend and friends.
I got down to the fundametals and educated myself on the different types of food and the benefits they have on our bodies. I truly have a great relationship with food now.
Don’t get me wrong, there are times when my anxiety gets really bad, or I stare a little too long in the mirror and begin to get those ED (eating disorder) voices in my head, and begin to “body check” (scanning your body and pointing out problem areas or checking for visible bones).
Instead of “using symptoms” (binging and purging), as we call it in treatment, I now know ways to properly cope with those emotions.
Just like any addiction (because an eating disorder is an addiction) you ALWAYS have it. It doesn’t 100% go away. You just have to make sure that it doesn’t flare up and take control again. I hope through my blog, I can inspire young girls, young adult women, even mothers (women in their 40s and 50s suffer as well) and especially minority women who are currently suffering with this horrific disorder.
It gets better. I promise.
If you or someone you know is suffering from an eating disorder, visit this helpful website.
You can also leave me comments, or email me directly: firstname.lastname@example.org and I will answer any questions you may have!