Thank you for continuing on this journey. It takes courage to persevere in something that is difficult. You are to be commended for completing step one and beginning step two. In this step we will examine breadth and impact of our unhealthy relationship with food. In step one, we named our struggle, now we will examine it.
It may be strange to realize that we all learned to start using food as both a self-soothing and punitive instrument as infants. Food is a primary tool in every parent’s motivational and disciplinary strategy. “The baby is crying. Maybe she’s hungry. Give her a bottle… If you don’t quit pitching a fit you won’t get any desert… You were so good you can have we’ll have your favorite dinner tonight.” These things are not bad. They just reveal how we’ve related to food since before we knew words.
“You began life with normal eating habits: You ate when you are hungry and didn't eat when you were full. But in a weight conscious world, where food is used for comfort, you take small steps and ‘normal’ gradually disappears. You want to be thin, so you become more serious about dieting. You like how food makes you feel, so you overeat and binge (p. 4).” Ed Welch in Eating Disorders: The Quest for Thinness
With this much history, it is hard to imagine that our relationship with food would not significantly impact our lives. Allow this thought to help you engage this chapter non-defensively. It is easy for this subject to illicit a sense of feeling judged or ashamed. That makes this journey more difficult, because it makes the journey lonely. If you can use this study to invite other people to come alongside you in your struggle, it will be a significant aid.
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