‘I tried bulimia once.’
There’s nothing quite as lovely as a thoughtful message from someone who understands:
’Sorry you’re going through this, I tried bulimia once and it sucked.’
Bulimia does suck. The sky is also blue, and the world round.
But darling, you did not try bulimia once.
Forgive me if I’m callous, but I can’t dig up much sympathy for someone who believes gagging once and deciding it’s icky is ’bulimia’. Sure, it’s never a good thing to try to make yourself sick, unless you’ve just been poisoned. And thinking purging is a viable option isn’t exactly healthy.
But sticking your fingers down your throat and coughing and then going OH MY GOD EW is not bulimia. Fasting for a day and then ‘fainting’ in the hallway is not anorexia. And ‘getting so desperate I seriously considered anorexia or bulimia’ isn’t an eating disorder.
Bulimia is a speeding train with no brakes, bingeing and purging and bingeing and purging no matter how broke you are or how disgusting the food is or what you should be doing. It’s gorging until you can barely stand, puking until you bleed, and the city could burn to the ground and when it was over you’d still be standing in the ashes, bingeing and purging.
Anorexia is a wall of blue-gray ice, a miswired translation code that turns appetite into disgust, a terror you don’t understand, a fear so real you can see it and hear it and kiss it goodnight, an illogical logic that rewrites everything and you know you need to eat and maybe you even really want to eat but you just can’t because if you did everything would fall apart.
Desperation is digging through the garbage for nothing-something-anything to stuff in your face because you have to binge and purge right now. Desperation is standing frozen in the aisle of the grocery store for minutes/hours/years, and then buying the same calorie-free crap you always buy because you can’t eat it if it’s not safe. Desperation is swallowing laxatives like normal people swallow candy, just because you have to be empty.
And you can’t ’consider anorexia and bulimia’, as though they were for sale at the pharmacy between agoraphobia and cyclothymia.
You didn’t ‘try bulimia once’.
It’s not a diet, and it’s not a choice.