Meeting tonight for the first time went well, and everyone participated well in the discussions.
WE ALL FEEL THE SAME DISTRESSES
Everyone was able to identify with everyone else's current problems in their relationship to food, their body image, and the connection between food and their feelings.
Most in the group identified with the feeling of fear and/or anxiety around losing their "friend" and coping mechanism, and wondered what they could do instead when faced with difficulties in the future, when the eating disordered behaviour is gone.
What is important to take from this sentiment is the feeling that everyone potentially sees a time when they may not have this behaviour in their life.
Finally, almost everyone identified with the feelings of secrecy and shame around their behaviour, and the inability to really share their distress with others in their lives, as others don't really understand how eating disordered behaviour actually works as a coping strategy.
ALL OR NOTHING THINKING
Feelings of either being in control or out of control were common in the group. Recognising a habit of thinking in very concrete terms, "all or nothing" thinking. I have suggested that you break the day down into three sections to allow yourself three chances a day to achieve your goal, whatever it is on the day.
FEAR OF WHAT WE MIGHT FIND OUT
Several participants spoke of a sense that there's something they don't know, or can't put their finger on, that causes them to feel like they have a 'black hole' inside. Although we will be exploring the past and the family during the group, the aim is not necessarily to uncover some dark, dreadful secret, (although sometimes that can happen), the goal of this work is to help participants understand what subconscious 'rules' and 'messages' they are still carrying around with them, and to work on changing them if they no longer fit with where we are today in our lives. Most parents do not deliberately set out to hurt their children, but they may inadvertently affect them on an emotional level by the rules they impose on the family, or through the 'roles' they assign to the family members. We'll be looking at all this in a lot more detail in the coming weeks.
This is your forum to communicate with each other or simply put something up on the board if you wish, in between sessions. This blog is private and only available to members of the group.
Take care of yourself, Emma