Here’s a letter from Kat, who’s struggling with an old love, and new weight – and feels that unearthing their connection will help her.
I have different thoughts and ideas about all of this – and I see a light at the end of the tunnel just up ahead!:
I am writing because I finally decided I need some outside help and I have read your letters for the last 3 years, getting a lot out of them. I wish your programs were around in 1986…. which is when this all started.
I fell in love with a professor in my junior year in college. We had a long time relationship even when we quit dating and I got married to another man.
The last time I spoke to “the professor” was 2004. Since then I have fought with obesity (never even thought about being heavy for 30+years).
I have been trying to figure out just why I have turned to food and believe that this stretched out, passionate, fully connected then not, relationship and the feelings I still have about it and my anger at my past decisions when dealing with him have me questioning how I can get closure so that I can finally deal well with the leftover emotions…
This is the only issue in my life that has haunted me which makes me think that it is the root cause of the eating disorder (gluttony) I now have. What do you think? Suggestions on how to get this man OUT of my life and my emotions back on track to get healthy? Kat”
Kat – For me (and I’m not an expert, or a doctor, though I’ve been working with doctors at the vanguard of auto-immune disease for many years now) – weight can be worked with in many ways. Eating disorders can be worked with in many ways. (I’m going to talk here just about weight you feel is more than you want to carry on your body, and we can talk about eating disorders like bulimia and self-starvation and body perception disorders and self-inflicted pain like “cutting” in another post where I can get an actual expert to talk with me about it…)
For me, starting with trying to tie anxiety and our personal cure for anxiety (eating for you) to something in our past is, to me, a waste of time.
To me, it’s old-fashioned psychotherapy – and in the time you’re taking to think about it and search for the “instigating” moment – you could be handling the situation quickly NOW – and at the SAME TIME healing the past – with more modern techniques.
New methods of healing emotional wounds and how they’re manifesting in the present are the way to go.And here are my total random thoughts on this subject – let me know if there’s anything here you haven’t thought of or done yet:
- I love Andrea Albright. She does “Spiritual Weight Loss” and talks about how food works and how chemicals in food wreck you and put weight on you…just good information. Get her newsletters. Follow her instructions about WHAT foods to stuff yourself with!
- Marianne Williamson just wrote a book about “spiritual weight loss.”
- Coaching is an amazing thing, and can reframe a lot that’s going on in our heads.
As far as the body stuff – to me it’s about health and the body, and secondarily about the brain. If we’re hungry for something – love, affection, food – we’re hungry.
I’m ALWAYS hungry, and I eat a LOT.
I can out-eat most people easily.
Sometimes it’s about emotional hunger or boredom or worry – but most of the time, I think it’s about hormones, and enzymes, and what my body can and can’t absorb and use and get nutrition from, my thyroid (be sure you get tested by an ALTERNATIVE doctor – a regular, western doctor does not check for anti-bodies and allergies, and Hashimotos Thyroid and high AIC, doesn’t see bad “numbers” until they’re in the bad zone, and by then, you need heavier treatment), and what my organs are doing inside my body.
For me, I like to start simple – with food itself.
So what if you like to eat all the time?
I say – focus on eating what works for YOU! (And you’ll likely need to do an elimination diet and get tested to find out more about that in yourself). Easy way to start is just eat lettuce, vegetables and meat, (if you’re a vegetarian, I encourage you to get tested and do some personal research with your own body to see if that’s actually hurting your particular body….regardless of how you feel about eating animals – it’s important to know the truth about what your body needs and doesn’t before you decide mentally what you’re going to give it to live on…) and…
…stop all gluten and sugar (even fruit) until you start to see a pattern of how your body is reacting to food.
- I like this: Eat as much as you WANT. Carry stuff with you. Drink tons of water.
- Find an alternative doctor – a naturopath, or Chinese medical doctor – who can run new kinds of tests to see if perhaps you’re actually ALLERGIC to some foods. There are people out there who can help you with this, just as there are recovery coaches and AA and Chinese medical doctors and naturopaths to help you with alcoholism and drug addiction.
- It’s WAY easier to never eat anything with sugar in it than to try to be “reasonable” about it. Food addiction is just that. Addiction. And there are all kinds of levels. Your brain is one, and your body is another…many levels.
- I’ve noticed that my appetite changes with the supplements I take, and the foods I eat, and the kind of exercise I get – and I see this happening with EVERYONE I talk to who’s interested in new studies about health. I also think it’s totally different for EVERYONE.
How about you focus on making yourself a “study”?
- Find a good new-fangled alternative doctor or practitioner who has a great track record for weight loss, uses real food, understands body chemistry and psychology, who won’t STOP until SHE finds out what’s going on inside you and fixes it!
I’ve learned this over time – I need to take myself, my daughter, my dog and cat to one doctor or vet after another until one actually gets results. Sometimes it doesn’t matter if I LIKE them – results are the key here. And a lot of the time, it’s not about a diagnosis (which I hear you looking for) – it’s about some trial and error, some testing – and tracking how you feel and your results. Sometimes, it’s about treating the symptoms HOLISTICALLY in order to find out what’s going on with you.
- Then you take this method out into love and dating – and you have Circular Dating!
About the mental part:
My tools are meant to get you deeper in touch with yourself. That means, that as you settle into yourself, sink into your feelings even when you’re feeling heavily triggered and emotionally intense (especially then) – the old stuff is going to come up.
The resolution for it all is to NOT resolve it. It’s to love it. To FALL IN LOVE with it, with yourself, to whatever happened to you,to whoever was there with you when it happened to you, or around you.
You simply cannot choose to harm a body you’re in love with. It’s not possible.
If it’s calling out to you for food – feed it something! Feed yourself EVERYTHING you can! Feed it love and affection by showering YOURSELF with love and affection and FRIENDS who’ll touch you and hug you physically and emotionally.
Don’t hold out on your body when it’s hungry – give it food and water. Just make choices you’re working out methodically.
The extra weight is simple. It’s there to protect you. Your desire to eat is a part of you that’s madly in love with you trying to HELP you. Trying to give you a gift of love and safety. To YOU, in your conscious mind as Kat – it may seem like a harsh, miserable, self-destructive thing – but to the part that wants you to eat, it’s a gift of LOVE!
And as you work to shed some of the protective pounds – the part of you that’s trying to protect you is going to become afraid and scream at you. You can count on this. Be prepared. And really, really HEAR this part of you scream. Really, really LOVE it with everything you’ve got. Embrace it. Forgive yourself for every NOT loving it, or even THINKING there was something “wrong” happening here.
This is a process. It can go fast or slow – that’s up to your determination.
You can DO this. HE, or ANY “he” doesn’t matter. It’s not ABOUT “him.” It’s always about you, and what’s happening for you now, and no kind of “closure” will help.
In fact, learning to love NON-CLOSURE is where your healing and happiness is.