Weight Loss Support - Overeating and falling apart

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03-25-2008, 01:58 PM
I keep being really bad. I have problems with binging and overeating. I do sometimes have a problem with eating compulsively until I feel well past full or even ill. I also have the everyday problem of eating too much between meals, and grazing on bad foods throughout most of the day.

I don't think that I have had proper compulsive overeating problems for a couple of weeks now (i.e. full blown binges), but I have certainly been eating most of the time. I don't seem to be able to stop myself. I just do it without thinking, and when I do manage stop myself, I keep thinking about food all the time which makes it really hard not to eat when I stop thinking about it again!

I'm finding things really difficult all round at the moment. I really want to lose weight and get healthier, but I don't seem to be able to get myself in the right frame of mind to actually do it. I half-heartedly plan to exercise and then I don't do it. Even if I really plan something out I don't do it.

I have the same problem in other areas of my life. I am supposed to be studying at the moment. I want to go to back to school to study medicine, and I know I would be a really great doctor, but I can't seem to make myself study. I've been the same way all through my life, never applying myself so that I have never succeeded as I should do. Without trying to sound cocky, I am intelligent enough to be an A+ grade student who excels in school, but I will never try so that I remain a B grade student. I don't know why I am unable to let myself succeed. I just spend my time distracting myself and watching TV and eating rather than trying for the things I really want in life. It makes me so unhappy too. I am not happy just ambling on without reaching my potential, so it isn't a sensible option to just relax and accept that this is who I am. I don't know what to do. I feel like I am just a waste of life.

I am really stressed, and I am not sleeping well so I am so tired all the time. need sleep. I need to study. I need to stop eating so much, and I need to do more exercise. And I know that if I got all of that under control, I would just slip back off the rails again because that is what I have always done.

I think that my overeating somehow stems from my academic problems. I first started overeating during the run-up to exams when I was 16. Rather than work, I would read or watch tv and eat. I don't really know if the eating is part of the distraction from working, or a product of feeling so unhappy and stressed that I am not doing what I should be doing and working towards my goals.

I want to behave differently, but it is so hard, and it is such a big thing to try to change that I just don't know how. I need help.

I'm sorry for the sob story!

03-25-2008, 02:12 PM
Don't apologize for the sob story.

I'm starting to wonder if I'm having an emotional problem with my eatting. I've packed on a significant amount of weight in the last year or so, and I think it's because I have developed those bad habits. I have a craving... and I get in my car and drive to the store to cure that craving. Why? I have no idea. Why not drive to the gym instead and decided that if I want something bad enough after I work out, then give in to a certain degree. But chances are, I wouldn't, ya know?

I too am a student, and SO often chose other activities - including random non-hunger eating! - over homework.

I certainly don't have an answer to your dilemma, but I just wanted to reassure you that you are not alone.

03-25-2008, 02:13 PM
Hey! :wave:

Sorry to hear you're having a rough time of it. Have you checked out the Chicks in Control forum here on 3FC?


You'll find you're not alone--others have this difficulty to overcome.

It sounds like part of you just doesn't feel like dealing with challenges. The trouble is, time is passing whether we feel like engaging with our life or not. A person can literally sit and eat and watch TV until the power company shuts off the electric and the landlord evicts you. Is this what you want? I don't think so.

"Could I please speak to the adult in charge?" ;)

If you're in college, you might see what counseling is available at your school. If you aren't in college yet, there still may be a counselor who can help you find a therapist. I think it might help you to talk with a professional about your problems.

It's not likely that you'll make it in medical school unless you can find a way to change what you're doing. :( So, see what you can do! Find some help.

Good luck! Hang in there!

03-25-2008, 03:44 PM
I would strongly suggest counseling here. Sounds like you might be suffering from some depression along with some other issues. There is no shame in seeing a counselor/therapist and working through whatever issues are holding you back from being happy and healthy.


nutrition junkie
03-25-2008, 05:25 PM
We sound like we have similar stories, so i just wanted to post to give you some hope. I am 23, and went through very similar issues. My grades were nowhere near where they could be my first 2 1/2 years of college because i was the same way. I was diagnosed with depression, anxiety, and an eating disorder. i had had a compulsive overeating problem for years, and got up to 220 lbs. Then, i decided to do something about it, obsessed about that, and ended up restricting so severely that i fit all of the diagnostic criteria for anorexia nervosa except that i wasn't underweight yet. i stopped getting my period, would fast for 4 or 5 days at a time, other days i wouldn't eat over 500 calories, etc. I tried to recover afterwards and maintained at 165 for a few years, but once my thesis came up i started binging again to deal wtih the stress and used the thesis as an excuse not to go to the gym. (coincidentally, i was off of my anti-depressants again at this point). I find that the antidepressants have helped me to be able to control my binges very much. they let me realize that i deserve to be happy, and gaining more wieght will make me miserable. And, i managed to get into medical school this year after pulling my grades up. So it can be done, but i definitely think you need to talk to a therapist and seek help.

03-25-2008, 05:38 PM
The author of Best Life Now says first emotional issues have to be addressed, like what's causing you to turn to food? If we have issues, then even loosing weight doesn't "fix" them. I've lost weight, feel better about myself but I'm going to counseling to learn more about some things... some of "this" is rooted in childhood, etc, and if we dont' like ourselves it's hard to take care of ourselves. Underachieving is often a result of inner shame and other "stuff." So is procrastination. I DO IT, procrastinate and just when I'm close to being successful it's like I backlash myself. Instead of this downward cycle that leads to eating too much, negative self talk I'm having to really study, learn and practice new ways of dealing with myself and others... it's a life long process. As for weight loss or any other issues, it's about taking it one day at a time. Each day try to make a little progress, do something for you, learn something about weight loss, and if you don't, don't be so hard on yourself, try again the next day. Some of this is just "habits" and changing what we are doing. It's a habit to turn on the tv, procrastinate, eat - but habits can be changed - best with support, lots of it...

03-25-2008, 06:35 PM
You've gotten some really great input and I really don't have anything to add, except to remind you that you are not alone, not at all! It may feel like this particular preponderance of habits/actions is all dumped on you and you alone, but there are many people who struggle with just the same things. Jay was good in pointing you towards the Chicks in Control forum, you'll see just how not alone you are. I've always had a problem with emotional eating and boredom eating, and recently I've had to overcome stress/depressive/anxiety eating too. It's easy to think that if you could just fix all the problems you'd be happy and healthy, but you do need to find out what's beneath your issues. Look at them as symptoms, not causes in themselves. Some people need meds to help, some need counseling, some just need time... But it's not going to go away overnight, and it's something you're going to have to work for, you know? I'm just now - after a year of actively trying to get a handle on the causes of my habitual/mindless/boredom/stress/emotional eating - starting to feel like I can exercise some amount of control over my eating behavior, but it's still not where it should be were I 'normal.' But that's okay. the important thing is that I'm making progress.

Somethings you might try focusing on to help in the short term, things I've found make me feel better/healthier/more prone to being productive, happy, and positive:
-spend some time in the sunlight. Enjoy the outdoors, focus on the fresh air, the budding trees, the blue sky.
-do some light exercise like walking. Particularly effective when combined with the above suggestion!
-If you can't keep your mind off food, okay. Give in. But do it creatively. Instead of focusing on packing in as much as possible, spend an hour or two creating a really elaborate meal. Something visually appealing, mentally satisfying, and tasty (and healthy!). Make an event out of it. I could never make myself stop thinking about food when I was having that problem, so by doing this it gave me a feeling of control over the eating process. It also delays you from eating because if it takes a long time to prepare you won't get to eat til it's done. The feeling of me controlling the food instead of the other way around really did help.
-Do something to make yourself feel special. Manicures, pedicures, do your makeup, etc. This goes towards making you feel better about being you, which in turn helps with the depression/anxiety in boosting your confidence and self-worth.
-Do something inordinately silly. Something about silliness always made me look at the world anew, and not see so much negativity as I saw before.

Those are some of the things that really helped me start to pull myself out of the place you're describing. It took time. Seems like everything does. Take care of yourself, okay? :)

03-26-2008, 11:42 AM
Somethings you might try focusing on to help in the short term, things I've found make me feel better/healthier/more prone to being productive, happy, and positive:
-spend some time in the sunlight. Enjoy the outdoors, focus on the fresh air, the budding trees, the blue sky.
-Do something inordinately silly. Something about silliness always made me look at the world anew, and not see so much negativity as I saw before.

Those are some of the things that really helped me start to pull myself out of the place you're describing. It took time. Seems like everything does. Take care of yourself, okay? :)

Have I ever mentioned how much I love you, Judy?? Seriously... I don't think I've read ONE post of yours YET that wasn't filled with such upbeat, supportive, and loving optimism!!!!! You have such a beautiful outlook on the world--- it's so refreshing and really makes me want to change the way I look at things too!

03-26-2008, 12:21 PM
Aw, thanks Jen! :hug: That's very sweet of you to say.

But really... try that silly thing. It helps. :p

I have this book, "365 Days of Creative Play." Target audience... 4-7 year olds. :o It's full of really good, simple activities that make you feel like a little kid, and who doesn't want to feel young all the time? :lol:

03-26-2008, 06:40 PM
Thank you for all your comments everyone. Just writing my problems down has helped. Until I started writing I hadn't really put two and two together to realise that my overeating started when I was procrastinating over studying as a child. While that realisation is far from a "cure", it has put things in perspective for me, and since then I have actually managed to be pretty good all round. I've been better at controlling my eating, AND I've done some studying. It has been pretty hard to concentrate because I am so tired, and I feel like I almost have to tie myself to my chair to stop wandering off and doing something else!

While I haven't really done enough work because I am so behind, I have decided to reward myself for doing anything at all. It is better than not doing it because I know that I won't do enough!

I don't know whether it was the working, the not binging in the evening or what, but last night I actually had an ok-ish night's sleep and I feel more positive today. I am still tired, and I really want to eat, but I just need to take every day at a time.

Again, thanks for all your help. I have had problems with depression in the past, and your comments have made me realise that I am thinking like that again. I would love to have some counselling, but I don't fit the criteria for free counselling, and I can't afford to pay. On the other hand, when I was depressed before, the best "treatment" was what I did for myself - I made myself do things and be around people rather than hiding on my own, procrastinating and eating - so I can start doing that again. Judy, your tips are great, they are exactly the sorts of things I should be doing. "spend some time in the sunlight. Enjoy the outdoors, focus on the fresh air, the budding trees, the blue sky" - brilliant. It is just a shame that it has been raining heavily all day ;)

I need to stop my habits of procrastinating, and stop punishing myself when I don't do the right thing.