Friday, September 02, 2005

Risks of Sharing Ourselves with others....

Hi. I am wondering what you all consider to be the benefits of sharing your thoughts and feelings with others? What are the drawbacks? How do you determine if another person is emotionally safe to share more personal aspects of your inner life with? What about trusting others to keep your confidences? What if they they "think less of you" because you shared aspects of yourself that expose your humaness and/or needs?

I am impressed with the honesty and genuine sharing that has gone on in the Eating Disorder Hope support groups. It takes courage to be vulnerable to others, to share what is troubling us and let it out....it feels good to unburden ourselves and to experience loving acceptance of us and our unique perspective on life....

What do you all think? Any and all visitors are welcome to comment.

Warmly,

Jacquelyn
Founder of Eating Disorder Hope

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hey group!

Well, I sure missed not being at group on Wen. I hope everyone is doing well in the group and I hope ya'll know that you can e-mail me and let me know whats going on and I will e-mail you back. my e-mail is akp_05@hotmail.com if you would like to e-mail me.

It is really crazzy that Jac. asked this que. cause I have been struggling at school this week and I just felt like I was all by myself and could not tell anyone about my ED. But today I broke down and shared about it with one of my roomates that I felt like I could really trust. I had never told anyone that I had not known for or a month about my ED but I had to. It was good and she was so nice about it. She was like I have struggled in different ways but if you ever need anyone to talk to when you are struggling come to me and I will eat with you if you need someone and it was just great.

I felt that college would be different cause I am at a privet school but its not. Every girl wants to lose weight or they just talk about others or how they hate their body. I told my roomie that its hard to be around that and she said that shes just gotten to the part where she likes herself for her and I think thats great that God has put someone in my life at school that could share that with me. When we were talking she started crying cause she said that learning to like yourself is hard but its so worth it and she said she was glad I told her so that she could be there for me when I needed someone. She also promised not to share my info with anyone and that made me feel really good. I know I can trust her.

I will ask everyone to pray for my family because Carla and me are both trying to talk to them about paying for cousleing up here. I really need it cause its hard in college and I just need someone to talk to. I have tryed top talk to them and they just say they dont have the money to do that and I think thats not true. So everyone please keep your fingers crossed for me.

I know this is long but I just want to up date on everything. I have made some good friends and friends I just really dont care for but for the most part some reallly great gals. I love my classes and I know I will learn alot from them. I hope that some how I can use what I have gone through and what I am going through to show the other girls that its not worth it. There is a couple of girls that have pushed me to the top and I just went and cryed. I dont know if I just look like someone that wants to talk about losing weight but man they sure come up to me or sit by me at lunch and dinner. I dont know why but they always talk about it when I'm eatting and you know what that means a trigger for me. So I was just wondering if anyone could help me out. What would ya'll say if someone was talking about weight lose or talking about how they dont like themselfs at lunch while you are eatting and they dont know about your ed what do you think I could say to not be rude but to help me out and make it through a meal without having to leave and cry????? Any answers I will take from anyone.

I hope everyones weekend rocks their socks off and I miss ya'll tons. Hope to hear from everyone! Love ya'll girls and keep working hard cause God made us for who we are and we are perfect in his eyes and thats what I keep telling myself. Love ya'll and sorry for being so long!!!

*amanda r*

Anonymous said...

Amanda,

I am truly sorry to hear about your struggles with your eating disorder. The new environment and culture you are now experiencing can be shocking to say the least.

I would like to let you know that your college years should be some of the best of your life. You will make most of your lifelong friends during this time, so choose good strong Christian friends to run with and be a good strong Christian friend in return.

Although it has been several years since I was in college, I hope that what I have to say is helpful.

First, I believe that it is important that you shared your struggles with someone. It sounds like your roommate is someone you can count on. One of my best friends today was my roommate in college. I hope your have been blessed with such a friend.

Her remarks about finally liking herself are truly wonderful. As you stated in your blog, God has created us and LOVES us as we are. By trusting in Him, you will be better able to defend yourself against the attacks from the enemy. You are struggling to overcome a disorder. It is, however, something that you can overcome with God’s help and Grace. It will not be easy, but you know that God only tests us with what we can handle with His Grace and Mercy.

I am quite sure that he is preparing you for something wonderful and very important. Your struggle with and conquering of weight loss and eating can be a beacon to many others that need help. You have an opportunity to use your struggle to help others by sharing your story and Jesus’ story.

PLEASE know that God LOVES you just as you are. He is not condemning you or trying to beat you down with the negativity. That comes from the enemy.

When you are in another situation where your friends are discussing losing weight and not liking themselves, maybe you could let them know that it is very sad that they feel that way, and that Jesus loves them just as they are. Although this may be a sticky situation, you may be able to reach someone and help them or maybe prevent them from beginning an eating disorder.

I hope this has been helpful. My prayers are with you.

Trust in the Lord with all you heart, mind and soul. Fear not, for He is with you.

God Bless you and stay strong.

Anonymous said...

Prior to breaking down last week (in a rooom full of strangers), my therapist has been the only person I can talk to. I can't even talk to my husband or family. I have found that one out of the many things that this disease robs me of is socialization. My isolation is hurting the ones I love, killing my spirit, and preventing me from really living. Anyway, in hindsight I wish I had just observed last week. I am so isolated and scared. Scared of so much. The eating disorder has served as a means of survival for me. I thought I was in control. I am constantly struggling and cannot even talk to myself (so to speak) without being self critical. Makes it extremely difficult to share with others. Sharing with other people can help one to see things more clearly or from a different perspective. It can give one hope, relief, tools, insight.....so so much. It's the battle prior to and after sharing that torments me. Often I am controlled by my disorder or by the effects of it. The disorder is like a cancer that surfaced in one aspect of my life and is now aggressively attacking the rest. I remember feeling in control of all of this. I am not in control. I guess the moment I told myself that I was in control and that I would never let this thing beat me is the moment I lost control and left the door wide open for this monster of an illness to come inside, make itself at home, and take over my life. Here I go again, rambling on and on in spite of the fact that I was second guessing myself and feeling self conscious about my melt down the other night. Maybe it was a glimpse of the real me that has helped me to break the silence then and now. The eating disorder that is so ingrained in to the core of my being is fighting me to keep to myself....to give in and to give up. You all have given me some hope and strength to continue to fight back (although I am struggling to really accept all of this and to fully engage in recovery). Despite my angst, I felt safe around you all. Very strange considering that I don't know you and that I couldn't even begin to have opened up like that to the small group of people that I consider closest to me. This illness makes it hard to open up, to have real friendships, and to truly live and love. Secrets, masks, walls, insecurity, loss of control....makes it nearly impossible to show others the real me. What is scary is that I do not know who the real me is anymore or if what I know of myself prior to all of this was even real at all.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your story at Wed. night's group meeting. You have such strength.

Each one of us have some secret(s) we feel so aweful about. We feel that we would burst if said out loud. I am beginning to learn that those deep secrets finally shared out loud are the beginning of healing. By voicing them, they no longer have any power over you.

Amanda, I am so happy you have found someone to talk with. God selected you both to be roommates. She to help you and even though you don't know it - you to help her. You have much to give. Stay strong.

Celia said...

Hi group.

I am also sorry I missed last week. I had so much going on with school and was sad I could not make it. I hope you are all doing alright and your labor day weekend was peaceful.

To answer the question...it is SO hard to share with people. No one can really understand unless they have been there and when you are really struggling...people get scared and run away. I am fortunate to have a best friend who never turned away even in the worst of times. Now I feel things are hard because I am "suppose to be better." I have come along way, but when I slip or am really struggling...I dont want to tell anyone not even my best friend. I hate being a burden. The benefits of actually telling someone are worth the rist though. I think a huge part of recovery is being vulnerable with someone we trust, meaning letting out the pain and darkness that is in us. I think a person has to be emotionally mature and stable to be able to listen. This is something that I have had to figure out with time. If they are your friend, I believe they will be your friend in confidence and only tell someone if they are scared. If they do not do this, they are not a true friend. It goes the same for thinking "less of you."

I think the group is a great place to risk sharing ourselves...because we understand eachother and what we are going through. It is one place where i dont feel all alone. That is what is so hard about recovery...no one else understands...

Have a blessed week.
-Celia

Jamie said...

I understand!

Anonymous said...

Hey All! It's me, Linda. Thanks for being there for me last night. You all are so courageous and supportive. Seems like you gals and my kids are helping me to put one foot in front of the other. I am really confused as to what I need/ need to do about all of this. UGH! I keep you all in my thoughts and prayers and hope that you have a happier, healthier rest of your week! -Linda

Jamie said...

Hello everyone! I just felt like saying how much I enjoy this group and all the people! You all are amazing people and there is NO reason why any of you should have to struggle through these terrible life-threatening diseases! My heart bleeds every time I hear your storries about the struggles and difficulties you all are having with disordered eating. No one deserves to go through such despare. I wish that I could buy you all flowers, give you all hugs, and tell you that everything will be ok, and you don't have to suffer anymore because you've already been through enough pain. It's ok now... you can let go. I want to make everything all better for you all, but I know it's not that easy..., so I guess all that I can say, is that I am here for all of you 24/7. If you ever need ANYTHING, then let me know.
I'm here for anyone!
Hang in there!

Anonymous said...

Hi everyone-
I am sad I could not see you all last night at group. Hope it was a good session (sp?). Jamie, what a sweet and amazing heart you have. You are a blessing to the group. You deserve, just as much as anyone else in the group, to be healed from this terrible diease. You do not deserve to deal with this. All of you are so strong and I know with faith and prayer you will all be healthy one day. Keep your eyes on the future and you will be able to tackle each day with new confidence.
I miss you all and hope to see you soon.
Take care friends.
-Celia

Anonymous said...

Jamie...what a great picture of you!!! I really like it! You are such a sweetheart and I miss talking to you.

Celia....we missed you in group. I can't wait to see you again real soon.

Meaghan group was not the same without you either! Call me

I talked to Amanda this morning on the phone. I miss her so much. Please keep her in your prayers.

Anyone heard from Megan????

How is Jessie?

Hope to see you all real soon.

Jeanette

Anonymous said...

Hi everyone!

Well I hope everyone is doing well and I miss yall so much. I know I'm not in the group anymore cause I left the state but I hope its ok that I vent a little on here.

I thought this week was going well but things went upside down.

1) I have meet some wonderful people at school that I'm opening up to about my struggles.

2) I had to give a speech about what was my dream was and I talked about how my dream is to one day be able to help people with ED and let everyone know they are perfect in Gods eyes. The speech went ok I messed up a little but I was so nervous that it just wont not come out of my mouth. One girl that I sorta know came up to me and said that she was amazed that I got up there and said that so that made my day knowing someone knew that had to be hard for me to say so that was nice and it was good for me to actully stand up and say im tired of seeing me struggle with this cause i am.

3) I found out that I am getting to come home for thanksgiving

4) (here starts the bad) I have meet some guys and they seem nice. Well one guy asked me out and it was HELL! I hated every min of it and blah blah blah he said stuff that was not the right thing to say ummm it made me very self-cons. about myself. So that was not cool.

5) but this other guy that i hang with talked with me and it was nice and I just got to let stuff off my chest and that was good. he treats me nice and stuff. But the girls give me sorta trouble ab out hanging with him and that makes me sad cuase that reminds me back at home how some of my friends did not want me to hang out with some people so that was sad.

Well Im sorry I went on and on I just needed to let it out. I hope yall know that I love yall so much and I miss yall. Im doing ok and i hope to hear from yall.

amanda