Factors that can make someone develop an eating disorder (The beginning)
If you've known the kid that I was, you wouldn't think that I'm a person that wakes up at 5 am every day and has the habit of working out every day too. I've tried sometimes to miss my daily work out, but in my case, and especially today, it is a practice of commitment and self love.
Starting today, I'm going to make different blog entries talking about my history with eating disorders, mental health and self help. I can only do this because I'm healed and I want to share this joy with anyone that needs it. See, I never thought a couple of years ago that I was going to be able to speak about this matter, in fact no one close to me knew about what was going on with me until it almost took my life. I don't want you to get to that point. I struggle with various eating disorders for over a decade. I now understand why I lived so many years of suffering alone. Shame; the fear of anyone knowing about my issues with food and made seek help on my own. I've studied so much about psychology and even practice other forms of eatings like veganism that today I rejoice in knowing. What kept me alive was my spirituality and that's also why I'm doing this.
Let's start from the beginning, in this entry, I want to emphasize the impact that we as adults can have in our children. Growing up I was very overweight, I developed unhealthy eating habits from seeing my mom also struggled with the ideal that skinny is the only way to be pretty 'enough'. Raised by a single mother and from a family of beauty pageant contestants made me internalized many issues that most women have. The pressure of your appearance being your most important asset. Also, I feel like sharing my story with bring light to the fact that men also struggle with body image issues and eating disorders.
"Looks like he's very well fed" , "aw he's so cute but so big", " you need to start watching what you eat or no one will like you" Blunt comments that you might make to children or about children that for adults might not mean much, can become the set point of perception that a child has of themselves. For example, if you repeatedly tell a kid that he is lazy, that will become the perception he will have of himself, when presented the opportunity he will develop behavior that reflect those words that have been save in his unconsciousness forever. To change this beliefs is possible but why would you impact someone's image or consequently life for the worse just to comment. As an adult I had to do a lot of work to finally realized that even when I was scary skinny, I was still trapped in the belief that I was big.
It's important to realize how what we tell ourselves repeatedly is affecting our behaviors. Especially with children, they're like sponges, never think they're not watching, listening or feeling what your experience as an adult is. They're grabbing beliefs and perceptions that you might have about yourself without you knowing. This is why I always tell my friends and family members who are parents, the most important job you have as a parent is to work on your self. You're teaching children how to live by just living.
Other factor that influenced my weight gain when I was little was the fact that I didn't like soccer in Colombia. I hope that's changed but as a male student in Elementary school, it was expected for you to play soccer or you were 'weird'. Not to say the other names other kids called me. Not liking that sport made me outcasted and I refused to do any other physical activity at my school, now I see that I was angry about the fact that I was different for not liking soccer and with my sexual orientation also on my mind (at the moment I didn't know what I was) I decided to close up. And eat to cope with the pain. I think today we are doing a very good job to stop bullying from happening, at least we are talking about it and even have a name for it which in the 2000's we didn't. All I can tell you is that prejudicies and name calling all start at home. Watch your mouth and how you refer to others.
To be continued. Please feel free to reach me at any of my social media platforms or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org