Breaking the Rules of an Eating Disorder

By Natalie Hutson, M.S., L.P.C.

Eating Disorder Deception: You are an exception to the rule.

The eating disorder has a way of making people feel very special- like they are an exception to the rule. People with eating disorders often have thoughts such as: “If YOU eat this or that, YOU will become fat.” “If YOU don’t exercise, YOU are a failure.” If YOU aren’t completely selfless, YOU are selfish.” “If YOU seek out help, YOU are weak.” Now, these rules don’t apply to anyone else; they only apply to the special, select few who battle the eating disorder.

Eating disorders often make people feel special in the area of self-compassion. Everyone else deserves to be loved for who they are, but eating disorder sufferers are somehow special and somehow have to earn the love they receive from other people.

The reality is that even though we, as people, are unique individuals with many different character qualities and personality strengths, we are alike in the sense that a rule is a rule. If one do not believe other people should follow the many rigid rules inherent in an eating disorder, why should eating disorder sufferers abide by these harsh rules?

Today, make it a goal to think about one “Exception to the rule” the eating disorder may tell you or someone you love and BREAK THE RULE! We all have a rebellious side, so this is permission to unleash the rebel within for a positive result! Have a great day!