This is Mary-Anne’s testimonial, word for word, her story about how two hours of hypnotherapy and NLP cured her chronic bulimia.
I have suffered from what is now described as an eating disorder on and off for the last twenty three years. I always did comfort eat as a child, but having a great love of sport, exercise meant the additional calories were not an issue. The problem started when the comfort eating continued and yet I was no longer doing the same quantity of exercise. The weight gain happened very quickly and I realised for the first time I needed to diet. This realisation however happened at a time when I had been let down by my boyfriend and the diet got out of hand as a means of gaining some control in my life. I restricted my food intake to ridiculous levels.
This pattern of weight gain through comfort eating, then excessive dieting to a dangerous level, continued for the next fifteen years. Food slowly began to take on a place in my life that was totally inappropriate. It moved from being enjoyable fuel, to being a crutch both physically and emotionally.
Ten years ago I went through a difficult divorce and at that time, quite understandably I was not interested in food. I lost weight to a level that was distressing to the people around me. However, not eating through grief was not my reasoning. My reasoning was using the restriction of food to punish myself for the divorce. The failure of my marriage was somehow my fault and I turned that emotional distress in on myself.
The trouble is that the weight loss became somehow attractive and therefore the weight gain, which had to happen, became painful. I can look back at this now and realise that the food was a replacement for the emotion. I was telling everyone I was fine and I actually thought I was, but all my emotions were being acted out via food.
Five years ago I lost a baby in horrible circumstances and although I had the love of my husband I felt totally alone. His grief was very real and yet I could not make mine real. I started eating again and yet this time I eat and eat and eat till I was physically sick. I gained a realisation that somehow this satisfied me emotionally. Instead of feeling the emotions, somehow I eat them and then ‘vomited’ them all down the toilet. That somehow seemed to release me from them.
Although it didn’t.
I became obsessed with this. I would plan my days around food. I would binge and binge and binge. I would have to know where I could get food, where I could be sick. I would panic at the thought of staying with friends or going on holiday where I would be with people 24 hours and therefore could not binge and be sick. I thought I could not cope without it.
I would get five pastries on the way to work, eat 2 sandwiches from the canteen and 2 coffees. I would eat all this at my desk, laughing with colleagues about how an earth I managed to stay slim. They did not see me nip to the toilet having eaten it all. By 11 am I would go out and buy two more sandwiches, muffins and the ritual would start again. Lunch became two or three meals from the canteen and two more sandwiches that were all vomited. The afternoon I would try and get out to MacDonalds where I would eat two Big Mac meals and vomit those. On the way home from work I would do the same and then I would even secretly vomit my dinner. I was obsessed. I slowly became bulimic and it completely took over my life. It started to affect my relationship with my husband and my friends. I became secretive and isolated. I didn’t go to bed when my husband did so I could raid the fridge and binge while he slept. I was deceitful to enable my habit. I could not live without it. I knew that it was killing me emotionally and physically it was starting to take its’ toll.
I was starting to throw up blood. My saliva glands had swollen and my teeth were beginning to show signs of the acid decay, but still I could not stop. ‘it’ had taken such a hold of me.
I had been seeing a counsellor since I lost the baby and for 18 months she had tried to help me. I admitted the bulimia to her 12 months ago and she persuaded me to see a specialist consultant as she realised I had always had a problem with food.
I went to see this top eating disorder specialist consultant in Harley Street. I went to see another consultant in a top eating disorder clinic. I was determined to ‘brake the hold’ this ‘thing’ had on me. I was ‘prescribed’ a specialist program for eating disorders which I did. Nothing worked for me, nothing could manage to shake the bulimia. I was becoming depressed and desperate.
I became so desperate I told me husband what was happening. He was fabulous and very supportive, although he said he would try, but had difficulty understanding. How could I explain something that I did not understand myself.
I was constantly told that I was avoiding emotions. I needed to ‘face the emotions’ and then I could deal with them and would not need to vomit them. But I just felt numb.
My husband came across a web site while he was searching for some understanding. It talked of hypnotherapy and NLP. He mentioned it to me and said to look at the site. I didn’t, why would I when I was seeing the ‘best’ for eating disorders? Three weeks later, him constantly asking me to look at the site, I looked at it. There were people talking on the site that seemed like me. I was interested but scared. Three weeks after that I somehow summed up the energy and the courage to call Steve. I was scared it was going to be just another thing that would not work. Steve told me it would work, no guarantees, but he was confident. His gentle confidence was somehow enough for me.
That telephone call was on the Thursday and on the following Monday morning I was sitting with him.
To say I was sceptical would be the understatement of the year. I had suffered from a misguided relationship with food for over twenty years. I had been severely bulimic for over five years, how could someone talking to me for an hour ‘help’ me.
I left Steve two hours later on that Monday morning three weeks ago. I have not binged or vomited since. I am not sure how this works, in many ways I do not care, I am simply eternally grateful for having my life back. I do not know what else to say except I wish I had met Steve years ago.
To anyone reading this, do not wait like I did. Why? I know how scary this can be, I had become scared of losing the eating disorder, it was part of me. I cannot even start to explain how free I feel now. Steve probably saved my life………..
Mary-Anne.For Further Bulimia Testimonials – Page 1 – Page 2 – Page 3 – Page 4 – Page 5 – Page 6