Tina Yeager is a licensed mental health professional with personal experience with anorexia. Today I will be sharing her journey of overcoming anorexia. Tina shares her hope-building story on her victory in overcoming anorexia, tips, and ways to help navigate healing.
It started with middle school age junior high school. She didn’t fit in and wasn’t popular. Someone suggested that I might be a little chunky and need to be thinner to be included. Precise details on food, and I thought if I could be smaller or thinner. Maybe they would let me even be in the background.
She became very restricted with what she ate. This lasted about eight years. She never reached the worst stage where you lose your period. In middle school, she starved herself so severely that her elbow was the most significant part of her arm. Her hips stuck out, so only bones appeared. Her skeleton poked through her clothes.
She ate under 1000 calories a day. Then she over-exercised. She would exercise in intense heat to sweat more pounds off. Her parents began to see her lose interest in food. So she began to hide it very well.
She would take laxatives to lose weight. She would work during meal times to not have to eat with the family. She became very good at hiding her disorder. She even hid rat poison in her bedroom. Instead of getting better, she got better at hiding her anorexia.
She said these are thoughts I was thinking, “I am never going to be thin enough, and I am never going to be good enough,” throughout the entire eight years of her battle. Her self-image was not based on God’s lens but through her filter of not being good enough or thin enough.
Tina got worse and worse. Her non-eating and exercise led to terrible consequences. Desperate to be thin at all cost!
But God had a plan of healing. Tina became pregnant, and it saved her from anorexia!
The darts of the anorexia disorder attacked Tina, but God unexpectedly delivered her! After she found out she would have a baby, she began to take care of the baby inside of her and started to eat healthily. She focused on her baby!
Tina then became immersed in God because something beyond her was vital. She began to focus on God first. She began to look at her life as a mother and a parent. She studied God’s word to give her statements of value and worth.
It takes a process. It takes time to heal. This is not a one and done with this eating disorder mindset. This takes time to unravel. Here are some tips to overcome anorexia:
- Get Christian counseling offering spiritual help as well physical help expediting healing
- Every story is different, so all of them can be worked through with prayer, believing God will deliver and heal anorexia
- Address medical issues along with counseling to prevent long-term medical problems
Tina shares that one of the essential tips she can give us is to have deep conversations with your teen or young adult if you suspect anorexia. If we don’t try to address the issue, they can continue hiding it. This is the best way to start the journey of healing.
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