Question Asked, Question Answered Part 2

Castor Girl asked a question of me in a post on May 8 regarding our loneliness and what was causing it. She asked, “Do you know what’s happened to you to make you feel so lonely?”
Several events have taken place that explain the recent onset of loneliness. First, I started reading a book called Beating Ana, and in this book the author asserts that relationships replace eating disorders. We began to think about this idea and began to see the trueness of the words. For so long we’ve turned down offers to see movies, go shopping, or have lunch because we were too caught up in our eating disorder. Several girls from treatment have tried to befriend us, and, except for one girl, we ignored them. We cultivated a friendship with our eating disorder rather than people. It was more important to us to skip a meal than dine with someone. We didn’t have time for relationships because we were too busy exercising and calorie counting. Restricting food was restricting friendships.

Totally forgot to take a pic of breakfast, and what a shame because it was phenomenal. Anyhow, we picked up with our A.M. snack of mangoes and raspberries. I love raspberries and I love mangoes, but not together. The raspberries were really sharp against the sweetness of the mango.
Which brings us to the second event: what’s important to us is shifting. Being alone may be safe, but it’s not very fun or rewarding. Every now and then we get glimpses of what life could be like without an eating disorder. We see ladies at our EDA meetings and A.N.A.D meetings who all sit and chat and laugh before and after the meetings. We want that.

This was one of the best meals we’ve had, at least until we ate dinner. But more on that later. Here we have a salad monster, mango, pretzels, and veggie patty with avocado. This was the BEST avocado in the world.
We sit by ourselves while the rooms fill up with people and chatter. We watch and feel jealous of other girls and the friendships they appear to have. It’s a good jealousy, though. It’s a motivator for us to do the work we need to in order to be one of those girls who is friendly and chatty with everybody.

This is a repeat offender of lunch except with green beans and veggie bacon. OMG! The avocado and “bacon” rule! And the green beans with butter wasn’t anything to sneeze at. Honestly, the best meal I’ve ever had. Hands down. Look for it again tomorrow. I’ve got half an avocado left.
It hasn’t just been about the eating disorder, though. We’ve felt damaged and bad and unlovable. Who would want to be friends with that, with us? But maybe a more objective viewpoint is trying to surface. Yes, we are shy. Yes, we don’t always know the right thing to say. Yes, we are extremely anxious to talk over the phone. But does that make us inherently bad? Does that make us unworthy of friendship?

Snack time. Little honey goldfish swimming in honey yogurt. Tasted like dessert. This was a great day for food.
While we want friends and see the benefit of having friendships in our life, it is also exhausting trying to like and be liked. There is so much baggage that comes with us that we don’t think a friendship is possible. There are too many declarations that need to be made. Too much background, too much get-to-know-you information. It’s just overwhelming. And how much work do you have to do before you begin to relax with that person and let your guard down? Sometimes I think it’s not worth it. But I digress. We feel lonely because we recognize we are alone, and it is now on the radar as something we want to change. We’ve felt the heart of being lonely and it’s not good enough for us. Being alone is not an option.

2 thoughts on “Question Asked, Question Answered Part 2

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  1. Thanks for answering my question 🙂

    Friendships are tough, there's no doubting it. They bring up all sorts of issues about trust, boundaries and all those things that survivors struggle with. It can be daunting to see people interacting so easily, while a part of you yearns to take part…

    We're also shy. I don't think it makes us bad or unworthy of friendship. But, I do think that we think of ourselves as bad and unworthy… It our perception of ourselves that becomes the barrier.

    It's tough stuff…
    Take care,

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