Being an Older Person With an Eating Disorder

Interesting that this post is from a 26 year old.  I’m 50.  Went through 30 years of my bulimia!  Talk about making one feel old, although I still feel like I’m 50 going on 30 but not to the 30 I was as a bulimic.  Your thoughts on age?  Is there really a difference, other than the awareness one has having been a bulimic for so many years?  Should we ask Jane Fonda?  or how about Diane Keaton?  They too had eating disorders.  And Jane Fonda is in her 70’s!  I guess we forget sometimes that this disease is not just about the young anymore.  It’s been around for decades, and some are still suffering decades later.  Maybe I should start a “geriatric” bulimic site.  Heck, if you get pregnant after 35 it’s called a geriatric pregnancy.  Guess, being bulimic after 35 should be labelled as such as well?  Nevertheless, it’s all the same.  We all suffer the same no matter our age.  Only difference, as I noted before, is that the older you get, the more aware you are of the damage an eating disorder causes in your life, in so many different ways.  And you want to reach out to the younger generation and tell them “don’t do it!  It’s not worth looking back with a ‘what if’ attitude”.  Helping someone though is not easy, as any eating disorder sufferer would know.  Even if you are recovered, it’s not easy to tell someone how to stop.  No matter what experience you have gone through.  I do know however, listening, and trying, is better than not being there for them at all.  Hugs to all of you out there, “old” and young.  Keep the faith.  There is a better life after an eating disorder.  A very much better life.

Being an Older Person With an Eating Disorder.

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2 thoughts on “Being an Older Person With an Eating Disorder

  1. Roxy says:

    I’m 30 this year. Been in recovery a year now. I think the original poster was on about the stereotype ED patient and feeling bad for not meeting it. I remember feeling old when I went to my dietitian appointments, seeing girls half my age in the waiting room, stereotypical AN patients. Age is just one of those things, to me it doesnt matter, I still feel mentally younger than I am, I think this might have to do with having an ED, that you get locked into a sort of limbo mental state, therefore, being older and having an eating disorder, still, makes a lot of sense.
    Should everyone be older and wiser? Well it doesn’t work that way does it, thats like saying, people who are older are not allowed to make mistakes. We’re only human.

    • I told my children about my eating disorder. I thought they should know. My daughter was a bit appalled, but she did do a school project on it (which was great because it even gave her greater insight into the issues involved) and even interviewed me, which I was more than glad to do for her. To me it was important to educate her. My sons were rather indifferent, although I think my eldest understood me a bit better later on in life when he was starting to get really addicted to getting his body in shape. He did not get an ED, but the obsession of eating right was there for a while. It’s amazing how many men have this disorder, and older women over 45 even and it’s not talked about nearly as much. As I stated, this has been prominent since the early ’80’s maybe even before that. It is believed it began with the first skinny model “Twiggy”. Unattainable skinny became the beauty of the media. And it lives still to this day unfortunately. I want them to bring back Marilyn Monroe!!

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