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Confessions Of A Recovering Closet Eater

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Thursday, October 03, 2013

A closet eater is someone who eats junk food by hiding or sneaking it so nobody else is able to see them. A closet eater is someone who appears to eat healthy in front of other people only to eat unhealthy things, often in large amounts in privacy. This is something that many people who struggle with weight have an issue with. It is a dirty little secret that often, only they know. On that note...

Hello, my name is Brad, and I am a recovering closet eater.

It is something I struggled with for the majority of my life. It is something that I am not proud of and never would admit to myself in the past. As part of my weight loss journey, I had to own up to the fact that I was a habitual closet eater.

When I was a kid, I would grab Little Debbie out of the pantry at a friends house on my way to the bathroom while my friend was in the other room playing video games. As a teenager, I would sneak a can of Coke to another room and drink it as fast as possible. As an adult, I wouldn't eat much somewhere with friends only to hit a drive-thru on the way home and get a couple of cheeseburgers and fries. I have eaten things like candy bars and stuffed the wrapper down in the trash under something bigger so nobody else would see it. Does that sound familiar? And how come I never found myself closet eating apples or spinach?

Why would I do such things to MYSELF? The only person I am hurting when I do this is MYSELF!

People used to see me eat and ask me how I could be so big when I didn't eat much in front of them. I would give the standard lie and say I don't really know, I guess it is just a slow metabolism. REALLY? SLOW METABOLISM? It wasn't a slow metabolism, it was the tacos I picked up on the way home after eating a few healthy things in front of others. I hid that. I hid that shame.

And it really was shame. Every time I did it I felt shame. But some how, that shame didn't stop me from doing it again, and again, and again...It was as if I told the lie to so many people for so long that I actually believed it myself! I convinced myself that I didn't eat a lot of junk food and it was a slow metabolism that caused me to gain weight. WHAT IS THAT?

But the title of this blog is fortunately "Confessions Of A RECOVERING Closet Eater". So how did I quit? I had to admit to myself what the problem was and come to grips with it. I had to forgive myself for what I had done all those years. I forgave myself for all that shame I brought upon myself. The last thing was tracking my food. I held myself accountable for every thing I ate. By doing that, I knew if I was sneaking things that I was only sabotaging my own efforts. I was only hurting myself. That is something I knew in the past but actually seeing it allowed me to break the habit. Even today, I can feel the pull to sneak something from time to time. It is something I don't believe will ever completely go away. So I will deal with it one day at a time and remind myself to never go back to that mindset.

If you have or are still struggling with closet eating, I know it is a hard habit to break. For those of us who have broken the habit, it is a huge relief to not carry that shame around. For those of you who are still struggling to break the habit, just know that you are NOT alone. You are NOT the only one dealing with that problem. Always know that there is hope. YOU CAN CHANGE!

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