Dealing with DENIAL in food addiction / emotional eating
Friday, January 21, 2011
I SUGGEST reading my OTHER BLOGS prior to this one. I started writing about Food Addiction on 1-17-11 and have written one every day since.
If you have read my blogs you will see I got off track in Dec and part of January but got back to my eating plan on 1-17-2011
1-17: Wgt 180.5
1-18: Wgt. 179.2
1-19: Wgt. 176.4
1-20: wgt. 175.4
1-21: wgt. 174.8
Today I will blog about DENIAL! I have been really finding out just HOW MUCH DENIAL I HAVE BEEN in the last several years.
ANY COMMENTS in PARENTHESES are mine below. (I commented after most of the paragraphs)
DEALING WITH DENIAL
by Kay Shepard, LMHC
Denial -- a major symptom of food and other addictions -- is a psychological mechanism humans use to protect themselves from fear by blocking conscious awareness of truth. Denial by food addicts consists of blocking awareness of excessive and inappropriate use of food and resulting harmful consequences.
Denial is a potentially fatal aspect of food addiction because it impairs judgment and results in self-delusion, locking the addict into a destructive pattern. Denial may permit medical advice of "Stop overeating or you will die!" to be ignored.
Recently I heard a food addict say with a laugh, "Why live if I can't eat what I want?" Addiction, through the mechanism of denial, creates a value system in which the use of the substances supersedes the will to live. ( I HAVE sure thought this sometimes, like a 2 yr old having a tantrum!)
DENIAL HAS MANY FACES
Denial is the term used for a wide variety of psychological defenses food addicts unwittingly set up to protect themselves from the realization they are food-addicted. All defensive maneuvers distort reality. ( I have really found this to be true ‘distortion of reality’)
Simple Denial -- maintaining that something true is not true. This dishonesty is a form of denial, although the addict may not be aware of it. "Who ate the bag of cookies?" "I don't know!" Of course, I knew I ate them but I actually believed my own lies. (I HAVE said this countless times when someone in the house asked where all the ____blank__ went ( insert food name here like cookies, cake, candy, chips, etc). I even lied just last Saturday when I had eaten the cookies my 10 yr old and I had gotten at Subway. I said I don’t know where they went and I just wanted him to SHUT UP and drop it…. Sad really!”)
Minimizing -- admitting the problem in such a way that it appears to be insignificant. "All I need is a good diet program and everything will be all right." ( I have sure said this countless times and bought every stinkin’ diet they came out with”
Blaming -- denying responsibility for behavior and projecting responsibility onto someone or something else. The behavior is not denied, but its cause is identified as an external person, place, or thing. "You would overeat too if you had a husband (children, mother, job) like mine" ( I HAVE Said this allot too.. to others and constantly to myself)
Rationalizing -- making alibis and excuses for behavior. Rationalizing and justifying are attempts to create a logical reason for illogical behavior. "I was in so much pain, naturally I ate for comfort." Since food addicts eat to feel better and that always makes them feel worse, this rationalization doesn't hold water. (I have found I do allot of EMOTIONAL EATING and will be blogging on that too soon)
Other defense mechanisms include judging, analyzing, explaining, quibbling, debating, arguing, questioning, evading, defiance, attacking, aggression, withdrawing, silence, verbalizing, shouting, joking, and agreeing. All of these defenses protect the disease process and defend against healthy recovery.
How are you holding up after reading all of what I have written this week?
It is scary and overwhelming but also encouraging to me!
In my “Why Can’t I Stop Eating “ book by Debbie Danowski she wrote a paragraph similar to what I am writing here.
She said “we are sure your first thoughts are about all of the food you think you will have to give up now that you know. But, did you think of all you will GAIN?”
She said IMAGINE GETTING THROUGH A WHOLE DAY WITHOUT THINKING ABOUT FOOD, EXCEPT AT PROPER MEALTIMES. Think about eating a healthy satisfying meal without feeling one ounce of guilt or shame. And how about never having to eat powdered, packaged diet food again to lose weight? Imagine BEING AT A COMFORTABLE HEALTHY WEIGHT FOR YOUR HEIGHT, WITHOUT STARVING YOURSELF.
She goes on to say Think about the self-respect you will gain from knowing that your are not to blame for failed weight-loss attempts. And what about the immense feelings of relief that come from believing that, before now, you could not have stopped yourself from eating all that you have eaten?
Even greater than this, realize how much more energy and time you will have now that your life no longer revolves around food. You will have the time, stamina, and desire to do all the things overeating too away. Isn’t there a hobby, activity, or even a career that you used to do or have always wanted to try? Well, without food monopolizing your life, you will be able to do this. IT WILL NOT HAPPEN OVERNIGHT, BUT IT WILL HAPPEN.
HUGS to all my readers! I am here for you and there is HOPE! Amen!
I will blog more tomorrow!