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TW: Eating disorder, bulimia and binge eating 

shares the first poem she ever wrote exploring her issues with food

– Linda

I have
struggled with food for as long as I can remember. As a child, I struggled with
binge eating and when I started University, I developed bulimia non-purging. The
hardest part of having an eating disorder is telling people. After I developed
bulimia, I felt like I needed to. I did not want to be invited out to eat. I
did not want to talk about food, dieting, weight and exercise. For many people,
these are topics that you do not bat an eyelid about – therefore, asking people
“please can we not talk about x” felt unreasonable. 

I struggled
with explaining my eating disorder to other people. Many people found it hard
to imagine me restricting or excessively exercising as I was always at a
“healthy” or overweight BMI. People did not to grasp that my eating disorder is
less about food and how I looked, but more about control and trauma. It is
completely understandable – it is hard to picture something that you have not experienced.
Still, I sometimes felt a bit misunderstood, weird and isolated.

One of the ways
that I can explore my issues around food is through poetry. I seem to perfectly
sum up how I feel where spoken words fail me. This is the first poem that I
wrote about my issues around food. I wrote it at around the age of sixteen
reflecting back on my childhood experience with binge eating.


I am
obviously FINE!

Not a care
in the world.

After all, I
am smiling,

hysterically, joking

and quite
literally bouncing around,

putting on a
good show for the crowd.


Act over,
curtains closed

and in the

I wipe off
my smile because secretly,

I am dying.
In silence. Within.

My mind
wages war persistently –

it demands

and like a
servant, I oblige.

I reason –
or rather more, I don’t –

that I can
fill the deep dark hole

residing in
me with food


But it’s no
good; I never feel whole

because I’m
perpetually starving! Craving

self-acceptance, respect and unconditional love

that can
never come from food

and that I
can never muster enough of

You can visit Student Space to explore online resources, access direct support via text, phone, web chat or email and find the support available at your place of study

I am Linda. I am currently studying a MSc at the University
of Warwick. I am also a sub-editor for Student Minds. 

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