You're so right. It's a control issue. I "dabbled" in eating disorders as a teen, but it didn't become serious until I was in my mid-twenties. For me, I turned to anorexia as a means to exert control over the only area of my life that I felt I could. When everything around me was falling apart, I would console myself by starving myself. It sounds illogical, but it is a very powerful feeling.
Eating disorders are a lot like alcoholism -- once you have them, you have them forever. You can be a "recovering alcoholic" or a "recovering anorexic/bulimic" but that disease is always there, and is a constant battle. I really feel for you and your daughter -- when I was going through this, unfortunately there was nothing that anyone could have said or done that would have made me stop. It was a decision I made, when I woke up one morning and realized that I could see my internal organs, and that that wasn't attractive.
One thing that might help, especially if this hasn't turned into a full-on addiction yet (it usually doesn't -- just like people who start drinking aren't immediately alcoholics), is to expose her to some of the dangerous and ugly truths of ana/mia; the un-glamorous stuff that they don't tell you about until it's too late. The part where your body is so starved for nutrients that your hair starts falling out. Or the fact that your hormones will become unbalanced and you start growing hair on your face. Or that throwing up that many times will start making your teeth rot and fall out.
I hate to sound ugly about this, but this is really an ugly, ugly disease, and I hope you can help her see that there are healthier options. My heart goes out to both of you.
Originally Posted by Imakcerka
It's kind of hard to just stop. And you'll say anything to get people off your back about it. I was anorexic and moved to purging because I found it easier to hide. I said I stopped lots of times to ease my moms fears. For me it was all about control. I could control that. Or atleast I thought I could. I still fall into my anorexic ways but I know I couldn't get away with purging in my house. It's a habit... an addiction.