Lately I have been reconsidering the number of “friends” I have on social media.
It’s not that I have an overabundance of friends or that I don’t care about them or value “knowing” them or supporting them (many are people from running circles that are either at the acquaintance or online friend level only); but rather I have found that having all of these “friends” is making me worse. Mentally worse.
A great deal of my Facebook and even more so Instagram, is fitness and running posts from friends, groups, myself, etc. This isn’t a bad thing normally and I love following my friends’ posts about their trials and tribulations running, getting and staying fit, what races are coming up or new workouts to try but honestly, some of the posts are just not healthy for me to see.
Those posts are major TRIGGERS.
In case you aren’t versed in triggers, triggers are something that when a person with an eating disorder (or disordered eating) experiences them, they can cause that person to have the same emotions, experiences, behaviors, thoughts or anything of that type that instigates the ED or revives it.
For me these come in the form of many posts but the two worst are:
- Food Photos
- Diet/Detox/Supplement/Quick Fit Posts
I HATE this trend. Hate hate hate hate hate! Instagram takes first place for this one. It is inundated with photos of food and eating everywhere I look. It’s like a coffee table book of food sometimes.
Runners eat. A lot. Actually, I should say most runners eat which is part of the reason I hate this trend, because when I see the food it triggers me to either not eat because I see it as a “challenge” or to want to eat which because I restrict and purge isn’t easy. Fact: Even though you have an eating disorder you can still eat, still be hungry and still want to eat, it’s just that with an ED your actions and thoughts regarding food always revert to the negative. However, in a world where I am already consumed with thoughts of food, fear of food, hate of food, secrecy, lies and everything else associated with food the last thing I need is to open my app and have food thrown right in front of my face because I only treat it as a challenge of willpower rather than an association that people are supposed to eat.
Diets, Detox, Shakes and Supplement Posts
#sorryimnotsorry but I think all these posts about x day challenges and detox diets, cleanses, etc. are bologna. Do you lose some weight yes, but honestly all they seem to be is a natural (or manufactured) way to get the same effect that abusing laxatives and diuretics do for people with eating disorders. Additionally, they are usually accompanied by some unrealistic before/after shot of the 1 person who actually lost an insane amount of weight during the x day time frame.
As for all the other supplements and shakes it is rather ironic how I feel about these. On one hand I feel that anything you should be putting in your body should be good natural food. Why have a shake when you can just eat some darn broccoli or kale or protein or whatever you’re liquefying? And why are you paying so darn much? I’m skeptical of them. On the other hand I am skeptical for one reason and one reason alone: how exactly can you put food in and lose weight and be healthy and happy. In my current ED world that possibility doesn’t exist. Food is bad. The end.
On top of that the one thing that drives me just absolutely bonkers and is the trigger of all triggers when it comes to this is when I see the post and it is captioned: “Call/message/talk to me about how you can lose weight and get healthy too!”
OMGGGGGGGGGGGGG this one line on a picture/description/product image is like the king of triggers. I know about 99% of people that read this will probably think, “Why? If it isn’t something you subscribe to why do you care, why do you let it bother you? Just blow it off.” But I CAN’T. Here’s how I interpret that:
“x product is absolutely amazing see how skinny and healthy these people are you COULD be that way too but you’re not right now and that’s because you are eating too much and BAD foods. If you were to eat this food you would look like this too! And if you don’t contact me, it’s because you’re fat and don’t want to get healthy and skinny.”
And then I think about all the pain and torture I went through when my GI issues get worse and think of all the bad things that could be in x product or diet or whatever and then I get upset because I really shouldn’t eat that food (if you can call some of it that) and because I don’t want to get sick again and really it’s unsafe to eat anything other than what I know is safe because I have kept my illness under control by doing it and then I just get irritated because thinking of all the food makes me feel fat, unhealthy and alone.
Yes, I know that’s delusional.
Every time I get triggered the ED gets stronger and the person fighting it retreats more and more. Lately I have been struggling so bad with wanting to be around people I just don’t like it anymore. I had to force myself to go to my best friend’s birthday, I am dreading my other friend’s wedding in 3 weeks, I skipped my sister’s birthday dinner, I almost had a panic attack on the way to Mother’s Day dinner and I don’t even want to go to the grocery store and have to talk myself into it for hours before I can accomplish it.
Anyway, that’s why I am condensing my “friends” list. Getting rid of IG followers and hopefully helping myself eliminate at least a few extra triggers.