Depression, eating disorders, and finding body positivity

Unfortunately, like many young girls across the world, when I was transforming out of my pre-teen body, I really started to understand why so many girls struggled with body positivity through my own forms of self-hatred. I truly did not understand my own self beauty and identity. To me, my body was disgustingmy unique features that made me, me, were ugly, I was never going to be the "it girl". Whatever that even means anymore. 

During lunch in 7th grade I went to the bathroom with my friend. After I was done, I waited by the bathroom sinks for my friend, casually looking myself up and down in the mirror. At this point in my short life, my body wasn't a concern. That all changed when my friend came out of the bathroom stall with bloodshot eyes and a toothbrush that had a puke smell lingering off of it as she washed it off. This was the first time I was ever introduced to the idea of throwing up, Yes, I used to watch degrassi, I had heard the stories, I knew about eating disorders, but I was never actually face to face with the effects of one until that day. I looked at myself again in the mirror after looking at my friend, "does that actually work"? I asked, the rest was history. 

When I got to high school, throwing up wasn't enough for me. I had lost the trilling feeling that I would get every time I leaned over the toilet. I decided to buy my first box of laxatives. After two years of laxative abuse and throwing up, my junior year I decided to take it a step further. In the past when I was younger, specifically during 4th-5th grade, I was taking adderall for my ADHD. At that time I hated it. It made me less social, made me lose my appetite, and lose so much weight that teachers were concerned.

I asked my mom if I could talk to my doctor about going back on my adderall and told her my excuse was "I needed more help concentrating" in school especially since junior year was a crucial time for preparing for college. Once my mom was on board, it was all up to convincing my doctors. They started me on 15mg of Adderall XR and I quickly moved up to 30mg, telling my doctors each time I would visit that my body was getting used to the doses and wasn't working as well. Once I was at 30mg, I started taking two of them each day. During this time I was still abusing laxatives any chance I actually ate food. By the summer going into my senior year of high school, I managed to get myself down to 104lbs. 

The end of my senior year was one of the darkest times of my life. I was going through a horrible depression after my first heart break, I was stressed about college, and I honestly felt like I did not fit in anywhere. I tried to take my own life after prom weekend and that is really when my life started to change for the better. I would NEVER condone someone trying to take their own life, but for me it was the biggest eye opener. Those next few months following my attempt, I was in and out of hospitals, intensive outpatients, and many many therapy sessions. During those months I met so many strong, funny, and intelligent teens just like me who helped me so much during the whole process. 

After being assigned to a eating disorder specialist, support from family and new friends, I started to gain for the first time self-love for myself and for my body. I learned that it was really okay to just be me and that there were really people out there who loved me for who I am. Now it is not going to take years of eating disorders and depression for all of you to learn self-love and body positivity. Here is my advice to all of you, aspire to inspire and be inspired because you are beauty.

Finding body positivity is realizing there is no such thing as an ideal girl or guy. Some girls and guys are so naturally thin that it is so hard for them to gain any weight. Some girls and guys have a harder time losing weight. Not every body is made the same way, So stop body shaming. Any shape or size can spread body positivity! No more shaming "skinny girls" or "plus-size girls" because they are different from you. By unlearning the idea that only certain bodies are worth acceptance and praise, you will finally feel comfortable and positive in your own skin. Realize that just because you find some body positivity doesn't mean you are not going to fall into the pressures of society every once in awhile. We are all human, I still reflect on myself in bad ways because of pictures I see of Instagram models, or seeing Kylie Jenner every where I turn. All you can do is treat your body like a temple, be kind and nurturing. 

This is my hopefully insightful post for today, lots of love

-T.