I learned to hate myself at a young age, I was told I was too fat, too ugly, too stupid to ever amount to anything. I was told to keep my mouth shut or I’d get in trouble. I became reserved and quiet except for around my few friends. I say “few friends” and I mean it. I had three friends never more at any given time. Kids in school are mean. I was bullied and made fun of. I joke now that the only time anyone wanted to talk to me or sit by me in class was during a test. It’s not inaccurate, I was pretty good in school. I always scored well above average on standardized tests, but that doesn’t make friends, and god forbid we had gym class that day. I was a chubby child, no doubt about it. Nothing that a little change in diet wouldn’t help. My mom wrote notes for me to get out of gym class almost every week. Blaming my cough, a sprained ankle, or anything else she could write down just because I was bullied so bad. It’s no surprise that I would cry every time I came home from a gym day at school.
As I mentioned before, My step dad, Mike, was constantly badgering me about my weight at home as well. That was worse than being at school. Here he’s a grown man telling me I shouldn’t eat dinner anymore. In 8th grade I stopped eating lunch at school. I didn’t want the kids to see me eat. I distanced myself from what friends I had and began dressing in mostly black. I moved from my big, dolphin filled bedroom to a bedroom in the basement and that’s where the crazy started. I gradually stopped eating certain things at home, pretending to be on various diets, my favorite one to pretend was the Atkins Diet. I would get a plate of food and hide out in my room I dumped my food out my bed room window, knowing that something else would eat it due to the close proximity of the woods behind our house. Sometimes I would flush the food down the toilet. It I only had meat on my plate I would feed some to the cat. Everyone commented on how great I looked and I decided, “if this looks great what if I lose another 20 lbs or so..” I started working out. We are talking barley eating, 600 crunches at the very least, and running for hours on the treadmill every single day. In the summer between 8th grade and 9th grade I had lost a whopping 75lbs. I now weighed anywhere from 95 to 98 lbs. At 5’6,” 98 pounds is not enough. At Freshman orientation friends I had in middle school didn’t even know who I was. They told me I looked great, guys wanted to talk to me, people wanted to be my friends I was feeling awesome. I wore extra clothes because 1, I was always cold, and 2, If they saw exactly how thin I had gotten over break they might think I was weird. I even got the O.K. to wear sweats in P.E. everything was working out great! Until one girl named Alisha noticed I didn’t eat at lunch. She took me aside in the hall and demanded to know why I didn’t eat lunch. I proceeded to tell her I had a lot of food allergies and didn’t like a lot of things. She wasn’t buying it since my high school had dozens of options to choose from. I just shrugged her off and said “well on top of that I just got my braces tightened yesterday and my teeth hurt.” That one she seemed okay with. It was a fail-proof excuse that I had used on my mom a million times. I did have to eventually start eating again but I began to take to bulimia each time I “over did it” and with that little adaptation to my diet I did start to gain some back.I don’t know what upsets me the most, That I felt compelled to restrict my intake of food so much or that I “recovered” to the point of the polar opposite.
I weighed about 115 pounds at the start of Sophomore year when I met Chad. Next Installment coming soon in A Troubled Past: Adolescence and Fatal Attractions.