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If you suffer from an eating disorder now or have in the past, please email Joanna for a free telephone consultation.



Eating Disorder Recovery
Joanna Poppink, MFT
Eating Disorder Recovery Psychotherapist
serving Arizona, California, Florida, Oregon and Utah.
All appointments are virtual.


I have only ever tried diet pills a couple of times, during my teens, because my mother insisted that I needed to, but the palpitations they gave me were really frightening; and I've never tried any get rich quick schemes - so I don't have much experience of either.

The biggest liars in my life were my family - because they made me believe that the only way to be liked, loved, popular, successful etc, was to be thin - and I willingly went along with all the diets they put me on, because I believed there was a glittering prize at the end - their love and acceptance.

The diets my mother imposed were all about rapid weight loss, slower weight loss meant you were lazy and uncommitted, but as she controlled my food at that age, she made sure I lost the desired amount each week.

All I wanted was my mother's love and acceptance, instead I got the beginnings of an ED, and a load of ingrained lies about myself and how bad and worthless I was.

In terms of protecting myself from lies and liars:

As I got older, I realised from what I saw happen with other people, that people who could not trust others in relationships, drove those relationships to destruction - like the girl who is always quizzing her boyfriend about his faithfulness, and snoops in his things, and jumps to conclusions, ultimately either drives him to be unfaithful or drives him away... and I learned from that, that you have to trust other people unless they give you a reason not to trust them ...which was hard for someone like me with such low self worth and fears of abandonment, but I forced myself to work at it, because I knew I had to.

Then I learned the hard way, about trusting your intuition and gut instincts, I allowed myself to get raped and battered, that's not to say I blame myself  or absolve him of his abuse of power and the things he did, but had I trusted myself, then it wouldn't have happened... because I knew, I sensed straight off that things weren't right, I felt uneasy in his presence that day and could sense that something was going to happen, but he was one of my bosses, so my perception must be wrong, and I was scared that if I didn't let him in my room on that business trip, that he would make fun of me to my colleagues for being weird and paranoid... so I let him in to "wait for me to finish getting ready", and you can figure out the rest.

And so from those 2 things, what I learned, was that you have to trust others unless they give you reason not to do so, but more importantly, you need to trust yourself and your instincts first!

The other big liar in my life is myself - when I know I am acting out my ED and I tell myself "it's okay" or "tomorrow will be different", even though I know that isn't really the case, but it's easier than tackling those ED behaviours.

But tackling my ED pretty much mirrors what I said above. I need to trust my body to know when and what to eat (like trusting others), unless I'm acting out my ED (unless they've given you a reason not to), but don't ignore cravings, eg: I tend to crave meat when my iron is low, and salty foods as well as fluids when I'm dehydrated (don't ignore your instincts).

It has taken me a lot of work to get to the point where I have enough self-worth and faith in myself not to always do the wrong thing, that I am able to (in the main) live by my principles of arming yourself with relevant knowledge, not pre-judging others, and being able to trust yourself - as in your body and gut instincts and trying to stay tuned in with that inner energy and use it as a guide,

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