In 1991 I was co-hosting a radio talk show concerning health issues with Tamiko in Beverly Hills, California. She asked me to write "Ten Tips to Stop Overeating" that we could offer our listeners. Her idea was to create a card that people could tack on a refrigerator door. (Second part of interview.)
I liked the idea of writing something that would help people understand how to stop overeating. It had to be longer than a simple card.
I thought of my own eating disorder history, of bingeing and throwing up for may years in secret, long before bulimia had a name.
I remembered all the useless, self-deceiving and sometimes dangerous devices I used in my attempts to stop. I remembered my guilt, my growing sense of failure and despair, my loneliness and my stalwart attempts to look good. And finally I remember accepting that my behavior would kill me. I lived believing that I would die in six months. I had no visions of any future for me and so never made long range plans that involved years of commitment.
Today I know that bulimia was my greatest teacher. Moving through the despair of my eating disorder into a life of health, freedom and continual opportunity was and continues to be my Triumphant Journey.
I wanted to share the essence of the healing journey with my patients and especially to people still trapped in lonely despairing eating disorders that can erode a soul.
The seeds of this book first sprouted in an article called, "Ten Tips to Stop Overeating," published by Resource Publications in Winter, 1991. Spring of 1992 Resources published my follow-up article, "Triumphant Journey: Understanding the Secrets of Overeating and Binge Behavior."
The many letters of appreciation I received from people struggling alone with their overeating moved and inspired me. I tried again to describe what I find to be the most helpful guidelines in addressing tenacious overeating and other eating disorder behaviors and thought processes. I developed the eating disorder department of Selfhelp and Psychology Magazine on the internet. SHM was the first to mount the entire first version of Triumphant Journey on the internet.
A refrigerator card that might help would say,
"Look in the exercise section of Triumphant Journey before you reach for non-essential food. You might find a better way to resolve your feelings and clear up your thinking than eating right now."
This book continues to grow. I welcome your thoughts, comments, stories and questions.