By Dana Rademacher, intern at The Emily Program
We all have stress in our lives; whether from school, work, family or countless other contributors, we all face stress in some way or another. Often times, it can be hard to live outside this stress and it can seem to take over our lives. As someone who has lived with anxiety, this can feel especially true and I needed to find something that could help me manage my anxious feelings.
For me, it wasn't about getting rid of anxiety completely, (because it is almost impossible to never experience that emotion) but I wanted to keep it in control, so my therapist suggested meditation and mindfulness practices. These practices helped me a great deal in managing my anxiety (and I would suggest anyone who is feeling stress to try some!), but meditation also helped me learn things I can apply to other areas of my life.
By Dr. Mark Warren, chief medical officer at The Emily Program
One area that is a constant concern with those with eating disorders has to do with heart rate, in particular, low heart rate. This issue is generally observed at low body weight but can happen anytime there has been a significant amount of weight loss. In general, as one loses weight one loses muscle mass. With the loss of muscle mass there may be loss of heart mass as the heart is a muscle.
Recently a dad wrote in asking how he can talk to and help his adult daughter. He's noticed that she has been returning to some harmful behaviors and asked for some advice in how to approach her with his concerns.
This is one person's story; everyone will have unique experiences on their own path to recovery and beyond. Some stories may mention eating disorder thoughts, behaviors or symptom use. Please use your own discretion. And speak with your therapist when needed.
By Liz Rognes, a former Emily Program client in recovery. She is a teacher, writer, and musician who lives in Spokane, WA.
I have always been something of a perfectionist. As a student, I aimed for straight A's and I was involved in everything, but just beneath the surface, I was filled with insecurity, uncertainty, and shame. No matter what I did, I didn't feel like I was good enough. I had terrible anxiety, and I didn't know how to talk about it, so I just kept feeling anxious. Bulimia and anorexia became a way for me to attempt to manage that anxiety, but instead, my feelings of anxiety and shame intensified. I struggled with an eating disorder throughout high school, and when I moved away to college, I thought it could be a way to finally escape the eating disorder. I thought that moving away from my little Iowa farm town, away from old triggers and patterns, might simply erase the eating disorder chatter and urges.
And, in fact, for the first semester of college, things were okay. I was using eating disorder symptoms less than I had been before. I made friends. I learned about new concepts and theories in my classes: music theory, feminism, philosophy, and I discovered that I loved talking about ideas and examining various points of view. I felt inspired by academia, and I knew that I wanted to give my whole attention to my studies, but I still had the pull of bulimia holding me back.
Join us on Sunday, May 3, at this year's Tolerance Fair & Conference. Held at the Wolstein Center in Cleveland from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., the event is hosted and organized by the Bachmans, a Solon family that has been crusading about the need to understand people's differences since 2011. It all began when their son, Justin, who suffers from Tourette's syndrome, was disqualified from a cross-country race because of his nervous tics.