Part of your recovery journey from an eating disorder may include relapsing — maybe once, twice, or possibly more. No matter how many times you relapse, you can still recover.
Although relapse can be discouraging, it is essential to view it as a sign that you need to root deeper into healing your relationship with yourself, your body, and food. Instead of something that derails you, a relapse could indicate another element of healing that still needs to be uncovered.
Permission to Be Messy
Although perfectionism is an element of eating disorders, allow yourself to experience what it feels like to let recovery look messy and non-linear instead of perfect and clear-cut. Recovery is not linear. Relapse is a normal part of recovery, and you can allow your healing to be disordered. This may even lead to a better recovery.
Don’t Misinterpret a Relapse
Do you ever experience a situation, interaction, feeling, or thought and quickly make it mean something about you? In the event of a relapse, perhaps you have been making it mean that you are not good enough, that you cannot trust yourself, that you are a failure, or that you will never recover. However, what if none of these notions were true? Instead of assigning a meaning to a relapse, take it as a part of the overall healing process.
Ask For Help
Part of diving deeper into recovery may mean seeking support — for the first or tenth time — and finding support that makes the most sense for you.
This could be reaching out to a trusted friend to share your experience with. As uncomfortable as vulnerability is, talking about your struggles fosters connection and healing while releasing any shame you may have been holding onto. Sharing openly with others helps combat the eating disorder itself, as it persists via shame and control issues.
Seeking help could also include reaching out to see what types of treatment would be the most beneficial to you at this stage of your healing journey.
Experiencing relapse in eating disorder recovery is a natural part of the journey. Relapse is not an indicator of personal failure and shouldn’t be misinterpreted as something that makes you less worthy of recovering. At Avalon Malibu, we recognize how defeating relapse can feel and how overwhelming the experience of an eating disorder can be. Because of this, we are here to meet and support you where you are at in your healing process with trained professionals to help you navigate recovery. To learn more, call us today at (844) 857-5992.