When Daniel and I started dating, he’d often ask me about my eating disorder. I was open with him from the beginning with my past and current struggles (you can read about that here). Every time I would try to talk to him about ED (Eating Disorder) I’d get emotional (that’s what we women do, right?). I mean all out cry, sweat, it wasn’t good ladies.
And I always felt slightly crazy and off my rocker saying some of the crazy thoughts ED would tell me out loud. I could never find the right words. We’d talk but I wasn’t sure he really understood the way ED talked to me, the way ED never shut up (he is now much quieter). One approach that truly helped me and us as a couple was reading books about the subject.
I often buy books about eating disorders and I’ll read them through first. Then I will highlight sections I want Dan to read or have him read the whole book. The authors of these books can much more eloquently put into words what I try to verbalize to Dan. And there is something about a book…it took the hot, emotional mess out of the conversation. Dan didn’t have to feel badly bringing my eating disorder up and feeling like he made me upset…but using books about eating disorders kind of served as a conversation starter and an educator for both of us.
Over the past couple of years some of the most popular posts have been written, not by me…but by Daniel. And many of them have been his outlook on eating disorders as a husband (read this one here). The couple weeks after Daniel posts he always gets Facebook messages, emails, questions about the posts. I started noticing a pattern after he grabbed coffee with a friend who wanted to talk through his own wife’s struggles.
Dan came home from that coffee chat and asked me for the 100th time for a list of books that we’d read together and that I had found helpful. DUH!!! I had written out this list of books about eating disorders for Dan several times. Why wasn’t I sharing with you all? Because if people were continually asking him (and me) for these resources, I knew others were out there likely wondering the same thing as well.
Today I want to share with you my favorite books about eating disorders
Michelle is an amazing Christian woman that has a very similar story to my own. She loved exercise, she loved the feeling of seeking perfection…but she loved God more. Michelle now uses her passions for fitness, nutrition, and faith to empower women…I love her! This book is SOOOO GOOD! I’ve bought three copies, and I don’t have any of them anymore because I just hand them out. This is a great starter. I had my mom, dad, brother, and husband read it and they all said THANK YOU to me after reading.
I actually purchased these books together off of Amazon. I cannot remember which one I read first but MAN OH MAN…each night I’d read them at night while sitting on the couch next to Dan. And I would almost nightly say, ‘yes, yes, yes.’ Jenni literally wrote out how I had felt in the past and some of the ways I feel write now. She verbalizes the crazy thoughts I know are lies in my head. She also provides REAL LIFE, practical suggestions on fighting the thoughts and using the energy for positive action. Though I both of these books useful from front to back there were sections I didn’t think Daniel would gain as much from, so this is one case where I marked chapters, sections, highlighted portions I thought would be most helpful. DEFINITELY recommend these!
At the root of my eating disorder is perfection. Perfectionism in today’s society ESPECIALLY WITH WOMEN is at an all time high. The type A, control, perfectionist is a classic eating disorder personality. I actually got to meet and run with the author of this book on our mission trip in Poland. I immediately knew after our run and talk that I HAD TO GET AND READ THIS BOOK. Richard only briefly touches on eating disorders specifically but this entire book has nuggets of good stuff throughout that line up so closely with eating disorder tendencies. I recommend this to anyone asking me for books about eating disorders. But it is specifically written for perfectionist type personality types…so even if you are impacted by an eating disorder I’d highly recommend this book.
AND another great resource I’ve found for myself has been listening to podcasts. I listen to podcasts while I wash dishes, walk, clean, even drive…I figure better fill the boys’ ears with podcasts development than junk radio…and I had the humbling honor to be on a podcast this past week with Emily from Beauty in Christ. Make sure you check it out too!
*Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links…meaning if you click and then purchase anything I will get a % of each sale. This in no way impacts your price.