- The power of the internet to open doors and connect souls continues to amaze me. A few months ago, I exchanged blog comments with Karly Randolph Pitman. Little did I know at the time that she would come to inspire me with her wisdom and willingness to share her journey with others.
Karly speaks openly about her struggles with food addiction and how that has impacted the relationships in her life. She is the creator of Growing Human(kind)ness, a therapeutic approach to heal food suffering, and is, also, the founder of First Ourselves, www.firstourselves.org, a community site for women healing from eating disorders.
I invited her to be my guest for a marriage column I put together for Chat, Chew, and Chocolate each month. Addictions of all sorts are common issues in marriage so I will be revisiting the topic from time to time with the hopes of encouraging readers to seek help if they find themselves in situations that are beyond their capabilities.
Here is what Karly had to share about food addiction. I know you will appreciate her as much as I do!
“For most of my life, I’ve been addicted. While my chosen addiction is food, something that’s more socially acceptable than other addictions, it can feel harder than drugs or alcohol to kick. I have to eat to live. Lucky me: I get to sit in the hot seat with my compulsion, at least three times a day. My tendency to eat 3,000 calories of food in a sitting also diametrically opposes one of my other, more subtle addictions, looking perfectly together.
Both lead to a pit of shame, despair, and self loathing. Both keep me from living with a clear, open heart – both with myself and with my loved ones. This is particularly true with my husband.
You could argue that I really, really love food, but what I most love is safety. A guarantee that I won’t have to hurt, that I’ve found a magic inoculation against pain. I consistently brace myself against pain – with food, with control (of myself and others), with blame, with judgment, with anxiety itself.
When I’m caught in this space, I tend to pull away from the very things that help me heal – such as my husband’s love. I simply feel too vulnerable, trapped in the ugliness of my deepest hurt. And since I don’t find safety in my relationships, or with myself – I’m too full of self blame to rest in my own sanctuary – I seek safety in food.
Of course, this only keeps the addiction going. Fortunately, the converse is also true. When we drop the blame, and rest in presence, either our own or another’s, we can stop the cycle.
As I see it, addiction is never about the food, alcohol, or drug. It’s not the behavior itself that feeds it, but the deep, unmet needs that fester underground. So healing an addiction often means a close examination of these needs and our relationships, as our relationships tend to “prick” us and bring those unmet needs up to the surface…”
To read the rest of the article click HERE!
You can reach Karly at www.karlyrandolphpitman.com