Dating When You Have Binge Eating Disorder
Dating is difficult enough by itself, but when you date and have binge eating disorder, there are sometimes issues that pop up even when having a simple dinner. There's no easy way to navigate the world of dating or binge eating disorder, but when you are confident, honest, and open, you can make everything a little bit easier. Here are my tips for dating with binge eating disorder without losing your mind.
Quick and Dirty Tips For Dating With Binge Eating Disorder
When you have binge eating disorder, the most common first date of all, going out to dinner, becomes a lot more complicated. If you have anxiety with your binge eating disorder, this can be nothing short of torture. So how do you do it? How do you stay focused on getting to know your date and not worry about your eating disorder?
- Always be honest. When I date, I have not only an eating disorder, but also an 8 oz stomach due to gastric sleeve surgery to contend with. If a date asks me a question about why I'm eating so slowly, why I'm eating so little, if I don't like my food, etc., I'm honest about what's going on. If I don't feel comfortable discussing something, I say that. If I'm having a bad food day and know that I can't go out to dinner without it causing me problems, I ask my date if we can do something else or meet another night. You don't have to go over your life story or even share more than you feel comfortable with, but a little bit of honesty can lead to a lot of understanding.
- Be clear about your illness. It can be uncomfortable to discuss a serious problem with someone that you're dating, especially when you're just getting to know him or her. While you don't have to announce that you have binge eating disorder while dating, if it does come up, make sure you don't speak in vague concepts and ideas. Be direct about what you mean and how binge eating disorder impacts your life. Don't assume that your date knows anything about the illness, in general, or how it impacts you, specifically.
- Ask for understanding. There is, unfortunately, still a lot of stigma and misunderstanding floating around about eating disorders and some people don't even know that binge eating disorder is, indeed, a real problem. You might run into a concern troll or someone with unhelpful binge eating disorder tips. It's sometimes important to humanize the issue and make sure that your date realizes this is a real problem, you have it and you all you need from him or her is compassion and understanding.
- Relax. Chances are, you will go on lots of dates where your eating never comes up. Don't feel as though this is a huge secret that you're carrying around. Address it when it presents itself or there is a reason to. Never introduce yourself to your date with the fact that you have binge eating disorder.
When Your Binge Eating Disorder Interrupts Your Dating Life
It's an unfortunate reality that a serious mental health problem like binge eating disorder can be a deal breaker for some people when you start dating. If someone is not prepared to date someone with an eating disorder, it will hurt; but, ultimately, it will hurt less than being in a relationship of any kind with someone that is not understanding or supportive. Most of all, be kind to yourself when something like this happens. No one chooses to have binge eating disorder and there's no reason to blame yourself for your date's rejection. Focus on finding someone that is willing to provide the support and acceptance that you need.
LaBranche, S. (2015, May 14). Dating When You Have Binge Eating Disorder, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2023, January 27 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/bingeeatingrecovery/2015/05/dating-when-you-have-binge-eating-disorder