Eating disorder disclosure: harder than I thought

I messed up. I tried to tell my best friend about my diagnosis of bulimia yesterday and it didn’t go over well. It started out well. I actually managed to say “I was diagnosed with Bulimia Nervosa” and waited a whole TWO seconds before back-pedaling and providing her with excuses for why the diagnosis must be wrong. The list of reasons looked something like this:

-I’ve NEVER made myself throw up. Like ever.
-I’m a normal weight.
-I restrict my calories sometimes, but who doesn’t, right? And I mean I don’t do it ALL the time. So I’m fine.
-Did I mention that I’ve never made myself throw up? Because I haven’t.
-My doctor weighed me and he said I’m at a healthy weight. So I’m fine. Really.
-You’re my best friend, you of all people would know if I had an eating disorder. I mean come ON, you know me way better than my psychologist. And I mean, its not like she’s a psychiatrist so can she REALLY diagnose me?

The conversation went on for about twenty minutes. The sad thing is that she actually believed me. She went along with every excuse I provided. Even provided me with more fuel for my fire. “I know you” she said. “If you had an eating disorder, I would know about it. You do NOT have bulimia my dear”.

We just laughed it off. It wasn’t until she said “you’ve never even had body image issues. You’re not one of those girls” that it really clicked. I was lying through my teeth to my best friend. Because the truth is that I AM one of those girls. I have bulimia. And I lied to my best friend. And now I don’t know how to tell her.

The expression on her face when I initially said that I had been diagnosed with bulimia was a look of pure “what the fuck are you talking about”. It was a look of utter disbelief. I think that’s what set me off. I was afraid that she wouldn’t believe me. I was afraid of what she would think of me when she found out what I have done to myself.

I’m seeing her again tomorrow and I really want to tell her but I don’t know how. I don’t want her to be mad that I lied to her. I don’t want her to think that I’m saying it to get attention. I don’t want her to treat me differently. But most of all I don’t want her to pressure me to change.

Someone please help me. I need advice. How do I tell my friend that I lied? How do I tell her that all of those excuses are just based on stereotypes? How do I tell my best friend that I am bulimic?


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