One of the major criteria necessary for a diagnosis of an eating disorder is poor body image and body dissatisfaction. It is not surprising then that those who have an eating disorder might struggle with sex and sexuality. Sexual activity requires an entirely new level of vulnerability which is understandably difficult if you struggle with your body image.
This is something that is really important for me right now because my partner cannot understand why I can’t be intimate with him. It wasn’t until I wrote him a letter explaining that I had an eating disorder and that I am too self-conscious to be sexually involved that he understood where I was coming from. I know that it is extremely frustrating for him, even if he wont admit it, but he has been extremely supportive and willing to go at my pace.
I guess the one thing that really helps me get more comfortable with being sexually intimate is the fact that if he did not find me attractive he would not be interested. Therefore, I am the only one who sees the flaws. He tells me that I am beautiful and that I have nothing to worry about, but its still really hard to get over. It also doesn’t help that he is extremely attractive and has a six pack. I feel like it would be easier for me to be less self conscious about the amount of fat on my abdomen if he had a bit of meat on his bones as well. I feel like he could do SO much better than me in terms of looks. But again, he chose me over other girls and it certainly wasn’t because he thought I would put out. Its been 2 years and we still haven’t gone “all the way” so there must be some reason that he is sticking around.
Can any of you who have eating disorders relate to this difficulty with intimacy? And if so, how do you overcome it? Its really frustrating to say the least. I want to be able to be comfortable in my own skin, I just don’t know how.