Friday, 23 August 2013

Oisin and Ruby

It's out last day here in Achill
My sister and nephew left last night and we return home tomorrow morning
I can't tell you how excited I am to see my dogs
I've missed them so much

This week has gone a lot better than I thought it would
We all got on well
No family arguments
No tension
Just lots of laughter and fun
Of course food has been a problem as it always is
I've purged multiple times every day
I've also used enemas every day
I fear that I have gained between 5 and 7 pounds
The thought of weighing in on Sunday is both terrifying and thrilling
I am preparing myself for the worst

Something amazing happened this week
And that is my relationship with my nephew
For most of his life I have either been in active addiction or in the throes of my ED
I had little or no interest in his life and I made practically no effort to forge a relationship with him
I've been on holiday with him before but I spent most of the time in the pub and no time with him
As mean as it sounds he got in the way of my using
Any one who has been addicted to drugs will know what I mean
One thing we have always had in common is our love of animals
He loves my dogs just as much as I do
But beyond that we weren't close at all
So he turned 13 recently and suddenly over night he went from being a little boy and turned in to a teenager
He's growing up so fast
I am so happy to report that we got on fantastically this week
We hung out together loads
I think I spent more time with him this week than I have in the last year
I loved it
We goofed around
Laughed lots
Slagged the 'adults'
I think the fact that I have never really grown up helped
I am still a big kid
I think my mental age is about 15 or 16
Now at then end of the week I really feel like we have made great strides in getting closer
He is such a lovely kid
So cheeky
So mischevious
We spent a whole day telling jokes about poo
Now it is up to me to keep this going
When I'm at home I rarely call down to their house
Never did anything with him
We went horse riding here yesterday and I suggested to Oisin that we go once a month when we get home
He seems keen and I am too

As hard as it is to admit this, I think one of the reasons I struggled to get close to my nephew was that I was jealous of him
Up until he came along, I was the baby of the family
I got all the attention and I was used to that
Everyone doted on me and I was a  bit spoilt really
Then along comes this little boy and he steals my thunder
All of a sudden I'm not the baby anymore
The focus is off me
So I had built up a resentment against him
I hated myself for feeling that way but that was the truth
I think wanting attention is a very human thing
We want to be noticed
We want people to give us their time and attention
In the past I have done some pretty outrageous things to get attention
Somewhere along the way I got the idea from somewhere that if people felt sorry for me, then they would like me
So when I was a young teenager I told some lies to friends because I wanted them to like me
I wasn't enough
I felt that I had to make stuff up in order to keep my friends
I also liked to shock people
I'd get a great buzz out of people's reactions to my stories
To this day I still feel guilty for telling those lies
But I have to let it go

I remember the first time I went to drug treatment
I told one of the lads there that I had an ED
He asked me was I doing it to get attention
I was highly insulted
My ED wasn't about trying to get attention
It was about not liking or accepting myself
It was about being depressed and anxious and confused
But yes, my ED has gotten me a lot of attention over the years
People don't seem to have the same empathy for drug users the way they have empathy for people with an ED
I'm not quite sure
I have to admit that I have liked the attention that I have got
I guess it makes me feel special
And that's another reason why I hang on to my ED
To retain that special feeling
But I think most people, even if they didn't admit it, like to get some attention
It's a nice feeling for someone to show an interest in you
But like a lot of things, it is addictive
Hence why some people go on to become attention seekers
I'd like to think that I am not an attention seeker
At least I hope that I'm not

What about you?
Do you enjoy attention?
Or do you shy away from it?

Last of the Achill photos...........


  1. That's great that you get on well with your nephew! Sometimes the best relationships come out of nowhere, and that's fine by me.
    I think you're right about the empathy thing. Drugs are considered much more the fault of the person doing them than EDs. People blame the addicts, and although this happens in regards with EDs, I think it's seen much more as an inherent sickness than something you choose.
    I do like attention. And I recognize that I need it and I can deserve it without being an attention whore. Maybe Ed keeps me focused on me so that I can have attention that I don't get from the outside world.

    1. It's true Emily
      When people think of drug addicts they think of crime and violence and misery
      The addict is blamed but EDs and drug addiction are so similar
      We don't choose to become addicts any more than we choose our ED

      I think we all like some attention, myself included
      I think the more we get the more we want it
      It's addictive x

  2. Ruby, I think we all can be attention seekers to some degree, I am not sure if it is a good thing or not... I think for the first time that I am not looking for anyone's approval, not even my David...

    I am so centered on becoming healthy and being the best me that I can be... too bad it took until the age of 50 for me to finally get it...

    I think it is wonderful that you have connected with your nephew, he sounds like a wonderful young man... keep going horse back riding. my youngest is enamored by her aunt and I wish they could be closer... I will have to make more of an effort myself:)

    1. That's so great Launna
      Getting well for you is the only way
      I've tried to get well for others and it will only get us so far

      Don't worry about being 50, it's happening for you and that's what counts

      Yes I am so delighted to be forging a relationship with my nephew, it is so precious x

  3. I love that last picture of you on the rock! You look incredible! I know you mentioned in the last post that you struggle with getting better because you feel like you don't even look like someone with an eating disorder...I don't know how you'll take this so I hope you don't get offended, or triggered, but you do look thin, and you do look like you need more nutrients! I think the story of you being someone who doesn't carry weight well is just another lie your disorder fed you. The mirror lies, our heads lie...the scale tells the truth but we warp it into a lie anyway. We are so unaware of ourselves and our bodies, and more or less, reality.

    I am so happy that you were able to spend time with your family and grow closer with your cousin. Family for me can be both a trigger and a blessing, I guess it depends on the setting, but I think overall family plays a healthy role in recovery. I hope you can continue to work on your relationship with him. I too shut out a lot of people, including family, during my drug days. I just couldn't bear to be close to anyone who wasn't also using. I think drug addicts get less sympathy because there's this "dirtbag" stigma. Just like with ED's there's the "vanity" stigma. Neither are true but people make assumptions regarding things they don't understand.

    Wishing you the best as always, thank you for your support and your last comment on my blog was really helpful. I wish I had a magic wand too but unfortunately we don't, so we just got to make the best with what we can. Good luck to you, you'll be in my thoughts!

    1. Thanks Anna
      Yes you are probably right, it is another lie that my ED has manufactured to make me believe that I am fat
      No, I'm not offended at all
      I welcome honesty and prefer it rather than someone sugar coating things

      That's true, there is the scumbag stigma
      Addicts have such a bad name
      And you and I have both stigmas to deal with
      Not fun

      You're in my thoughts too x

  4. I love goofing about with kids. I'm not afraid to make a dick of myself in public any more (Nobody can hate me more than I hate myself, after all) and it's good fun.

    Yeah, drug addiction does tend to keep you mentally and emotionally stunted since you avoid dealing with shit you'd otherwise be forced to in some way or other. Because of Mum's drug of choice and her age of starting it she's basically a 13y/o girl in the body of a 50y/o grandmother. Still, I reckon it's good to keep some level of immaturity and a willingness to goof around and be silly as part of your adult personality. I may have to grow old, but I shall never grow up! You can choose to keep that as a part of you now, rather than having it forced on you by the addiction and ED. When you break apart you get to choose some of the pieces you keep when you rebuild yourself.

    OMG I wanna go horse riding too! I haven't been since I was 12 or 13, I think. We couldn't afford for me to go. (But could afford sports gear for my brothers. U-huh -.-) Can I come ride with you guys next year? PLEASE?

    Sometimes I like attention, mostly I try to avoid it. For me attention was bad because attention meant being yelled at or punished or made to feel like an idiot. I have to psych myself up for it. Japan helped a bit. Kinda hard to hide when EVERYONE is staring at the tall gaijin girl >.<


    1. It so good to be around kids
      I love their honesty and total lack of self consciousness
      The more I hung out with Oisin the better I felt
      Now I just need to keep it up
      As in get out of my house once in a while

      Yes you can totally come horse riding with us next year
      I will hold you to that
      You can hang out with me and my mad family
      Yes, yes, yes!!!

      Love you too Peri x

  5. Dear Ruby I've been absent for a long time, but I'm glad to hear that you got to go away and I hope it's been a refreshing and good time for you. How wonderful that you could have time to develop further a relationship with your nephew! :) I have sadly slipped away from my family, but lately I have been thinking about re-connecting with my Aunt. Much love xxx

    Ps: love the pics! :) <3

    1. Good to hear from you Destiny
      I've wondered how you were
      I hope all is going ok for you

      Sending you a hug x

  6. Hi Ruby,
    I'm not sure about the attention thing. It's tricky and there are lots of fine lines to be drawn. For me personally, I can't hack attention about me ED, hence I ensure that make up makes me look as healthy as poss, wear lots of layers on my arms and legs etc.
    This being said, there is a part of me that finds it hard that if I look more okay, nobody can see the agony inside. I'm not sure this is the same thing as being attention seeking, and yet I think a high proportion of people suffering with an ED confuse this with 'attention seeking'. A lt of people fear that their need for understanding is just craving attention. It's not the same thing.
    I don't know if I've made any sense whatsoever! Probably not. Anyway, I'm glad you had such a great holiday! Especially that you found such joy in new relationships!
    Thikning of you


  7. Ruby I'm so proud of you for what you've achieved this week. It must feel wonderful to have built up such a fun relationship with your nephew, and I hope you're both able to keep it up. The monthly horse riding sounds like it would be a great way to keep in touch, just the two of you. I can relate to having a younger mental age too...I'm definitely not the age I am!! They say your mind stays at the age you begin with a mental illness, particularly with an ED.

    With attention - I absolutely hate it and shy away from it as far as possible. It has led me to being agoraphobic, socially anxious and a bit of a recluse! I think part of the reason I developed anorexia was because I just wanted to disappear, to be invisible and never get any attention ever again. But then paradoxically, anorexia leads to you having to have so much attention just to keep alive, and I can't tell you how much I hate that.

    I love your photos, they are wonderful, just like you!
    Much love x

  8. I've been reading all your old posts, but I was so curious to see how you were doing now. Your trip looked like so much fun. I'm also on methadone for a year now. I also have issues with food. I don't know if I have an eating disorder, but I do purge and restrict sometimes. I also have depression and anxiety. I am 36 years old , I have a daughter, married. I am currently unemployed, we lost our businesses a couple months ago. I've been trying to look for a job in nursing with no luck. I wanted to introduce my self, I feel like I know you! Lol! Love your blog and keep up the good work.


Thank you for leaving some love x