Eating disorders often cause the person suffering to have an inability to see their body the way the rest of the world does; this is called body dysmorphic disorder. I personally have this issue and knowing that I have it makes me feel crazy because most of the time I have no idea what my body actually looks like. I have only my perception which I have come to realize is something that is very out of touch with reality.
An exercise that expressive therapists may use to help their patients see the reality of their image is body tracing. I have known about this method for years but have never had the opportunity to experience it.
I finally decided to ask my mom if she would help me. She willingly said yes so I grabbed some sidewalk chalk and we went out to the driveway. After she finished my tracing the whole family decided to join in the experience with me; talk about support. It was so beautiful to have that support and the tracing ended up being therapeutic for all of us in very different ways. I am so grateful to be surrounded by a family that encourages these moments and stands with me every step of the way. I am one lucky girl.
After taking in the end result of my tracing I was in shock. I honestly thought my body looked like an adolescent boy. I never see that when I look in the mirror which is what made this reality check so necessary.
Again I could not be more grateful for my family participating in this with me. The willingness they have to partake in my treatment always amazes me. I'll say it once more because I can never say it enough, I am one lucky lady.
"Perception does not equal reality."