If You Didn’t Have Urges to Binge…

No, this will not be about all the great things you could accomplish if you didn’t have an eating disorder, although I’m sure there are many. This is about why you binge. In my book, I propose the idea that there is only one cause of each and every binge, and that cause is: an urge to binge.

To help myself stay focused and discard the idea that I binged to cope with feelings/emotions/problems, I often asked myself this question: If I didn’t have urges to binge, would I binge anyway, just to cope? The answer was: of course not! (You can read more about this in sample Chapter 34: “Coping.”)

This question can be used to test any reason you think you binge. Ask yourself: If I didn’t have urges to binge, would I binge anyway, just to (insert whatever you think causes your binge(s) here) .

For example: If you didn’t have urges to binge, would you binge anyway, just to deal with holiday stress, avoid intimacy, “stuff down” feelings, be numb?If the answer is yes, then you most likely don’t want recovery, because the binge eating is worth it to you. If, without any desire or drive to eat abnormally large amounts of food, you’d still do it to achieve whatever perceived benefits it gives you; then those benefits are worth the cost. If the answer is no, then it’s the urges that are the true problem.

This is not to be insensitive to your other problems. They are no doubt very real, and possibly overwhelming. But, it’s possible that those problems are not really causing your binge eating.

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