My brain is that of an alcoholic, of that I truly have no doubt. I could be addicted to alcohol or drugs just as easily as I am to food – the only reason I’m not an alcoholic is that my father was (he doesn’t drink any more, 14 years now) and I have always found him, and the smell of alcohol on him, so disgusting that there was no way I could ingest that stuff myself. Plus, I can’t stand not being in control. So even when I did try alcohol that didn’t taste like alcohol (such as those alcopops, vodka that tastes like soft drinks), once I felt not fully in control of everything any more, I was off it. Did not like the feeling one bit.
Pot also never agreed with me: I enjoyed getting high for about 20 minutes but then I would get so miserable, nauseous, that it really put me off that as well.
And as for other things, I’ve simply never been tempted.
So food it was, food it is. The addiction, the thinking, the mind is the same – and it’s still strong, even in abstinence. It’s different things now. Gum, for one (although I’m off it now, I have to guard on a daily basis!); sweeteners too. I can rationalise, I will negotiate back and forth, and when I have it I’ll not have just one but lots and lots. There’s no middle ground for me. The problem as I see it is that once I identify a substance, or even a behaviour, as an issue, it becomes that much more dysfunctional… for example, I used to use sweeteners with no problem at all, but once I began to think they might be a problem with my weight (which has been a continual frustration throughout my journey) and tried to cut them out, I began an unhealthy overdo / quit / overdo / quit cycle. Now I wish I could use them sanely like I used to. It’s a progressive disease.