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I was always overweight when I was a child. This caused me to have very low self- esteem and sometimes be bullied at school. I was sick of always being the nice, but unpopular girl. I wanted to be noticed. When I was 13 I thought the only way to get noticed was to be thin.

This is where my bulimia started. I have always loved food and eating but pressure to be thin leads me to begin purging after meals. What started out as trying something new became an obsession once I began to lose weight. The more weight I lost the more excited I became about the changes and the more I would purge. Purges then became accompanied by massive binges and a cycle of eating and throwing up and eating more to throw up again.

I lost approximately 20 kilos and people began to ask questions regarding my health. I was finally being noticed, but for all the wrong reasons. I kept my disorder a secret. It was my little obsession and my way of controlling myself. But it also controlled my life, making me feel like I was losing control. Over the past 5 years I went through constant episodes of bulimia.

It was only through thinking about my long-term physical and mental health and having the support of a loving relationship that I was able to stop my episodes. I also saw a University psychologist who helped me realize that there is no need for low self-esteem, giving me a more rational perspective. I also discovered how tasty healthy food is and how much fun physical exercise can be. I am in my early 20ˇ¦s so I want to be as fit and healthy as possible so I can live life to the full. I still struggle in situations where there is a lot of unhealthy food around and have an occasional relapse. However, I am well on the right track and will continue to work on self-acceptance and love so one day bulimia will be a mere memory! The ˇ§Smart Eatingˇ¨ program has helped me to realize how important my goals are and to remain accountable for my disorder, to ensure I think rationally and donˇ¦t let bulimia get the best of me!