What Kesha Can Teach About Bravery and Seeking Help
First published July 24, 2014, sometimes I need to remind myself of the realizations I came to when I first wrote this post.
In a recent article from Elle U.K., Kesha shares her story of the life-controlling demon which is an eating disorder, as well as, the hopefulness which is the road to recovery.
#Eatingdisorders and body image issues can hide anywhere; they do not discriminate. http://ow.ly/Tx1W30aVJX0 #bodypositive @lenaebaker CLICK TO TWEET
Kesha’s story is so inspirational and admirable because of her openness and honesty. Now, I do not intend to speak for everyone with an eating disorder or body image issue. These next statements are generalized statements based on my experiences and what I have observed from the experiences of others. So, those of us suffering from an eating disorder or body image issue find ourselves putting on façades. We try and cover up our “flaws,” our disordered eating, our obsessive body checking, our food and calorie micromanagement, our fanatical exercise regiments, our self-loathing… Celebrities even more so have “images” they feel pressured to keep up. It is so difficult for us to acknowledge our issues to ourselves, and we feel that if no one else knows about our issues, we can stay in control, the fact is that we are not in control anyway. Kesha did something extremely brave, she not only acknowledged her issues to herself, she told others and sought help. She let go of control and in doing so, demolished the façade.
Kesha mentions how terrifying her first day of treatment was, and yes, I am sure it was. But in that terrifying action there is immense hope because she did it, she faced her fears and sought help. Acknowledging that there is an issue and that help is needed is one of the most important steps to recovery.
I have recently sought help myself, in therapy. However, it has been a struggle.
Will the therapist tell me to stop weighing, trying on pants daily, and measuring?? Will the therapist tell me to quit exercising so much, and God forbid, to take a day off exercising once and awhile? Will the therapist be perfect and skinny and judge me? And scariest of all, will therapy cause me to let go and will this letting go cause me to just submit to getting “fat”?
These are the questions that have been flooding my mind and causing hesitation in seeking treatment. However, it was when I finally noticed how my issues affected those I loved that I decided I needed to apply for treatment, for those I love but ultimately and more importantly for myself. Kesha mentions that “those words [lyrics for loving yourself] didn’t ring true to me anymore…. I felt like a liar, telling people to love themselves as they are, while I was being hateful to myself and really hurting my body"(Quoted from Rolling Stone 2014). You see, many people suffering from an eating disorder or body image issue are not fazed by the damage we are causing ourselves because many suffer from low self-esteem issues. But eating disorders and body image issues do not just affect the person suffering from these issues; these issues have indirect consequences on others as well. But I think that for treatment to work, we eventually have to seek it for ourselves, to help ourselves and to grow into loving ourselves.
Kesha has this mentality, and I applaud her for being an advocate for seeking treatment and being positive about who we each are as individuals. When the therapist asked me what my goals for treatment were, I suddenly felt deep at my core that my goal wasn’t to weigh or measure a certain amount, but to love and be happy with myself as I am each and every day. Kesha’s story spoke to me and told me to be brave. And I am beginning to. And I hope her story inspires others to be brave and take that first huge step and seek help… we are ALL worth it!
Yours Truly, LeNae
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Grow, Kory. 2014. “Kesha Opens Up About Her Eating Disorder and Experience in Rehab.” Rolling Stone. http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/kesha-opens-up-about-her-eating-disorder-and-experience-in-rehab-20140711. July 11.
ABC News. 2014. Kesha Opens Up About Going to Rehab. http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/video/kesha-opens-rehab-24692364. July 24.
Image - daniellehelm. September 29, 2009. To eat or not to eat? flickr. https://flic.kr/p/73Afcw. Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0).