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Overeaters Anonymous meetings
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March 9, 2010 at 5:21 pm #1681
I am thinking of going to a couple of Overeaters Anonymous meetings.
Does anyone know what they are like? I have never been to one.
I am sincerely worried that I do not have a big enough problem to go. All though I think I have a legit issue.
If you would like read my journal. Especially today’s entry. I am worry about insulting other people. Because I feel if I do not have a real problem than they might fight that insulting. Does that make since?
Was anyone else scared to attend? I know I feel kind of nervous about admitting that I need help. I am a bit worried about what my friends will think of me. I pretty much keep this problem a secret. I would be devastated if anyone ever found out that I went to these meetings or even read my posts.
Also I am worried because I am male and there is a certain stigma that comes with being male and being so worried about weight loss.
My main goal is to really to eat healthy and live long. I also want to set a good example for my child. And yes I do want to be thin and look good for my wife.
I am very self conscious person and I do worry about what others think of me.
Can anyone relate.March 10, 2010 at 8:02 pm #39076
Hey, for the info I got from Fairburn´s book, this organisation tells the users that BE is an ADDICTION, which is not because YOU CAN NOT LIVE WITHOUT FOOD! Plus, the only way they see change is by believing in God and such things. They took the AA statements and changed the word food instead of alcohol. That is not a very professional way of dealing with a serious disease, which harms the lives of so many ppl. Seriously I wouldnt let my weakest me in their hands
I think this forum will give you the privacy you need and we are not going to judge you EVER. We can give you advice so you can learn from your and our mistakes to have a healthier life. You are mostly welcome to keep on posting.March 10, 2010 at 9:27 pm #39077
I am also curious about others opinions on OA.
I went to one meeting, and really hated the mentality. I don’t like the idea of defining myself as once a binge eater, always a binge eater. I don’t believe I am perpetually powerless over food, and that god or a higher power will free me.
This sort of attitude seems like a self fulfilling prophecy, well at least for me. I am a big perfectionist and b&w thinker and putting things in terms like these makes me think, ‘Oh well I am powerless so, fuck it.’ But honestly, that is just me. I believe that I am responsible for my recovery and my actions, and no one else is.
Also, I do not like how it seemed like everyone there felt sugar and carbs were poison and had to be 100% eliminated for recovery. This seems like a diet scheme and a form of restriction which is not sustainable long term. Again, just my opinion.
I think you should try it out. I don’t think you will be judged, and if it works for you, then great. I have toyed with the idea of going back, just for the support, but I am not sure if the pro’s outweigh the con’s, at least in my situation.
StephanieMarch 10, 2010 at 10:31 pm #39078
The meeting aren’t for everyone, but they do work for some. They are based on the 12 steps, which is about finding a higher power which although alot of people refer as god this could be anything that gives you the strength to get through.
the good bits are that you are in a group with people that understand the emotions and the conflicts that you will be going through.
I would recommend the book previously mentioned it has been the main thing for me that has made sense and does come with a self help section.
overcoming binge eating by dr christopher fairburnApril 13, 2010 at 11:31 pm #39079
I have attended a number of OA meetings but am thinking of not going any longer. I can see how many people can benefit from the 12-step approach and the support and I think that’s wonderful; however, I don’t think this approach works for everyone. I struggle with some of the messaging; as Excrisis mentioned, continually defining oneself as a binge eater seems to be a self-fulfilling prophecy. I am more than my bingeing. I don’t believe that I am powerless either. If I truly am, then I will always be at the mercy of my binge eating and I will never be free. I also take issue with the fact that we are discouraged from talking about different healing modalities or techniques that aren’t part of the OA program. As everyone is unique, each person has a different path to follow. One program can’t accommodate everyone. I sense a zealousness among some people: it’s OA or nothing. I’ve actually had two people tell me that if I don’t get a sponsor and follow the 12 steps, I won’t be successful. I’ve known countless people who’ve lost weight and kept it off and have beaten this “disease” or obsession without going to OA. I’ve asked members what it was like when they got to their healthy/goal weight (I was looking for hope and inspiration). Instead, I got a lecture on how i need to focus on the steps. I’ve also been accused of not following the steps in order. I am not a linear thinker so adhering to something so rigid and restrictive is problematic for me.April 21, 2010 at 12:26 pm #39080
Hi there Rosophoie,
I read your post a few days ago, got loads of identification and and been wanting to reply but been pushed for time to find the right words until now. I wanted to say I know just how you’re feeling in fact you put into words thoughts that i havent known how to express for ages.
I attended OA regularly for 5 years plus and though i found it very helpful in some ways it didnt hold the whole answer for me and Ive come to the same conclusions as you.
While in it i saw alot of people benefit and change their lives with the help of OA and the 12 steps. As i said it helped me alot too and i’ll always be grateful for what it gave me. The support can be very good – when you read the literature and listen to people who struggle too and have then recovered it gives you alot of identification and encouragement. In fact I made two very good friends there who i cant imagine my life without now. I think that the support along with a few of the tools helped me the most. Having a food plan gave me a structure – beforehand food was chaos to me – and having a food sponsor helped me stop restricting so much. I learnt to eat normally and for the first time in ages i was able to sustain very long periods binge free. OA gave me alot of insight into myself and why i use food and my triggers but i have to say i may have found that elsewhere anyway though maybe not so quickly. Perhaps one of the best things was it connected me with was faith that something (not God) was definatley looking after me. I was brought up in a very strict religon, stayed in it for years but only for the sake of my family. My whole time in it i tried sooo hard but never knew the meaning of faith/couldnt get a connection so for me, a person who cant abide religon, to feel it now, well thats priceless. Yes, there are good things to it.
Like you say though its approach doesnt work for everyone and thats ok. You are sooo right. We are all unique, we think differently, we learn differently and our journies are different. What helps one person may not help another. I stuggled also with its messaging = we are ill people whether active in our “disease” or not and that we are powerless over food. Also, once a bingeeater always a bingeeater so never truly recovered. Hmmmm, i dont think so!!
In my years in it i came accross different meetings or groups that worked it differently. In the end i stayed well away from the rigid ones in which there is a zealousness and there minds are closed to anything else. I have been told the same things too – the steps or thats it, no recovery and the same with a sponsor. Desperate to get better I tried pretty much everything (had 4 sponsors which caused me a whole heap of emotional grief), read lots and lots of their literature, went to many meetings a week, made daily phone calls. Eventually though i came to see different ways of working it and settled upon a gentler way that worked for me. I guess i did what their literiture advises – I took what i wanted and left the rest.
While OA felt right for a long time and my BED certainly improved i couldnt shake this feeling of doom and that i had lost myself somewhere along the way. My recovery which once felt right began to feel stale. Eventually, after alot of searching i found this forum which has lit me up again because i believe i can recover. In all honesty I feel more identifiaction and strength here than i ever did in OA, because we are all binge eaters. Also, there are no judgements/pressures or expectaions. Ive also stopped restricting any foods which is really brave considering ive had years of OA thinking on that score. I still use what worked for me in OA but i no longer attend their meetings or subsribe to their ways of thought.
I wouldnt want to put anyone off attending OA and i hope i havent given a bad impression of it – its just my experience, im sure someone elses will be different and we are all entitled to that.
Thanks Rosophoie for helping me acknowledge this – i hope if you get to read what ive posted that it is of help to you.
.April 21, 2010 at 6:19 pm #39081
I tried out OA last month & went to 2 or 3 meetings.The first thing that suprised me when I walked in was there were people there of all sizes & all ages. I thought everyone would be overweight but at OA you have bullemics, anorexics & overeaters. To be honest it wasn’t for me, yes it is a very supportive environment & it was a relief to be around people who knew what I was going through but I found I didn’t really feel anything whereasI feel I can realte alot more to the stuff in the e book & the conversations on this forum. OA did make me realise that I was a binge eater as I didn’t know this & as a result of that I came across this. So without OA I may have not have come across this site. At OA it is very process driven, they read the same things out each week & they stick to the rules. At the class I attended they alternated between having a chair (which is when someone discusses a topic taken from a hat for 10 mins) & having OA member in recovery comeing in to tell their story which was very interesting. They then ended each meeting with sharing which is when anyone can talk about how they’re feeling & the last 15 mins was always reserved for new members to talk. You don’t have to share though it is totally up to you & I found it quite cathartic. I think it is down to the individual as to whether OA is for you & if it something you are unsure about I would say find your nearest one & try it out. I must admit I didn’t get the full experience as you are recommended to try it for 6 weeks before deciding if it is or isn’t for you also they say that you don’t really start the program until you get a sponsor. So I am just telling you how I found it but the one thing I hope can put your mind at ease is that no one will judge you, they are very welcoming & there were men in my OA too. Hope this helps.
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