Nobody said no

I remember this day like yesterday. We were sitting around the chairs and I was complaining about my weight and the increase I had seen. I remember covering up my stomach as we were talking, I remember people agreeing with me and telling me they understood my frustration and validated I was getting bigger. I remember them comforting me but since they never told me ‘no,’ taking it as a sign I was fat. I remember going into the pool and beginning to walk out, you snapped this photograph. I hated that you pointed that camera at me, but without you I wouldn’t exist in many memories since I am the one that holds the camera, typically. Two months before this image was taken I remember talking to my friend about my disgust with my body. I told her I didn’t understand why I was gaining weight or where, but I showed her my stomach and said, “I don’t think there is much more fat on me,” and she replied, “well, yah… you got some stuff there,” implying I was getting more fat around my body. For six months nobody told me that I wasn’t fat and I ate 400-500 calories a day. If I consumed alcohol I could only have fresh vegetables and that was it. I got in an unhealthy relationship, and he complimented me when I lost weight. I told him I was so anxious I hadn’t eaten in a week, and he said, “good! you look amazing!!” This is no one’s fault, but I blamed them. This isn’t their responsibility to condemn my starvation or to reassure me I wasn’t fat, but I leaned on them. I starved in private and ate small in public. If the social setting was right, I’d binge in public and pay the consequences in private. If I would lose weight I could reward myself with eating relatively normal for a day or so, but never more than that.I got rewarded with words when I looked thinner. I didn’t see any beauty. I don’t see beauty. I guess I subtly asked for reassurance in the form of help because I didn’t know how to ask.

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