Saturday, July 17, 2010

Notice Me!!!

A story told at my OA meeting today gave me an insight into my addictions. This is the story:
An obese woman was purchasing ice cream, cookies and chips at a grocery store. She had prepared a lie for the checker, intending to say she was buying the goodies for a party that her teen-aged daughter was having. Before she could get the words out of her mouth, the overweight checker looked her in the eyes and said, "Oh, I see you're an overeater too." Hearing the truth like that probably shocked and hurt her, yet she responded by changing her behaviors about food.
What an unusual and bold thing for a checker to say... yet to notice her customer and care enough to say something like that was an act of kindness! Then I got to thinking about my own eating habits, drinking, smoking and staying out late at night... and about how my parents never said anything to me about any of it even though I was living at home. During the two years I lived at home while I was going to graduate school, my addictions reached their peak.

Makes me wonder, maybe my growing addictive habits were a subconscious and inappropriate way of saying to my parents, "Notice me! Please notice me. Please care enough to tell me to stop."

Over the next two decades, I was able to stop first smoking, then drinking. But the food addiction (the binges and overeating) kept going strong, even while I was dieting. It wasn't until just recently that I realized this too IS an addiction and I'm powerless to stop without the help of a higher power and the OA program. Finally, I am noticing me!


  1. You know, no one really notices things about us until we notice them first. It's like waking up, and sometimes, like the woman in the grocery store, it's kind of jarring. Once we do start noticing, that's when we have to decide what, or what not, to do about it. I'm so glad you found something that works for you and gives you strength.

  2. That makes me think about what I did when I was a teen, trying to get my parents to notice me. My brothers both got a lot of attention because they had various issues and I was the easy, middle child. But I can say that at no point have I wanted someone to point out my overeating to me.

    I would think that eating would be a much harder addiction to break because, unlike smoking and drinking, you still have to eat to live.

  3. Wow, that's a powerful light-bulb moment. Me, too, a lot of the same issues as you, but my parents didn't tell me to stop. Funny how that comes back to haunt us. Not thinking "didn't care", but "didn't really comprehend the danger that I was in". Do you think that's possible for you?


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