This Is The Truth About Recovering From Bulimia - Bonnie Brennan on SELF.com
On the most recent episode of "Real Housewives of New York City," cast member Jules Wainstein discussed her ongoing struggle with bulimia. Here's why experts say people with the disorder can often make a full recovery.
Jules Wainstein’s weight and eating habits have repeatedly been topics of conversation on this season of the Real Housewives of New York City. On Wednesday’s episode, she revealed more about her struggle with bulimia, which has been far from easy.
“I live on the fine line of an eating disorder,” the 35-year-old said in the episode. “In one second, I have a bad day, and I have slips all the time. Three days ago, I threw up my food. I’m not going to lie—it’s my life.” She later elaborated, “Bulimia, it’s with you forever. It’s a big part of my personality.”
Wainstein has previously talked about her past with anorexia and bulimia, which she told People began when she was in high school. She said on Wednesday’s episode of RHONYC that she’s still in recovery, which involves being “open and honest” about what she’s going through.
It’s impossible to speak directly to Wainstein’s situation, but experts say she certainly isn’t alone in dealing with bulimia decades after its onset. Still, some people have a different experience. “A minority of people continue to struggle after undergoing treatment, but the vast majority are going to recover,” Jennifer J. Thomas, Ph.D., co-director of the Eating Disorders Clinical and Research Program at Massachusetts General Hospital, tells SELF.
Thomas and other members of her team just completed a 22-year follow-up study about eating disorder recovery that will be published in an upcoming issue of The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry. The study followed women who were diagnosed with bulimia up to 25 years ago and underwent treatment. After nine years, 68 percent of them had recovered, and after 22 years, 76 percent had recovered. “Full recovery is what we expect,” Thomas says.
But Bonnie Brennan, senior clinical director of Adult Residential and Partial Hospital Services at the Eating Recovery Center, tells SELF that it’s not always easy to move beyond bulimia. “People with bulimia have a tough recovery process and, for some, it takes several chapters of struggle,” she says.
Bonnie Brennan, MA, LPC, CEDS, Senior Clinical Director of Adult Residential and Partial Hospital Services, was recently featured in an article on SELF.com discussing the difficulties of bulimia recovery.