Thursday, March 3, 2011

Addiction Recovery Programs-- Confession of a Food Addict

This is it.
True confessions.  Tonight I attended my first meeting (again).  It's actually hard for me to come out and publicly admit I'm insane...but I think most of you know I'm a little nuts anyway. Admitting I need help outside myself and that I'm completely unable to deal with something on my well...almost impossible for me to do. Almost. Yet how can I confess to love God and be a Christian without such a confession?  I have this extreme sickness called "perfectionism" where I want to be perfect at everything. I want to give God this "perfect" life. Then He'll love me. Duh. There was only one perfect being...and I'm not Him. I know...I don't have to qualify for His love. I just have to accept it. Admitting weakness doesn't mean I'm means I'm human. Having humility doesn't mean one hates means one acknowledges total reliance on God. I realize now that by doing this, I may loose a few friends.  I may gain a few friends.  I may, along the way, lose a few pounds. Honestly, it's not about the "appearance" of sanity and the appearance of's about the real deal.  
I've joked in the past about being a food addict...and a dealer. You know, being a chef. However...I finally am willing to admit that I need a 12 step program. Six years ago I attended the meetings, did all the steps...and then for some reason I stopped going. I thought I could do it on my own.  Well...enough said.  Back to step one. Admitting I have a problem. Now I'm not sure if I should have another food addicts blog...because seeing all this food here might send someone on a binge-fest. However...I'm also willing to admit that unlike a crack is necessary for living. I know I'm not the only one who suffers from emotional eating issues. I'm willing to go forward with healthy sane solutions to this problem...right here.   Right now.  I'm telling you all..."Hello, my name is Stephanie. I'm a food addict."  
The final motivational quote that sent me to this step was this:
“The suffering you endure from resisting or from leaving a life-style of addiction or perversion is not a hundredth part of that suffered by your parents, your spouse or your children, if you give up. Theirs is an innocent suffering because they love you. To keep resisting or to withdraw from such a life-style is an act of genuine unselfishness, a sacrifice you place on the altar of obedience. It will bring enormous spiritual rewards."--Boyde K. Packer

The Church I love has an Addiction Recovery Program (ARP), sponsored by LDS Family Services, to help Church members who desire to recover from addiction as well as to help family members and friends. For more information, visit or contact the LDS Family Services office nearest you. The manual Addiction Recovery Program: A Guide to Addiction Recovery and Healing (36764) is available at Church distribution centers or at  Thankfully we actually have a local branch here that deals with food issues.  
Here I go.


Goob said...

I love you and how real you are. I love how you can just say it how it is and let what comes be. I predict that you will come out a happier, stronger, more confident woman, mother, wife, and chef who is totally prepared for the successes headed her way.

Anonymous said...

Chef Tess, How will you combine your love of food, and the obvious passion and enthusiasm you display for your work - with being in a program that teaches eliminating the addiction from your life? Do you feel the two passions of attaining success will be in conflict with one another?

Chef Tess said...

Lisa...thank you. Anon...unlike eliminating a drug or alcohol addiction, the removal of food from my life (or anyones) is not ever possible. This program focuses on eliminating the foods that are harmful from my life and gaining a healthy relationship with myself and food by relying on God. I will still blog about food...and if you go through my blog you will see that a great majority of it is already very healthy. I couldn't give up that part of my soul. I love creating with food. I'm not giving up food...I'm giving up an unhealthy relationship with junk food. I'm learning how to love myself more and trust God more. I'm learning to rely on the foods that are meant to strengthen my soul. It's really an amazing program.

Blogfollower said...

Chef Tess, I love your blog, and have used so many of your receipe since I stumbled upon it 3 months ago. I even bought a solar oven(which I had never heard of before running into you). You are a true inspiration for me. I also am a self diagnosed food addict. 3 1/2 years ago I was overweight by about 75 lbs. I had weightloss surgery that was a Godsend to help me slow the train down from the path to morbid obesity. It was not an answer but a tool, that made it physically uncomfortable to continue hurting myself with food. People who haven't struggled with this issue just don't understand how your mind is telling your hand and mouth to stop overheating and your hand and mouth continue to eat anyways. I understand the despair and the overwhelming feeling of failure. This was the one area in my life that I could not control. I lost 40 lbs and then nothing more, I still found ways to eat poorly. But lately God has sent me some knowledge that has allowed ne to lose 25 more pounds, and stop the voices in my head that would enchant me to continue overeating. Here is the key -the ingredients/chemicals in junk/packaged/fast food trigger some people to over-eat to the point they can't stop themselves. What's worst is that they are put there for that very purpose. So it is not your fault. So get mad, damn mad! That you have been tricked into poisoning yourself. As a controlling person that has to have things done my way, I was able to order myself to take back control of my life. I removed all the groceries that had any ingredients that I could not pronounce or that were produced in a lab. Put this to the test, take your favorite cookie or chip, and buy a similar tasting organic version, see which one calls you to continually go back and have more. The one with all the chemicals. The are designed that way to make the food companies rich at your expense. So go to your meetings, get on a supplement that will allow you quiet the demons while you work on your self, and then take your life and health back from the filthy rich food companies. Just tell your self you are allergic to those ingredients as they alter your brain chemistry. Even my very thin husband and thin children lost weight. Allthewhile I've been feeding them bread and ciabatta pizza from your receipes. Good luck to you and God bless. I found really good all natural supplements that don't have side effects at they may work for you as well. I wish you all the best. If you need my contact information to talk/ for support just let me know.

Chef Tess said...

Blogfollower...Thank you! You made me cry with gratitude for your wonderful comment. It's those chemical foods that make me crave more like a freak on crack. Big hugs and smoooches! You have no idea how much I needed your words today.

theador said...

Love your honesty Chef Tess. I am aware of the addiction recovery program. We all have addictions and need Christ help to overcome all things. I also need to get back-on-track with eating healthier food. I feel better when I make my own foods and leave the junk behind. This is true to life's experiences. We feel better about ourself when we understand that our worth is God give and we choose to leave the junk of the world behind. God don't make know junk! I'm glad to know you & be related to you. You have blessed my life in so many ways. Love & smooches to you from Aunt Thea (one who loves to create with food too) :-)

Chef Tess said...

Oh I love you second Mom Theador! Big hugs amazing woman!

Bobbi Jo Nichols said...

Hi Stephanie! My name is Bobbi Jo and I too am a food addict. I have struggled all my life with issues dealing with food from anorexia to bulimia and causing health problems throughout.I also suffer from OCD and can relate to your feelings.
You are not alone and have support of so many people here in blog-land and I am sure many or hundreds in real life who love you and are here for you.
Some people have addictive personalities and we have to find ways of helping ourselves work through and move on.
You have my number if you ever need to let off steam or whatever.
HUGS!! Bobbi Jo

Chef Tess said...

Oh Bobbi Jo! You know I love you!!