The effects of the compulsive eater’s abnormal preoccupation with food, such as health issues and mood swings, can harm the family. People who are eating abnormally can demoralize and devastate everyone around them. But there is hope in OA.
Overeaters Anonymous offers a program of recovery from compulsive eating using the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of OA.Worldwide meetings and other tools provide a fellowship of experience, strength, and hope where members respect one another’s anonymity. OA charges no dues or fees; it is self-supporting through member contributions. Unlike other organizations, OA is not just about weight loss, gain or maintenance; or obesity or diets. It addresses physical, emotional and spiritual well-being. It is not a religious organization and does not promote any particular diet. If you want to stop your compulsive eating, welcome to Overeaters Anonymous
OA is a worldwide Fellowship, open to all who have the desire to stop eating compulsively. Compulsive eating behaviors may include:
“I hated being fat, so I ate to feel better.”
“Anorexia made me feel in control and gave me a sense of power. It distinguished me from others and made me feel special in my diseased mind.”
“I came into OA when I turned 16 because I was sick and tired of hating my body and letting food control my life... I told myself I was worthless because I was overweight.”
“I came into OA at 15, around the time I first figured out how to purge. I would not be where I am today without OA.”
“My weight dropped to 77 pounds and my parents hospitalized me… In October I began bingeing. My inability to control my binging was my worst nightmare.”
Some of these behaviors may have begun in early childhood, but we believe that compulsive eating is progressive and may become even more of a problem later on. It can have a dramatic effect on the daily lives, relationships, physical health, and aspirations of young persons in their teens, 20s, or 30s. In our Fellowship we consider anyone under the age of 30 to be a young person.
Regardless of age, joining a Twelve Step program is a personal and private decision for each individual. We believe each individual is given the dignity of choice to decide whether he or she is a compulsive eater. For those members who are younger, exposure to the Twelve Steps and recovery meetings has ultimately been beneficial to our search for help. Some accept the help immediately; while others are reminded years later of that meeting our loved one exposed us to.
Only a desire to stop eating compulsively is necessary to attend. If there are not many face-to-face meetings in your area, consider a phone meeting in order to get connected to the program. Click here to find all meeting information for all types of meetings. (MORE) We suggest attending at least six different meetings before deciding if OA is for you OA is fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions. There are no fees for membership.
Many young members found this literature helpful:
While we have no opinion on outside issues, we respect the use of resources outside of Overeaters Anonymous. Some parents and concerned adults have found the support of other Twelve Step groups that specifically support family and friends of addicts to be a source of strength and guidance.