Breaking Out

I am an OA newcomer. I have been in program for about five months.

When I first came to OA, I was a mess. I was bulimic and couldn’t stop bingeing and purging. I had tried everything. My doctor gave me medicine that was supposed to help me stop bingeing and purging; it didn’t. A therapist insisted I could stop bingeing if I wanted to. I used to tell her sprouting wings and flying would be easier.(She didn’t like that response.)(MORE)

I was convinced I was a failure. I thought God was punishing me because he didn’t like me.But now I’ve been binge/purge free for almost four months and abstinent for almost a month. Also I am starting to break out of my introverted shell, talk to other OA members and do service.

I have been to a Super Saturday, and I just came back from a retreat. Both were fun! I also just finished my Step Five.

When I first came to OA, I was convinced it would not work for me since nothing else had. But this program works! A few weeks ago, my sister (who is my best friend) moved to Vienna, Austria. I miss her so much, yet I haven’t binged. Sometimes I have misunderstandings with my boyfriend, but I haven’t eaten over them either.

The biggest miracle happened yesterday when I walked into a store and Halloween candy surrounded me. I didn’t look at it or pay it any attention. I bought what I wanted (crayons) and didn’t even think about Halloween candy.

Without OA and my HP, I would still be struggling. Thank you. – reprinted from Lifeline

“Life centered around food.” – Dodie

Listen to Dodie’s Story Podcast


The Benefits: Total Surrender


Before OA, I focused on nothing but my battle with food and distrust for others. I was so self-obsessed with finding a way out of the food that I had no idea I was really searching for a way out of myself. (MORE)

At my first meeting, I heard other members telling the same secrets I kept buried within me. No one seemed fearful of trusting the group or sharing his or her story. I was mesmerized by the possibility of one day being as honest as they were.

Before program, I felt sharing myself with others would expose me and I’d suffer the consequence of judgment and criticism. I now realize that keeping the secrets kept me in the disease. By sharing my secrets with fellow OA members, I am surrendering to my fear of facing them, and my recovery gets stronger. My anonymity gives me a sense of humility in sharing my struggles with others, and I feel a part of the group’s sacred trust.

As an addict, I fought to control my disease with every ounce of energy I had. I found recovery when I gave up the fight and surrendered to something greater than myself. Anonymity helps get me to a new level of surrender because my secret romance with food does not control me. When I share my addict behavior with the group, I let go of trying to control others’ judgment. The more I share, the more I surrender.When I come to meetings, I am no longer debilitated by fear. I share my secrets with others so they no longer control me. If I had to worry about my anonymity being bro­ken, I could not be honest and could not surrender. I no longer have to go through life trying to protect myself from being hurt. In OA, I finally feel free to be myself and who my HP wants me to be. The release of my secrets has lifted a huge weight off me.

If we had to keep our guard up and protect ourselves, we’d never have recovery be­cause we could never fully surrender. By promoting anonymity, we promote our own recovery.  – reprinted from Lifeline

“People with the exact same problem that I had.”

Listen to Mary’s Story Podcast