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When is the Right Time for Treatment?

Monte Nido’s Eating Disorder Center of Philadelphia Primary Therapist Kate Funk, MS, MFT shares some of her personal recovery journey in this week’s blog post. She explains that there might not be a “perfect” time to enter into treatment and to not let that stop you from seeking the support and help needed. Read on to learn more from Kate’s personal and professional experience…

Ambivalence is a common part of eating disorder recovery. Getting better can often feel terrifying and overwhelming which makes people question if they even want to recover. There is often a thick layer of denial and fear that can also make people question if getting better is truly worth it or if it’s the best time to start on the journey to recovery.

Many clients worry they don’t have time for treatment. (Financial worries, social obligations, academic pursuits, and upcoming vacations are just a few of the reasons clients have questioned whether or not to delay treatment.) As a recovered therapist I can relate to this issue on a personal level. I remember attempting to postpone my own treatment so I could attend my high school’s Homecoming. The woman looked me in the eye and said, “You might not make it to Homecoming if we don’t get you into treatment”. I was shocked. No one had ever spoken to me about my eating disorder like that before, but deep down something in me knew she was right.

It will never be the “perfect” time for treatment. There will never be a time in your life when everything is neatly tied up with a cheery red bow, you just happen to have extra money tucked away to spend on your well being, everyone in your life is supportive and excited for your recovery, and your “to do” list is empty. That’s not reality. Quite often, I find clients expect a variation of these scenarios in order to be ready for treatment. Treatment will never be convenient and, in fact, probably shouldn’t be. If recovery came easily the destination wouldn’t mean as much.

If you are wondering if you should go to treatment even though there are a laundry list of obstacles in your way, take some time to reflect on what’s preventing you from committing to treatment today. Ask yourself, am I truly present in my life? Am I able to laugh with family and friends? Am I able to concentrate in conversations? Am I able to engage in activities I enjoy? Is my life in jeopardy without more support? (This is a trick question; the answer is absolutely! Eating disorders are deadly!) Is it worth living a half-hearted life when I have the chance to recreate a whole one? Consider carefully your answers to these questions. Remember your life will still be there after treatment, and you might actually be present to participate in it instead of just surviving it!

Recovery is a process that allows you to peel away the layers of pain, break the habits and obsession, and heal so you can reclaim your true self. Treatment is the leap of faith that things can be better and the white flag admitting that your eating disorder’s way of life is no longer working. Asking for help is the most vulnerable thing we must do as humans, but it is also the most courageous. Treatment offers the opportunity to dust off and reclaim your life. If you are considering treatment, now is the time. Everything can be put on hold, but your health cannot. For more information on treatment please call our admissions department or email at montenidoadmissions@montenido.com.


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