Why Does My Eating Disorder Want to Impress My Therapist? | Kati Morton

Hey, everybody! Happy Thursday now today’s question is a good one it’s all about eating disorders and impressing your therapist.


Hey, everybody! Happy Thursday now today’s question is a good one it’s all about eating disorders and impressing your therapist before we jump into that I want to remind you to subscribe if you’re into psychology and mental health education make sure to hit that subscribe button and also hit the notification that little bell next to it so that you are notified when I release the two videos a week that I put out but let’s jump into the question there is so much involved in this question now the first component that I wanna talk about is what she mentions saying maybe to justify my eating disorder and that could definitely be a component because I’ve heard from many of you and even many of my clients have talked about when they’ve seen therapists they’ve felt like they needed to justify how sick they were or validate, you know just how hard things were for them by acting out in it whether it’s in session or telling them how hard of a time they’re having out of session just because they feel like they aren’t taken seriously or maybe they need more validation for what they’re struggling with so that could definitely be a component but I would encourage you to think about whether or not you feel that your therapist takes your eating disorder seriously if the answer is yes then I wouldn’t consider this to be the answer to why you feel you need to impress her with how sick you are the second thing that I wanna talk about is the fact that eating disorders are crazy manipulative and they will tell us that we need to be more sick, lose more weight, do more of these things in order to be “sick enough” and I’ve done a lot of videos about this talking about how your eating disorder will always tell you you’re not sick enough and the truth is, it will never stop telling you that you’re not sick enough we will never binge enough, lose enough weight, exercise enough, purge enough, there will never be enough behaviors that we can do to satisfy our eating disorder because what an eating disorder does is it helps us cope with something else by not allowing us to think about anything else so we’ll take over our entire life, our entire body where at some point they’ll be all that we can do and it still won’t be happy keeping both of those things in mind and taking some time to think about it because it’s gonna take us a little while to realize whether or not we do feel validated by out therapist and, also, like, how manipulative our eating disorder is it can be really hard for us to even accept that because an eating disorder like I said, is really sneaky it can even chameleon and be like “no, you have complete control, I never make you do anything you don’t want” it can do all sorts of bullshit but it’s just that: bullshit so don’t listen to it by taking both of those things into consideration, we’re able to maybe, hopefully see more clearly and I want you, the thing–my advice about this, I want you to talk to your therapist about it I want you to come clean about it tell her all of the thoughts that are swirling. Trust me, if she’s an eating disorder specialist she’s going to understand because the next step, my guess, would be, if we don’t talk to her about it if we don’t let her know how we’re feeling and how we feel like maybe we need to impress her with how sick we are if we don’t start talking about this then we can’t actually work on the eating disorder because, in a way, your eating disorder is fighting against your therapist which is so normal eating disorders will fight tooth-and-nail to try to hang on to us that’s why they’re super manipulative and change shape all the time and by talking about it with her it gives her the opportunity to better understand and maybe offer up some different tools and tricks or maybe the way she interacts with you can change so that you don’t feel the need to impress her so much, but please talk about it because if we keep going down this slippery slope, right, we’ve already increased to two sessions a week, the next step, I’m telling you from an eating disorder therapist’s perspective, the next step is inpatient, and I would be looking at different programs, whether it’s day treatment, maybe it’s not fully inpatient, maybe we look for a day program, but then the next thing is inpatient, and how many months can you do that, and what insurance will cover it, and all of that those are our next steps as we kind of go down that slippery slope of eating disorder treatment I hope that that clears up and kind of gives you an idea of where that’s coming from because it may be all of the things that I talked about, that could be a factor as well, but it may just be one of them but don’t forget, eating disorders are sneaky, and they will try to hang on any way that they can, and don’t listen because it’s only gonna lead you down the path to more intensive treatment and more damage to your body but let me know, are there other things that I left out? leave in the comments as always this is a conversation with our community, right, because we work together towards a healthy mind and a healthy body and like I said: don’t forget to subscribe and turn on those notifications and then I will see you next time Bye! Subtitles by the Amara.org community

58 thoughts on “Why Does My Eating Disorder Want to Impress My Therapist? | Kati Morton”

  1. Hey Kati, I like that you mentioned ED being manipulative several times int he video. Just like many mental health diagnosis, the thoughts that are manifested from this condition can compel the person to continue repeating patterns of behaviors that at some point it can lead to a more critical condition followed by in need of a more intensive care for support. I always encourage my clients (I work with children and adolescence) to focus on using coping skills to manage anxiety, anger, feelings of hopelessness, and/or any other emotional/physical condition that may lead to risk. Thanks for touching base on ED, as always, your videos are great :).

  2. Aaah I didnt know that anyone else felt like this and im super relived that I'm not all alone. i don't have an ed but I get all these feelings with my other mental things. i dont really want to go into details aha.
    just thank you so much for making this video 💚

  3. What I don't understand is why people don't talk about these specific issues with their actual therapist. Sometimes the BEST stuff comes from when I sit and explain how I'm feeling ABOUT my therapist TO my therapist. Because what happens in therapy is going to happen in the real world. The same patterns we frequent outside of the therapist's office happen IN the therapist's office… and what better place to address them? If I feel jealousy when my therapist discusses another patient or reminds me of her own life, or if there are things my therapist says I ruminate about or react to, those are things I definitely will bring up in a session. These sessions help me see other patterns where the same things happen in my life and let me address those.

  4. watching kati counts as studying right??…. so much more interesting than the current chapter of my psych text book.

  5. I feel this for my general depression and anxiety disorders, but I also feel the opposite, like I have to tell her "I'm doing great!! look at how I'm improving!!" but when I get to a certain point of being better, then the "am I sick enough?? oh no I'm gonna be kicked out bc I'm not sick enough" fears come back. and the cycle continues.

  6. hey Kati I love ur videos if u have not already could u Possibly make a video about transferring therapists like one leaves and u have to transfer. what should u say? do u start off with the new therapist where u left of with the old one? is it normal to be anxious the first few times u meet with the new therapist?

  7. Kati. I have topic I do not know where to go to get the answer. I am chronically ill and a widower. The question is about dating when you are dependent on those around us. Is there a personality type that would be drawn to the ill. The chronically ill have limited abilities and energy, because of that dependence we make perfect victims to the unscrupulous. Are there personality traits that should avoided? Any help you give would be so helpful. Thank you for your videos. Bill

  8. Can you do a video on You Get Me (2017 Film) on Netflix. I'm interested in what Holly Viola's diagnosis would be. Love your vids!

  9. Thank you so much to the person who asked this question, and to you Kati for answering. It would have never occurred to me to raise such question, sadly because all this time ive been thinking I am simply very deranged for feeling and acting that way. Never thought other people could feel and do the same. I feel bad, but i think a little bit of the guilt has lift off because i now know im not the only one and that it is part of the illness. Thank you again.

  10. Good point. I would suggest sometimes patients are afraid for losing love from "reparenting therapist". Regarding ED they are really hard to overcome and sometime come with another diagnosis and troubles like BPD, Narcissism, Obsessive, Paranoia, Perceptive Delusion, Interpersonal Failures and / or Isolation… BTW, loves your channel and as therapist love your scope. Regards from Spain

  11. I actually stopped therapy a while ago for this exact reason. I only seemed to be getting worse, so I just quit going. It's really great to see a video acknowledging this and explaining why it happens, thank you!

  12. Hey Kati, I have a question for you and I was wondering if you could make a video of this. What happened if a person said they have Suicide ideation. would they need to go straight to the hospital or should they tell a close friend or a therapist?

  13. My therapist recently asked me why I continue seeking treatment. She said I'm not like her clients who are mandated to see her (therapy or jail) and that I'm not like the adolescents she works with (parents make them go). It made me question why I am there and if I should keep reaching out for support from her. I'm kind of like wtf- and what do I do? Any advice on this?

  14. I witnessed someone after a failed attempt at suicide a few days ago. Is this grounds to try and get my first appointment pushed up? I'm having a hard time handling it.

  15. "Wanting to impress her' is an act of seeking validation. That is why DBT incorporates acceptance and validation strategies before targeting the behavior. Great topic.

  16. Could you please, please do a review of To the Bone on Netflix? I haven't watched it, and I don't think I should. I just want to know your take on it and if you think it would be triggering for people struggling/recovering from an eating disorder.

  17. this is unrelated to the video, but do you have any advice on bringing up the possibility of having bpd to a therapist? i've been seeing my therapist for 9 months now, and while it has helped and we have a comfortable chemistry i havent made much progress, and i feel like the symptoms of borderline might apply to me more than just the anxiety and depression ive been treated for. i know many therapists dont like talking directly about diagnosis and that many dont like to treat borderline patients at all, so i was just wondering if you had any tips on how to phrase it in a way that doesn't seem like self diagnosing (cause i dont know if i have it i just really want an evaluation) or attention seeking, i guess

  18. The "unkown" – I mean who can answer that? But, I guess the unknown creeps into or can be a significant factor of everyday life. Change. I can be pretty minimal at times – if I were being minimal I guess I would say that, seemingly unlike a lot of guys, I don't find the feeling of acceleration that rewarding. If I used old english ethical language, I guess I mean I don't find the gravity of many situations probable to me. Yet, unlike a lot of girls, I'm not comfortable expressing that. To many life is natural…?

  19. This was me completely, in my first ever therapy session, in which i was seeking help for trichotillomania, the therapist asked to see my hair. I had no bald spots, but my hair was quite short at the side/top of my hair, so i showed him how lengthy and choppy it was. I felt invalidated, as he asked me questions on depression and anxiety, the general questionnaire, i felt even worse, as i was pretty much fine. Apart from hair pulling everyday, which apparently wasn't evident or a big deal.
    I ended up pulling out hair on purpose before the next therapy session with a new therapist because i was so worried it would happen again, and i had been convinced that my trichotillomania wasn't serious enough.
    I changed therapists, i had a female closer to my age and not once did she ask to see my hair, and i felt validated, it helped massively.

  20. This is a really interesting question!
    Also, I love the style of this video! The very simplistic background and editing (jumpcuts ftw!), especially at 2:53 "it's just that – bullshit!", is really awesome!

  21. Also I kinda of relate to this in a way, but with my friends and family not a therapist. I feel like I try to "impress them" because if I shock them then it means I'm actually sick even though I don't think I'm sick .

  22. Hey Kate rob from Australia 🇦🇺.. I njoy yr videos. I've been diagnosed with schizofrenia but I don't have this. I'm forced to get a paliperidone injection 💉 once a month. Medications have ruined my life. All I can say to others out there from my experience is never use mental health medications they will ruin yr mind and body.
    Anyhow Luv your stuff Kate… Not sure if you have already but would like to see a video on how dangerous the medications are

  23. I've never felt like my therapists took my ED seriously. Even now that I've been eating enough for quite a few years, with only minor relapses, I still feel unhealthy. I am still so insecure and I want to lose the weight all the time. I think, rationally, that they always took me seriously, but I never felt like they did at the moment.

  24. This is why I stopped going to therapy. My ED tries so hard to make me think I'm not sick enough, and it just made it worse. I feel better in knowing that it's not just me.

  25. Hi Kati, thank you so much for this, your videos are always so helpful 🙂 Could you share your thoughts on structured eating in recovery from bulimia, whether you think it can be helpful or not, and how to do it wisely? If you have talked about it in some other video, can you link it? Thanks so much X

  26. I use to feel like I had an eating disorder. And for a moment it felt like it because I put so much pressure on myself to lose weight that I would binge and stress that I'd always have to deal with that cycle. But now I don't worry so much about food. I still have some struggles but not like before.

  27. really interesting to hear you talk about the manipulation of an eating disorder. It's clear from what you said about impressing your therapist is a real issue for clients trying to impress their therapists. I wonder if it is also the case for other populations. For some going into therapy can be terrifying and they feel they have to be at 'rock bottom' in order to attend a session. Maybe they to try and impress their therapist to validate the scary decision to go to therapy in the first place. Great video!

  28. kati i have a question

    i was born with autism and my BPD makes it so i dont have OCD anymore and if you need to have OCD to have autism does that mean that i am no longer autistic

    this comes to my attention because i thought about something with hank green he has all of the signs of autism but spacial because his dyslexia takes over that so that means that his autism doesnt exist because of one other stupid mental illness

    so since i no longer have OCD doest that mean that i know longer have autism

    not that i would ever buy into that bullshit and i would like it if hank broke the norms and went with autism as a thing he has as well as dyslexia

    also that would explain why he is so good with spacial considering he has dyslexia unlike with ksic and cenk

    cenk rammed his car into every single car in the parking lot while trying to back out once it was a hilarious story

    that is if i am remembering everything hank green ever said correctly and since i am blocked i dont mind bringing this up here

    i dont think that it is fair to keep people from having the right mental illnesses just because one might be blocking another one from coming through all the way

    like in my case with the OCD i made it go away by using my BPD i figured out when i dissociated i was skipping around in my watch later playlist my OCD would never have let me do that

    now i have more control over my BPD so i use it to destroy my OCD now by what is happening with hank if i am 100% correct about that it means i am no longer autistic and that isnt right or fair that means my IEP would be a lot harder to get if i needed one

    if i am wrong about any of this i would like to know and the only reason i am certain that hank has autism is because of think tank hannah everything she has hank has besides spacial but for having dyslexia he has pretty damn good spacial

  29. one other thing that somebody could do if having their weight asks about is a massive trigger is say could you not ask me about my weight it makes my eating disorder act up

    maybe if the therapist has to know contact the physicians instead and get the weight numbers that way

    its just a thought since people with eating disorders usually have a team that might be a better way to go about it

    thx so much for this ha bisky vid i know there are certain things i will fight on no matter what when it comes to my mental health and in some cases physical health just if i find it to be 100% pointless

  30. I really really really really need help! I started ed recovery three weeks ago and it was nonstop binges until about a week ago they stopped feeling like binges and started feeling like regular overeating (still thousands of calories in one sitting). I keep seeing on the internet "it's okay to binge in recovery, you need it," and I feel like I'm using that as an excuse to eat and eat and eat.

  31. soon after my best friend had to go to a clinic because she had anorexia, i became anorexic too. it was a terrible time. eight months later, she came back and i had finally beaten my eating disorder. not because of my therapist. every session is the same: she says "so do you want to tell anything?" and i tell her how my week went. the end. is that a real therapy? i don't know. anyways, i overcame my disorder and everything was perfect. but my parents still want me to go there. i never tell my therapist what is going on in my head and i think she knows that so she tells my parents that it would be better if i kept coming. now the problem is, my best friend had a relapse and is back in the clinic and i became depressed. nobody knows about it. and i don't tell my therapist because i feel really uncomfortable talking to her. my life is a mess.

  32. I was literally just talking about this exact issue with my friend. I was being weighed by my therapist weekly, and i always felt like I needed to restrict so I would maintain or lose. I wanted him to know I was sick and was afraid that if I gained he wouldn't think I was sick enough or worthy to even go to therapy. @kati your answer is brilliant! I should have talked to my therapist about it, instead I found myself getting worse and quit treatment all togeather to avoid the ongoing validation The eating disorder was feeding off of.

  33. can an eating disorder come from wanting to be skinnier? everything that I've read, and researched, said that eating disorder come from a lack of control. does this mean that they can't come from societies standards?

  34. I still find this now and I've been in recovering for almost 11 years. Recently I gained a decent amount of weight due to depression, and I hate people knowing that I suffered from an ED because I don't feel like I look like someone whose struggled with anorexia, and I want to. I want to almost be able to brag about it. I guess it still has more of a grip of me than I thought.

  35. I'm feeling the same, that I have to "impress" my therapist. You're talking about the ED like it's a person, as we'd have kinda like a demon inside.

  36. I can't tell if I have an ed or if I just want one/fake it for attention like I have done with many things in the past. I was diagnosed in 2016 with it and admitted for being malnourished and underweight but I remember feeling happy as soon as my Dr admitted me, and from then on eating was fine. it's like I just wanted to achieve a hospital admission or something.

  37. How can ED specialists understand so much about them? If they have never gone through it, they won’t know exactly how it feels to be caught up in it. Yes I know they go to school to learn about it but that is based on “facts about feelings”. How do they really know how to help us and know what to say to prevent us being triggered? I just don’t understand how anyone else can understand EDs if they’ve never been through it.

  38. I actually struggle more often with trying to impress my therapist by pretending I'm doing better than I am. She is so caring and helpful and I feel bad that im not utilizing all her excellent tips and getting better.

  39. This is me af and my psychologist doesn’t even diagnose things like that, she says it’s traits of what’s going on and not a .. I can’t explain 😹

  40. Sneaky? its a Bitch! I've been dealing with bulimia for YEARS now. Ive tried healing myself, but can't. I know I need help but im way to embarrassed. I don' t even know how to start to look for a therapist. oh well

  41. I wish I had seen this video when my ED first started, because sometimes it felt like I tried to impress the therapist I was already seeing (for another issue).

  42. When I was seeing a dietitian I thought I wasn’t sick enough to be there.
    For me it seemed like the ED had the most control that first few weeks of treatment, it was resisting what I was trying to do to get better.
    Remembering that people see therapists and dietitians when they are a healthy weight (I still see my ED nurse when I’m 6 years into recovery) helped a lot. I remember being sat in appointments, and the therapist would say something and the ED would be shouting at the therapist in my head.

  43. Oh my goodness. Thank you so much for addressing this! The fact that I have felt/thought these things is really makes me feel so horrible about myself. When i was a lot younger in treatment I didn’t feel as bad about it but now that i am older i am disgusted with the fact that i feel the need to do that!

  44. I have depression and ptsd (but I’m pretty sure it is cptsd), and always feel like as long as I haven’t been raped or beaten close to death, I have no justification for my suffering. People say “You weren’t violently punched, just slapped and hit a bit hard. So, what if the bullies at school hurt you so bad you bleed, it was long ago. What if every single friend almost to this point has been manipulative and horrible, what if your best friend of a decade as you thought was your sister still walks past you and wont even look at your face, it’s not that bad”. But when it comes to animals being hit, everyone loses their mind and starts campaign and stuff.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *