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'Functional' Anorexia

anorexia ana ed

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#41 CloverHoney


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Posted 26 November 2018 - 12:51 AM

Stay in treatment but find someplace else.

I agree with this. AND you need to actively work on recovering. You are the reason you were discharged. They can't recover for you, they can help you but ultimately you have to do it for yourself. I know you dont want to but if you want to FEEL better you have to GET better.


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LW: 150

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#42 MsRaven


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Posted 04 December 2018 - 04:27 AM

Lowest BMI was 15.4.

Was able to work, exercise, go to cosplay conventions, shop. Pretty much everything. 

memory was fuzzy and I was tired here and there but I was still going. 

No wonder they did not put me in treatment back then...guess I was not sick enough. 


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(Anorexia- January 2014-July 2014
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#43 RatherDeadThanFat


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Posted 04 December 2018 - 04:36 AM

Eventually I function best when heavily restricting. I try to cover up by being excellent at work, super sociable and kind, so noone would get a feeling of how much I suffer on the inside. With full blown ana I try to be the most perfect version of myself, while when I´m bingeing I let myself go in all matters. I barely go out by then because I feel terrible about myself, I´m too distracted to do a good job at work and I´m all depressed and bitchy.


So yeah. Actually I function better with than without. dunno...

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31F - 5'8" - CW 140 - HW 190 - LW 140 - GW 130 - UGW 120

#44 ✩Freckles✩



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Posted 04 December 2018 - 04:57 AM

I think it’s definitely possible
Freckles | Mother | Wife | Nurse


#45 xmelissax


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Posted 04 December 2018 - 05:03 AM

It has a lot to do with motivation and determination to become successful in life.
Some people are also functional out of fear of failure, so they keep on going.
It's also a way in which you develop your way of controlling your body, into a way of controlling everything around you and you want not only your calorie intake or your body to be perfect, but also your grades/eucation/work and all the rest. There comes a time when you're so used to your ED that you don't mind living with it, as long as everything else in your life is on track. You start using it as something that can help you make plans and follow them strictly, and yes, it may be stressful, but it's in my opinion the best part of my life.

I used to be like that in high school. Straight A student, making plans and actually sticking to them, exercising on a daily basis, keeping track on not only what I eat, but what I do outside of my ED, but once I was accepted into university, my life turned upside down. I allowed my ED to take control of me once again and I simply... let myself go. I am currently at rock bottom, even below that, I've never been so low in my life. How did I turn from a high functioning achiever to a low life prisoner of my own ED? Well, major depression.
I thought the term "crippling depression" was just an old dank meme, until I actually got to experience it. It didn't happen all of the sudden, mind you. I was dealing with depression probably alongside my ED, but never knew it would become so bad until the second year of university when the material I studied became harder for me to memorize and low restriction made me more fatigued and tired, which resulted in oversleeping, lack of motivation, procrastination (the worst that could ever happen), skipping lectures, and thus resulting in failed exams and even more lack of motivation, to the point where I don't even feel motivated to step out of bed, because I don't see any point of doing anything. I've never been so low in my life. I read all those comments of people being successful at what they're doing. which makes me question What am I doing with my life then?! and this adds even more to my depression. Why can't I bring that past me back? I would do literally anything to have that motivation again and work on my education, not just my body. Now I feel even more worthless and useless.

This sounds like exactly what happened to me :(

#46 Walkinthesnow


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Posted 04 December 2018 - 05:56 AM

I think you need a new treatment team. Your BMI puts you one bad stomach bug away from seriously ill.


Long term a BMI under 15 will be incredibly damaging. 


Can you find a team willing to help you move up REALLY slowly to nearer 16? It's still not great but gives you more of a buffer.


I maintained around 15/16 for three years while functioning. I had a full time job and ran 70-80 miles a week. But I ate to maintain my weight, logging everything with MFP and using a quality sports watch to calculate exercise calories. I was though permanently cold, wore a jacket all day in the winter, stuck rigidly to safe foods etc. I caught every cold and virus going.


It's a compromise. I tried to get my BMI up into the normal zone for a year but every time I hit BMI 19 my anorexia went nuts and I dropped back to 17. My weight chart looks like a roller coaster. So I've come to terms with the fact that I'll have to try to maintain 16/17 for a while until my brain resets what it thinks of as 'fat'. I think this is a major problem with treatment: weight gain happening faster than the brain can keep up. If ed treatment centres got you more slowly up to 17 or so and then helped you, as an outpatient, to move up to 19 over a couple of years I think the relapse rate would be a lot lower. Rapid ed treatment is a false economy.

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I want to walk in the snow and not leave a footprint

I want to walk in the snow and not soil its purity


I want a perfect body, I want a perfect soul


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#47 Thaminess


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Posted 05 December 2018 - 06:34 AM

i wish i could be one. i am way too extreme, there's no middle ground for me. My ED takes over my whole life.

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#48 Guest_Polar__*

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Posted 25 January 2019 - 03:31 AM

I've not been above a bmi of 17.5 since I was 14 (I'm 19 now)


If by functional ana you mean counting calories roughly, weighing myself occassionally, maintaining my weight usually in the bmi 16.5-17.5 range, all while still functioning fine at school and everything... yeah it works for a while.


issues tho: tempting to relapse, always. cold a lot of the time. I still get bruises on my hip bones. Chronic hunger. No period. idk I'm kinda sick of it, I'm finally starting to think I want to try for full recovery, so I can actually like... enjoy living and eating.

#49 sans-merci


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Posted 26 January 2019 - 02:34 AM

I've not been above a bmi of 17.5 since I was 14 (I'm 19 now)

If by functional ana you mean counting calories roughly, weighing myself occassionally, maintaining my weight usually in the bmi 16.5-17.5 range, all while still functioning fine at school and everything... yeah it works for a while.

issues tho: tempting to relapse, always. cold a lot of the time. I still get bruises on my hip bones. Chronic hunger. No period. idk I'm kinda sick of it, I'm finally starting to think I want to try for full recovery, so I can actually like... enjoy living and eating.

Woah I’m kind of depressed that I made this topic in July and nothing’s really changed in my life.

Your comment hit me because I’m so sick of it too; not sleeping right because my hipbones dig into the mattress, no period, flu-aches 24/7 and omg the hunger!! At this point I get to kick out of it anymore, it feels like I’m being tortured mentally and physically because I constantly feel exactly the same as when I fasted for days at a time.

Maintaining through a cycle of restricting Sun-Wed and bingeing/exercise-purging Thurs-Sat, averaging at or just above my TDEE is its own kind of hell.

Try and recover if you can! :) to anyone reading this in the first throws of their ED, please consider recovery now, I wouldn’t wish chronic anorexia on my worst enemy


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#50 losweet


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Posted 29 January 2019 - 03:58 PM

I was kind of functional before I was laid off in December. I had a full-time job and I'd somehow manage to take care of my old, dementia-riddled cat who needs constant care, despite also being chronically ill and being in a fullblown ED relapse. I made it all work. Then I lost my job and with that, my ability to function lol oops. I still have my cat to take care of, of course, but I'm not doing much else. 

Height: 5'3

HW: 180 lbs (Sept 2018)    LW: 110 lbs     CW: 127 lbs

Goal: At least 120, but truly, there is no stopping.     

#51 Guest_LucidMind_*

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Posted 01 February 2019 - 09:20 PM

There is no such thing as "functional anorexia". Also, very bad and counterproductive statement to make as a doctor. There have been terms like high functioning borderline (would be me) because bpd is not curable, it could be just reduced in terms of experiencing the symptoms less frequently and less intense. About anorexia. It is curable. Painful job yes, but it's not stigma you will care on for the rest of your life. High functioning anorexia, you say good at work/school /social life etc, but it's an excuse for everyone and yourself to feel okey for your unhealthy state. I know this because I was/am experiencing the same thing. No hard feelings, just facts.

#52 GreenTea.



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Posted 01 February 2019 - 09:58 PM

i guess you could say im, functioning. i work and maintain my adult life while living with my ed. i mostly keep my intake to where i can function right without passing out. mostly because i cant afford to go to the hospital.. so i just... dont? ughhh :{

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#53 Frozen Grape

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Posted 04 February 2019 - 02:25 AM

Yup absolutely it's a thing! Maintaining too low a weight will eventually make you not function, but your body is an amazing thing and will put up with a lot of stress for a long time. 

#54 Cymmetry



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Posted 04 February 2019 - 08:06 AM

i'm working a part time job and taking one (1) online class and maintaining a pretty sorry social life and this is the best i have ever functioned lol.

i've been in school for 6 years and am still like a year away from getting my ASSOCIATES degree. not masters, not bachelors, but the one that's supposed to take 2 years to get.

you people who are like "boohoo it took me 2 extra years to become a doctor" can honestly suck my dick. this thread made me feel like such a loser lmao.

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#55 Garden


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Posted 04 February 2019 - 08:21 AM

I function, but that's about it. I feel that I won't be able to function much longer if I continue my path of ED. My bmi is in the 16s and my job is partly fysical. Furthermore I have to be representive on stage and looking sickly is not very pretty.

Having to function keeps me away from spiraling down. But seriously, it's not a measurement for good living. Im just surviving. That's it.
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#56 skinebtch


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Posted 05 February 2019 - 08:16 AM

My 2 voices always gets me, one tells me I can function “normally “. But I always end up restricting after a while and realizing I’m not in control.

#57 sorbitol


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Posted 06 February 2019 - 12:06 PM

there are high functioning anorexics, definitely. but hell, it's a sad existence. I really do believe a lot of us are fooling ourselves. it's the nature of our illness. 

also, that sounds really irresponsible of your doctor to say. you don't just tell someone with an eating disorder that simply existing with our disorder is the way to go. it works out okay for some, but that's definitely not the kind of thing a doctor should be promoting :/


I am probably the least functioning anorexic there is. my body worked alright at bmi 16-ish, but I'm pretty sure my ED killed all my brain cells. I've gone stupid and it hurts. I can't stand that I'm slipping again. 

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#58 pillsandbones



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Posted 06 February 2019 - 12:10 PM

I could maintain a BMI of 16 for long but I can't maintain lower than that without getting sick.


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#59 lambchomp


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Posted 06 February 2019 - 12:20 PM

I was “functional” at BMI 16-17. Any lower and I couldn’t really do any active work and my brain was too foggy to do much mentally. I never understood why I couldn’t when so many other people on here can.
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#60 Lèonly


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Posted 06 February 2019 - 12:32 PM

Kind of, at my lowest (bmi 14) I wasn’t functional at all. I was regularly getting detentions at school for not doing my homework, my friends became distanced from me and there were time were I genuinely couldn’t get up in the morning. At a bmi of 15 I was a little more alive but still felt very weak and tired all the time. At a bmi of 16 I was fairly ok, my health was absolute shite but hay ho I could deal with it.

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