Voice /vois/ nou\"anad-find-your-voice\"n: the distinctive tone or style of a literary work or author. We all have the ability to be heard, it’s whether or not we can get people to listen. Our voices, just like our very beings, come in many shapes and sizes; verbally, kinesthetically, visually, orthographically, or simply by listening to others, there is no ‘one size fits all’ in terms of how our voices can be conveyed.

Moving forward, ANAD wants to use this blog as a platform to interact with, guide, and support others as they find their voice in the Recovery Community. Authenticity, nonjudgment, assertiveness, and the willingness to dare are all key. These points not only direct the voice that ANAD wants to create, but they are all vital components to recovery.

Eating disorders are like parasites. They latch onto a host for survival while simultaneously convincing that host that somehow their relationship is symbiotic. The host begins to lose a sense of who they are or who they were before they were bitten. Beginning to break free from the role as a host is a scary process, but one that is rooted in courage and authenticity. Recovery is being daring enough to unconditionally and nonjudgmentally love the person you are without that parasite. It is telling the world that you deserve to be here. It’s refusing to listen to that parasite when it tries to convince you that you need it. It is choosing to live, despite having been a host.

So maybe you’re there. Maybe you’ve broken free from the grip your parasite had on you. Maybe you’re still fighting to ignore its manipulative whispers telling you to stay. Or maybe you’re sitting on the sidelines trying to figure out how your loved one turned into a host. No matter where you are in this process, start with your voice. Use those principles to guide your writing and allow them to become second nature as you walk the path of recovery.

Written and contributed by Megan Rose.