Battling Emotional Hunger : This Is What It's Like


Battling emotional hunger is an endless war between short term and long term satisfaction. The merry go round is enticing. You get on with the expectation of flavorful comfort. The ride takes you around and around while the world blurs; then after a couple of minutes, it just stops. Reality sets in, and you're forced to acknowledge the long term effects of your momentary choices. You didn't need to eat that. Still, it felt good and what you needed but would never say aloud is that you needed to feel right. Food is an easy fix. Food is accessible and necessary. I mean you've got to eat right? So, what's the problem? Feeling overstuffed and ashamed, you can no longer feel the comfort that once beckoned you. You're in the middle of a little feud in your mind, and you feel conflicted. Therefore, it must be time to eat again.

In the moment feelings are better left consumed than spoken because it's voicing your emotions that threaten your fragility. The vulnerability can feel like imminent danger. So instead you make small choices to snack here and there while busying your mind with the tastes and textures of sweet candies and salty snacks. As time goes on, your needs remain unmet, and the scale goes up. So you decide to stop looking at yourself, and you don't bother with the scale. The scale and the mirror become the enemy. Now your needs are unmet, and you refuse to see yourself. What relationship was ever made stronger by refusal to recognize one another? Sure, you look in the mirror to make sure your hair is in place and your nose is clean, but you don't acknowledge the changes happening before your eyes.

Avoidance is your coping mechanism, but you can't run for long, and when reality catches up, you look for a place of sanctuary. You call it your sanctuary, but others just refer to it as a pizza. You don't know any other way to make yourself feel better. Therefore, you make small choices that lead you further and further away from yourself. Your first choice is to wake up to a mimosa, then you wash it down with your second choice of leftover pizza for breakfast, and it feels divine. Finally, your third choice is to rummage the snack cabinet because you're bored and there's nothing good on T.V. on Tuesday nights.

This post is what it's like battling emotional hunger, and it affects people more often than not. It happens to you, I, and everyone we know. For some, the effect accumulates and become disastrous; others can get themselves in check in the nick of time.  However, there's some common ground. Everyone experiences emotional hunger as a symptom of something lacking whether it be peace, fun, esteem, money, romance, purpose or other. Likewise, those that sink deeply into it without any reprieve have left their needs unrealized, therefore unspoken, and unmet.

DiscussionThe Writers