my wife and i celebrate 15 years of marriage this month and we've known each other for 20 years... ever since i've known her she's struggled with anorexia. i tried for years and years to get help. things got better when she got pregnant and when she was nursing. then back to the restrictive eating and compulsive exercising.
she also has a history of trauma...abusive childhood, sexual assault survivor--the eating disorder is very much rooted in the trauma and eating in and of itself triggers flashbacks of how starvation was used when she was abused as a child.... i think self starvation helps her to feel like she's in control of her body and i can't blame her for that. she alsh has done self injury as long as i've known her and to this day, it's been near impossible for her to stop self harming AND stop restricting.
about 2 years ago it got really bad she started restricting after our son was born, and she continued to nurse him but wasn't eating the recommended amount of calories. eventually she collapsed at work and was taken to the hospital and went through a long hospitalization and spent about a year in treatment programs for her ED. her heart had to recover too. Now, thankfully, she's doing a lot better with the eating (although still self harms and still struggles with trauma but seeing a therapist for that). her weight is normal and she's still dealing with the cardiac effects but it's a lot better. i think she has finally realized that our kids need their mother. she still goes to therapy twice a week and keeps a food diary. sometimes, food is such a trigger that she will just choke down an Ensure Plus instead of have a meal. but she's choosing to take in the calories she needs however she's able to do it.
as a result, she's....well, healthier. I've always been attracted to her and I have always loved her even when she was sick, but now her body has changed for the better. at one point, her therapist told me to NOT make any comments that sound remotely like commenting on her weight gain, even if they seem like compliments. and there's been a major lull in physical intimacy in our relationship for so many different reasons... her own mental health, my physical health problems, fatigue (for both of us), and i think she has felt unattractive maybe? i struggle with communicating with her...it's awkward to just be blunt and say "can i touch you more." i can't do things like hold her or put my arms around her because of my own disabilities...i'm not quadriplegic but i have very little movement in my body and can't move my arms or legs or sit up on my own. if any intimacy is going to happen, she essentially has to make it happen and i don't want to make her ED worse by doing anything that could be construed as commenting on her body.
again i apologize if this is too awkward