Warning Lights and Triggers

triggerI was asked today to describe some ‘triggers’.

Some are mine; some are what friends have suggested:


Trying to please others

Winter (for me it’s summer)


Family stresses

Loved  ones getting sick

Life changes


Uncertainty about life and the future

Expectations  – my own or from others

Feeling you haven’t lived up to early promise

Lack of direction

Comparing self to successful peers

Low blood sugar

Special occasions (especially birthdays)

People you love hurting and not being able to stop it

Lack of sleep

Parent’s divorce and later, feeling out of control

Family issues

Friends encouraging you to diet

Mental health problems in family

Media stereotypes/images

Having a child

Not having a child

Lots of change

Weight gain

Weight loss


Fear of being like your parents

Administrative jobs – especially having to contact lots of people

Missing exercise

Sexual abuse

Bullying at school or work


Decision making

Trauma – and anything: sights, smells, sounds that remind you of that time.


Warning signs:

Brain replaced by noodles

Total inability to make decisions

Losing words: (pointing at the microwave ‘That.  The thing! Bing the thing’)

SoupedupFerrarithoughts OR

T  H  I  N  K  I N G   V  E  R   Y

S                       L                                    O                    W.

Irrational thoughts or beliefs (if I don’t call my mum right now something bad will happen to her)

The Fear

Feeling threatened (why is that child LOOKING at me)

Planning your escape (leave the country/fake your own death/get a job in cupcake factory/become a tribal wife)

Acting (and feeling) like a very small child – hyper, restless, tearful, demanding  and angry  – then suddenly exhausted

Mood swings (‘Hey everybody look I’m amazing…Wait: no – don’t stare at me! I’m bad.  As you were’)

Irritability (To cat: ‘Eat with YOUR MOUTH CLOSED’)

Hating yourself (because now even the cat hates you)

Someone slips on a banana skin right in front of you and you don’t find it funny

Sleeping – too much or not enough

Self-neglect (needing to have sweatpants surgically removed, replacing soap with deodorant spray)

“Make mine a triple”

Needing things a certain way and going crazy if they’re not (and sometimes even if they are)

Crying in shopping centres.



God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy place where the Most High dwells.
God is within her, she will not fall;
God will help her at break of day.
Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall;
he lifts his voice, the earth melts.

The Lord Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.
Come and see what the Lord has done,
the desolations he has brought on the earth.
He makes wars cease
to the ends of the earth.
He breaks the bow and shatters the spear;
he burns the shields  with fire.

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”

The Lord Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.

Psalm 46

6 thoughts on “Warning Lights and Triggers

  1. I’m too triggered to tolerate. Have been trying to cope with it without doing anything drastic for too long and things are only getting worse, so I’m giving up and giving in. Just for a few weeks until I get back to where things feel safer and more comfortable. I don’t want to give up, but I can’t keep going like this. Both options are equally miserable but at least one gives me the body I want.

  2. Major trigger – expectations (real and imagined) of being a “vicar’s wife”….

  3. Thank you, Emma. Good to be encouraged, and to feel somewhat less alone!! ;o) xx

    PWP, for what it’s worth (:-/?) sending love xx

  4. PWP – it’s wearying to keep fighting – and I’m sorry for how hard this is and how exhausted you must feel. But the lie is that you get the body you want, because as we know, the boundaries keep changing and no matter how low you get, it’s never enough. Keep going sister. Praying for you. x

  5. yeah, this is a big fear. Though the VWs I know personally are normal and lovely (in a good and not intimidating way).

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