Denial

by Sarah S., your NoVAtions editor

No, the title of this month’s Editor’s Note has nothing to do with denial over my powerlessness over food, or my weight, or my character defects… although there’s also that. This denial refers to my perception that I’m more like a man than a woman. It’s a self-perception and one held by my loved ones. I’ve been called “a man trapped in a woman’s body” (and more often “a gay man trapped in a woman’s body”), I was “the guy” in my last romantic relationship, I have a high sex drive and a foul mouth, I prefer to solve problems rather than discussing them, and I’m more likely to exercise than change my eating when trying to lose weight pre-OA.

But that does not make a man. And, more importantly, it doesn’t help anyone in program. OA is supposed to be a safe space for all compulsive overeaters, but it mostly exists as a safe space for women. Don’t get me wrong, the rest of the world is not a safe for women, so we need it. And we (women) certainly don’t mean to exclude men from our nest. But the truth is that there are differences between the sexes, and that acknowledging and accepting that aids our collective recovery. We women—no matter how macho we think we are—can help our male fellows by respecting and celebrating what men bring to the rooms.