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Abuse and Weight
I was abused as a child and am just beginning to face it at 40 years of age. Now for the first time I find myself comfort-eating (desserts seem to be the only thing that make me happy). How do you deal with the pain? I'm sad and worn-out from trying to confront my past. What worked for you, and do you think it could work for me? I want to lose 40 pounds. 
— Cheryl, 40, Wichita, Kansas

First, let me commend you for your courage. I was abused, I was ignored, I felt abandoned, my single greatest emotion growing up was feeling alone. And for me, a big moment was recognizing that I'd come through it all, that I'm still here. A book that helped me a lot and that I highly recommend is The Power of Now, by Eckhart Tolle. It's basically about how the only time that matters is the present and the way you choose to use it. What I'd say to you, Cheryl, is this: Remember, you were able to overcome unimaginable horrors you had no control over. Now you do have control (even over those desserts). To really let go of the pain, you've got to give up the hope that the past could have been different. So move forward with the strength you've been given to live an undefeated life.