Ramadan,Turkey, Eating Disorders “No Body Should be Left Alone”

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It was narrated from Ibn ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “The Muslim is the brother of his fellow Muslim; he does not wrong him or let him down. The one who meets the needs of his brother, Allah will meet his needs. Whoever relieves a Muslim of distress, Allah will relieve him of distress on the Day of Resurrection.”

Narrated by al-Bukhaari (2442) and Muslim (2580). **

Dear Readers,

A reader from Turkey is in recovery from her Eating Disorder. She’s been advised against fasting. She’s taking medication for many of her health problems. Missing doses may increase her risk for a relapse and can lead to many other problems. She said: ben yalnız– I am alone. I know many people don’t fast in Turkey out of choice, but it makes you feel so nostalgic to miss out on something that is so different from rest of the year. I always see Ramadan as a month of peace. You put away bad, lock away bad, and focus on good’. I suffer from anorexia and a mild bipolar. I have to take my medication to get better.  It’s like people are scared to come near me, they avoid me. I can’t remember the last proper conversation I had with my friends and family. They just want me out of sight, out of way. When my family breaks their fast, I’m upstairs in my room desperately trying to go to sleep, If I try to join them, my siblings get uncomfortable and comments like ‘ sen hastasınget- you are sick, Eğer tembel- you are lazy, get me water, do this, do that’ fly around the table. It really hurts.”

This Year the Theme for Ramadan in Turkey is: Nobody should be left alone. The theme was set by The Religious Affairs Directorate Diyanet Head Prof. Mehmet Görmez aiming to raise awareness on “modern loneliness,” “refugees,” “orphans,” “children on the street” and “the elderly.”.

 

The mosques across the country have undergone decorations in line with this year’s theme.

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I find this year’s theme absolutely beautiful, what a way to help those who need our help most, by giving them our time, our support and making them feel loved and part of Ramadan and our fraternity. Very Sadly, this year Ramadan is also marred by unprecedented turmoil, violence, sectarian clashes in Middle East and Pakistan.

This Ramadan, Don’t leave those who suffer from Eating Disorders Alone.

If you know someone who has an Eating Disorder  or are associated with it in any way you might want to add your support your love to the list. Don’t forget these people are frequently accosted by members of one camp or both and they are very lonely and isolated. Most people would like to keep their eating disorder a secret at all costs, and many don’t even confide in their closest relatives and friends. There’s social withdrawal and intense fear of the judgement of others.

Good News is that Treatment for Eating Disorder is getting better every day and there are things you can start doing right away to help your loved ones. It’s simple and doesn’t take much effort, love, understanding and empathy. Once you understand your loved ones Eating Disorder you’ll see remission as an interim goal. It’s your belief and your support that will empower the sufferer to take the steps to defeat the demon of Eating Disorder. If a person is not treated Eating Disorder can get worst, can become lifelong condition and even lead to death.

Imagine the numerous rewards you’ll get by helping someone who suffers from an Eating Disorder? It’s very Pleasing to Allah and Allah’s Angels smile down on you.

“The one who stays with the one who is sick, and takes care of him and looks after him has done good by serving him and caring for him, and Allah, may He be glorified and exalted, says (interpretation of the meaning): “and do good. Truly, Allah loves Al-Muhsinoon (the good-doers)” [al-Baqarah 2:195]. **

My Eating Disorder tells me I’m Hopeless because I can’t Fast

To the sufferers- Your Eating Disorder makes you think that you’re hopeless, worthless and can do no good. It’s difficult to fast with an illness as menacing as this one and it’s even more difficult to deal with the Eating Disorder thoughts that affect your mind every minute of the day. This Ramadan prove your Eating Disorder wrong by helping the war victims. Try to break out of the loop of Eating Disorder by spending your time with your loved ones and doing something good for your community. Ramadan is about giving charity, give what you can to those who need it most.

The person  unable to fast must feed one poor person for each day, because Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“And as for those who can fast with difficulty, (e.g. an old man), they have (a choice either to fast or) to feed a Miskeen (poor person) (for every day).”

[al-Baqarah 2:184]

People suffering from Eating Disorder, who’ve been advised by their treatment team not to fast, also fall under the same category.

  • According to new report Syrian Refugees in Turkey will reach 1.5 Million by the end of 2014.
  • About 9.3 million people in Syria need help and 2.5 million have become refugees
  • With more than 20000 Iraqis fleeing the conflict in Mosul, many refugees end up in camps in neighbouring Erbil
  • There’s a Ramadan Appeal for Palestine Refugees in Syria, Refugees in Western Africa, in Sudan, Somalia and DRC.

Instead of giving comfort to your Eating Disorder and spending hours wallowing in your Eating Disorder Misery, Take a Step and Give Aid And Comfort To Those Who Have Fled The Fighting in Their Home Countries. You can do this through a charity of your choice. Research and select a charity that is dear to your heart.

This is your chance to do something good for the society and to tell the demon of Eating Disorder to ‘go away’. You can donate to your chosen from the comfort of your home. You can visit their website and see just how simple and secure it is to donate. Many charities collect and distribute the clothing. Do some Ramadan Cleaning – De clutter your wardrobe. Think how your donations will benefit those people and bless their lives? Inshallah you’ll experience the happiness that comes from giving. Giving to charity not only strengthens our communities and aids the people we are helping, but it also gives us feelings of inspiration. 

In Super markets in Turkey alternative packages  can be bought on donations to various charities.

Change is always in the wind.

Message to Family/Friends of Sufferer

You’re reading this perhaps because you know the person with an Eating Disorder.  Make an intention to learn about this disease. By doing this you demonstrate  compassion and commitment in your desire to provide the best possible support for your loved one. This illness to a degree is related to chemical changes in the brain. Arm yourself with information that will help you better understand what your loved is going through.

Bear in Mind Few Things:

  • It’s not your fault your loved one has an Eating Disorder
  • It’s not your loved one’s fault they have an Eating Disorder
  • You cannot fix your loved one but you can support them and love them till their Eating Disorder is in full Remission.

Many misconceptions exist about this illness, due in part to the media, which frequently focuses on individuals who demonstrate more severe symptoms of this disorder. But always bear in mind that Eating Disorders come in all sizes and all forms. If you love and care about someone who suffers from Eating Disorder, it is important to understand that their illness is reflective of some underlying problem. People don’t ask to have an Eating Disorder nor do they reinvent themselves in that way.

Giving is Joie De Vivre (Joy of Life). This Ramadan give your loved ones your support your love. Implement Turkey’s theme ‘No one should be left alone’.

Congratulations to the one whom Allah enables to extend a helping hand to the weak, sick and needy; congratulations to the one who spends his life and his time doing acts of kindness.**

Reference:

**http://islamqa.info/en/105343

 

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About Author

Islam and Eating Disorders founded in 2012 – run by Maha Khan, the blog creates awareness of Eating Disorders in the Muslim world, offers information and support for sufferers and their loved ones.

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