Emotional Eating? Emotional Shopping? Yes, Ma’am

Posted January 9, 2010 by Marcy Twete in Life After Five
I just finished re-watching one of my favorite movies of the year – “Confessions of a Shopaholic.” But today, it meant more than it did a few months ago. Why? Because as I mentioned a couple of weeks back, I too am now taking my finances into my own hands and getting my credit card and (ahem) shopping situation in order.
I recently compared controlling finances to losing weight and getting healthy – writing down my expenses, just like I’m writing down my food. Not putting things on credit cards is like not eating McDonalds for lunch and then swearing you just won’t eat for the rest of the day to make up for it. It doesn’t work that way.
But something stood out from this wonderful movie, and it occurs to me that my once out of control weight and my currently less than desirable amount of debt might be connected in more ways than one. In the movie, Rebecca Bloomwood says,
“Instead of a relationship with my credit card, I have a relationship with someone who loves me back…and never denies me.”

Is it possible that my relationship with food and my relationship with shopping were both results of yearning for a relationship with something (or someone) else? I take full responsibility for my credit card debt, but it’s no wonder it was accumulated during a time when I lived in a lifeless and horrible marriage, and used credit cards as a way to fill a home with something when I knew it could not be filled with love. Curtains and blinds, light fixtures and towel bars, towels and sheets and euro shams. At the time, they seemed so important – I had to fill that home, the home I built. But what I really wanted, needed, and yearned for was a relationship that would fill a home without things.

The 80 lbs I’ve lost have been solely because I (finally) developed a relationship with myself – a relationship that filled my home and made me ready to allow someone else to fill it as well. And now, I feel for the first time I can have a relationship without a credit card – with someone who loves me back…and never denies me.

About the Author

Marcy Twete

Marcy Twete is a career fundraiser turned corporate responsibility executive, a career and networking expert and the author of the book "You Know Everybody! A Career Girl’s Guide to Building a Network That Works."