Follow-Ups: Meg

Fighting Anorexia
Dr. Phil follows up with some of his most memorable guests.
"Coming on the show was the first step that I have ever taken myself in my recovery," says Meg, who checked into a treatment center for her anorexia after her last appearance on the show. "When I start to struggle, I read [Self Matters] and I rewatch the tape of the show and just really realize that I can't go back to the place I was before," she explains. "I've realized that life isn't about a number on a scale." She tells Dr. Phil, "Thank you so much for helping me acknowledge my anorexia and find a treatment plan. Thanks to you, I'm committed to recovery."

Dr. Phil asks Meg how she's feeling and doing in recovery.

"I can't tell you how nice it is to be able to feel positive energy to do something," Meg replies, admitting that when she was on the show she was in a fog and didn't feel like doing anything. "Now, I'm involved with things, living with my friends, wanting to go out and meet people, working, which I haven't done in forever." She says that she took Dr. Phil's advice to be excited about her life. "I wake up and I want to now. It's amazing!"

Pointing out that Meg is now going to school, president of a campus organization and interning at a law firm, Dr. Phil says, "You're not standing around focused on the body image."Dr. Phil asks Meg, "What's the hardest thing for you right now?"

"I think it's really hard when I think about the past seven years when I've struggled with this and how focused I've become on it," she says. "Things that I've missed out on and I have trouble forgiving myself for it." When she starts to think about it, she wants to punish herself, but she can't do that anymore. "I get stuck in that place of, 'How do I forgive myself and keep moving forward?'"

"One of the things you said that struck me is that you defined what you were doing as discipline and perfection," Dr. Phil tells Meg. "I want you to understand that life is not about perfection ... Maya Angelou said it really well, she said, 'You did what you knew how to do, and when you knew better, you did better.' And you did what you knew how do to. And now you're doing better."

Referring to Meg's comment that she feels guilty that she spent so much of her life focusing on her body, Dr. Phil points out that guilt is a very selfish emotion. "If you're sitting around feeling guilty, that means we have to drag you, and we don't want to drag you," he tells her. "What you have to say is that 'I don't have time for guilt. I did the best I could at the time. And now I'm

doing better and I can do better. I'm going to forgive myself because I'm not perfect. I am who I am and I'm doing better today.'"

Meg explains what made the difference for her. "It really stuck with me when you told me, 'Just live for today. What happened, happened. What's in the future you'll take it when it comes,'" she says. "I think that has helped me so much thus far because I'm starting to realize, 'OK, that's not perfection and I'm not perfect.' And that I can manage right now," she explains.

"I'm watching you like a hawk, OK?" Dr. Phil says to Meg. "We're going to continue to follow you and monitor you, because I want you to continue to inspire so many young women that you can do something about this, and that it feels good to be back in life."