I’m Dustin (I use he/him pronouns), and I’m originally a jazz musician by trade, a former IT professional, a stay-at-home dad to three fantastic kids and husband to an incredible wife. I use my own lived experience plus a harm reduction approach to support your own unique form of recovery from eating disorders, disordered eating habits, or issues with your body image or self-image. I’m also proud to be a founding member of The Aleo Collective, a collaborative group of eating disorders recovery professionals.
I have a decades-long history with Binge-Eating Disorder and restrictive dieting, and I first entered recovery in 2017. In 2020, I completed training with a local support organization as a Peer Mentor for those recovering from eating disorders, and I’ve worked since then to help people find whatever path to recovery works best for them.
Almost everyone I’ve ever met with disordered eating habits has had some personal history with trauma. Before our habits ever became disordered, we might have just been innocently using food to cope with our feelings of stress or abandonment. For some of us, these habits might have taken over most of our waking thoughts and caused significant disruptions to our lives and relationships.
My approach to recovery begins with forgiving yourself for whatever you’ve had to do with food in order to survive. I work on affirming your own intrinsic self-worth and insight, and to help you see that you already are the best expert in your own life.
To me, recovery is an active word that refers to an intentional way of being in the world, but without using food or other substances to cope with emotional distress. I’ve also never found a true endpoint to “living in recovery” from an eating disorder: it’s an ongoing path that I’ll be following for the rest of my life.
Personal Note: I explicitly align my values against oppression in all of its forms, including racism, misogyny, abuse, homophobia and transphobia. I especially stand against gender-based violence, sexual assault, and all forms of intimate partner abuse.