Welcome to Overeaters Anonymous. This series of questions may help you determine if you are a compulsive overeater.
• Do you eat when you're not hungry?
• Do you go on eating binges for no apparent reason?
• Do you have feelings of guilt and remorse after overeating?
• Do you give too much time and thought to food?
• Do you look forward with pleasure and anticipation to the time when you can eat alone?
• Do you plan these secret binges ahead of time?
• Do you eat sensibly before others and make up for it alone?
• Is your weight affecting the way you live your life?
• Have you tried to diet for a week (or longer), only to fall short of your goal?
• Do you resent others telling you to "use a little willpower" to stop overeating?
• Despite evidence to the contrary, have you continued to assert that you can diet "on your own" whenever you wish?
• Do you crave to eat at a definite time, day or night, other than mealtime?
• Do you eat to escape from worries or trouble?
• Have you ever been treated for obesity or a food-related condition?
• Does your eating behavior make you or others unhappy?
Have you answered yes to three or more of these questions? If so, it is probable that you have or are well on your way to having a compulsive overeating problem. We have found that the way to arrest this progressive disease is to practice the Twelve-Step recovery program of Overeaters Anonymous.
Overeaters Anonymous is a fellowship of individuals who, through shared experience, strength and hope, are recovering from compulsive overeating. We welcome everyone who wants to stop eating compulsively. There are no dues or fees for members; we are self-supporting through our own contributions, neither soliciting nor accepting outside donations. OA is not affiliated with any public or private organization, political movement, ideology or religious doctrine; we take no position on outside issues. Our primary purpose is to abstain from compulsive overeating and to carry this message of recovery to those who still suffer.
Is OA for You?
Only you can decide that question. No one else can make this decision for you. We who are now in OA have found a way of life which enables us to live without the need for excess food. We believe that compulsive overeating is a progressive illness, one that, like alcoholism and some other illnesses, can be arrested. Remember, there is no shame in admitting you have a problem; the most important thing is to do something about it.
Our Invitation to You
We of Overeaters Anonymous have made a discovery. At the very first meeting we attended, we learned that we were in the clutches of a dangerous illness, and that willpower, emotional health and self-confidence, which some of us had once possessed, were no defense against it.
We have found that the reasons for this illness are unimportant. What deserves the attention of the still-suffering compulsive overeater is this: There is a proven, workable method by which we can arrest our illness.
The OA recovery program is patterned after that of Alcoholics Anonymous. We use AA's twelve steps and twelve traditions, changing only the words "alcoholic" and "alcohol" to "food" and "compulsive overeating."
As our personal stories attest, the twelve-step program of recovery works as well for compulsive overeaters as it does for alcoholics.
Can we guarantee you this recovery? The answer is simple. If you will honestly face the truth about yourself and the illness; if you keep coming back to meetings to talk and listen to other recovering compulsive overeaters; if you will read our literature and that of Alcoholic Anonymous with an open mind; and most important, if you are willing to rely on a power greater than yourself for direction in your life, and to take the twelve steps to the best of your ability, we believe you can indeed join the ranks of those who recover.