chapter  7
19 Pages

Becoming Whole Again: Dance/Movement erapy for ose Who Suer from Eating Disorders

BySUSAN KLEINMAN

Suerers of eating disorders have diculty tolerating and containing feelings. ey oen describe the experience of being in their bodies as disembodied, as if living with a stranger or an enemy (Kleinman & Hall, 2006). Helping these individuals reawaken their life force by connecting with their feelings is critical to their recovery. Martha Graham (1952) said:

ere is a vitality, a life-force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action. And because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and be lost. (p. 335)

Because an eating disorder is such a bodily-focused experience, dance/ movement therapy is uniquely suited to address related issues. In short, dance/movement therapy allows suerers to become more embodied, by experiencing themselves more fully and identifying connections between their eating disorders and the issues that underlie them (Kleinman & Hall, 2005). e suerers’ way of being in their bodies and willingness to access their own unconscious material is part of their sense of self, and plays an important role in the degree to which they will be able to heal.