Before she rose to fame as a television host and journalist, Katie Couric spent years hiding a deep dark secret from the world. “I wrestled with bulimia all through college and for two years after that,” the 56-year-old on-air personality revealed during an emotional interview with More magazine.
Though it’s hard to imagine someone so confident struggling with feelings of inadequacy, Couric said that her eating disorder resulted from poor self-image. “I know this rigidity, this feeling that if you eat one thing that’s wrong, you’re full of self-loathing, and then you punish yourself.”
After keeping her binging and purging a secret for decades, Couric felt inspired to come forward with her own story after interviewing singer Demi Lovato, who also struggled with the bulimia. “I was asking people to reveal their innermost feelings about (this issue), and I actually know about it. I have had this issue; my sister Emily who passed away, had this issue,” Couric said. “So I thought, ‘This is the time.’ I tried to do it in a way that wasn’t ‘I had bulimia!’ But just ‘I had bulimia, and I know this mind game that goes on where if you don’t adhere to this strict calorie restriction.’ It makes you feel really bad about yourself, and this vicious cycle kicks in.”
Though Couric is happy about her decision to open up about her past struggles, she is shocked by the amount of attention her announcement has received. “I had no idea it would be a big bulletin,” Couric exclaimed. “But I think it got traction because in a way people see me as somebody who has their sh– together.”