Friday, November 19, 2004

Disturbing...

First: Click on the title and read the story.

This may be one of the scariest things the internet has yet produced. Last I checked, eating disorders were still ravishing diseases that attacked both mind and body. I'm figuring the last thing an untreated anorexic needs is someone to tell them to keep up the good work.



"But what worries doctors is that the sites often encourage girls to embrace their disease, to lose even more weight, rather than seek treatment. Some of the sites describe themselves as 'pro-choice' or 'pro-tolerant,' and have names like 'The Thin Page,' 'Starving for Perfection' and 'Ana by Choice'."


You know, when I first heard about this, I thought it was just a really sick joke. Well, I had it partially right I guess. It's just really sick. Anorexia is not a "lifestyle" it is not a "choice" and it should not be "tolerated." It is a debilitating and at times fatal disease that is treatable. By encouraging people with eating disorders to "embrace" their conditions, these sites are keeping them from ever seeking treatment. It's like telling someone who's just discovered a growth to embrace their cancer. You don't embrace it. You get rid of it in any way you can before it literally eats you alive. Anorexia will do the same thing. When you don't provide your body with any nutrition, your body starts by eating away at the fat, and when it's done with fat it starts eating muscles and organs.

That doesn't even begin to take into account the damage it does to your mind. An eating disorder can be caused by any number of factors, but they all have one thing in common: self-loathing. I don't care who you are or where you're from or what you've done, self-loathing is not healthy.

Various "tips" I found in a quick browse of some of these sites:

"Make yourself nauseas! You won't eat!"

"Don't eat/drink anything that is a red color. When vomiting, in some cases bleeding may occur and you won't know if it's serious, or just what you ate/drank."

"Check the fridge when nobody else is around. Find foods that you would have eaten and get rid of them, for example, three eggs and a piece of butter. Then if someone asks, you can say you had scrambled eggs and are really full. And if they check, the ingredients are gone, which reinforces your story. Consider dishes and silverware as well. "

"With the exceptions of days 1-5, particulary day 3, fasting is not nearly as difficult as one might imagine (In fact, after day 10, quite pleasurable)."

What is wrong with our culture that we make people think starving themselves will make them beautiful? That fasting and purging is a valid lifestyle choice? That size zero is something to strive toward? Don't get me wrong -- if your body is a size zero and you have a *healthy* diet and excercize plan, more power to you, but it is not an attainable goal for 99% of the women out there. I am not ashamed to say that I am a size 10. I am comfortable with being a 10. I could probably stand to loose a pound or two, but it isn't worth harming my body over. I really wish Hollywood and Vogue and the like would move away from the waif look. It obviously isn't projecting a healthy image.

2 comments:

Princess Jami said...

This was one of the most disheartening comments in that article, I thought:

"Nora said she has no desire to meet the people she talks to online, because she’s scared of finding out they lied.

"I’m afraid of finding out that someone who talked to me and comforted me and related to me is a fat girl," she said."

Nora has no love for herself and little for others, which is definitely scary. Her idea of "fatness" is entirely out of whack, and determines whom she chooses for friends. Treatment for anorexics like her has to be more than just figuring out how to pack more food into their emaciated bodies...there's a truly fundamental issue that has to be dealt with, first. My opinion is that the combination of skinniness idolatry and the pro-death (abortion, euthanasia) dogma screamed from the main-stream media pulpit becomes the younger generation's religion. It's a god-less and me-full and "we'll let you live if we deem you worthy...after all, you're just a better monkey" theology. It's disgusting, and what a cry for Jesus if ever I heard one. I just want to weep for these boys and girls and men and women, infuse God's love into them with an enormous hug...help them know how valuable they are to the Lord of the universe.

To veer off on a tangent, I know you didn't purposely seek out people with eating disorders when you went to Russia, but I'm thinking you and Grumpamoose quite likely touched more lives than you know in Ekaterinberg, by introducing people to Jesus. Not that they were on their way to bulimic or anorexic tendencies, but it's just so beautiful to see how people's lives become more sunshiney and hopeful when God touches their hearts. Quite the antithesis of lives held captive to eating disorders!

Maybe I should spout off about this on my OWN blog... :)

Bun-Girl said...

I couldn't agree with you more Jami. The root of the problem s not the same thing as the symptoms. Not eating is just a symptom of what is truly wrong. At the heart of the matter is that most of those afflicted with a disorder of this kind have no self-worth. They consider themselves to be unfit and unloved, and they are trying to make themsleves better by conforming to the ridiculous standards in their minds. Real self-worth can be found in acknowledging that each of is so precious that it took the blood of Jesus to redeem us. A message that is too often ignored in our culture.

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