When someone says the word “eating disorder” what vision immediately appears in your mind? Be honest and think about it for a moment. For me—and, I would imagine for many—a shockingly skinny white young girl pops up. And many think, for this reason, young white girls are the only people EDs affect. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. While I know this, I don’t always see evidence of it (although I wish I did), but a recent review I received from a reader of What Goes Down brought this realization back home:
EDs do not discriminate.
It doesn’t matter if you’re white or black or Chinese or Peruvian, big and tall, or fat and small, a girl or a boy, or even transgender, an ED cannot see any of that and cares nothing about it. Once it sees you as prey, you are only that: genderless, nondescript prey. And any of us can fall prey. Continue reading “EDs Don’t Discriminate: Neither Does My Story”
This lady makes me smile I tell you! Many thanks to Beth Smyls at https://smyls.co.uk for working with me to bring this piece to life. Once I fell down the horrible rabbit hole (or habit, rather) that is bulimia, I found one of the hardest elements of getting out was simply breaking the habit. Strong habits are hard to break. But, I’ve included some great tips and advice in this piece that may help you or someone you know if they are struggling. Thank you again, Beth, for sharing this important piece on your sites! Check out the full article at Smyls here:
I think we’re all pretty familiar with the “life-size” Barbie analogy where a Barbie doll is made to-scale as a life-size woman and she’s absolutely ridiculous: boobs she could not fit into any shirt, feet the size of insects, arms as thin as reeds. It really is quite hilarious (and sad) that children strive to look like that. If you haven’t seen that Barbie analogy, here’s a great recap:
While I think this measurement-to-measurement comparison is an important reminder to the little girls and boys inside us that Barbie is not a good role model, the more I think about Barbie, the more I see how a real-life version of Barbie would make me laugh. I wouldn’t envy her, or be jealous of her. I would simply laugh. Just imagine the many oddities and limitations Barbie has to deal with and how she might handle that on social media:
Because she can never NOT smile:
- “Lost in Simon Says again today. Hate when he says ‘make a sad face’.”
- “I am pissed. Why don’t you believe me?”
- “This IS my resting bitch face.”
Because she has no nipples:
- “Piercing guy told me ‘No’ because he wouldn’t know where to put them.”
- “Is it cold in here? I can never tell.”
- “Where do I put my pasties?”
Because her knees only bend with two audible pops up to 20 degrees:
- “Namaste in this awkward extended position cause I can’t do Lotus.”
- “At least I can bend and snap (oh … *snap*).”
- “There goes my pole-dancing career.”
Because her toes are always pointed like she’s in a perpetual orgasm:
- “Got my ‘O’ feet on today (and everyday)!”
- “I can’t wear Birkenstocks. I just can’t.”
- “I can’t understand why they call them ‘flip-flops’ – mine never flop.”
- “Why are the cops always so mad when I tippie-toe in the line-up?”
Because … well, just because she’s hard, shiny plastic:
- “Nothing jiggles when I twerk.”
- “How do I ‘make it clap?’”
The more I think about it, the harder I laugh. Imagine Barbie trying to go down stairs. Her back foot wouldn’t bend enough to let her safely put her front foot (even in ‘O’ mode) onto the next step, so she would just tumble the rest of the way down and land in an only slightly-bended heap at the bottom. Like a falling stick. (It’s a good thing she’s plastic.)
But, then how does she even get up?
I believe if Barbie took one single fall, she’d be down forever.
I hope some of these Barbie musings have made you all laugh as hard as I have, and—far more importantly—realize how infinitely more amazing YOUR bendable, capable, unique body is compared to that piece of plastic.
You are an amazing person, you know that?
Sure, you may not believe me right now, if you feel you’re having a bad food day, or you feel sluggish and huge and mad at yourself today. But, do you want to know something that’s really great about people like you me—and, yes, the word “like” there includes the fact that I (and maybe you, too, to some degree) have suffered from an eating disorder? Continue reading “2020: Be a #GoalDigger!”
That’s what my grandmother called it anyway. Although that’s never what I would call her. She went by one name and one name only: Big Mom. But, the name for the white Christmas trash she made was quite fitting as that’s exactly what it looked like: this sticky, white hodge-podge mound of trashy snacks thrown together.
In all reality, it was just a soupped-up Rice Krispy/Chex Mix treat, but in my little ten-year-old mind, it was so much more. When I saw that goodie on Big Mom’s kitchen table, I knew Christmas was here! And, when I look back on it, I think it truly did sum up how I spent some of the most memorable Christmases of my childhood: with a hodge-podge of people thrown together, and just the right amount of white trash. Continue reading “Celebrate Christmas with Some White Trash”
A great piece of comedy is a verbal magic trick[.] [D]ealing with a lot of the same areas where our defenses are the strongest—race, religion, politics, sexuality—but approaching them through humor instead of fight-or-flight adrenalin, we get endorphins and the alchemy of laughter turns our walls into windows, revealing a fresh and unexpected point of view.
Chris Bliss, Comedian
Humor. It is the most difficult way to approach a sensitive subject because it seems to make light of it, it flirts on the verge of offensive. But, if done expertly, it can be the most effective tool because it sneaks up quietly and slips into your conscience while your guard is down. “It’s just comedy. Nothing serious about it.” Then all of a sudden you’ve seen something big and important in a very different light, and it is now all too serious. But it is also now true and undeniable, because you laughed at it. This is what humor can do. It can allow me to help you see the blunt reality of your life with an eating disorder and finally decide to stop damaging yourself. By the time you’ve laughed, you can’t take it back or un-see the honest truth exposed and I hope it will give you the strength you’ve been looking for to change it. Walls into windows.
I feel like I’m sashaying saucily up to you: “Would you like me to seduce you?” Let’s see if I can. Continue reading “Walls into Windows: Beating EDs Through Humor”
Good morning and TGIF!
It’s that time again: Free Friday!
Anyone who would like a free eCopy of my book, What Goes Down: The End of an Eating Disorder, to read and review gets it!
Reading other’s stories of struggle and recovery was incredibly therapeutic for me when I was recovering, and I hope my words and story can help others too.
Throw a comment out if you would like a free eCopy, email me at email@example.com and I’ll get it over to you to read and review. I can’t wait to hear what you think of it!
Here’s to recovery. Cheers!
It’s true; I have three pairs of Thanksgiving pants for the three different phases of my eating past. I can’t go back in time and change what I did all those years. My past is still very much a part of me, so I have to find a way to face it, forgive it, and find some humor in it. I truly believe that is the best way to make peace with it. Look back and laugh a little.
When I looked back, I was surprised to find I had somehow channeled my inner Goldilocks (I guess I can chalk that up to my natural blonde locks) when I found I had evolved through three very different types of Thanksgiving pants. I also found it ironically hilarious that Goldilocks begins her plunder hungry, looking for food, and the first thing she does is sit down and eat a stranger’s whole bowl of porridge.
I had to laugh, realizing that was a pretty fitting testament to what my ED-self might have done back then. Hide your porridge folks, Goldie’s hungry and on the hunt! And, in true Goldilocks-style, that is exactly where my twenty years of porridge-plundering began—with pants way too small in an attempt to hide my hunger. Continue reading “Goldilocks and the Three Thanksgiving Pants”
I imagine the path is similar for many and different for others. For me, my eating disorder was a seed I planted during puberty. It was a realization that I have a body that is not slender and beautiful like other girls, which somehow makes me different and less than other girls.
That seed was then nurtured by the stress of moving across country to live on my own for the first time, with no friends or acquaintances on campus, to begin college and start learning how to cope with all the demands of life as an independent adult. And as I was doing that, I found myself surrounded by throngs of gorgeous hourglass-shaped southern belles. This only continued the unraveling of my self-esteem, a pervasive waning of my confidence. Continue reading “The Black Vine in my Mind”
In that moment, when I’m about to do it. On a good day: I’ve fought it all day, likely knowing all the while, despite my best efforts, that I’m going to cave. On a bad day: I’ve been secretly craving it all day, knowing I’m going to push everyone and everything out of my life for that glorious hour to succumb to it. But, I know I’m going to feel like total shit when it’s done, questioning yet again why I keep doing this to myself. Why I keep dancing with this demon? So, I promise myself this will be the last time. Continue reading “I Can Promise Anything … Then”