Words Right From the Source: Those Who Live With Anorexia
The following are actual quotes written by individuals with what are described as "eating disorders."
"And I am pure now . . ."
"Nothing matters when I'm thin."
"An imperfect body reflects an imperfect person..."
"The word fat assumed a meaning as deadly as cancer. Getting fat was worse than losing your job, worse than being jilted at the altar, worse than living in a trailer park and growing up without shoes. You need to start watching yourself, my Mom said, before it's too late."
"People don't see me. No one sees me. It's like being fat. No one takes you seriously. You just don't exist - you're so big, you're not even there."
"You will be tempted quite frequently, and you will have to choose whether you will enjoy your self hugely in the twenty minutes or so that you will be consuming the excess calories, or whether you will dislike yourself cordially for two or three days, for your lack of willpower."
"...for every pange of hunger we feel, we can have a double joy, that of knowing we are saving worse pangs in some little children, and that or knowing that for every pang we feel we lose a pound. A pangs a pound the world around we'll say."
"Every supposed pleasure in sin[eating] will furnish more than it's equivalent of pain[dieting]."
"Food is a hinderance to your progress."
"Don't do anything today that you'll regret tomorrow."
"Like a plant, surely, the body can be trained to exist on nothing~to take it's nourishment from the air."
"I have a rule when I weigh myself; if I've gained, I starve for the rest of the day. But if I've lost, I starve too."
"Nothing tastes as good as thin feels"
"It wasn't simply that I chose not to eat; I was forbidden to. Even thinking about forbidden foods brought punishment. . . . How dare you, this voice inside me would say. You greedy pig. And I was grateful to have someone from hurting. Making me respect myself. Hunger, I thought, is a minuscule price to pay. To be thin, no price is too high. The sky's the limit."
"I'm not starving myself..I'm perfecting my emptiness."
"Those 4:00 hunger pains are striking you hard. It's the *fat time* of the day when you're starving and you appetite is telling you to over eat. But whatever you do RESIST THE TEMPTATION!!!"
" Nothing is so bad that not eating won't cure."
"Lose everything and what is real will still remain."
Reading between the lines of what is said above...
...issues about being "pure," "perfect," "tempted," "real"...
What's really going on here?
If we could speculate just a little, and do a thought experiment or two, how about this:
Would it be a very big stretch to say that anorexia really isn't about food, and eating it or not-eating it?
What if anorexia is, on a deeper level, one way of confronting other problems - such as, for example, the problems of "how to be 'pure,'" "how to be perfect," "how to be real" and so on?
In other words, what if anorexia was treated as if it was a way to approach what are essentially "spiritual" issues?
Is it too much to say that perhaps anorexia is one way of confronting "The Problem of Life"?
...and so...to be confronted properly...needs to be confronted by addressing the deeper issues that are behind it?
- issues such as these...