I think many of us have experiences with disordered eating, subconsciously or not.
(TW: eating disorders, weight loss, body image.)
No woman I know has a 100 percent healthy relationship with food, with eating. Our childhoods deny us. We see the furrowed brows of our moms and our sisters; we hear the offhand comments about the women on TV or read headlines in Impact font on the magazines at the grocery checkout. Even in the most well-intentioned comments, there is a veiled threat. “You look so thin.” “I could never wear that.” “Have you lost weight?” You don’t always look this good. Careful, or you might not be able to wear that one day. You were fat before, and fat is the enemy. I’ve met many people who would say they’ve had experiences with “disordered eating”—I’m one of them. I never binged or purged, I never purposefully starved myself, but in college, eating fell by the wayside. I was depressed and overworked, and food didn’t seem important.
I think many of us have experiences with disordered eating, subconsciously or not. According to the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD), 95% of those with eating disorders are between 12 and 25 years old. That’s middle school, high school, and college, right there. That’s the first few years out of college when many of us (myself included) are negotiating how to cook, what snacks to bring to our office jobs, where we can afford to buy groceries despite thousands of dollars in student debt.
I’ve gained weight. Even though I identify as a body-positive feminist, I lament my fat rolls to my boyfriend. I cry and tell him I’m the fattest one in my friend group (as if there was something wrong with that!). As though my body is quantifiable through a number on a scale or the fit of my old jeans. I can buy new jeans. I can learn to love my body.Continue reading “Four Stories About Disordered Eating”