written for a friend


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written for a friend

why do i write about living with an eating disorder? or, more accurately, about dying of an eating disorder? i think about how much of my life was stolen from me, by my own doing. yes, the cliche "i'm my own worst enemy" is all too true here.

every memory is tainted and every dream tinged with the pervasive stain of the eating disorder. in fact, as i write, the air is filled with a foul, sour odor, the stench of week-old vomit hidden in a mostly full trash bag. the bag is big, black, invasive, and out of place, much like i picture my disorder. it's like a shadow cast over me at all times, a cloud bobbing around above my head. a silent observer, nodding with approval as i swallow the gut-wrenching pills that make my heart pound; smiling smugly as i bend, gagging and retching, over the cold, white, porcelain bowl; screaming obscene insults and epithets at me if i dare weaken and feed my desperate, deprived body.

there is someone in my head who hates me. they hate me with such a fiery passion, they will torture me until i finally fall dead. then, unsatisfied as always, another innocent girl will fall prey to this monster, this force that enslaves you.

no-one is immune. it spreads like a fungus, rising quickly to epidemic proportions. funny, though, how it makes each of its victims feel so alone and freakish. it controls our eyes and mirrors, manipulating our once-healthy selves into mutants worthy of a sideshow. and cruelest of all, it warps the collective minds of society to view us as either having a harmless quirk, a funny habit; or as being vain, shallow creatures who only care about our appearance. all possible understanding is destroyed as eating disorders corrupt every aspect of society.

dramatic, you may think, an exageration. tell that to the millions of girls (and guys) dying in front of your eyes. tell it to the people who love these ruined children, desperate and frustrated and most of all, scared. scared because someone they care about is dabbling in death, and maybe they're a little afraid it could happen to them.

because sorry, eating disorders don't discriminate. it could very well happen to you, your mother, your brother, your lover. if you think the terrifying reality of eating disorders has no effect on your
life, look again. we really do hide it oh-so-well, don't we? we have to, don't think we actually enjoy building our elaborate spiders' webs of lies, so delicate that it could come crashing down at any moment, exposing us for the pathetic beings we are.

you may be disgusted, you might not understand, and someday you too could be one of us. yes, you too could be a part of the glamorous world of calories and laxatives, living under the iron fist of scale worship. if you think a bad hair day is trauma, wait till a number controls your every mood. suddenly, sticking your hand down your throat is a good idea, pain is soothing, and the mirror and measuring tape are your new best friends.

it's not as simple as it seems to those on the outside, and it really can happen to anyone, at anytime. so please, don't lecture, don't judge, and don't ignore, because the next prisoner could be you.

***** I think those are correct.