Posts Tagged ‘sign of the times’

The City

Sunday, May 16th, 2010

There is a correlation, I think, between urbanisation and the rise in eating disorders.

It came up, in a presentation, and there’s probably some research; but, I seem to have created my own personal proof.

I remembered, today, as I walked down Kentish Town Road (to see how far I could go before the panic kicked in), what happened when 24 hour living – and my eating disorder – met. I was thrown back, 10 years, with a surge of pain that almost over-powered me, as the landmarks that I had been avoiding, re-appeared, again.

Bad People

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2010

Last night, I saw a man hit another man, and I haven’t yet come up for air.

It is, I appreciate, an extreme reaction; and, after a silky soft childhood, I’m not quite sure where it’s come from; but, it has thrown me back, and got me scared, and I feel like I’ve removed the rose tinted glasses and done a double take on a very different reality –

This has happened before.

It is not the first time that the world has suddenly seemed a dark and terrifying place, and it doesn’t seem to take much to scare me -

Post Chrismas Diets

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

The radio times reads like a fat camp schedule this week and I nearly mistook my Saturday supplement for a dieting magazine.

The moment Christmas is over, the world seems to go weight-loss mad and the chocolates we were encouraged to eat a few days ago have suddenly metamorphosed into the devil’s food.

Fortunately, the supermarkets seem to have cottoned onto the movement and the lighter choice special offers are well stocked up, for those of us who haven’t succumbed to the cut-price gym offers…

I am surprised at my surprise -

Black Ice

Friday, December 18th, 2009

Outside, the snow is ankle deep and shot through with black ice.

Twice this morning, I have seen a frail figure, clad in leggings and a thick woolly hat, run past my window.

This is why I am writing this website.

Anorexia does not do holidays and it certainly doesn’t do days off.

This is why the message is so important.

If she falls, she will break.

This is why I’m telling my secrets -

Because the prisoner running up and down the road whilst the rest of the world is wrapped up in warmth or shouting with laughter reminds me of where I’ve come from –

And where too many people seem to be going -

If we don’t change the trend.


Thursday, October 15th, 2009

I didn’t give much thought to forced starvation when I was really ill.

Anorexia makes you selfish.

The ‘you’d eat it if you lived in Africa’ line just got on my nerve.

I’m not sure that the discussion would be any more helpful to other people struggling with eating disorders; but, after reading a piece in last weekend’s Observer, I am trying to make sense of the fact that there are over a billion people out there going hungry – whilst I have struggled between choosing not to eat – or wasting food like there’s no tomorrow.

There’s something very wrong going on.

A Lifestyle Choice?

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

I am a little perplexed as to how anorexia can possible be considered a lifestyle choice.

Lifestyle infers that you’re hoping to stay alive, so we’ve already hit the first snag; and choice infers that you’re in control, which is clearly an illusion as you discover when you try and escape

So the description’s wrong on all accounts…

It’s just a little worrying that we’re even describing a prolonged suicide in these terms.

When Thin is Meant to be In

Monday, October 5th, 2009

I don’t normally get engaged in the question of whether thin is in.

I’m not into scape-goating the media and I’ve always believed that anorexia is about what’s going on in someone’s head – and not what’s going on in the pages of Vogue.

I’m a little less sure now.

It’s not the anorexic appearances on the catwalks that have got me thinking or even the fact that modelling now seems to be a high risk career –

It’s because the trend seems to be spreading.

Thin is no longer just haute couture ‘in’; it seems to have got muddled up with notions of success in a whole host of other, completely unrelated, things.

The Human Calorie Calculator

Saturday, August 1st, 2009

I don’t join in the communal calorie conversations.

As a reformed calorie calculator, I’m trying to de-programme my head and start seeing food as food – and not as a permissible or not permissible number.

The problem is, the worlds’ concurring against me.

There are traffic light systems and calorie counted menus and colour coded packaging and an obesity epidemic vying with a size zero culture -

Lily Allen

Monday, July 6th, 2009

Lily Allen is cutting painfully close to the bone in ‘22’.

I have to resist the temptation to skip the track. The lyrics would be far too close for comfort – if I didn’t find myself singing along.

As a nearing 30 year old, I am, officially, over the hill and on the shelf.

I’d find it offensive if the social commentary wasn’t so astute – if I wasn’t caught off guard by the spotlight.

Instant Gratification and Prolonged Disatisfaction

Saturday, June 27th, 2009

I’m familiar with instant gratification.

It’s what binging and bulimia thrive on. Strong desire; fast food; instant gratification.

Food is one form; according to the media, consumerism is another.

I agree. The parallels don’t surprise me. Having spent much of 2003 to 2005 in supermarkets, I’m familiar with the lure.

When you’re in the middle of a great gaping emotional void, shops are quite appealing. They’re a preoccupation and then a full time occupation. When nothing feels particularly great, they’re a haven of soft lighting and soothing music and promises. When you want, they provide – with the drip drip drip of addiction: the gratification may be instant, but the satisfaction doesn’t last much longer.

It wears off pretty quick – and just leaves you wanting more.


Food Feeds

Saturday, June 20th, 2009

Food has stopped being just food.

We’ve messed around with it all so much that we can’t see the wood for the artificial trees.

We’ve got so caught up in the whole subject that we’ve lost sight of the key feature.

Food feeds.

It’s the human version of fuel.

It’s a natural requirement, not just a lifestyle choice.

It’s easy to forget this.

Because we’ve complicated the subject. Food has been media-ised, stylised and politicised. It’s been written, talked and argued about; finger-pointed at; dissected; analysed; debated; genetically modified.


Present Danger?

Friday, June 19th, 2009

Most people have toughened up a little by their late 20s. They’re a little more world wisely, a little more clued up. They’re a little less black and white and good and bad and all or nothing. Things are taken on the chin.

It’s great to reach this stage – but the journeys not so hot. Times are changing and there’s lots of stuff out there that can distract you along the way.


The Seduction of Self Destruction

Friday, June 19th, 2009

Something was going on at the end of the last century. There seemed to be a certain mood, a downward trend. When I first wrote about it, the title ‘Heroin Chic’ sprung to mind: self destruction was in vogue.

As a more mature adult, the line between normal teenage angst and a social mood doesn’t seem so clear. But I’ll follow my thinking a little because it helped things make sense.


Self Harm

Tuesday, May 26th, 2009

It’s hard to know where to start with this one.

It’s not something I’m very comfortable talking about.

- even though it’s on the rise, and even though it’s blazened across the tabloid on a regular basis.

Maybe it’s the apparent casualness of it all that’s so unsettling. Maybe it feels like we’ve got complacent about teenagers shredding their arms: self mutilation is commonplace.

No. It’s not.