Why does society hate people with anorexia?

Do you know what I’m talking about?  If you have had anorexia, you sure do know.  Ever get hospitalized for this disorder?  The media loves to portray us having a blast at horse farms and spas for the rich.  Truth is, people who have this darned disorder are all alone lying in bed where we get bossed around, told we can’t even get up, and no one calls or visits. Suddenly, the people we thought were our very best friends aren’t even speaking to us anymore!  What the F?!!!

I’m here to tell you that you are not alone.  We skinny folk are hated.  It’s true.  Society hates anorexics.  Why?  Is it because we are skinny and women in particular are frustrated, unable to shed the pounds themselves, so they take it out on us?  I used to think that this was the case, that even female doctors and many male doctors who had serious body image problems indeed did this “transference” thing on their anorexic patients.  It would certainly explain all the rude remarks we get from doctors and nurses, don’t you think? It would surely explain their overly controlling, manipulative actions as well, such as unnecessary forced or coerced “weigh-ins,” or pressuring a patient through threats and accusations.

I am wondering, also, if there is another factor involved: the suicide factor.  If your anorexia has progressed past a certain point and you have been hospitalized or have experienced some kind of medical complication, society is going to wake up and say, “Hey, this anorexia is dangerous and he/she might actually die from it.”  For whatever reason, when this “wake up call” happens to a sufferer, or rather, to the people around the sufferer, they wake up suddenly.  It’s like they pop up out of bed from a deep sleep, saying, “Hey, he/she’s suicidal.”

Society hates suicidal people.  Absolutely no question about it.  People who commit suicide are automatic sick fucks.  No, you can’t talk about it.  Yes, there are suicide hotlines but these are “confidential,” that is, you call them in secret and these are “first name only,” that is, it’s so darned scary to come out and admit, “I feel like ending my life cuz my life just plain sucks.”

I learned early on that it was a dumb thing to tell anyone under any circumstances that I wanted to die.  How did I learn this?  How does anyone learn anything?  You try it out and you find out the hard way.  You bake your cookies too long and they burn, so you never bake them that long again.

So I guess this was in high school.  Out of the blue, I told someone I had a shitty life, but I didn’t say why.  I didn’t get into a lot of detail, just said I was unhappy and made brief reference to the possibility that maybe I was considering suicide.  I didn’t want to put a huge emphasis on it or reveal how seriously I was thinking about it cuz I didn’t want the guy to worry.  However, I was certainly not at all vague about the “shitty life” part.  This wasn’t exactly a friend and not exactly a not-friend.  The person completely avoided me after that.

I asked myself why he was avoiding me.  We had had many intellectual discussions in the past.  I had clearly caused him discomfort.  To this day, I don’t know if merely my opening up to him was the cause (I never really opened up to anyone anyway), or if he was uncomfortable with my unhappiness and that I might commit suicide.

Of course, a lot of kids in my high school were most likely thinking about suicide.  For many, a passing thought.  Some kids thought about it all the time.  I’ll do know there was an awful lot that didn’t get discussed.  I’ll bet in high schools out there right now, today, it’s not being discussed enough. In the adult world, today, it’s not discussed enough, either.  That’s because, as I said before, society hates suicidal people.

If you’ve ever been suicidal, society hates you and calls you a sick fuck.  But why?  I mean, maybe life sucks for a good reason.  People lose their jobs because of bad luck, not bad morals or a bad attitude.  Their homes burn down not because God is angry, but because of a frayed wire or loose connection and if the fire department didn’t make in there in time, it’s because of poor timing, so if your think your life totally sucks right now because you lost your job and your home is nothing but ashes, well, dang, you’re right, your life does indeed suck!  Bad luck isn’t an illness!  If you feel lousy about the crap that happened, I don’t blame you!

Feeling lousy needs to be normalized.  Growing pains need to be accepted for what they are. We are okay. There are no sick fucks in this world.  Society need to listen more and love more.

So back to my question: why does society hate people with anorexia?  It’s such a push-me-pull-you!  Everyone wants so badly to lose weight.  The overweight person is also despised.  If you have ever been overweight you can feel that hatred, too.  I certainly have felt it myself during the years I spent living in a much larger body than the one I am living in now.  I sure wouldn’t want to go back to those years, mainly because of the discrimination.  The rude remarks, both subtle and flat out blatant, drove me nuts.  I commend anyone who puts up with this baloney and is able to ignore it.

I know many people whom I greatly admire who aren’t affected by what I described above.  They float past it.  In fact, they don’t have to dismiss it or ignore it or make any effort, because it’s like they have a built-in filter. They don’t even hear it!  It’s like those spam filters.  They have this cruelty and discrimination and bullying and Evil of the World filter.  So they can be whoever and whatever they want and be secure with themselves and they don’t hear or see the baloney.

That would be cool, wouldn’t it?  To feel good all the time and be happy?  I sure would never, ever consider suicide or ever want to starve myself if that were the case, if I truly believed the world was a positive place and that everyone was filled with love in their hearts and good intentions.

So these very, very positive people can walk past those two separate water fountains and they don’t see them.  They won’t get pissed off and see the wrong in it. Anger is bad.  It’s negative, after all.  Do you see what I am saying?  Those of us negative folk are the sick ones and if we get immensely frustrated enough to quit the planet or consider quitting it, then we get ostracized.

That very well may be the reason you are now all alone in that hospital and the people you thought were friends aren’t friends anymore.  Let’s go blame those that are already hurting.  Kick the ones that are down and make them feel even worse.

Life for a person with anorexia is likely to suck for a long time, mainly because of the societal hatred part.  I am still rather shocked at it all.  All the reactions.

There’s one thing I can say, though.  If it has happened to you, I hear your cries. I do know what it feels like to be all alone.  I do know what it’s like to have your rights taken away and I do know what that “blame” is like when the truth is, you did nothing wrong and the people around you are wrongly blaming you.  You are not defective and there’s nothing morally or constitutionally wrong with you.  If you have ever lied, it’s only because you had to do so in order to stay alive, because of the immense pressure to survive in the cruel, artificial world called “treatment” where no one even listens to us anyway.  I do know what it’s like to have a door slammed in your face, and to ask yourself, “Can anything more go wrong?” and then one more person says goodbye.

I love you all.  God bless us, everyone.

2 thoughts on “Why does society hate people with anorexia?”

    1. Thanks so much, Lori. /what a crazy world we live in. I just try to laugh at it all sometimes. Writing is a good thing because other people can read what I write and say, “Hey, that happened to me, too!” and maybe something will change. I get frustrated when the changes don’t happen fast enough. I want to shake the world and the sleepy people in it.

      Julie

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