IEDs are everywhere

OK, this study is interesting on its own. But I have to marvel at the sad poetry of calling eating disorder patients "IEDs," an acronym more commonly used to mean Improvised Explosive Device. And indeed, anorexia and bulimia send emotional shrapnel in every direction, maiming and destroying without discrimination.

I guess we can make up acronyms as we please (especially when the Internet can help us figure them out). In a field where SCOFF and EAT help diagnose the illness, I guess we can expect both irony and poetry in the making of new terms. (I'm guessing in the original German this acronym was different.)

Back to the study, Are individuals with an eating disorder less sensitive to aesthetic flaws than healthy controls?, I think it is useful for parents to know that patients really do not see what the rest of us see - literally. And therefore their interpretation and actions are different as well. This is why logic and anger with our loved ones don't work and don't help. Just knowing that it isn't a matter of intelligence or will or vanity can help de-escalate our own reactions and fears. Recovery - FULL recovery - is of course the goal, but knowing where they are coming from can really help.

"CONCLUSION: IEDs are less capable of recognizing flaws in the appearance of others...Evaluating the appearance of others more positively in contrast to one's own appearance could lead to poor self-evaluation, thus reinforcing body dissatisfaction and contributing toward the maintenance of the disorder."


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