Normalizing crazy

"I hate it when my disordered thinking seems normal"

It must be our urgent task to change the way our society thinks of food and bodies so that we stop normalizing disordered thinking!

No more dieting, moralizing, chiding, self-hating, and using food and activity to manipulate our bodies. No more bragging and preening and ogling and Life as Competitive Reality Show. No more XXXX-free, "guilt-less," food as magic, food as evil.

And end to 95% of our life being taken up with appearances (size, skin, hair, house, car, handbag).

We need to stop normalizing crazy so those in need of help and intervention are easier to spot and we aren't hypocrites when we do. Let's stop making crazy normal so we can live happier and leave our kids healthier.


  1. Thanks so much for this post. I couldn't agree more. I think hypocrisy is a really good word for our society's attitude toward weight and eating disorders. On one hand fat is bad and thin is the morally good way to be, yet people with eating disorders are selfish, shallow, spoiled brats to be mocked (I think of Pink's Stupid Girls video where a young woman vomits into a sink while complaining in a valley girl voice about how disgusting and fat she feels).

  2. That is sooo right. I noticed while I was watching TV last night with my RAN D that at least 2 ads in every ad break were about slimming, low fat - even in kids foods, gym training, fat dogs (!), calorie counting.

    It makes me so mad! We turn the sound off during the ads now - just so as to limit the onslaught. But my D and all of us are going to have to put up with this kind of nonsense on billboards, in mazazines - and worse from our friends and ourselves - dozens of times a day...forever.

    Anyway, I'm starting with me. AN has made me realise how mixed up my own thinking has been. I'm working hard on dealing with my own craziness. And hoping for better outcomes for my other kids.

  3. Yep. It is just getting worse. Everywhere I turn I'm hit with disordered ideas about food and weight. It is almost impossible to maintain recovery in this culture. It's like I'm the weird one when I say, "I'm not on a diet".

  4. I hate it! I can't stand being surrounded by people and TV and magazines and posters that want to talk about "health." And, by "health" they really mean "the trendy pursuit of thinness." Even though I can't get my mind to stop calorie counting (and am not sure I want to...), I really can't stand it when people talk about calories. I just want to walk away. I just can't surround myself with people like that. But, in this society, so many people so easily talk like that.

    Today in the grocery store I heard one woman say to her daughter, "I always by this brand because it has less calories." So, after they move aside, I go look at the calories of the two brands. One brand has 20 more calories than the other. I wanted to approach them and tell them, "You know, 20 calories is really pretty insignificant and you shouldn't be basing your decision entirely off of 20 calories. And, oh yeah, by the way, don't say stuff like that to your daughter."

    I learn things from my nutritionist that are actually healthy. And then I hear people say things like "That person just thinks they can eat frozen yogurt every day because it's not ice cream." I want to say "They can eat frozen yogurt every day! And they even can eat ice cream every day. It's not inherently bad! You are not instantly going to gain weight from eating ice cream!" It's like everything I hear contradicts the truly healthy messages I hear from my nutritionist and it makes me angry.

    Sorry for the long post that isn't even proof-read. I was just typing rapidly because I have strong opinions on this topic.

  5. Weird, I was just catching up on the latest blog posts, starting from the earliest to the latest and actually commented in the last one about how eating disorders have been normalized...

    In the media we truly have normalized eating disorders. When we hear that a celebrity has one, it's run of the mill now. Almost expected.

    Not just eating disorder either, but also diets - which clearly are not eating disorder - but they do share some of the same behaviors, which makes it difficult for those that cannot distinguish the two things.

    Everyone diets - fad diets are all over, magazines, papers, television, movies. We see dieting so often, it normalizes it.

    Not dieting because the abnormal.

    For those that are predisposed to eating disorders that can help them rationalize their behavior.

    When I was at my worst I remember having a discussion with one of my friends, defending what I was doing by saying that everyone diets. What I was doing was not strange... that everyone did it.

    Granted what I was doing was not dieting, but i used that as fuel for why I should be able to continue the path of self destruction...

    We as a society are encouraging that to such a degree...

    You know it's bad when even the editor of vogue has spoken out.

    She was receiving clothes for photoshoots that were too small for her normal magazine spread models. So small that only emaciated models were able to fit.

    She spoke out about the problem.

    That's what we as a society need to do... raise our voices. Raise our concerns about this normalization of emaciation, dieting, etc.

  6. Sorry, another comment.

    Have you seen/heard about Bacardi's new "Get an ugly girlfriend" campaign??

    Stuff like this, in my opinion, fuels our obsession with being perfect.

    It suggests women -- attractive women -- accessorize themselves with an "ugly girlfriend" to make themselves look better at various places and events. The campaign is sizeist (note the picture has a heavy set female - ugly = fat) and disabling towards women branching away from the mindset that thin is perfect.

  7. Agreed. When is the world going to wake up and come right?

    Sure these attitudes do not cause ED's but it is disordered behaviour to an extent and not helpful for those with ED's.


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