Monday, July 13, 2009

this is me. i couldn't have described it more accurately. i am getting better. or at least trying to get better...

"The enormous psychic feats accomplished by the anorectic in her attempted suppression of need are exemplified in another way in which she relates to this body that is, and is not, hers. A notable experience for many women caught up on the anorectic treadmill is the involvement in physical regimens of a punishing and extraordinary nature. It is not uncommon to encounter an anorectic taking two or three 'killer' exercise classes in a row or working out for forty minutes a day on the Nautilus machine after a seven-mile run. An anorectic rarely uses public transport, not because it is disagreeable but because it is too indulgent. Strenuous exercise in increasing amounts is often central to the maintenance of a psychic balance as is the denial of food. It is possible to understand these physical efforts simply in the terms in which they are first described by the woman, that is, as the attempt to rid herself of the calories she has ingested and thus conceal that she has indulged by eating. But there seems to be much more involved in the frantic exercise programme than merely the efficient use of calories. In several instances I have been struck by how the completion of exercise rituals gives the woman a real feeling of accomplishment. The achievement temporarily counteracts the feelings of inferiority that the woman lives with so incessantly. If she can achieve such extraordinary feats on so little food, and with so little weight, then perhaps she is of some value. Sadly, these efforts have to be repeated daily and increasingly for the person to maintain the feeling, which is transitory. Nevertheless such efforts are in the service of attempting to look after herself and give herself good feelings in a way that is entirely within the anorectic's control. She is turning around the frail image of emaciation she represents to the world and defying the conventional notions attached to thinness and femininity." --from Hunger Strike: The Anorectic's Struggle as a Metaphor for Our Age by Susie Orbach

No comments: