The online world in the past few days has blown up about the Return of the Kings “5 Reasons to Date a Girl with an Eating Disorder” article. Since the article was shared around Facebook and other social media networks, over 7,000 people were trying to comment on the article at once, actually crashing the site. For good reason, people want to read the disgusting article. It’s the “I can’t look away” problem. However, there are benefits of reading slander like this. If people are writing it they are thinking it, and there is a possiblity this will create a following. As a college woman’s magazine, we have a duty to respond, and most importantly try to make it stop.
How do we even start? Well, in middle school we are told to ignore bullies. The more attention the bully gets, the happier he/she is. Tell the bully to stop, and you continue to be pushed into the locker. Let’s say that Returnofkings.com is the bully and women represent the vicitims. We are deciding to just straight up punch this bully. Break him down, harass him until he cries, belittle him until HE goes away. So ladies, we ask you to keep reading, and keep fighting. Don’t give in to letting anyone speak to you this way. And girls who are struggling, keep fighting. Together, we can take on anything.
One of our very own writers, Kiera Stachowiack was willing to talk to us about her own struggles with an eating disorder in hopes to show how the men writing the article are extremely uneducated and utterly wrong. Even more importantly Kiera wants to dissuade women from ever thinking this is ok, even if they are just trying to draw attention to their site. We won’t stop saying it’s wrong, and we won’t stop fighting for women to know there is never ever, a reason to hate your body.
Most importantly, we want to remind readers that every person, not just “white females” can suffer from an eating disorder. In fact, An estimated 10 – 15% of people with anorexia or bulimia are males. Finally, The mortality rate associated with anorexia nervosa is 12 times higher than the death rate of ALL causes of death for ALL females 15 – 24 years old.
So let’s break it down:
1. Her obsession over her body will improve her overall looks.
No, it really won’t. Look up an anorexic person on Google images. You will not like what you see.
Kiera: In the worst part of my eating disorder, I knew I didn’t like how I looked. I look back at pictures of me, and I hate what I see. I was so frail, and it just wasn’t healthy. Last Thanksgiving I only weighed 85 pounds.
2. She costs less money.
Kiera: I hated eating out. I would stress over not being able to get something healthy. And in fact, I would give away most of my food. But, what these guys aren’t saying or, realizing, is what comes after that meal. I was so moody, anxious, and uptight. I could never enjoy a meal with a friend or a boy because I would just know I would stress over what I was going to eat. It’s not a fun date.
3. She’s fragile and vulnerable.
Even without the explanation, this statement should make every guy want to cringe. Confidence and self-love is sexy and every guy knows it. In fact, Thought Catalog, a blog written by men that has an actual following with over 2,000 shares, and 500 Facebook likes, states, “Buying into the idea that you have to be a dainty feather isn’t sexy because it means you’re not comfortable with who you are or whom you are with.”
Kiera: Having an eating disorder takes an extremely emotional and physical toll. I couldn’t sleep, my hair thinned, I developed anxiety. It’s just a mental disease. Everyone who knew me could see it, and was talking about it. I changed, and it wasn’t for good. Luckily, as I’ve been able to overcome the disease I feel so much happier. I really like how I look now that I’m feeling stronger, and I like that people want to be around me again.
4. Probably has money of her own.
People of all socioeconomic classes suffer from eating disorders. There is no way this is a correct statement. Idiot.
5. She’s better in bed
NO, just no. It’s actually proven that there is a strong relationship between anorexia and infertility. Also, most women who suffer from an eating disorder are either too weak to have sex, or lose their sex drive completely. (http://www.elament.org.uk).
Kiera: This one is just ridiculous. Everyone knows an ass is hot.
Kiera went on to tell us that her greatest help in overcoming her disease was her support system of friends and family. But, most importantly, she had to admit to herself she had a problem. “I’m now able to laugh, I’m less anxious, I enjoy what is around me. I want girls to see that you are not perfect. You can be healthy, and strong,” Kiera Said. Thank you Kiera for sharing your experience on such a serious issue.
So, women of the world, if you did read this article and gasp, good. Read it, and reflect on what it actually means to have an eating disorder. Remember that the Internet allows for all sorts of trash, but lets overcome it. By talking about it, we can stop it. We will not let anyone get away with talking this way. Also to note, we know all men don’t think this way. We know men love healthy bodies. We just want anyone in general who may agree with these statements, to stop.
Remember also, that most people (I say people because ALL people suffer from this mental illness not just women) do not overcome their disorder. Let this be a lesson for all of our readers, this isn’t a joke. Help us make a change.
Lexie & Taylor Rizzo