In high school, I knew a girl who was so thin and so popular that I stopped eating. At 16, I thought that if I looked like her, I’d have more friends. My weight quickly plummeted down to 80 pounds: I looked like I was dying and I probably was. Soon, I found myself in a kind of disciplinary lockdown, eating meals under the watchful eye of our school nurse. All of which was seriously unpleasant — but eventually, I rallied.
Sadly, many do not. The mortality rate associated with anorexia nervosa is twelve times higher than the death rate of ALL causes of death for women between the ages of 12 and 35, giving it the highest mortality rate of any mental illness.
To the degree that body image lies at the core of this pathology, how can visual people not take notice?
photo by Lauren Greenfield