My first (very, very) short film

I’ve been thinking about creating video clips or short videos about the subjects that matter to me. I made this one this morning:

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Drunkorexia

A dangerous trend

Have you heard of drunkorexia? It consists in not eating to be able to binge drink. Indeed, alcohol contains lots of calories, so in order to stay slim, many girls skip meals and only indulge in the calories contained in their drinks. Also, drinking on an empty stomach makes you drunk faster and that is also something drunkorexics seek for.

Unfortunately this trend is extremely bad for your health: brain disease and heart complications appear on the long term. On the short term there are much more risks for you to be in an ethylic coma. And of course, you’re very vulnerable to rape and unsafe sex.

Is it really a form of anorexia?

For most people it’s not. They only skip meals when they plan to drink a lot. But I do know some people who really suffer from an eating disorder who fear calories in everything except – strangely – in alcohol. I know someone, for example, who basically eats only low-fat cereal in the morning and a can of tuna for lunch daily (when she doesn’t binge and purge) but gets drunk almost every day. In her case, she suffers from two addictions: anorexia and alcoholism.

Anyway, whether you do suffer from an eating disorder or only skip meals to binge drink, you ought to know your health is at stake.

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I was not anorexic

I’ve made lots of research about anorexia via anorexics’ blogs and books and medical TV programs.

It turned out that my relationship to food and eating was not “normal” but:

I never had dysmorphophobia: I was skinny and saw myself as skinny. Anorexics always see themselves as too fat even when they are dangerously underweight. (My BMI went down to 16.5).

I did not count calories and only weighed when my mum asked me to do so. I just ate very very little food and this lasted 7 or 8 years. However I was NOT dieting. I just couldn’t eat more, I was not hungry. I skipped breakfast and lunch for a long time, only had dinner. When I was alone in my apartment, in college, I could even skip dinner, only nimbled very little food in the day. My lack of apetite was due to the fact I was depressed, anguished, with period of over-excitment which all caused a knot in my stomach.

I was not obsessed with food and not eating. I was not scared of food. When I was finally hungry, I ate. I did not try to lose weight. Actually, I tried to gain when my weight was too low, or at least maintain. However when I got to a “normal weight” again I started to be mindful of what I ate because I wanted to stay slim. Not stick thin, but slim.

When I felt fine, I could have an ice cream, or a piece of cake, or a chocolate bar, without feeling guilty.

I started to eat normal again without making much effort. I learnt that undereating increased depression, and to get rid of depression I started to eat three substantial meals a day. I don’t remember it was a challenge. I just did it.

About the symptoms due to being malnourished: I was dizzy, cold, lost lots of hair, had bruises, shook all the time, was depressed, constipated…which can look like anorexia. But when I finally got better I had no long term damage, well I don’t think so.

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I am glad I did not have anorexia. From what I’ve read and seen, it is really, really hellish. It ruins your life, your health, your relationships…one of the worst part is the obsessing over food, over eating, calories, gaining, that’s why it is called a mental illness (although it also seriously affects your body).

About plus size

I’m slim. I like being slim. I have  been skinny, but then I was sick. So I prefer to be “normal slim”, with a normal BMI. I have gained weight, my thighs are no longer stick thin, my ass is more curvy and I (almost) have no more fucking thigh gap. And yet, people still compliment me on how slim I am. I would lie if I’d say I am not flattered.

BUT.

I am totally FOR fat pride, body acceptance at any size; the disappearance of emaciated models on the catwalk; the end of photoshopped photographs of women in magazines; the increase in plus size models. I don’t wanna be the slim one who does fat shaming, because I know people who got ill (anorexia, bulimia, self-harm, depression) from being teased about their weight. And this is not acceptable.

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What skinny tastes like – what recovery tastes like

What skinny meant to me:

  • Brittle hair falling all over the floor
  • Exhausted
  • Shaky
  • Dizzy
  • Depressed
  • Suicidal
  • Constipated
  • Cold all the time
  • Panicky

I gained like 14 pounds in 7 years and I needed it but sometimes I have to try and accept my newest curves. My BMI is “normal”, whilst I was underweight when I weighed less than 100 pounds.

It’s OK. Your body changes and you see those skinny bitches in the magazines, but eventually you end up thinking:

  • It’s no big deal.
  • I’m pretty anyway.
  • I’m healthy and that’s priceless.

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Avatars on the couch

These are some English translated extracts from an article I found in a French magazine:

“Computers are not always harmful, they can heal too.” Doctor Pommereau is convinced that child psychiatry must adapt to the new generations. These “teens.com”, children of images and communication, born in the computing era, tell more about themselves and their pain in pictures than aloud.

Teenagers are able to tell me [when they create their avatar] that they created themselves the way their mothers wanted them to be. Anorexics create obese avatars…

“We can change things, it’s great. You can’t change in the mirror.”

“I’m less hung-up than a few years ago, but I’d still like to be a little skinnier.” The young woman likes the idea of the avatar. “In therapy you feel you are observed, so our words are evasive. We say nothing but yet they [the shrinks] write down like 4 pages. We no longer dare make any move! But [with the avatar] we’re playing, the shrink’s look upon us is less oppressive.”

The avatars enable suicidal people to show the wounds they inflict upon them, ignoring they are only the reflection of their inner wounds. We allow them to represent their scarifications. When the teens see their avatar, their detachment enables them to give another meaning to these scarifications and they start talking abundantly with the nurse.

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