Channel 4’s recent documentary, ‘My Self Harming Nightmare’, highlighted the plight of three young women, Becky, Charlotte and Chrissie. The programme told their very personal experiences of suffering from eating disorders and self harming; behaviours that were started / encouraged by websites that glamorise both illnesses.
Over 1 million people with an eating disorder have used pro anorexia/bulimia websites. These websites enable sufferers to trade dieting tips, post unhealthily thin, skeletal pictures of themselves and gather information on how to lose weight and self harm more effectively. Read whole article
Becky's Story Excerpt:
"I do cut quite deep. I don't think the depth reflects how a person is feeling. I think for different people it serves different purposes. Some people do it for the pain, some people do it for the blood. I do it to feel a sense of control over my body. I like to be able to run a blade over my skin and it opens up and I feel powerful that I can do that to my body, because there are so many things that I can't control".
Charlotte's Story Excerpt:
"You make friends over the Internet and they say they will help you to lose weight, but really you want to be thinner than that friend and they want to be thinner than you. So you compete to be the thinnest; being the thinnest means that you are the strongest. Even though it kind of contradicts it, because you are so thin you have no energy … you are so weak you cannot even get up”.
Charlotte’s Story - Pg 2
Chrissy's Story Excerpt:
"My old blog had about 10,000 followers. There was constant competition on there and we'd all be commenting on the pictures and sending each other messages, wishing each other well and asking ‘are you okay’ and ‘saying you look really ill’ and stuff like that. So I got all these supporting messages, but I'd be thinking: 'Oh she's just saying that, because she wants me to put on weight so that she can be thinner than me' ".
Chrissy’s Story - Pg 3