I was a full-blown feminist by the time I started college. I also had a full-blown eating disorder. As a teen I marched on Washington for women’s rights. I put out a zine called Wonder Woman. I played drums (and by “played” I mean I aggressively and skill-lessly beat the shit out of a floor tom, a snare and a cymbal) in a punk band whose songs included “Penis-Shaped Missile” and “Cute Band Alert.” I prepared all varieties of soy-based hippie stews for Food Not Bombs, though I don’t recall ever sampling any of them. And it wasn’t because of the soy. Or the hippie. While my dog-eared copy of Naomi Wolf’s The Beauty Myth was proudly displayed on my bookshelf, my equally well-worn calorie counter book was hidden out of sight in my desk drawer.
I was terrified of gaining weight. I restricted. I binged and purged. I hated my body. Keep reading »
Living in LA is weird sometimes. OK, all the time. One minute, I’m minding my own business, eating kale and looking at babes or whatever and the next, I’m being fat-shamed by a wardrobe assistant on the set of a Dove commercial that I somehow ended up getting cast in.
I’d been curious about what exactly went on at these auditions that my entertainer friends are always running off to, even though I have no aspirations to model or act myself. I’m more the “borderline agoraphobic writer” type and actually, really kind of hate having my picture taken. Thing is, I have this little obsession with constantly trying new things – the more uncomfortable, the better. So, last year, when a friend that works in casting sent out an email inviting women to audition for the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty, I was 100 percent in. Keep reading »
I eat my secret cookies in the middle of the night. There is something clandestine, furtive about my stealthy trip to the kitchen, long after the world has gone to sleep. I am mostly asleep myself, I reason. This is hardly even happening. I can’t help it, it’s not my fault, I don’t even know what I am doing. These cookies don’t even count!
There is evidence in the morning — a cookie or two missing. We won’t speak of it. Who can remember what happened during the dead stretch between the dregs of the night and the pale creep of dawn? I can’t!
But wait a second.
What is really wrong with eating a cookie or two? What makes it an act of quiet self-deception? What about it requires sneaking?
I’ll be blunt. I mean, that’s why I’m writing this — to be blunt and confessional for a moment because I think that’s really the only way to address this sort of thing.
In my head, there is this eternal, infernal, absolutely obnoxious connection between food and failure. And you may find this next statement ridiculous, but: I think I’m actually pretty healthy about food. Keep reading »
This weekend in San Francisco, the organization About-Face hosted a protest where participants shed their clothing in front of Victoria’s Secret as a statement against the company’s exclusive use of unrealistic body images. In just bras and underwear, the protesters bared their real human bodies proudly to the world while holding signs with phrases like “I pledge to love my body.”
About-Face is a San Francisco-based organization that works to “equip women and girls with tools to understand and resist harmful media messages that affect their self-esteem and body image.” This particular demonstration, which was mostly planned over Facebook, sought to inspire women and girls everywhere to be proud of their real bodies and not to be affected by unrealistically flawless body images that Victoria’s Secret sets as the expectation. [Huffington Post; Policy Mic]