Anorexia Is a Mental Disease

The problem is a very serious mental problem. Anorexia Nervosa is an eating disorder characterized by self starvation. Anorexia is a very complex, often chronic, illnesses with physical and psychological ramifications. It is not just a problem with food or weight. It is attempt at using food and weight to deal with psychological and emotional problems (McKinney). Out of every two hundred American girls between the ages of twelve and eighteen, one will develop anorexia to some degree (Dove 2). This number is what upsets me. It may seem like a small number to you, but if you look at it in comparison, it is to many. Dove states what kind of home an anorectic patient comes from, Anorexia nervosa patients typically come from white, middle to upper-middle class families that place heavy emphasis on high achievement, perfection, eating patterns and physical appearance.” This was even more surprising to me. These and many other reasons are why I came up with the solution that I came up with.

Before I give you my solution let me explain why I think it can be solved. Anorexia is mostly a problem because of the standards that are a part of todays society. Most young girls believe that if the weighed a certain weight or looked a certain way, they would be really happy. Their self esteem is the major problem. Most problems with self esteem can start as early as grade school. In My Life Anorexic, Charlotte Carrington says about the kids that teased her when she was young, I never wanted to give them another reason to tease me, which is probably one of the many things that led me to become anorectic. She wasnt even overweight. She had a thin body frame, but her family had a history of weight problems, so she became worried that she would be overweight (Carrington). Just because overweight people werent accepted, she was worried about her generic makeup. Dove states a reason why they turn to their diet for control, The patient has a lack of control in all other areas of their life so they turn to that of food. This seems to be the only aspect of their life they can control, in their mind. In Charlottes case this was very true. She states I had no confidence whatsoever, so I took control over the one thing I could – which was my diet. Anorexia is very serious and can be very fatal. I believe that this is a huge problem in todays society and we need to deal with it.

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There can be a solution to the problem. Most everybody can even prevent the problem, but it must be a joint effort. Plain and simple, my solution is to be a totally open-minded and accepting society. The truth is that everyone needs to be willing to accept people for who they are. Every single person must believe that they are a unique person for a reason. If people look at the situation realistically, they would have realized a long time ago that there is no normal. Normal is absolutely unattainable, because there are too many different opinions of normal. People should realize that they are different and accept it for what it is, a reality. It is unrealistic to actually have a normal person. Every single person has some little idiosyncrasy that makes them a unique person. Believe it or not, every single person that has ever lived or will ever live will be their own person. Not a single person living or dead will ever be the same as anyone else before or after them. This makes it very completely impossible for there to be a normal. I believe that if we accept each and every person as an individual we would be able to rise above all the self esteem problems that exist in our society today.

Anorexic people are crying out to the public. They want nothing more than to be accepted. If we as a society would only look beyond all physical attributes to the person inside the body, we would be happier. I think that the people that tease endlessly are only insecure with themselves so they lash out at others to hide their problems with themselves. I guess my solution would help the people that are doing the teasing too. You may think that is a little over the top and that it is impossible. I think you are right, but think, is there any other way to prevent low self esteem? I mean really think about it. What else could we do to prevent something we are not really sure is happening until it is too late. We dont really know of all of the people that have low self esteem, until they do go to the extreme of an eating disorder, or as far as suicide. My solution is the only full-proof plan to prevent self esteem issues, and therefore preventing the disease we call anorexia.

Now that you understand that this solution may be over the top, but the only real one, let me explain on how we should go about doing this. First we should vary the types of people in the media spotlight. We should realize all people for their wonderful qualities above appearance. We should eliminate all of the hoopla about diet products. Get rid of Jenny Craig, Metabolife, Slim Fast, or any other product that makes us doubt our appearance. All these products are doing is damage. I realize that some of the people that lose all of the weight feel better about themselves. Think about it though, if they were happy with themselves in the first place they would have felt good to begin with. They wouldnt have needed to invest lots of money and time into a product that did nothing but put the hope that being skinny would make them a better person. There should be Mind Pageants and Personality Contests that are just as important if not more so that Beauty Pageants. I mean, game shows should not be the only place where people can test their intelligence and be rewarded for it. The fact of the matter is, people need to be publicized because of everyday things we take for granted. How about that little old lady that seems to be so gentle that she wouldnt even hurt a fly. Kindness like that comes from a lifetime of wisdom. We could learn a lot if we spent more time conversing with the elderly, rather than ignoring them. We should treat them with the utmost of respect, rather than as a burden. We as a society should break down all of the racial and sexual barriers that lower self esteem. I thing that people should be able to accept others as well as themselves with respect. Every person that you met can teach you something. We should learn to open our hearts and minds to the idea of differences bringing us together.

I know that this may seem impossible, but a person can hope cant they? I have had a person very close to me suffer from anorexia and no amount of me telling them that they were a good person was ever going to change their view. A big part of anorexia is that you see yourself as less of a person. We have to accept ourselves before we can begin to live a happy life. I know that it isnt other peoples fault all of the time. I also know we cant blame others for our problems, but we should learn to be able to share responsibility. If every person was a little more accepting, we wouldnt question our worth to begin with. The problem begins externally, and if we would just learn to get rid of all the judgments made on and by others, we could accept ourselves more willingly. I understand that the society is not ready for this as a whole, but there is really no other solution to this complex problem, and I guess thats why I thought of what I did. It may be farfetched, and I sure dont accept it to be a reality soon, but maybe this train of thought will spread like a brush fire. I dont think that this will catch on very soon because of the lack of self esteem that the nation has as a whole as it stands. I mean, nobody fully understands each other because of the barriers that we are taught to put up around our views right from the start. If we, as a generation, could begin to teach the younger generations this concept of acceptance, it could become a reality faster than I hope. I only wish that my solution was simple because the problem is obvious, and very much without a solution.