Fighting Stigma

Harriet originally posted this article, and it touched me so much, I wanted to reprint parts of it.

The piece was written by Rosalie Yan at Duke University in honor of NEDAW. She says:

I feel incredibly lucky for having friends and parents whose support knows no limit and I'm grateful for them beyond words. I am including a list of ways I have been helped, with the hope that you will reach out to your loved one with an eating disorder. Don't talk about appearance or eating. Offer to listen, don't interrupt and don't give advice. Let go of stereotypical notions. Spend time together doing fun activities. Recognize that it is not her or his fault. Encourage him or her to get help. Understand that this is when your love is needed most. Stay patient.

Throughout the past four years with an eating disorder punctuated with intermittent bouts of recovery, I have come to the following understandings about healthy relationships with eating. First, pay attention to your diet, but don't worry about it. Second, take pride in your body, but don't allow it to define you. Third, having an eating disorder takes strength, but recovering from one takes more strength. Finally, happiness doesn't come with a certain body shape; happiness comes with acceptance.

Thank you for the reminder, Rosalie. You inspire me.

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I'm a science writer, a jewelry design artist, a bookworm, a complete geek, and mom to a wonderful kitty. I am also recovering from a decade-plus battle with anorexia nervosa. I believe that complete recovery is possible, and that the first step along that path is full nutrition.

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nour·ish: (v); to sustain with food or nutriment; supply with what is necessary for life, health, and growth; to cherish, foster, keep alive; to strengthen, build up, or promote


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