I never thought this could happen to a child so young, in a body-positive household like ours. Boy, was I wrong – Published on SALON.com, by KRISTI BELCAMINO, August 6, 2013.
My 9-year-old daughter was starving herself to death. And somehow, God forgive me, I didn’t notice until it was almost too late.
We were busy running from soccer to swim lessons to play dates. But that’s no excuse. The mere idea of a fourth-grader becoming anorexic was so foreign, so wild and so far-fetched, that it never crossed my mind.
My daughter had always been a picky eater and small for her age — less than six pounds at birth. She didn’t like to eat much, and I didn’t worry about it.
Then one day she asked for help with her sunscreen. She walked up, wearing her purple-and-blue swimsuit, and I squirted a blob of white lotion onto my palms and spread it across her back and shoulders. My fingers felt what had somehow escaped my eyes — pointy bones protruding like little bird wings. Over the bones stretched a thin layer of skin.
What the hell was going on?
Slowly, the pieces fell into place: odd comments over the summer that I had dismissed, thinking if I didn’t make a big deal out of them, they would pass like so many other random fears and concerns that my children had.
Questions, such as:
“Are my legs fat?”
“I feel full.”
“Do you think I’m fat?”
My response? It was so absurd I laughed and told her if anything she probably didn’t eat enough.
I also didn’t pay attention when she lost interest in foods she had once loved. I thought it was just a phase. In her short nine years, my complex daughter had brought up unusual fears and concerns. Usually if I didn’t make a big deal — took it in stride and gave her a little reassurance — it went away.
This time, it didn’t … //
… Our doctor has treated a girl as young as 7.
(My comment: why is it so difficult to see that girls’ ‘normal’ submission into a nice, friendly, lovely female behavior makes sick? Why this bluddy dump society cannot change anywhat about the way we transmit girls their place in the society? Why we promise them a such uggly, sickmaking destiny as to be mainly the mirror of males desire? Why a girl has the only choice to run away from this destiny by trying to disappear physically? Even if this is an old, a very old crasy tradition, having the taste of a hidden, forgotten, nasty corruption! Have you never thought about that? – Heidi).