[Never Say Diet] Eating Disorders Not Just For Kids Anymore.

Older women and eating disorders

Today on Never Say Diet, I’m talking about why disordered eating patterns continue to pop up in our 30s, 40s, 50s and beyond — and why they’re more likely to go undiagnosed in this age group.

By the way, I am pleased to report that the comment bug seems to be FIXED over on iVillage at long last. You do need to log in to comment, but you can sign in with your Facebook or Twitter account, which is quicker than creating a whole profile over there. And then you can feel very free to weigh in with all of your thoughts, good and bad. I love to hear when readers disagree with my take on an issue, so don’t be shy!

(And of course, if you continue to have commenting challenges, come right back here and tell me in the comments, so I can pass the word along.)



Filed under Never Say Diet

2 responses to “[Never Say Diet] Eating Disorders Not Just For Kids Anymore.

  1. Kelsey

    This is not to say that all skinny women (of any age!) have eating disorders, real, healthy women come in all shapes and sizes.

    I am like 99% sure that this isn’t what you meant to communicate, given you’re normally so excellent at avoiding this type of sentiment (which I super appreciate!), but you might reconsider your use of ‘real’ to describe women without disordered eating patterns. People with EDs, or people who fall toward that end of the spectrum, are pretty ‘real’ as well, and to suggest otherwise frankly isn’t helpful. One of the diagnostic criteria for both anorexia and bulimia nervosa, after all, is experiencing one’s shape or weight in a disturbed manner– one’s self-evaluations not actually reflecting reality. Maybe weighing 90 pounds but not ‘really’ being skinny, for example. It’s also kind of marginalizing, in the way that using ‘real’ to describe any subset of a group generally is on members of said group that differ from what’s being described (e.g. ‘real Americans’), and marginalization sucks. My own history of quasi-disordered eating was related to anxiety (how fun to literally be afraid of eating. not.), but that and other experiences of not quite meeting the prerequisites for various types of ‘realness’ have definitely made that one clear.

    Anyway, keep being awesome in general– I really enjoy your writing, so thanks for putting it out there into the world. 🙂

    • Gah! Kelsey, thank you SO MUCH for calling me on that. You are completely right. It was a total flub — I was trying so hard to clarify some other stuff (that you can’t diagnose an eating disorder just by looking at someone and that “real women” can be any size, as opposed to that unhelpful message that sometimes permeates discussions of body image that models aren’t real people like average-sized women are) that I completely missed this. A case of the fingers typing faster than the brain can think.

      I agree 100 percent with your comments here and am off to iVillage right now to see if I can edit that sentence accordingly. Thank you again!

      -V xo

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