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Anorexia And Moms- Are We Kidding?

Dr. Meg Meeker

Dr. Meg Meeker

Starving, binging, vomiting and using laxatives to lose weight are no longer issues that just teenage girls contend with. Nope. Now, adult women are doing them. Surprised? Shouldn’t we Moms who have endured child bearing, gained and lost those 40 pounds per pregnancy have a better grip on life?

One would think so. But I’ve smelled trouble for about 6-7 years now and Dr. Nancy Snyderman confirmed last week on The Today Show that, indeed, middle aged mothers are struggling with this monster too. I don’t know about you, but this makes me very angry.

I’m not mad at the women because I know a thing or two about anorexia and bulimia nervosa. I’ve been taking care of kids with them for some 25 years. What really gets under my skin is that grown, mature mothers are under assault. And from where I sit, when mothers go down, so does the entire family.

Eating disorders are like the perfect storm. They happen because many things in one’s life come together at the same time. Perfectionism, obsessive-compulsive character qualities, stress, a need to please others, anxiety and really, nice, bright women along with a few other things. Mix these all together and you have it- the perfect recipe for a 100 pound frame. And is someone or something to blame for eating disorders?

Eating disorders have been primarily an American phenomenon until recently. Why? Are we the only country with stressed, overly perfectionistic women who are too nice for their own good? I don’t think so. The glaring difference between us and other countries is our obnoxious media obsessed with throwing emaciated women in our faces and calling them beautiful. The problem is, we can’t get away from them. Maybe you men can, but we Moms see them everywhere they go. And they get to us.

So I think that we, middle aged Moms need to do something. We can’t change the magazine covers, or get Jennifer Aniston to plump up. But we can toughen up. We can say that enough is enough and we are going to get off of the competitive bandwagon where we try to outdo even our bestfriends when it comes to dieting. It isn’t a game anymore. Our kids are watching and I don’t know about you, but I don’t want my grown daughters to look at me and remember that their Mom was obsessed with her weight. I want them to remember that I poured my energies into deeper issues than body fat.

What do you think? Are you as sick and tired of women’s body-obsessed, unnatural obsession as I am?

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