Is your fight against the culture's lies a mental
struggle or a mental illness?
Every woman wrestles with our culture. Media tells us we're not pretty enough or thin enough or curvy enough. But what if the struggle takes over your life? One example is anorexia nervosa. The mental fight crosses a line, and the obsession with being thin drives the victim to starve herself. It's a physical illness requiring medical intervention.
In my case the illness is not anorexia but obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). A psychiatrist diagnosed me thirty years ago. It affects how I view my body. I am small-busted, and our culture constantly tells me my figure is ugly. "You're not a woman," is what I hear whenever I glance at a magazine cover.
I've thought about it every day since I was twelve. That's 11,680 days of feeling inadequate. (I'll do the math for you -- I'm 44.) Thanks to a drug called Wellbutrin, OCD no longer controls my life, but it's probably involved in my body image issues. This realization led me to talk to a counselor about it a year ago, and the counseling has helped.
Have you -- or has a friend -- crossed a line? I know nothing about diagnosing eating disorders. I know a lot about suffering from OCD, but even so, I'm not an M.D. If you think you may need it, get a professional involved.
And leave a comment here or on facebook for me. You may not need the help of a professional, but if you're like me, you do need the support of fellow soldiers in the fight against our culture's lies.