At Age 12 I Started Starving Myself
I’ve never been a size 0 girl.
As a kid I was bullied for being overweight, and every night I cried myself to sleep.
My parents were busy raising my two baby sisters, so I was left to raise myself. Without guidance I read magazine articles on how to lose weight.
When I turned 12 I began starving myself. I ate maybe one meal a day. Or none. And added crazy exercise routines to my crazy diet.
At family gatherings I ate very little, or watched other people enjoy their delicious food.
I began to hate food. If I ate I felt like the worst human being — who should be punished with an extra mile of running.
My weight went down. And unfortunately, so did my metabolism.
By the time I got to high school I was small, but still thought I was too big. I had rounded hips but wanted to look like the starving girls on Photoshopped billboards.
When I got a boyfriend I tried to keep my unhealthy relationship with food a secret. And when we broke up I blamed my weight and starved myself for months, until I got to be the smallest I had ever been.
But when I graduated from high school and moved out of my parents’ house I went to the other extreme. I was working like crazy to survive, and felt so empty inside that I began binge eating to fill the void — in another manifestation of my unhealthy relationship with food.
But two years ago I decided to take control of my life, helped in part by the examples of other women who have developed healthy relationships with their bodies, like Amy Schumer, UFC fighter Rhonda Rousey, and former Disney star Demi Lovato.
I have finally learned to love my body. I’ve joined a gym and I’ve also regained a love for food. I now eat healthfully and guilt free.
I also wake up with purpose and a reason to live.
I have worked very hard to get here and still have a ways to go, but I am mentally and physically stronger than I have ever been.
Young women too often fall into the trap of putting all of our energy into our appearance and forget about the other things we have to offer the world. Being obsessed and unsatisfied with our appearance leaves us missing out on a lot of opportunities for success and happiness.