50 Shades of Grey was originally fanfiction based on the Twilight series, which was then published as a novel (along with 2 subsequent books). It sold over 100 million copies around the world and topped best-seller lists everywhere. It’s about to be adapted into a film, set to come out early next year.
It follows a college student named Ana Steele, who enters a relationship with a man named Christian Grey and is then introduced to a bastardised and abusive parody of BDSM culture.
While the book is paraded as erotica, the relationship between Ana and Christian is far from healthy. The core mantra of the BDSM community is “safe, sane and consensual”, and 50 Shades is anything but. None of the rules of BDSM practices (which are put in place to protect those involved) are actually upheld. Christian is controlling, manipulative, abusive, takes complete advantage of Ana, ignores safe-words, ignores consent, keeps her uneducated about the sexual practices they’re taking part in, and a multitude of other terrible things. Their relationship is completely sickening and unhealthy.
Basically, “the book is a glaring glamorisation of violence against women,” as Amy Bonomi so perfectly put it.
It’s terrible enough that a book like this has been absorbed by people worldwide. Now, we have a film that is expected to be a huge box-office success, and will likely convince countless more young women that it’s okay not to have any autonomy in a relationship, that a man is allowed to control them entirely. It will also show many young men that women are theirs to play with and dominate, thus contributing to antiquated patriarchal values and rape culture.
Boycott this fucking movie, for the love of god. These kinds of ideas are dangerous and set us back as a society
It’s so messed up how many women love/obsess over this book..
What they think it’s like:
What it’s actually like:
mod note: for an explanation as to why this is unhelpful for many people, check out our post on the subject
Congratulations for taking this step! It takes a very brave person to do something like this, and you should be proud.
Here are some of my ideas:
- Point out that they don’t see you all the time, and so have no way of knowing what you do/don’t keep down when they’re not there.
- Ask them if they’d rather wait until it was worse, perhaps too late? Would they want to be responsible for watching their daughter wither away, because they wrote you off too soon? Remember that this isn’t some kind of sneaky trick. It’s true. Very, very, scarily true. Getting help now is ALWAYS better than getting help later. I heard some statistic like, 2/3 of ED sufferers are not underweight. EDs, however, can be fatal at any weight, due to a host of medical issues. Remind them that these are real fears and that they should be fearing for the life of their baby girl. It’s that serious. Looking up some statistics (maybe even printing them out) could bolster your case and serve as a wake up call.
- If they do see it as not serious “enough,” it could be cost-related. If they see you eating normally and assume that therefore nothing is wrong (even though that is very incorrect), they might be reluctant to consider expensive treatment for a problem they can’t see. Two approaches here: you could either look for a very low cost, low commitment (on their part) treatment program, i.e. getting counseling from psychology grad students if you live near a college campus (usually cheap or free, sometimes they reimburse you for travel expenses) or seeing what counseling may be covered under insurance. Essentially, trying to work within their budget — make it easy for them to help you. Option two is to go back to #2: remind them that YOUR LIFE IS IN DANGER. This is not a phase, or attention-seeking. Clearly, you are anxious about even asking for any attention, hence the nervousness with talking to them, as well as eating normally around them (which some people do to lower suspicions). Point out that there are better ways to seek attention, that would require less effort (like maybe dying your hair blue and piercing your nose). Be reasonable, but firm. You know what you need, and they are the ones who are most equipped to help you with it — the only issue is showing them what is so clear to you.
Here is a list of their potential responses, and some rejoinders you can use:
"Don’t be silly, it’s just a phase, you’ll be fine."
I’m talking to you about this because I have waited for this to pass, and I’ve kept it a secret, and it’s only getting worse. If you still think I’m being silly and worrying for nothing, what if I got a therapist’s opinion? We can see what an impartial professional thinks, and then re-evaluate based on that. Does that seem fair to you?
"But you always eat your dinner, so it can’t be THAT bad."
I eat my dinner [to pretend I’m okay, to avoid suspicion, because that’s when it feels safe to eat, because I’m hungry after not-eating or purging]. Just because I eat dinner around you doesn’t mean that I’m fine, or that I don’t need help.
"Why don’t you just start eating, then?"
I want to, but it makes me so [anxious/uncomfortable/etc.] that a lot of times, it’s difficult. Eating isn’t the problem, the anxiety/depression/etc. is. If I started eating but kept ignoring the underlying problems, they would still be there, festering instead of healing. I want to start eating, but mostly I want to be healthy, and I can’t be healthy if I have no way to cope with the anxiety/depression.
"You’re fine, you don’t need to lose weight."
Having an eating disorder isn’t about being thin. It’s about control and self-destruction, which is why it gets out of hand in a way that normal diets don’t. Even if I was emaciated, I would feel compelled to lose weight — it’s that mindset that is dangerous, and it’s the same mindset whether this weight or 800 pounds or 20 pounds.
"Just go exercise or something!."
I’m willing to try various other things outside of counseling if it will help with my overall wellbeing. If I think that exercise could help (endorphins, etc.), then I would be happy to try it — no one is more invested in my happiness than me. However, it’s tricky because I am afraid this eating disorder would make it about burning calories/losing weight/becoming sicker, rather than becoming healthier. Since I don’t know, I would rather talk to a counselor about it before and during, to make sure I am not hurting myself in the long run.
"You’re just doing this for attention."
There are many easier ways to get attention, that don’t involve feeling anxious and ashamed so often. If I wanted attention, I could spend $4 and dye my hair blue. An ED is actually the WORST way to seek attention, because so much of it is based in keeping secrets from everyone. It’s actually really hard for me to open up this much, because I am afraid that you won’t hear me or will dismiss me, and I won’t get the help I really need.
"We don’t have the resources right now, it’ll have to wait."
There are many ways to go about getting treatment. What if we called the insurance company together and asked about the various treatment plans? I could draw up a spreadsheet and we could work together to find a way to get me what I need without breaking the bank. If absolutely necessary, I guess I’ll have to wait. But the longer I delay treatment, the easier it is to fall more into my ED, so I’d like to get started as quickly as possible.
"You’re doing this to yourself. You’re making yourself like this."
Why would anyone make themselves like this? It hurts, I feel terrible, I have to keep these huge secrets, and it’s really really scary. This is not a choice, and it’s especially not a choice I would make.
Anyway, anticipating what they’ll say and practicing how you’ll respond could help you feel more confident and come off as more mature (which is also good because your maturity would conflict with the “childish/silly/attention-seeking” theory, without really trying!)
In any case, I hope that helps.
Best of luck with things <3 Let me know how it goes!
if someone has a fucking phobia of something don’t be an asshole and play with their fear for your own amusement
I don’t want to judge people here or for this to sound offensive in anyway but after leaving for a while and then coming back and seeing the same old thing, the same old posts all ‘recovering’, worries, struggles, ups, downs, debates, triggers, numbers, thoughts, disorders, food, body image, ‘look…
Most of us don’t think twice when it comes to having a soft drink every now and then. But what happens when those drinks become part of our everyday diet? And what happens when they become staples of children’s diets? Not only does this video highlight the dangers of consuming too many sugary foods and drinks, but it rightly calls out how often low-income families end up spending what little they have on these junk food products because they don’t have access to healthier options. The consequences are heartbreaking and pretty terrifying.
Oh! One more thing. While it’s important to encourage people to make healthy food-and-drink choices, it’s also important to remember that everyone has control over their own bodies and should be respected as such. Healthy options and education should be the goal when talking about diabetes prevention, not policing what anyone else eats or drinks. OK, good talk.
"Family gatherings" aka "90% of the people here are racist"
"Family gatherings" aka 90% of the people here are either racist, homophobic, sexist or all of the above