True Life: I have Orthorexia Nervosa

The episode of True Life that I watched was about three young people to have a disorder called orthorexia. This disorder is when you have a big obsession with food, so much that it starts to take over your life. Although there were three people I thought that it would be easier to focus on one person, so I chose Lauren. She was overweight as an adolescent and later developed anorexia. She realized that she could no longer live that way because it was unhealthy, so she used a new form of diet. At twenty years old she would only eat around 15 foods that she deemed were “safe”. She was very into planning her meals at the beginning of the day and when she ate what she planned she would feel very good about herself. Her disorder was mostly a secret, especially to her girlfriend for almost 4 months. In the end, she didn’t really improve much even though she tried to see a therapist about her problem.

The type of narrative I classified this as was chaos, because it interfered with her social life. She said that she didn’t feel normal, and that she wishes she didn’t have to worry about food like she does. When going to parties with her friends she feels that it is very hard to turn down her friends when they offer her food that she won’t eat, and finds it hard to fit in. She also said that she is sick of putting food first, and having it as a priority. I think that a big part of her problem is the stigma that our culture puts on being overweight. If being overweight wasn’t looked down upon, she probably wouldn’t be having such a hard time dealing with her weight. So many young people feel that they are inadequate because of their weight, or how they look, and it’s all because the way we think we are “supposed” to look. Lauren’s experience with her medical professional didn’t work out to well for her because she realizes that she has a problem, but she isn’t willing to change the way she eats because she is too fearful of gaining weight. She knows she has a problem, and owns up to the fact that she does, but she just can’t change the way she eats at this point in her life.

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