First, a few definitions by scientific research and eating disorder organisations:
“Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) is often called the ‘imagined ugliness’ disorder. […] excessive, disproportionate concerns about a minor flaw, or as recurrent, anxiety-provoking thoughts about an entirely imagined defect […] most frequently focused on the head and face, but may involve any body part. [Sufferers] feel that something is too big or swollen or too small, or that it is out of proportion to the rest of the body. Any part of the body may however be involved in BDD including the breasts, genitals, buttocks, abdomen, hands, feet, legs, hips, overall body size, body build or muscle bulk […] lead[s] most patients to engage in compulsive behaviours, such as mirror checking, excessive grooming, and skin picking … [They] believe themselves to be ugly or defective.” Source: http://www.ocduk.org/bdd
“[…]body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is relatively common among patients with anorexia nervosa” (Int J Eat Disord2002;32:291) Source: http://eatingdisordersreview.com/nl/nl_edr_13_6_6.html
“A normally healthy weight range for an individual can be perceived as overweight by someone with a distorted body image. An anorexic … woman may look at herself in a mirror and see a reflection that is greater than her actual size.” Source: https://www.eatingdisorderhope.com/information/body-image
Sorry, I’m a bit out of practise with citations but just so you know where the info comes from and that I don’t claim it as my own 😉
And now about my body self-perception:
I’m not entirely convinced what I have is BDD or a distorted body image. I know it’s common among people with eating disorders and yes, there’s a big chance I suffer from it too. Deep down I know I do. But when I look myself in the mirror I’m certain that what I see is real and that I’m probably the only eating-disordered person who sees their real size in the mirror. Leaves the question open why my size keeps changing often several times a day but there’s one prevalent size and image I keep seeing. People tell me what I see is total bullshit but I don’t believe them. It’s so hard to get into your head because why on earth would you see yourself as bigger as you are, why is it so real for you?? In addition there’s the fact that people generally tend to lie when it comes to judging someone elses body. However is this the same? Are they telling the truth? In your perception they are just trying to make you feel better or they are exaggerating or it’s them who have a distorted perception.
This morning I looked myself in the mirror and all I see again is a chubby short person with chubby thighs, an upper body that’s way out of proportion and too big for her height; I see a completely acne scarred face with weird mouth-nose-eye proportions or just generally something weird but I don’t know what exactly it is. The face shape is weird, the eyes are weird when I look at my face as a whole. They are kind of okay when looked at without the rest of the face but as soon as you look at the whole picture it’s just totally unaesthetic. Actually putting it in a category is difficult because it’s ot ugly per se…it’s definitely not pretty but it’s something more than ugly, something I can’t describe.
As for my thighs and butt and torso….I really wonder how I have a low bmi and where I lost that weight. Probably all brain weight or whatever. Maybe some organs shrank, otherwise it makes no sense. Noone in the entire world can look like that with a bmi 16 on the lower end. Except me. This only confirms how I see myself: weird and different and just abnormal and ridiculous. Maybe it’s my height. Maybe short people have it more difficult to actually look anorexic or thin. But then I know girls who are short and look sooo tiny. So is it just me? It must be. Maybe some exceptions. But it must be my height. Fuck my height. Fuck my parents who didn’t realise how I wasn’t growing throughout all my puberty. How I stopped growing at 10. Fuck them that they didn’t do anything about it, I mean how would I know there’ s such a thing as treatments with growth hormones etc. Ecetera ecetera….and here we are back with the old conflict of my height. Blaming my height for everything.
So that’s my BDD. Or apparently BDD. I don’t know I know I don’t know I know I don’t know. But it probably is a distorted perception. But it probably isn’t. That’s how I feel. That’s what I have to contribute to the topic. Completely fucked up, right? I know from others who have eating disorders that they often feel the same way. But according to my brain they really have a distorted perception and are wrong in what they see in the mirror. Whereas I’m oh so special that I’m actually right when I see these things.
I’m slowly getting a headache reflecting on all this, it’s always passively on my mind anyways and also I have to do work for college. It’s way to late to manage doing all the work I should’ve done but I’ll try trying.
Bye for now, I hope you all have a nice day! xx