I was reminded not to eat too much and I was forced to join a sport so I wouldn’t “be fat”. When I joined the swimming team I ate more but it came to an unhealthy obsession. I ate almost every two hours and I genuinely felt hungry. The phrase echoed in my head when someone told me I really needed to stop because “I’ll be fat”.

My body image became an obsession that became worse. All I could think about was being too fat so I started eating less. At first it wasn’t noticeable, then it was slow and then there was a dramatic decrease. I didn’t care though. I was too concerned about how much food I consume; and I didn't notice how skinny I was until my friends started asking if I had lost weight over the summer. Lying through my teeth I said no feeling too disgusted with myself to admit that I was choosing to half starve.

So why are my struggles admired when there is so much pain? It’s like I’m being praised for hating my body, but there is so much more to life than being skinny. Did you ever think if I felt skinny or did I hate myself everytime I looked in the mirror? I don’t see beauty when I look in the mirror and eating makes me feel fat. Even thinking about food makes me think how fat I would be if I ate a decent meal. I understand there is social pressure especially on teens to be skinny, and it is fine if you want to lose weight but you need to do it right. Do research and ask around for advice.

Working out is just as important as eating healthy. It is easy to shrink your stomach but making it larger is a lot harder if you haven’t been eating properly. I hope you take care of your body with love and don’t let anyone change how you feel about yourself. And if you knew how much pain I went through to not be fat; would you still admire me?

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