A Deadly Disorder
Kidney failure, heart problems, spleen dysfunction, bone and muscle loss, and finally death, these are only a handful of the deadly effects associated with anorexia and bulimia. As Mim Udovitch states, “About one in 200 American women suffers from anorexia; two or three in 100 suffer from bulimia” (557). Through the combined works of Mim Udovitch and Lisa D. Galynker both sides of the eating disorder were described in detail. In “A Secret Society of the Starving” Udovitch keeps a tone of anti pro-ana (against pro-anorexia) throughout the entire story. She repeatedly talks about pro-ana websites and how ridiculous and nonsensical they are. Udovitch is very persuasive with her choices of words and personal interviews. While Udovitch takes a reporter’s view of the subject, Galynker takes the view of a trained medical psychologist. Although Galynker and Udovitch discuss the same subject, their views and opinions are entirely opposed throughout the entire essay.
Within the selection “A Secret Society of the Starving”, Udovitch describes the lives of girls with eating disorders and how websites and society affect them. She interviews girls who have dealt with a personal eating disorder and addresses them by their website nicknames. Claire, Chaos, and Futurebird were only a few girls she interviewed. She describes Chaos as, “a very attractive 23-year-old who has been either bulimic or anorexic since she was 10” (Udovitch 561). Chaos practices weird habits such as not eating in front of people and taking an excessive number of laxatives. Chaos also makes a number of trips to the hospital with heart problems. Although Udovitch makes it clear how many bad and unusual things this girl does, she also explains the good aspects of her life. Chaos, as described by Udovitch, “is by no means a young woman with nothing going for her” (562). She is a double major college student with a full-time job who is very talented in the arts. Each girl interviewed maintained a similar sad story, and each shared an interest in pro-ana websites. Udovitch describes the appearance of the girls who have been interviewed and how the disease has affected their medical stature. Each girl who had been interviewed had a bright future ahead of her, and most had led normal lives (except for their secret disorder). Udovitch also describes the effects that pro-ana websites have on girls. Although she states that the websites do not cause this disorder, she defines them as a place for encouragement of this behavior.
Udovitch seems to have a desire to tell the world about pro-ana websites and how they affect girls with these diseases. She describes these websites as, “A way for them to connect with other girls and to basically talk about how special they are” (559). Udovitch’s outlook on pro-ana websites is not a very happy one, as she talks about them in a negative sense throughout her entire essay.
In Lisa D. Galynker’s selection “Reading across Professions,”...