The Student News Site of San Luis Obispo High School




The Student News Site of San Luis Obispo High School



Anorexia: One Girl’s Battle


 Anorexia is a disorder that affects not only people around the world but students here at San Luis Obispo High School. Expressions went inside one SLOHS sophomore’s life to see what it was like battling anorexia.

  “There’s 2000 calories you’re supposed to eat in a day. I would eat under 500,” said Sophomore Haley Adler.

Adler has been battling anorexia since February of last year. Her situation got out of control.

“For me, one of the main reasons I started is because I am a perfectionist and if I see something about myself that I don’t like, I have to fix it,” said Adler.

Different people have different triggers that causes them to go into this mindset. Some people hear songs, others see an image of a model or just a thin person. These are all things that cause the brain to automatically think you need to starve yourself again. Developmental changes that result in alterations to sudden hormonal imbalances in the brain play a role as well.

“There are certain triggers for me that make me starve myself again. I have these one pair of pants that i try on occasionally, if they’re too small, it automatically triggers me to start up again,” said Adler.

The role of media and popular culture in the development is a less likely trigger, surprisingly. Different kids develop different triggers, and no study has proven why these kids develop what they do.

For people suffering with anorexia, it is mentally impossible for them to see themselves as skinny. That is one of the many reasons it spirals out of control.

“Your mind has an image distortion, and for me when I looked at myself I didn’t see the weight dropping,” said Adler.

It is hard to stop once you’ve started, sometimes it’s just a coping skill.

“I know for me if something is stressful or goes wrong you just have to go back to that because in some way it’s sort of a comfort, which sounds really weird,” said Adler.

Once somebody has anorexia, it stays with them the rest of their life. Even though it might not look like they’re skinny, they still have it in their head that they are fat and need to lose weight.

Adler can not stress enough the importance of not starting thinking of yourself as lesser than you are and starving yourself because of it. Adler said, “Once I started, I noticed so many things about my body I wanted to change. It started with my thighs, and then I went to obsessing over being able to wrap my hand around my upper arm, then being able to see hip bones and collar bones. It’s like a huge obsession and it just snowballs.”

Anorexia does not only kill your insides. Adler said,“There are the side effects. I got pale, and my hair would fall out. My stomach hurts constantly, it’s really bad cramps, sometimes it feels almost like needles, and you’re completely weak. I had to walk up the adult school stairs and I would get light-headed and have to sit down because I couldn’t do it.”.

Adler is currently receiving help from a counselor and is fighting her battle like a champ. Adler said, “The most important thing to do is be there to listen and don’t tell people they’re doing anything wrong.” She is getting better daily and wants to help others with anorexia as well.

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