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Eating Disorders If you or someone close to you is struggling with an eating disorder, reach out here to ask questions or to receive support for recovery.

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Pro-Ana Websites - March 16th 2014, 01:13 AM

This thread has been labeled as triggering, particularly on the subject of eating disorders, by the original poster or by a Moderator. The contents of this thread might therefore not be suitable for certain sensitive users. Please take this into consideration before continuing to read.

In my developmental psychology class I learned that there are actually pro-anorexia websites out there and forums that people can go on to encourage anorexia. Before I regard this as utterly sick, I want to know the reasoning behind why this is going on. Is there anything positive about these sites?

I just want your feedback and what you think of these sites. I was kind of shocked looking at them....
   
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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 16th 2014, 01:29 AM

My friend has showed me these sites and it's... kind of terrifying. I strongly encourage everyone not to visit one. The ones I saw all had crazy diets - mostly something like eating less and less calories every day and exercising a lot. They have all these pictures of super skinny people who look like living skeletons. They stress the importance of starving yourself, and wrongly state that you can never be too skinny.

They tell people to stay away if you aren't anorexic. Stuff like, "This is only for people who are already diagnosed with an ED and if you don't have one this is not for you and you will not understand it." Maybe it seems normal to people with eating disorders... I'm not sure. But to me they look just... awful.

There's a lot of them out there, too. Not to mention the pro self harm websites, which are equally disturbing.

I think the only reason people like these is because they offer diets and stuff that anorexic people would want to try. So most people who don't have anorexia are incredibly disturbed and shocked, and some people who do have it see them as useful tools, and all the "rules" these websites set are like motivation.


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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 16th 2014, 03:39 AM

I've used these sites in the past and, to be honest, there is nothing positive about them. All it does is allow people struggling with eating disorders to encourage each other in their negative behavior. I won't go into too much detail about what types of things are said or done on these sites but, in my opinion, they are so dangerous. They provide so much opportunity for peoples eating disorders to spiral even more out of control because they've found a community where their actions are encouraged and celebrated.


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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 16th 2014, 04:15 AM

I agree with Sammi, there is nothing positive about Pro-ana websites. They are just a place where people with Eating Disorders can go and encourage each others behavior. I've used them in the past and it only made my eating disorder spiral out of control a bit more.


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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 16th 2014, 11:06 AM

I'm going to be devil's advocate a little here. I'm not saying pro-ana sites are good, they are toxic and dangerous. But when you're in that mindset that you can never be good enough, and that nothing is going right and you're completely alone because no one understands what you see in the mirror, the people on these sites will tell you they understand. They share the same habits and work together to try and reach their ultimate goal. I am absolutely not condoning these websites and strongly believe they should be shut down. But when you're in that mindset and find a place where there are people like you giving you the kind of advice you want to hear, it can feel like a good thing.
So yes, when you're in the deep throes if an eating disorder with no interest in recovery, they can seem like a good idea. But even on these sites you will never be respected or regarded as good enough, you'll just be told to try harder and be better.

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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 16th 2014, 03:39 PM

Thanks for all the responses. I agree with Louise. I think it's more of the fact that people who are in that mindset are finding support so they continue to do those things. But why are such sites allowed on the internet? It blows my mind that no one is doing anything to end the "pro-ana" and "thinspiration" movement. It makes me feel really sick about the society. I'm not saying that these people are intentionally doing wrong, but I feel like people who browse these sites, even without an ED, can develop one. It's essentially promoting suicide.
   
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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 16th 2014, 05:25 PM

Those pro-ana sites is what I call in one word: Bullshit.


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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 16th 2014, 06:16 PM

I read up about them a few years back and looked one up just to see exactly what they were (I'm nosey) They're pretty vile. Nothing positive about them at all.


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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 18th 2014, 04:09 AM

Nothing positive about these websites at all. Honestly, I can understand why people would go to them though, people suffering with Anorexia I mean. As Louise said, sometimes it can feel like a good thing to be around others doing the same thing. To be understood and not be looked at weirdly. But in reality, all it does is cause the person to fall deeper and deeper into unhealthy and dangerous habits because everyone there encourages each other to proceed in dangerous behavior.
   
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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 18th 2014, 10:56 PM

Yeah, I can see why people would be drawn to them. It's always nice to be around people like yourself. But, I really do think that they aren't healthy at all. All that these sites will do is bring you farther into it and make everything worse. It really makes me sad to know that people resort to getting support from those kinds of places. Definitely not good for them.


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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 18th 2014, 11:37 PM

I was looking at them and I was kind of intrigued. I started reading the list of "tips" and I tried to imagine what it would be like to do those things and I started to fight myself to stop thinking about it. These sites are very dangerous and can be addicting to view and keep scrolling down the tips. I only hope people stay away.
   
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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 19th 2014, 05:00 PM

If they're anything like pro-suicide sites, then perhaps they aren't as terrible as they seem. I like having people egg me on. It affirms my thoughts, rather than tells me that what I'm feeling or thinking is wrong because it's not considered socially acceptable. Sometimes it's nice to have a group who shares your beliefs, even if they may lead to harmful activities, because you realize you don't have the whole world at your back. So perhaps they may not be good for stopping the disorder, but at least they can prevent sufferers from falling into other problems such as depression.
   
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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 20th 2014, 05:58 PM

I don't go on pro-ana sites, they would just discourage me.

But I do get ads that could very well belong on such type of sites. "10 tricks to this body" and I can see the ribcage protuding. No, just no. It brings a sense of irony to my thoughts.
   
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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 21st 2014, 03:08 PM

It's not just pro-anorexia sites that I've come across but I have found pro-self harm sites that encourage cutting to deal with problems. It makes me shudder. They make the disclaimer that it's for people who are already dealing with these kinds of issues but there are very vulnerable people who can fall into it due to sites like this. I know that they provide relief for those who are in that mindset but it's only feeding the negative behavior. \: I wish something could be done about it.
   
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Re: Pro-Ana Websites - March 21st 2014, 04:35 PM

I have never been on the pro-ana or pto-self-harm sites. But I am guilty of collecting icons of what people would call thinspiration. I also collect icons on self-harm too. I know it's not healthy but I do it anyways.


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