Most of you probably heard about this young girl, Dana, the 8 year old struggling with anorexia. I stumbled upon this documentary style video about her and I wanted to share it for comments and thought. I also felt curious about this little girl who being so young struggles with a very serious eating disorder.
This is Dana's story.
Dana is only eight years old anorexic child. She consumed only 175 calories a day and exercised to the point of exhaustion, skipping for an hour after each meal and then running to burn off more calories.
Dana did indeed nearly starve herself to death. Out of the blue, she stopped eating sweets and junk food. Then she stopped eating meat. Then she stopped eating anything and started refusing to drink water.
Her parents dragged her, kicking and screaming, to hospital. She came home after a couple of weeks and agreed to eat small amounts. But she'd exercise obsessively, running up and down the stairs, to keep the weight off.
Her mother said Dana had told her she was hearing voices in her head, telling her not to eat. She also said she wanted to die. After a few weeks, she'd lost a third of her body weight, dropping to three stone.
So her parents dragged her, kicking and screaming again, to the Rhodes Farm Clinic, a residential treatment facility for anorexics.
"Not eating is not an option," said clinic head Dr Dee Dawson, alongside scenes of skeletal teenage girls laboriously chewing on breakfast cereal as though it was broken glass. They all have the same dead eyes and spout the same dead cliches, as though they'd picked them up from a magazine (which maybe they have).
The clinic's policy seems to be to bring the kids in, fatten them up for 12 weeks and then let them home again.
"Anorexia is not really about food, it's a cry for help," said a solemn voiceover. Yes, but help with what?
"It begins with a child who has lots of problems," added Dr Dawson. Yes, but what kind of problems?
Dana is back home, back to her proper weight and eating again. For now. But no one knows why she stopped to begin with.
Her mother said: "We can close the book on this now. It was a little blip in her childhood."
This was a shabby and incurious documentary, as hollow as Dana's empty stomach, that arguably did more damage than good to the drive to understand anorexia. Cutting Edge has lost its cutting edge.