Mocking Eating Disorders: Is This a Good Halloween Costume?
Ricky’s was selling the “Ana Rexia” costume. Whoever said, “You can never be too thin…”
When Isabelle Caro, a French model and actress, died last year at the age of 28, she weighed a mere 68 pounds. A sack of protruding bones and sagging, discolored flesh, Caro suffered for 15 years with the mental illness referred to as anorexia nervosa. Just months after her death, her distraught mother committed suicide.
And this isn’t a rare case: of the millions of people suffering from this deadly disease, 20 percent will die prematurely from complications related to it.
Many of us have spoken out against the fashion industry’s nasty habit of using too-thin girls in magazine spreads and on the runways.
So, when did it become humorous to wear a skeleton costume titled “Anna Rexia,”complete with a cutesy heart nametag and measuring tape?
I can’t help but demand to know how anyone could don a glittering skeleton suit that glorifies a serious sickness.
Did I mention that the description reads, “You can never be too rich or too thin”? Well, the too thin part didn’t exactly work out for Isabelle and the millions who have literally died in the name of being skinny.
As someone who has struggled with an eating disorder, I can assure you that I find this costume horrific, offensive, and utterly sickening. As adult women with feelings and some sense of empathy, we should never make a joke of a terrifying disease that primarily affects and kills girls (as young as 5!) and women.
Emaciated, starving girls do not need to get the impression that other young women want to be them. And for women like me, this getup is a slap in the face –a heartless trivialization of a battle that took us so long to win.
Though the costume was pulled from Ricky’s and other mega retailers, you can still find it around the web with a simple Google search.
Highly offensive costumes have been around for a while (homemade Twin Towers outfit, anyone?). This Halloween, let’s choose what we wear wisely. There might never be an end to insensitive getups, but that doesn’t mean it’s okay to head out as a sexy cancer patient or bulimic teenager.
Diana Denza is a regular contributor to BettyConfidential.