What would be a real life example of bulimia?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Princess Diana was one real life example of someone who battled with bulimia.

There are many people who experience or have experienced bulimia. However, when we look to "real life" examples, we often gravitate towards famous people.  Princess Diana was open about how bulimia impacted the way she saw herself:

I had bulimia for a number of years.  And that's like a secret disease.  You inflict it upon yourself because your self- esteem is at a low ebb, and you don't think you are worthy or valuable.  You fill your stomach four or five times a day- some do it more- and it gives you a feeling of comfort... but it's temporarily, temporary. Then you're disgusted at the bloatedness of your stomach, and you bring it all up again.  And it's a repetitive pattern which is very destructive to yourself.

Diana's experience is a reminder of how real bulimia is.  It is a destructive eating disorder that settles in psychological perception of one's self.

American journalist Katie Couric represents another real life example of someone who struggled with bulimia.  Couric's experiences with the eating disorder took place during and after college.  She says that the disorder forced her to feel a sense of "rigidity, this feeling that if you eat one thing that's wrong, you're full of self-loathing and then you punish yourself." Couric's observations reflect the real world implications of the disease, as it preys on the psychology of the individual.  Finally, the real life example of British politician John Prescott shows how the disease  is not something that only "young women" experience.  Prescott, a member of Parliament, was under severe stress. The anxiety and demands of political expectations triggered a condition where "the signs in the toilet gave it away" along with "all the missing food."  Prescott is another real life example of bulimia.