What you need to know before you watch To The Bone
The Netflix original movie To The Bone came out yesterday...and it has everyone entranced by the realistic plot line showing the harsh reality of what it's like living with anorexia. Ellen (played by Lily Collins) is a teenage girl battling the deadly disease who has been in and out of several recovery programs to try and beat it, but nothing seems to be doing the trick—until the day her parents enroll her in a recovery program at a group home for youths lead by a non-traditional doctor. Here, she begins her journey to self acceptance with the help of her new group of friends.
The film is, however, cautioned as being triggering or maybe a not-so-great influence on young girls. But if you've never personally suffered from an eating disorder, it could be a very eye-opening and enlightening movie. Regardless, if you feel comfortable watching it or are wondering if you should watch it, read our tips below first.
Watch with a parent or trusted adult.
During the movie, you might have a lot of questions or concerns about anorexia and eating disorders in general because of how realistic it is. Watching with Mom or Dad will help you feel comfortable discussing anything you see that is upsetting or maybe hits a little too close to home.
Be honest with yourself.
While eating disorders can affect people of all ages, according to The Healthy Teen Project, "95 percent of those with eating disorders are between the ages of 12 and 25." And sadly, a lot of girls your age are dealing with issues around food and body image. If you or any of your friends can relate to the symptoms or behaviors show in To The Bone, it is important to reach out to someone you trust about it. You might be in the early stages of an eating disorder and not even know it and getting help early is key.
Remember eating disorders are serious issues.
Lily Collins might be a super gorg actress—but that doesn't mean you should treat her new movie as a how-to guide for looking like her. Watch with the mindset that you are seeing a portrayal of something deadly, serious and painful, not something to aspire to. Keep in mind that no matter what, everyone has different body types and shapes and your body is perfectly unique. And if you're worried that the film might affect you negatively or worsen your self-esteem (or if you've suffered from an eating disorder in the past), we recommend steering clear.
Understanding that every girl is beautiful in her own way is key to having a healthy, positive body image. Try one of our fave self-esteem boosters below:
+ Gather your girls once a week and have everyone say one or two positive things (that don't have to do with appearance) about each girl. Afterward, write what was said about you on a sticky note and hang it up in a place where you'll see it every day as a reminder.
+ Keep a journal filled with positive quotes, thoughts and pictures that will be there for you to read when you're feeling down.
+ Create a go-to 'feel good' playlist that includes a slew of girl power anthems.
+ Talk to yourself in the mirror at least once a day (it may feel a little silly the first few times but trust!) and say what you love about yourself.
+ Practice meditation as a way to unwind and focus on the positive aspects of your life and get away from the negative thoughts.
If you think you or one of your friends may have an eating disorder, please seek help immediately from a parent or doctor. For more information on eating disorders, CLICK HERE.
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