Teasing leads teen to nearly starve herself to death
A Gloucester, New England girl lost a startling amount of weight after taunts from a family member sent her into a scary downward spiral that almost resulted in her death. A family member made "a daft little joke" about 17-year-old Deanna Carter's weight and called her "thunder thighs," which really damaged Carter's self-esteem and sent her into a deep depression and eating disorder. What until you hear how much weight the teen lost in just one year.
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Carter started obsessing over her body image and gravitated towards pro-anorexia sites, losing a drastic amount of weight and willingly making herself sick after each meal so that her body could get even skinnier. She did this until she lost 56 pounds in one year, was severely underweight, and started experiencing more serious side effects like heart palpitations. Even when her family stopped teasing her and actually grew concerned for her health, Carter was already in too deep. She fully believed she need to be thinner and that she had more weight to lose. She was at 84 pounds when her mother finally insisted that she get help. Through therapy, Carter has since climbed back up to a healthier 126 pounds.
This story reminds us of the power that we have with our words. We might think we're joking around and that the person will take it as lightly as we have, but you never know what insecurities you're tapping into when you tease. It could develop into an obsession for the person, leading them to hear voices saying over and over how insignificant they are, how ugly, fat, and unpopular they are compared the rest of the world. This is why bullying is so dangerous and why some children have even committed suicide as a result of relentless torture. Not only are they getting it from their peers day and night thanks to social media, but even when they're alone, their mind starts taunting them as well. It seeps in and takes so much work to crawl out of that hole and realize that it's all made up. Carter was just weeks away from dying because her mind led her to believe she needed to continue wasting away in order to be accepted.
Images via Corbis Images, Daily Mail