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Poetry :: Articles :: Caron
 
In Their Words

All poems that appear have been submitted and reprinted with the permission of the authors. Copyrights are retained by the original authors and you must contact them for permission to reprint. If you have a poem you'd like to submit yourself please send it to POETRY@something-fishy.com


I Am Woman
by: Shannon Hunt

i am woman, and i am dying.
I am chastised for eating too much and too fast, but when i nearly starve myself to death i am: selfish
looking for attention
trying to look like a supermodel
fighting puberty
mentally disturbed
among other things. it's bad if i'm sick, but worse if i'm fat--where's the happy medium? i am yelled at, patronized, abused for not doing my duty at home, but when i look for other work, i am turned away because i have ovaries or accepted into the company because i have breasts. i try to be smart yet not too smart, thin but not too thin, happy on the outside while i am crying within. i must be strong and feminine, cut my hair short and do the same with my skirts. i am encouraged to exercise compulsively and eat healthily yet men hate big muscles and vegetarians. i am weak as an artist but too forward as a businesswoman or scientist. unwilling to go too fast in a relationship, i am a tease, but accepting a date desperately, i am a slut. i am dressed in pink lace but i am hard as nails. with all these contradictions, why do you think i am:
anorexic
bulimic
depressed
suicidal
reluctant to take ap math
afraid to express my feelings
withdrawn
self-mutiliating
promiscuous
alcoholic?

i'll tell you what i really can be. i can be confident artistic powerful intelligent and beautiful inside. i can be fat thin lesbian straight creative or businesslike, christian jewish buddhist or wiccan, black white hispanic asian native american or indian, a mother teacher physicist author doctor or lawyer. i can cry, laugh, love and hate. i can feel, and i can believe.

i am woman, and i am proud.

©1999 Shannon Hunt. Reprinted with Permission.

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