Sunday, September 12, 2010

For those of you unfamiliar with TLC, it is the cable TV network that has brought us such gems as Jon and Kate Plus Eight, The Duggars: 19 Kids and Counting, I Didn't Know I was Pregnant and Toddlers and Tiaras. If my tone isn't giveaway enough, I won't elaborate any more on my opinion of these shows. [I will say, as a disclaimer, that my mind is just so blown by 'I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant'. How do these women NOT KNOW?!] Anyways, many people really like these shows- and that is just fine. What is not fine is that I just read an article in the LA Times about one of TLC's new shows, airing tonight, which follows people through their issues with food and disordered eating. The name of the show is called Freaky Eaters. Umm... FREAKY EATERS???!!

Now, my thought is that by calling yourself The Learning Channel, your intent is to educate people and help them learn! Part of educating people about eating disorders and helping them to understand disordered eating is to bust myths, emphasize the facts (genetics included), and hopefully in doing so, de-stigmatize mental illness. A show entitled FREAKY EATERS does not help do that- it does just the opposite by stigmatizing eating disorders and disordered eating by calling people 'freaky' who struggle in the ways that they relate to food!! It seems really insensitive and irresponsible.

I would encourage you to follow this link, which will take you to a web page that will allow you to email the network directly and share your feedback with them. You probably have other thoughts in addition to those that I have written- in fact, I am sure that you do! And I would encourage you to share them with the network as well! Part of raising awareness and education is to advocate- and this is a very simple way to do that!

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