Disordered Eating & Substance Misuses Recruitment Tactics

Substance misuse and disordered eating are often very real attempts at problem solving.  Pain, violence, homophobia, racism, sexism, curiosity, friends, and the empty-promises offered by anorexia/bulimia/compulsive eating (ABC) and substance misuse often inform people's decision to enter into this territory.  Tactics refers to the areas of a person's life that anorexia/bulimia and substance misuse try to take advantage of and use to enter  into a person's life.  For example, the prevalence of western societal prescriptions that equate women's thinness with beauty.  Or how poverty, violence, sexualized violence, abuse, racism, and homophobia, might pave the way for these practices to enter a person's life. In order for anorexia/bulimia/compulsive eating to get so big they need to offer people something that they might not be able to get otherwise, this seduction often takes the form of promises, and offers of pain relief.  When talking to person's struggling with ABC and A&D what becomes quite evident is how disordered eating practices and substance misuse use the person’s experience of pain to their advantage. What gives these problems their strength is the person’s relationship with uncertainty, ideas of comparison/not measuring up, pain, or a sense of a lack of control. People clearly are not resigned to a life of feeling badly and go in search of ways to feel better. This section takes a close-up look at the strategies and tactics that disordered eating and substance misuse use to capture and seduce its recruits.