About the Bitches

I thought Susan Sontag showed everyone that our personality defects don't cause our cancer. Now we have the lovely bestselling Skinny Bitches telling us the opposite, and I would bet that more people have heard of them than the late Sontag. The authors of Skinny Bitch: A no-nonsense, tough-love guide for savvy girls who want to stop eating crap and start looking fabulous are counseling those savvy girls to go vegan and organic. Nothing wrong with that, except some of their science seems a bit loose. And then we get to page 189, where the Bitches praise, quote and paraphrase case studies from Dr. Carolyn Myss' book, Anatomy of the Spirit. To wit: "It is no coincidence that Julie was diagnosed with breast and ovarian cancer, reflecting her lack of self-love....'Joanna' was married to a man who had multiple affairs, which she knew about but tried to live with. Not surprisingly, she developed breast cancer." But then she confronted her husband, left the marriage--and recovered! Of course!

The authors do say that they're not saying that "everyone suffering from a disease has brought it upon him or herself." But that it's possible. Thank you so much, Skinny Bitches, for blaming us. You can keep your book and your damned soy beans and soy milk and tofu, which I don't eat any more because they act like weak estrogens.

I can't take this book back to the store because I didn't buy it. A co-worker of L's did. She had a lumpectomy and I guess is trying to clean up her act. We are all trying to. But the Skinny Bitches aren't the ones who should be directing us.

6 comments:

nat said...

Oh, I hate that mentality of blaming the victim. My MIL went so far as to ask me, when I found I had ovca, if I was on birth control (thinking that would have been a choice I made that caused my cancer). It was like people were trying hard to find something *I* did wrong, so that the blame could be rightly placed (on me, and whatever ill choices I had made to 'get' the cancer). It wasn't malicious, but it was there. People want to know that it won't be them, next.

Don't get me wrong, I have also questioned what I may have done, what wrong choices I made in the past, that may have caused this.
Regardless, its too late for assigned blame. I have it, and now I have to redirect my focus to every day living.
Stupid cancer.

ChronicBabe said...

GRRRRRR. This is the kind of idea that just makes me crazy. A few months back, a reader emailed me to request that I remove the word "chronic" from the name of my web site (and my thinking and speaking in general) because using the word was causing my illnesses. Her belief, taken straight from The Secret (which I suspect the Skinny Bitches have read) is that I am causing my illnesses and by positive thinking, I can eliminate them.

Wow. What a crock. Of course, as Nat mentions, I've wondered many times if I did something to cause my fibromyalgia and asthma. I notice things I do to aggravate them, of course, and I do my best to improve my life approach so I flare them as little as possible. But the idea that I made myself sick...that any of us make ourselves sick, especially with a whopper like cancer...is repugnant. Thanks for spreading the word, Babe!

Bradley said...

My wife and I are both vegetarians who decided pretty early on that the Skinny Bitch series really wasn't for us, mostly because we've got some pretty serious problems with a series of books designed to reinforce body image problems in young women while pretending to espouse a progressive political agenda. There are plenty of reasons to go vegetarian-- it's healthier if done correctly, it's better for the environment, and you don't have to deal with the guilt of knowing that you're likely eating a living thing that was tortured before being turned into your meal-- but "It's as effective as anorexia, without all the hunger pangs!" isn't one of them. Knowing that the Skinny Bitches also seem to think that cancer patients are somehow responsible for what happens to their bodies at the cellular level just kinda gilds the lily for me.

Kris, Skint in Europe said...

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The Fifty Foot Blogger said...

Ughh...it's the 21st century and this kind of magical thinking seems to be all the rage. Never mind exposure to industrial toxins, I must have gotten breast cancer because of low self-esteem.

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