It’s no surprise to me that extensive amounts of porn of varying fetishes exist online, but I never realized that there was a market for dangerously underweight emaciated women’s bodies.
According to The Guardian, women using pro-anorexia websites are likely targets for a growing porn niche that glorifies protruding ribs and shrinking waistlines. One woman, Sasha McDonald, who posted pictures of her skeletal body on pro-anorexia websites and her own blog received the following email from a pornography agency specializing in anorexic images:
“As you know, beauty has one name: being thin. Our models are underweight, skinny, thin, bony – just like you. We want you. Regardless of the costs, we want you to join our agency. Let’s face facts, on anorexic porn websites, men are masturbating watching your pictures. You are a superstar of starvation and if you were selling and marketing your frame you would be more wealthy than most of us because men would pay any price for watching those pictures.”
While McDonald was not lured into the anorexic porn industry, she did find that some of the pictures she posted on her own blog had been posted on anorexia porn forums without her consent.
The Guardian also reported on two anorexic women who were held captive and forced into anorexia pornography by someone they had met online. The captor starved the women to make them as emaciated and “marketable” as possible. After they escaped one of the women died shortly after from heart failure.
With the number of pro-anorexia websites soaring – a global increase of 470% between 2006 and 2008 amounting to over 1,500 sites according to an international IT security company – there are many vulnerable women susceptible to the lure of the anorexic porn industry.
With crippling self-esteem and body image issues, not to mention the sense of satisfaction and pride many of these women feel in losing weight, women struggling with eating disorders are easy targets for the anorexia porn industry where they receive positive affirmation for the thinner they get.
“There should be a worldwide law in place to protect those with anorexia from those horrible, disgusting perverts,” says one of the women who was held captive. “Those with anorexia fetishes will target women who are so far into their illness that they are easily manipulated and extremely vulnerable.”
Seeking out women who are ill, as women suffering from eating disorders like anorexia are, is deplorable. Protections need to be put in place for women with eating disorders so they don’t get lured into a porn industry that will only make their illness worse.
Photo from Flickr.