“Unbearable Lightness” by Portia de Rossi

I recently read Portia de Rossi’s memoir about her brave battle with anorexia and bulimia. I’m absolutely amazed that this is de Rossi’s (now Degeneres’) first book. The writing is brutally honest, vulnerable, and astounding. Descriptions of de Rossi’s suffering are chilling, yet real to anyone who has ever suffered from self-esteem or body issues.

Starting with modelling at the age of 12, de Rossi began dieting to fit sample sizes and “look like a model” (an idea created by society). Eventually cutting her calorie count to 300 calories a day and bingeing and purging on food when she didn’t have jobs. Now speaking from the perspective of a recovering anorexic, de Rossi shines light on the disorders that target so many individuals (95% of which are women).

I highly recommend for everyone to read this book and see first-hand the damage that societal views on women’s bodies create. It’s an amazing read and a story that needs to be shared and talked about. I also recommend watching de Rossi’s interviews promoting the book. Hearing her speak about the experience is heartbreaking, yet so so so so courageous.

A definite must read!

UPDATE (2014):

On a more personal note, I have suffered from and struggled through an eating disorder and severe depression for most of my life and reading de Rossi’s memoir really put into perspective the things I’ve done to myself in order to fit those stupid societal standards. I’ve looked up to de Rossi for many years and hoped to someday be brave enough to fight against (and win) my eating disorder. Now at 25, I’ve been seeing a doctor regularly for a year and a half and taking a high dosage of Zoloft to change my brain chemistry. I’m at a healthy weight and I can honestly say that I’m happy. I’m engaged to the most amazing woman on the planet — I’m not kidding when I say that, she stood by me through all my crazy mood swings, held me when I cried after slicing up my stomach, and helped me love my body for what it is. Check out My Writing on the blog for first-hand account of my struggles with an eating disorder and depression.

My fiancée and I this past summer. (I'm on the left)
My fiancée and I this past summer. (I’m on the right)

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