Zosia Mamet Opens Up About Her Eating Disorder

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26 year-old Girls star Zosia Mamet recently opened up about her eating disorder in a long and personal piece in Glamour Magazine:

“Here’s how I think of my eating disorder: I’m an addict in recovery. We’ve brought other addictions into the light; we’ve talked about them, dissected them, made them acceptable issues to discuss and work out. We need to treat eating disorders just as seriously. (What’s different about eating disorders, of course, is that you can’t just avoid food for the rest of your life. You have to eat to live.) Nobody is addressing the fact that so many women wake up in the morning, look at themselves in the mirror, and, out of habit, attack what they see. Maybe that’s not an all-out disorder, but it’s certainly the seed of one. I read a study once that said that more than a third of casual dieters develop pathological eating habits (and of those, up to 25 percent wind up with an eating disorder). Of course, not all of those people will end up deathly ill, but obsession–and doesn’t every diet require some degree of obsessing?–is a slippery slope. Did you know that only one in 10 people who are suffering gets proper treatment? And that eating disorders have the highest death rate of any mental illness?”

Read lots more on the next page!


“If you are lucky enough never to have battled this beast, let me tell you what it’s like: I was told I was fat for the first time when I was eight. I’m not fat; I’ve never been fat. But ever since then, there has been a monster in my brain that tells me I am–that convinces me my clothes don’t fit or that I’ve eaten too much. At times it has forced me to starve myself, to run extra miles, to abuse my body. As a teenager I used to stand in front of the refrigerator late at night staring into that white fluorescent light, debilitated by the war raging inside me: whether to give in to the pitted hunger in my stomach or close the door and go back to bed. I would stand there for hours, opening and closing the door, taking out a piece of food then putting it back in; taking it out, putting it in my mouth, and then spitting it into the garbage. I was only 17, living in misery, waiting to die.”

“I can’t talk about all of this without bringing up the world we live in. Our culture delivers a real one-two punch: You want to control something, and then society says, ‘Hey, how about controlling the way you look? Skinny is beautiful.’ Your obsession feels justified. It’s no secret that we live in a country with a warped view of beauty. ‘Skinny’ sells us everything, from vacations to underwear, effectively. But we need to be brave and expose this body type for what it truly is: a figure naturally possessed by, let’s say, a mere 5 percent of women. We must demand that our media figure out another way to sell things to us. It’s not going to be easy. I recently saw an ad featuring a nearly naked, thin model with the words love yourself written across her. Even this attempt at encouraging women to accept themselves was accompanied by an image telling us the opposite! We have to change the ideal.”


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9 thoughts on “Zosia Mamet Opens Up About Her Eating Disorder”

    • My guess is anorexia/bulimia mix. they often go hand in hand yet most claim anorexia because it seems less “gross” or shameful than bulimia. I’ve been in recovery for years and I tend to do that depending on the person who asks. Some are too nosy, or I feel they’re almost looking for info on how to have an ed so they can lose weight. people are effed up. so with them, i just say an ed or ano. with people i trust and those who genuinely care, i say the truth–both.

  1. she has an excellent handle on the crap women go through it seems. i’ve always had the best discussions with fellow ed-sufferers because they know first hand what it’s like and going through recovery is in part, studying exactly how to look at this societal BS that is trying to feed that demon. I wish her well. Recovery is life and vice-versa.

  2. She clearly knows what she’s talking about and is not just a publicity thing. And kudos to her that she has the balls to talk about it so openly. I don’t think I could. In these days you’re being ashamed by other people if you’re not the ideal body, but as well if you diet.

  3. I don´t know who she is (related to David Mamet maybe?) but she makes valid points. I have had an eating disorder for most of my grown up life and unfortunately still do and sadly everything she says is true.

  4. Its kind of sad how people with eating disorders blame media and bla bla the big bad wolf out there for their insecurities. At the end of the day, you got to take care of yourself and your health, getting your hands on information about exercise and nutrition is not a huge mystery. Im 28, at the age of 12 i was obece and weighed in at 242 lbs at a height of 5’6, from the age of 12 up til my early twenties i did alot of experimenting with food. diet and exercise. I remember watching a documentary on anorexia as i was the fattest, and i remember thinking “so its all in my mind, all i gotta do is keep myself from eating”, so i did it. because at the end of the day, within your mind, you have control over your thaughts and actions. And oowee..i lost weight and landed at 139 lbs..and then one day i fainted in the bathtub and woke up 30 minutes later with my tongue bleeding (bit it appearantly as i fell), and remember thinking “maybe starving myself isnt that healthy after all”…so i started eating and amped up my exercise..only to find myself dissatisfied even tho the weight was off…and so ive tried many diets (without ever getting stuck after the trial, which is why i think people suffer because they get “stuck” in these modes, instead of experiencing them and evaluating the benefits and disadvantages). Anyhows, im my healthiest ever, my posture and physique are amazing, my skin looks amazing (scrubbing and moisturizing, coconut oil is the beest)i eat mainly healthy foods (cutting down asmuch as i can on prepackaged, canned, artificially enhanced junk) and workout for fun. How did i get here? I did not treat myself as an enemy, Love thyself, and you will see the results. I did not judge my character or oppurtunities in life based upon my looks, Love thy inner self first, and it will shine outwards as you heal. I tried varying forms of physical exercise and enjoyed dwelving into literature (about alot of subjects actually) concerning exercise, anatomy,. biochemistry and health etc. The more i experience the more i have to compare and learn, i’ve come to realise that there is no quick fix, you have to find your own rhythm within life, what triggers you to enjoy life, do more of it, i remember wen i first realised i was thinking negatively about exercise, as i would go to the gym i would be like…oh noo.i Have TO GO, omg, tiring, boring, just this voice in my head b—ing about s—, and as the realisation came i started watching my internal voice, and i would intentionally say, Yaay, going to the gym, gon sweaat and shake iit, and it just escalated into me now feeling like a superhuman, i run faster than everyone at my gym, i row like im an indian, i take hikes in the woods for hours through terrain, nomatter what the weather is…and i feel alive. Everything in existence is based upon movement and stillness, lovemaking, atoms, molecules, humans, giving birth to, death, exercise, the ocean tides, the planetary system..its all a flux between movement and the stillness of empty vast space which all movement dances through..move urself into ur own peaceful stillness. And…one of the most important ingredients, It is what you make of it, if you get into it with an attitude of beating urself up and policing yourself, your going to be miserable. Enjoy the ride, take it as it comes, find better alternatives to junkfood (there is so much yummy stuff u can make, totally flamboyant like chocolate desserts that are totally Healthy, like http://thehappyrawkitchen.blogspot.se/2010/02/chocolate-banana-pudding-cake.html), so when u feel a crave, even the goodies n snacks are made of the Best and purest ingredients. You dont have to count calories, just eat good calories, food that has high nutritional value (herbs, seeds, nuts, berries, vegetables, fruits, grains etc etc).and amp up the exercise as u go on. U will be amazed at what lies ahead of you, if you all could stop hating your own selves and educate urself on real health and happiness without the “i wish i was on the cover of vogue” yearning which is ludacrisss. I look at models n actresses..n most of the time im thinking..dang i look better then that :D…n dont need the approval of others…because i approve myself. Love and peace.

    • i agree with you. however, ” Love thy inner self first, and it will shine outwards as you heal.” is much harder for many people than it sounds like it is for you – it sounds like you never struggled with self-hatred and severe depression in the way that many people with ED’s do (just based on your comment here). It’s great you are in such a wonderful place right now, just remember people are coming from different places and face different challenges that may make their journey longer than yours 🙂

  5. hey. again, I totally agree with you, it sounds like we have a very similar perspective on things 🙂 and yes people are ridiculously spoiled and clueless about what they are doing/should be doing… but I still feel bad for them, because they don’t understand their own situation, and often lack the ability to understand it/learn about it. If you are someone who knows what to do to get better and just chooses not to, then yeah I don’t feel so sorry for you. I think it’s amazing that you overcame your disease, but there are a lot of people out there who just don’t know what to do/how to figure it out and don’t have proper guidance – the internet is out there for everyone but there is so much conflicting information and especially if you are uneducated it will be very difficult to sift through all of it. Yes this kind of suffering is nothing compared to things that go on in the rest of the world but I still feel somewhat sorry for them. that’s all 🙂

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