Mother of Anorexic Daughter Creates Petition to Ban Airbrushing
The mother of a daughter who suffers from anorexia has called for a ban on airbrushed images that create a false impression of beauty and thinness.
Lynne Johnston from Warrington in the United Kingdom has set up a petition online calling for the misleading practice to be banned. She believes that impressionable young girls are being influenced by the unrealistic images of models that appear in magazines and other media sources. The photographs are often altered beyond recognition, and are triggers for adolescents to develop eating disorders.
Her daughter, Rachael Johnston is still receiving treatment for anorexia. She began to develop symptoms of the severe eating disorder at the age of 13 and was near death at one point. Rachael’s mother remembers her daughter fainting several times due to lack of nourishment, and becoming almost skeletal in appearance.
Rachael Johnston is now 20 years old, and in recovery from the eating disorder that almost took her life. She admits that she thought she was in control of her food intake at the time, although it is now obvious that her eating disorder was completely out of control. Rachael goes into the local schools nowadays to talk to young people about her eating disorder, and to share her own experiences. She believes that it would have helped her to know and understand that the photos of celebrities and models in magazines are not real.
Lynne Johnston notes that impressionable young people are understandably influenced to try to appear like the altered photographs of models they see in the media, even though the airbrushed images may be completely unlike the actual person. She brings up examples of photographs where the person’s wrinkles are removed, or the waistline unrealistically over-defined. She would like to see extremely thin, airbrushed photographs of models replaced by realistic, natural, healthy images.