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Lorri Benson

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When we look in today’s magazines or on TV shows, most of the time we see these very slim, sometimes skinny models on almost every page or every teen show. Young girls want to be like these models and live that glamorous life. Image is so important to these girls that they want to control the amount of food that is digested into their bodies to control how they look. Everyone is different: genetically and their metabolism. So what works for some, does not work for others. Here is something I found really disturbing: It is estimated that 8 million Americans have an eating disorder – seven million women and one million men. There are three women for every 100 American women who suffer from bulimia. Our guest today is Lorri Benson. Lorri along with her daughter Taryn have written the book DISTORTED: How a Mother and Daughter Unraveled the Truth, the Lies, and the Realities of an Eating Disorder.  Lorri is here to share their story with us today.

Lorri Benson felt blessed. She had a loving husband with a lucrative job in the financial industry, matched by her own career as the senior producer for a long-running, prestigious television show. She had three beautiful daughters and what seemed to be the perfect family life—until the day she walked in on her oldest daughter Taryn inducing vomiting in their bathroom. Where had she gone wrong? Hadn’t she given her daughter security, a stable home? Hadn’t she followed all the experts’ advice about parenting?

What began as a shocking, surreal moment for Lorri became a painful journey for her, Taryn and her entire family; a journey that would include intense emotional chess, shocking realizations, and distressing life lessons.

In her search for understanding the mania that drove her daughter to an eating disorder—and the realization that her daughter’s recovery was a farce—Benson faced her insecurities as a parent. Not content to witness helplessly as her daughter destroyed her body and their family, Benson went through a grueling self-introspection and watched as her relationship with her daughter changed forever.

Distorted chronicles their story, written in the hopes that other parents, spouses, siblings, and friends can learn from their ordeal. It’s not just a cautionary tale about the dangers of eating disorders. It’s not another memoir of an anorectic or bulimic. This book dramatically examines an eating disorder from dual perspectives, revealing many highly charged issues—a daughter’s deception that she wants to be cured; a mother’s guilt and feeling of helplessness; the impact of the lies, the mistrust, and the financial strain on family dynamics; and how normal teenage angst between a mother and daughter is exacerbated by an eating disorder.

Distorted is a raw, brutally honest account, from two people who have lived the manipulation and the nightmare of an eating disorder.

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