One day I found myself hopping with a clickety click of the mouse from pictures of vintage French cheese labels, to a pro-anorexia, self-harm Tumblr site. I have never seen one of these before because I am neither interested in anorexia nor self-harm.
I started off scrolling through:
- artful pictures of fading flowers in enamel jugs
- pretty girls in wistful hats
- nail art (I am getting sick of nails painted to look like ladybirds and cheap cocktail umbrellas)
I then ended up stumbling through a stream of:
- skeletal hip bones and shoulder blades and spines of teenage girls
- various skin wounds and scratches, sometimes in the form of bleeding red text
- life-affirming platitudes “never give up” “ you are beautiful” “follow your heart”
I rolled through these images for a while, wondering at the curious mix of cute sunny fluffy animals and deep self-loathing. Is this what it feels like to be a modern young woman? Is this what my daughter will fall in to as she grows up? Is there any place on the web where it is NOT appropriate to include kittens?
As sad as that desperate collection of images was, I’ve had a tiny useful glimpse in to a dark place that I want nothing to do with.
Thank you Mrs Internet for teaching me a little about the girls who cut themselves because they don’t have a gap between their thighs. And for kittens. Let there always be kittens.