At 16, Christie Swadling was fascinated by the models who worked for Victoria's Secret. But her obsession almost took a deadly turn.
After she began idolizing former VS angel Miranda Kerr at the age of 12, Swadling started extreme dieting, which eventually led to anorexia.
Miranda Kerr is a 2012 VS ad (left) and Swadling. (Photo Credit: Victoria’s Secret (1)/Instagram (1))
“I was so dangerously underweight and I was practically on my deathbed,” she told Barcroft TV. "I spent my 17th birthday in the hospital because I was so weak and disorientated. The doctors said they didn’t know how I was still standing or even alive."
Not only was the eating disorder slowly killing Swadling, but it deeply affected her family and friends, particularly mom Fiona.
“It was really heartbreaking, it was very hard,” Fiona said of her daughter's struggle. “I thought maybe I had done something wrong as a parent. I didn’t know what to do, I didn’t really know about anorexia.”
A photo of Swadling where you can see her back bones.
Now back on the right track, the 18-year-old is hoping to bring awareness to eating disorders and is speaking out against models who flaunt their unrealistically small frames.
“I just think it’s wrong," Swadling said. "They all have a figure that isn’t sustainable or achievable but it makes every girl try their hardest to lose weight.”
Hear more from Swadling's story below: