health

'We shouldn't gawk at photos of Pixee Fox and snigger. She's battling a serious addiction.'

A glamour model dubbed a ‘living cartoon’, who has undergone more than 100 cosmetic surgery procedures, is making headlines once again.

Pixee Fox, 26, who’s from Sweden and now lives in North Carolina, has had radical surgeries including several boob jobs taking her to a 30J, permanent eye implants and most recently fat transferals to plump up her bottom and lips. She’s also had six ribs removed as she wants to achieve the world’s smallest waist.

Terrifyingly she says, “Next year in 2017 I want to have ten more procedures.”

"When does the body say, “no, stop?” (Image: Facebook/Pixee Fox)

Photos of her standing alongside her sister Lovisa who’s never had surgery are a shocking glimpse at how far Pixee has pursued ‘plastic perfection’.

Her worried mother Anna-Lena admits, “First of all, I think it could be dangerous. When does the body say, “no, stop?” Now she is 26, what happens when she is 62? And she was so beautiful before.”

Talking about her daughter growing up, she reveals, “I think she didn’t really know where she belonged… Everyday I wonder why she did this.”

As the photos circulate around the world today there’s a predictable wave of harsh criticism and judgement. Neither is appropriate.

It’s not surprising the cosmetic surgery business has become a mega money-spinning success. It feeds beautifully into individual insecurities and offers quick-fix ‘solutions’ for those pursuing a skewed societal construct of body perfection.

Pixee Fox has undergone over 100 procedures (Photo: iStock)

Like any addiction, cosmetic surgery offers escapism. To keep giving this woman surgery is like endlessly serving an alcoholic at a bar. We may think of substances like drugs or alcohol when we think of addiction, but cosmetic surgery can be equally as seductive and destructive. This falls into the category known as ‘behavioural addiction’; a mental obsession to go under the knife driven by underlying insecurities.

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There are two ways of looking at this. Either we totally lack all compassion and say ‘her life, let her ruin it if she wants’. Or, we can drop the knee-jerk, carefree response and recognise that sometimes in life we need positive support and intervention from others.

Responsible service of surgery should be a requirement, as it is for alcohol. Does it take a genius to work out this woman’s clearly unwell and in the grips of addiction?

At what point is an addiction to cosmetic surgery deemed self-harm? (Image: Facebook/Pixee Fox)

Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is an anxiety disorder that causes a person to have a distorted view of how they look. It doesn’t mean they’re narcissistic, vain or self-obsessed. Rather, discontentment about the way they look overshadows and impacts daily life.

It affects both men and women and can be more common in people with a history of social phobia. It can lead to depression and self-harm. Many people with BDD can experience an improvement in their symptoms when helped. In other words, if guided to professional help and therapy, there is hope and another way to live.

It affects both men and women and can be more common in people with a history of social phobia. It can lead to depression and self-harm. Many people with BDD can experience an improvement in their symptoms when helped. In other words, if guided to professional help and therapy, there is hope and another way to live.

At what point is an addiction to cosmetic surgery deemed self-harm? When do we look at a person’s body transformation and become honest about signs of self-abuse?

I read the words of her surgeon and feel a chill. Dr Frsedrik Berne performed her latest surgeries in Gothenburg and says, “Fat is beautiful. We can shape and create whatever we like with it. Pixee had 1000cc injected into her bum, 500 in each buttock. She now really has got that hourglass figure. Then, I pushed as much fat as I could into her lips so it will look enormous and, in a way, grotesque.”

Grotesque? He talks about her body as if it’s a warped design experiment. He seems eerily emotionally detached from this being a young woman’s real life body.

Of course some surgeons will accept money from the vulnerable. When does it become wrong to operate on a person who seemingly has a mental illness?

There are no laws to deny people receiving countless surgery. Maybe, just maybe, that’s not the compassionate way forward.

Anyone who is struggling or needs support with body image issues or an eating disorder should call The Butterfly Foundation helpline on 1800 33 4673.

* For more from Corrine, follow her on Facebook here.  

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