Delta Phi Epsilon recently put on their second annual #ThisIsMe week, which aims to raise awareness of eating disorders and inspire SIUE students to love themselves.
The campaign coincided with Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders Week, one of Delta Phi Epsilon’s philanthropies, and was created by senior mass communications major and Delta Phi Epsilon Vice President of Public Relations Mollie Thompson, of Centralia, Illinois.
Thompson said she came up with the idea last year when she was Delta Phi Epsilon’s social media coordinator. While the organization prepared for its annual ANAD week, she decided to take things a step further in order to increase the event’s impact. Thompson used inspiration from other self-love campaigns, such as Dove’s, to create #ThisIsMe.
“I was personally affected by an eating disorder, so it meant a lot to me,” Thompson said. “And I knew that there were other girls in the sorority that did struggle with body issues and self-love and stuff like that, so [that] is how it came up.”
The #ThisIsMe campaign included days such as Makeupless Monday and Trash Your Insecurities Tuesday, which were geared toward helping people overcome their insecurities.
Makeupless Monday, which has always been the biggest day for Delta Phi Epsilon’s ANAD week, encouraged people to post selfies on social media of themselves without makeup and show their skin just as it is.
Junior nursing major and member of Alpha Phi Emilie Olmsted, of Peoria, Illinois, participated and found this day particularly impactful because it made people step out of their comfort zones.
“That was cool because I don’t normally do that,” Olmsted said. “And just to see other girls post throughout the day was just really cool.”
The Trash Your Insecurities Tuesday took place in the Goshen Lounge. Students would write down their insecurities on paper and then throw the paper into a trashcan to represent getting rid of them.
“Mine was just kind of my appearance in general because that’s something I really struggle with,” Olmstead said. “And kind of thinking about throwing away what other people think was really helpful.”
There was also a photoshoot where participants wrote #ThisIsMe on a part of their bodies that they were most insecure about in order to help embrace them and show solidarity with others about their insecurities.
While only members of Delta Phi Epsilon participated in the #ThisIsMe campaign last year, it extended to other sororities and fraternities on campus. Thompson hopes in the future that it will become a campus-wide event.
“Because, you know, self-love and body image issues don’t just affect girls but guys as well,” Thompson said. “So it was nice to be able to touch light on that this year as well.”
Senior business administration marketing major and Alpha Phi member Alexa Davis, of Trenton, Illinois, participated in the #ThisIsMe campagin on social media and feels that Delta Phi Epsilon is helping facilitate conversations about eating disorders and body image.
“I feel like it definitely is [impactful] because girls don’t really talk about that stuff that much unless it’s to a friend, and then it’s like ‘oh my god, I feel so fat’ and stuff,” Davis said. “When you talk about yourself to other people, you tend to do it in a negative way, so I think it is good that Delta Phi Epsilon is doing this.”
If students want to learn more about ANAD, they can visit their website at anad.org. To see photos from the campaign, they can visit Delta Phi Epsilon’s Instagram page at @dphie_siue.