On Monday, the website The Chive posted a "before and after" photo of Anne Marie Sengillo in a story about "amazing weight loss transformations."
So, why the outrage? Because the personal pics in question were taken from Reddit after Sengillo uploaded the images to share her recovery from anorexia.
Yes, this actually happened.
The Chive's story, in which Sengillo's images have since been removed, featured a split shot which sees Sengillo weighing 150 pounds on the left and just 90 pounds in the right pic.
As Sengillo explained to E! News, she was struggling with a severe eating disorder at the time the "after" pic was taken—only to later discover the image being celebrated on The Chive.
"I was really hurt...That was the complete opposite reason I posted the album to begin with," Sengillo tells E! News. "I wanted to show people with body image issues that with therapy and a support network you can get better."
Sengillo's eating disorder first began in 2006 and her most recent relapse happened last year. "I was doing well until this past summer and I relapsed a bit. Which is why I posted an update to my album," she reveals. "But since then I am back on track!"
Sengillo's Reddit post was titled "my progress in my recovery from an eating disorder" and she uploaded an entire album of photos to Imgur, which sees her weight yo-yoing from 150 pounds to an alarming 70 pounds at her lowest. Although her extremely low weight is not pictured, Sengillo writes of the 90-pound pic, "My dad died and other crap snowballed my weight loss into some monster of a thing. It started out innocently enough, but became a 5 hour a day workout and 500 calories a day."
With regards to why Sengillo uploaded the photos, she says, "The major point of the album was to show that relapses happen."
In a surprising turn of events, Sengillo reveals that The Chive previously used her pics over the summer and called her out for having an eating disorder.
"They never asked for my permission. I doubt I can take legal action, and even if I wanted to I do not have the funds to even attempt to," Sengillo, who launched a Go Fund Me page to help pay for her medical bills, says. "I am still catching up to my medical bills so legal action is for from my mind."
While Sengillo initially said that The Chive refused to apologize, the website has now issued a statement in a post titled "An Apology to One Strong Woman."
"We had previously discovered the photo somewhere out there in the internet echo chamber which contained no frame of reference whatsoever," the statement read. "We obviously had no idea Anne Marie had anorexia but that doesn't excuse the action at all. It was a mistake, completely unintentional, and the photo was removed the second we found out about it.
"We usually don't air these issues out in public, because I think the true apology belongs to Anne Marie personally, which we have also sent. We are deeply sorry for having posted this photo, but I'm posting this out here on theCHIVE because I think you should know about Anne Marie's story," The Chive added (read the full statement here), including a link to Sengillo's original album.
"I haven't heard from them since," Sengillo reveals. "I have tried to email them back, but nothing back. I do appreciate the apology. It takes a big person to admit on a popular website that they messed up. I have no ill wishes for The Chive. I just hope they do a little bit more investigating before posting photos next time. You never know, I could have been barely in recovery and this could have sent me over the edge."
—Reporting by Ruth O'Neill