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Bob Greene asks: Why are you over weight?

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Old 02-22-2007, 09:11 PM   #1
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Default Bob Greene asks: Why are you over weight?

Today on Oprah Bob Greene asked "why are you overweight?" I have such a hard time with that question. Because I have a hard time.. does that mean I won't loose the weight?

This is seriously driving me nuts. I know that my relationship with my mother was never great.

(warning: this is about my life. I'm not trying to judge you and your family)


I always thought my Mother was selfish. When I was about 11 my Mom went back to school and back to work (up till then she was a stay at home mom) She put herself first in everything. She still does today. My Dad always comes last.
I'm very much the opposite in my life. God first, then husband, then children.
My mom recently lost about 80 lbs. Up until recently I would call her about 20 times compared to the one time she called me (she lives in Canada) I also have 2 sisters that are the same way. They never call me. Since the beginning of January I haven't called them - and they still haven't called me. Yes, this angers me.. and hurts me a lot. I don't consider them to have loyalty at all. Could this have anything to do with my weight issues?

Anyhow.. now I realize I'm rambling. Sorry.

Did anyone watch Oprah today?

Dana
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Old 02-22-2007, 09:34 PM   #2
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Hi Dana,

No, I didnt see Oprah, but this is a subject I think about a lot. Just yesterday, I was remembering an instance of being touched inappropriately when I just a little 9 year old. It was around that time that I began gaining weight. I often wonder if that had a lot to do with starting the cycle of using food to feel better. Also, my Mom was overweight and I learned how to attempt to satisfy my emotions with food from her. Today, I believe my weight problems are largely due to feeding my emotions for years. Depression has been a problem in my adult years and food...and formerly cigarettes.... has often been my coping mechanism.

It is a constant struggle to learn healthy ways of coping with stress, loneliness, boredom and depression. I have noticed that eating right has helped to level my emotional rollercoaster. I seem to be much more content with life in general and much less susceptible to the stresses of life. When I exercise, I notice that the good changes are magnified tremendously!

Good question. I'm glad you asked as its always good to reflect on the reasons why I'm making these lifesyle changes. And, No, I dont really think that not knowing the exact reason why you are overweight will keep you from being successful in taking the weight off. Typically, there may be many reasons why we gained the weight. Don't let not knowing right now keep you from moving forward to a healthy life. It may take going through this journey to find those answers.
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Old 02-22-2007, 10:39 PM   #3
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Hi Dana and Rhonda!

I caught the last twenty minutes of Oprah when Bob was doing the assessments of the participants. I'm reading his book, so I understood where he was coming from by the question, YET, I think the answer that a person gives IS WHAT IT IS...an ANSWER! Yes, maybe it wasn't THE answer or an answer that showed that the person had somehow reached understanding, but GEE! I was getting angry that he was putting MORE stress on the poor girls by asking them a question and being only accepting of answers he thought were the BEST answers!

As I read over the six journals I have filled since I began my weight loss journey, I realize I have come to different understandings and different "truths" at different times. To me, all of my answers were the "right" ones AT THE TIME!

I guess I am too much of a rebel to have someone tell me that I gave the wrong answer! I've been out of school for enough years to find that OFFENSIVE!

Rant over!

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Old 02-23-2007, 07:14 AM   #4
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I will tell you that thanks to Oprah and her flunkys I put off my weightloss journey trying to figure out that question. Not only has she and her gurus said you have to know why, but you then also have to DEAL with it. I finally said, I'm doing it anyway, I'll take my chances. Shhh, don't tell Oprah and Bob Greene. Did you see how they badgered a few of those people yesterday? Gets me sooo angry. So, yes I saw the show. I used to enjoy the show, especially those on weightloss, I can barely tolerate it now. Of course that doesn't change the fact that I still want to BE on the show when I get to goal .

Girlygirl I had a similar experience as you did, I was 10. I also became very curvy as a teenager and had a lot of male attention at a young age, it just BOOM came on. One day I was a little girl, the next day men were making rude and disgusting gestures at me. I believe this was one of the reasons for my weight gain. And then there's what Dana said. My mom was basically home and then took on a big career when I was about 12. A lot of resentment there and other things I think she should have been more aware of. Like the incident I had at 10 and all the unwanted attention I received. but whatever. She was oblivious. She just didnt' SEE things. So yes, I guess these ALL played factors in my weight. But have I dealt with it? No, I never confronted my mother and I never confronted my molestor. And I never will.

I am older now and I just don't believe you have to have it all figured out as to the why and hows that we let ourselves get so heavy. I may never know for sure why I let this happen to myself And it's really not all that important. What is important is that I no longer find it acceptable to live my life being morbidly obese. So to me, the much more important question to ask oneself is "Are you willing to make the changes necessary to lose the weight, permanently?"
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Old 02-23-2007, 08:18 AM   #5
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Another thing that amazed me about yesterday show: all 6 people seemed shocked to find out that they weren't overweight.. but obese. Duh! Where have they been hiding. I also found it a bit shocking that Oprah didn't really understand BMI.

Thanks for your replies. Oprah has really stressed dealing with "your issue" and I don't think everyone has a major issue. Maybe the issues with my Mom started things... but I have allowed it to continue. I'm no going to play the blame game on this.
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Old 02-23-2007, 08:34 AM   #6
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Dana, I'm sorry to hear about your family. It's their loss, really. I'm somewhat of the "black sheep" in my family too, but to a lesser degree. I am usually the last one called about family news, my only sister has always been more 'acceptable' than me, etc. It bothers me, and I've tried to change it, to no avail. After some therapy, I've come to realize that I have to accept and nurture myself in spite of what they think of me. I'm mostly good with things now, but it still creeps up every once in a while.

Have you ever asked any of your sisters what the deal is, why they have this "us against them" attitude? Oh, and do they communicate regularly among each other and with your mother?
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Old 02-23-2007, 08:48 AM   #7
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I haven't gotten far in my journey, but as I go on I know the why for me was just not putting my first. Not putting enough time in to thinking about what was going in my mouth. I am not really an emotional eater and I was never a binger and/or a purger.

I made changes that dealt with my problem before I worried about what the problem was and it worked for me. I do think there are people who continually try and lose weight and make all the right changes, but get derailed by other issues then they went over their calorie count and didn't work out enough.

Overeater Anonymous, Chicks in Control I think are some of the groups on here that say some people need to work on the why and the how.
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Old 02-23-2007, 09:28 AM   #8
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Quote:
I may never know for sure why I let this happen to myself And it's really not all that important. What is important is that I no longer find it acceptable to live my life being morbidly obese. So to me, the much more important question to ask oneself is "Are you willing to make the changes necessary to lose the weight, permanently?"
Robin you never cease to amaze me with your insight. I copy and save all of the statements here that hit home with me - If I feel like I am having a bad day, they are there for me to read and pick myself up. (although I really don't have that many bad days anymore!!)

I think a lot of us have more in common than what is on the surface, after reading this. Sure makes me think about the things we dealt with as children ~ and how that has affected us in our adult lives. We're the lucky ones, we have chosen to leave it in the past and move forward with our lives. I think that is pretty spectacular myself. Hugs to all of us.
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Old 02-23-2007, 09:29 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by phantastica View Post
Dana, I'm sorry to hear about your family. It's their loss, really. I'm somewhat of the "black sheep" in my family too, but to a lesser degree. I am usually the last one called about family news, my only sister has always been more 'acceptable' than me, etc. It bothers me, and I've tried to change it, to no avail. After some therapy, I've come to realize that I have to accept and nurture myself in spite of what they think of me. I'm mostly good with things now, but it still creeps up every once in a while.

Have you ever asked any of your sisters what the deal is, why they have this "us against them" attitude? Oh, and do they communicate regularly among each other and with your mother?
What did you do that was so bad? hehe Families can be hard.

My family lives all over. I have a sister in Texas (who has never met my husband - been married 8 years next month), a sister back in Canada (who has met my husband once), and my Mom and Dad in Canada. (who have come to visit me at my home a few times)

No one talks to anyone much. I was the "caller" - but I've stopped. It only hurt me. Sure - they would talk to me. But they always said they were too busy to call me and felt bad about it. Well.. that's not a good enough excuse. It's a choice - and I've finally woke up to realize what their choice has been all along. I was in denial. My sister's deal is that their life is too busy to include me. Sad... but true. We have very different priorites in life.
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Old 02-23-2007, 09:58 AM   #10
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Exclamation Such a good thread, Dana!

I know something different for me now is that I have stopped trying to analyze why I have lost and gained so many times. It gets exhausting at times and I really don't think there is one simple answer. I do know that there is a simple answer to getting healthy and that is staying on plan. I don't think my hurts and issues will go away because I have lost weight but I have stopped using them as an excuse to stay unhealthy. I am obese because I haven't treated my body properly for whatever reason. If I wait to figure out all the whys and wherefores I may be in an oversized casket with some extra pallbearers!

They may think that making people squirm and cry makes great TV, but I don't find that helpful to me and my journey!

Kathy
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Old 02-23-2007, 11:20 AM   #11
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What did you do that was so bad? hehe Families can be hard.
Well, I was the tall/fat/big daughter, the other daughter is a petite blonde, and 'the baby'. Yeah, it's messed up, but my family places most value on size and how feminine you are, not on normal things like intelligence, morals, or kindness.

I also was the one who was the communicator, wanting to plan things and such. And of course, my sister is the one who scoffed at the whole family thing.

I guess 'family' is what we make it, huh? I find a small group of very close friends is a very rewarding and trustworthy substitute.
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Old 02-23-2007, 11:53 AM   #12
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Dana,

I have the show taped and plan to watch it this afternoon, but anyway...

Yes, I do think your relationship with your family can have something to do with what you weigh and how you view yourself. Now, I'm not putting down anyone who doesn't feel that the "Why" question is important, because what works for one person may not for another one. In my case, the fact that I was molested as a child and nearly raped as a teen had EVERYTHING to do with my not being able to stick to weight loss because as soon as I lost enough weight to start getting male attention, I sabatoged my efforts every time. I have been working through this and making some headway and for me, that was a must.

I don't think that working through your issues with you family necessarily means that you have to better your relationship with them (especially if you are not at fault) as that would be a very personal thing that only you can decide. What I think you may need to do is to work out how you relate to yourself in light of the family issues. (just as an example, do you think that they don't find you worthy or valuable so you are viewing yourself the same way? Again, just pulling that possibility out of my rear end!).

The "why" may not be important for you or for other people. For me, it was essential.

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Old 02-23-2007, 12:16 PM   #13
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I, too, think this is a very important question. Blogging (and journaling in my personal notebook for things I don't want to share with the world/fear of being judged, etc) has helped me immensely in this way. We all have unique experiences and deal with them in different ways. What robin wrote really resonated: "Are you willing to make the changes necessary to lose the weight, permanently?" In the past, I have focused on the PAST. Why I am fat, why I let myself get this way... and of course that matters, it's part of my history and part of who I am. But no matter who hurts me, what challenges I might face, and how I might react to things that challenge me- I can't lose sight of what I need.

Dana, sometimes family life can be teh most hurtful. It's true that we can't choose our families, and we can't make them change. Truly, it is their loss, and I am sure you have learned from their mistakes and it shows through your relationships and parenting. We take our relationships and experiences with others into account when we form new(er) ones.

Rhonda and Robin, sometimes there are no words. I am sorry for your experiences, but I am so proud of both of you for being determined!

I know the reasons I gained all the weight... there were lots of them, from my childhood on. And eventually it became the fact that food was the only activity I enjoyed. It was the only thing to look forward to. Antidepressants didn't help... they just made me not give a if I was gaining weight or not.

I've always known this but it hasn't really helped me. So I can see what Oprah is getting at, but I agree with robin: the focus might not be where it should be.
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Old 02-23-2007, 01:15 PM   #14
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Thanks all for sharing your stories with us. I feel honored that you were willing to share.
I'm very happy with my husband and my 3 kids (my step son John moved in with us last summer) My mother in law is a wonderful person. Very honest - tells it like it is. I'm so not used to the games. If we think we are "full of it" we tell each other - nicely.
I guess it's just hard to accept that my own siblings just don't care. It's a hard pill to swallow.
I pray that my kids have a life long relationship... and with their sibling's spouses too.
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Old 02-23-2007, 01:26 PM   #15
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Dana..."I'm very much the opposite in my life. God first, then husband, then children." Where do you fall in that equation?
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