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No, I don't feel better

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Old 03-11-2010, 05:20 PM   #1
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Default No, I don't feel better

More than once, I've gotten the comment "I bet you feel so much better!" when people hear how much I've lost. I don't know why this comment gets my back up, but I suspect because it feels like a variation on people thinking fat=unfit and thin=fit.

My physical fitness has obviously improved immensely as I doubled my exercise, but I was in pretty good shape at my fattest and healthwise had no problems. And I have a totally sedentary job (program telephone systems from my home) and primary hobby is singing so neither of these pursuits have gotten easier with weight loss. Maybe if I had a physically demanding job or hobby, I would have felt the weight physically. But honestly the emotional pain of being obese was the pain I was feeling, and not feeling better about that one yet.

Thanks for listening.
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Old 03-11-2010, 05:32 PM   #2
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I TOTALLY AGREE!!!! ergh that comment annoys me! excuse me, i never felt BAD!! even worse in my opinion is " you must be so much happier now" like, WTF???? how does weight correlate to happiness, except on the basest of levels? you're either happy or you're not, if you're miserable and sad and lose a ton of weight you won't magically become a happy person, sorry to say! You can feel accomplished and feel more attractive and that can ADD to happiness but it won't change your fundamental core. I was super happy before, and I'm happy NOW. I felt great before (sure a few moree ooophs when I tried hauling around 300 lbs. but I never felt BAD) and I feel great now. What I feel now is... what's the word??? quick! i feel nimble now LOL
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Old 03-11-2010, 05:55 PM   #3
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People say that to me often. They get a cold stare and, "Back then, I would have said I felt fine." I felt fine then, I feel fine now. Are my lab numbers better? Yes, they are! But when they weren't, I still felt fine. Feeling fine often has nothing to do with actually being well. I dressed well. I was happy. I had friends. My husband loved me. We had an active love life. It's all still good. The only thing that has changed is my body!

I think people project alot of their feelings about fat onto us. THEY feel better now that we aren't as heavy. THEY can't imagine a fat person being happy, successful, in love, etc.

I know I shouldn't be so touchy, but honestly, the backhanded compliments people give......just got one the other day from a friend I hadn't seen in awhile. NOW, I'm pretty, according to her. That literally left me speechless.

Don't mind me.....still a little grumpy from that one....
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:02 PM   #4
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I am only 20, so I was never really physically affected by my weight....But I must say that MY WEIGHT LOSS SO FAR HAS HAD A TREMENDOUS EFFECT ON MY HAPPINESS! How could anyone be happy knowing that they are not their best self? I was wasting my potential. And I radiate a lust for life now that I never had before. Why bother losing weight if it will not make you feel better in some way?
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:16 PM   #5
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I've been irritated by the same types of comments, and by others such as overgushing "you look great" (really stressing how horrible I looked before), and yet I also know that it's a no win situation for people. No matter WHAT they say (or DON'T say) someone will be offended.

Saying nothing offends some people (I lost weight and no one even noticed or cared enough to compliment me).

Saying anything offends some people (None of their business anyway)

Saying something to the effect of "You look Great," can be offensive (Oh, you mean I was ugly before).



Of all the comments people can make, I think "Oh you must feel better," is the most open-ended, as it can be interpreted more broadly, better how?
Emotionally, physical healthy, physical ability, socially, sexually?

After all if a person is voluntarily losing weight, why would they do it except to feel better in some way? Better about how they look, better about their health (both in feeling healthier, but also in feeling more satisfied with their healthy habits)....

There is no response that is 100% socially acceptable. In situations in which there isn't a universally approved response, people end up saying stupid stuff because they don't know WHAT to say - such as when my MIL's husband passed away after decades of severe health problems, and MIL's friends tried to comfort her with such comments as "well at least you have your dogs for company," to "it must be a relief for it to finally be over" (it being the man's health problems, and MIL needing to be caretaker).
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:18 PM   #6
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fwiw, I do feel better physically. I have more energy, I sleep better, my knees don't hurt as much, my feet don't hurt after a routine amount of walking around. I was lucky enough to avoid specifically weight-related health conditions but I did not escape these physical manifestations of being obese.

I think it's rude to assume anyone overweight is sad or depressed or feels badly about themselves, or conversely, that weight loss would automatically fix those things.

But, yeah, physically, my loss so far has definitely made a big improvement for me, which I expect will continue as I get smaller until at some point, the law of diminishing returns will kick in and changes will be incremental enough that I will no longer notice.

I would say that if that hasn't been your experience to go ahead and let people know that if they comment, but my guess is that is what they are thinking about and not making judgements that fat=unfit.
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:24 PM   #7
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So true. I've found it kinda difficult talking to people about my weight loss (outside of this forum ), especially to those that haven't had the kind of weight experiences I've gone through.

For me, my 300+ lbs were the direct result of my unhealthy relationship with food and other emotional issues (emotional eater, insecurity, low-self esteem, ...). I wasn't happy at 300+ lbs but then again I wasn't happy at 150 lbs either. A year ago if I took a magic pill that would instantly transform me to my goal weight I would still have been unhappy and unhealthy, the only difference is that I would have physically weighed less.

When I committed myself to a lifestyle change last year it wasn't about losing weight, for me it was about getting healthy both physically and emotionally. Weight loss was the result of my efforts, and I'm thankful for that but the best result has been getting back into a healthy and loving place mentally.

Anyways, in my opinion those of us with 100+ lbs to lose go through so much more than a physical change and that's what is so darn hard to explain. Physically I weigh less and it is much easier to move around, but the biggest changes have been emotional and that's what I'm most proud of!
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:32 PM   #8
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Quote:
you won't magically become a happy person, sorry to say! You can feel accomplished and feel more attractive and that can ADD to happiness but it won't change your fundamental core.
Well I really am a MUCH happier person now. MUCH. And it really DID change my fundamental core. I 'm happier and freer and more confident. I have less anxieties. Each and every area of my has seen improvement. Most areas MAJOR improvement. It's not that I walked around like a sad sack, I did my best to mask it, but really my quality of life was an inferior one. So though I had some happy & great "aspects" to my life - my amazing children come immediately to mind - I WAS NOT HAPPY.

I can absolutely say that I even enjoy my children more now that I've lost the weight. EVERY thing was made worse by the added weight. EVERYTHING.

It's very hard to be happy when you feel as if you're letting yourself (& your family) down. Not doing what's required of you. Failing your family and yourself. Again, there were happy times, but that's not the same as happi-NESS. I've found an inner peace and contentment that comes with knowing that you're doing the best that you can do for yourself. Discipline. It's a wonderful thing. Not having any (in regard to my food intake) doesn't leave one feeling very good about oneself. Of course I am speaking about my own experiences. Discipline. Self respect. All tied in. It's really hard to put into words.

That being said, I don't care for the comment either. It's waaaay too personal and people have no right to "go there".

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Old 03-11-2010, 06:38 PM   #9
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I think people 'mean well'. Like Kaplods said - what is acceptable to one isn't to another.

I feel much much better being down 50 pounds.
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:42 PM   #10
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Thanks all, this is exactly why I love having this forum to turn to. I know my friends are likely trying to avoid the "you look better" comment (yet still say something positive in their minds), so I didn't say anything negative to them. Just very glad I had somewhere to go with the feeling that comment stirred up when I heard it for the 3rd time in a week.
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:46 PM   #11
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Interesting that you would say that...because the two people that have noticed that I have lost weight have said the same thing to me..."I bet you feel better" And both times I paused and looked at them and was so confused. I cannot remember what my response was...but I know I didn't like the comment "I bet you feel so much better"

But then later I talked to someone about it and they said...well I think it is hard for people to know what to say...which I suppose is true.

Maybe I don't like the statement because it sounds judgmental. Great to hear I am not alone...as I so often learn here on 3FC!
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:48 PM   #12
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Funny about the feeling better. I just realized that's my very own line that I use all the time.

People always say to me how great I look and I still have a hard time taking a compliment, yet alone about my looks, I immediately say, "thank you, I FEEL great"
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:04 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caryesings View Post
More than once, I've gotten the comment "I bet you feel so much better!" when people hear how much I've lost. I don't know why this comment gets my back up, but I suspect because it feels like a variation on people thinking fat=unfit and thin=fit.

My physical fitness has obviously improved immensely as I doubled my exercise, but I was in pretty good shape at my fattest and healthwise had no problems. And I have a totally sedentary job (program telephone systems from my home) and primary hobby is singing so neither of these pursuits have gotten easier with weight loss. Maybe if I had a physically demanding job or hobby, I would have felt the weight physically. But honestly the emotional pain of being obese was the pain I was feeling, and not feeling better about that one yet.

However, I do have overweight friends who say they feel good at their weight and do not intend on losing any. I also know that they are far more active than I am.
Thanks for listening.
I don't think i would take it personally, mainly because I DO feel different and better when I am carrying less weight. I would also venture that a lot of people who are obese or morbidly obese feel somewhat better (maybe just comfort or energy wise) if they lose weight. I know my response is biased because I have been at a lower weight and I can soooo feel the difference between then and my higher weight now.
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:10 PM   #14
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People have made a variety of comments to me about my weight loss. To be honest, there is not a single comment which has offended me, even though some of the comments have been awkward or clueless. I have no issue with talking openly and honestly about my weight loss, because it's no secret to anyone who knew me then that I was very obese. And it's no secret to anyone who sees me now that I'm still fat.

I got very fat because I have an addiction to sugar, much like an alcoholic is addicted to alcohol. I am not "proud" of this problem, but I am proud of having finally figured out how to handle it, and I am very happy to share that story with people. Because...it might help someone who has a similar problem. My mom is an alcoholic with 20 years of sobriety, and she is never shy about explaining the problem to anyone, and she does excellent work with those who are newer in her AA program, helping them figure out how to help themselves.

Yes, I do feel physically and emotionally much better, because I was physically and emotionally quite sick. And now I am much more healthy. It was not the fat that was killing me, it was me that was killing me. I have a story of recovery, now, and I am happy and proud of that.

We each have our own story. People who make awkward or clueless (or any other) comments are mostly thinking about their own story, not yours. I always keep that in mind, and simply don't take that stuff personally, at all.
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Old 03-11-2010, 08:56 PM   #15
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People assume anybody who is overweight is barely able to put a foot in front of the other. I do not notice any tiredness, inability to move etc. and never did. I think it's very insensitive of people to say those things, even though they "mean well". I especially don't like the remarks about whatever you do, don't gain it back! Or you look so much better, implying you were a warthog previously. The biggest insult I can remember is all those remarks when I went from 135 down to 127 (years ago). At that time I was never fat but they made me feel like I was morbidly obese.
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