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Are you open about your weight loss struggles?

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Old 11-21-2011, 02:18 PM   #1
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Default Are you open about your weight loss struggles?

I notice that there are at least 2 camps of attitudes when it comes to being overweight. I have a friend who fits into the first type and I fit into the second type.

My friend has struggled with her weight all of her life. She is always on some kind of diet plan or exercise program. She speaks very openly about her weight loss struggles with anyone who cares to discuss the topic and even jokes about it.

I fall into the other camp, where I don't acknowledge that I have gained weight (except to my husband and here) or that it bothers me that I am overweight. I act oblivious, even when other women around me are discussing their diet woes, because I am too embarrassed to admit how devastating gaining all this weight has been to me. Of course, it's obvious that I'm fat, and I know that. I just don't like to talk about it.

That's why this forum has been so terrific for me, because it gives me a place to vent about this issue that affects me every day, but that I can't bring myself to talk about in the open.

Which camp do you fall into - are you open about this issue or do you stay silent to avoid hurtful attention and admitting the truth about yourself?
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Old 11-21-2011, 02:25 PM   #2
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I have never be really open about my struggle with weight. It is the same for weight loss. It is a very private thing to me. Only two of my closest friend know about my weight loss journey, and they are a great help, but beyond that I just think it's nonody's business but mine!
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Old 11-21-2011, 04:34 PM   #3
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I play for the same team you both do!
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Old 11-21-2011, 05:06 PM   #4
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I'm an open book, even with complete strangers. Even if someone asks what I weigh, I don't have any qualms about sharing.

But I'm open about pretty much everything, mostly because I am so confident and happy about who I am and my own choices, that it wouldn't dawn on me to worry about what other people think.
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Old 11-21-2011, 05:30 PM   #5
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Out of my group of friends, there are only two of us who are overweight. There's me, and my other friend who is significantly overweight and at 20 is already having insulin problems because of her diet.

The difference between me and my overweight friend, is that she is constantly talking about her weight. She's a singer in a music college, and she always comments that her teachers tell her that 'no one likes a fat singer', this instigates the 'you're beautiful, your weight doesn't matter, you have a beautiful voice' comments. Then she's done. And she's put on more weight mind you.

Me on the other hand, who has never spoken about my weight, has recently dropped 10+ kgs (over 20 pounds) with only telling my best friend what I was doing. So I sit there, listen to them all talk about their gym routines (I run and do free weights, so no gym), and how they are cutting out carbs to lose weight. I don't comment. Then they comment on how I have lost HEAPS (their words) of weight and how it's 'so obvious' and my overweight friends chimes in and says she doing a liquid diet to get ready for summer.

I guess it does comes down to how serious you are about losing weight, and how mature your are being about it. I want this to be a one time journey only. This is a permanent change for me.

I've found that people comment about my weight loss, and make these big statement about how slim I am looking, how I don't need to lose more (thanks mum!), but no one askes how. No one stops and inquires about what I've been doing. They just make these big statements that I guess are flattering, but I find embarrassing. And then they follow up with 'well if you can do it I can do it too'... which yay for me inspiring you, but there are other ways to interpret that statement.
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:40 PM   #6
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I don't think it has anything to do with how serious you are about losing weight or how mature your are being about it.

I've met successful and mature people who were open about weight loss, and enjoyed talking about the subject, and I've met unsuccessful and immature people who were very private about it (and I've seen probalby all combinations of success/maturity/openess).

I think as a whole, obesity, weight issues, and dieting is too taboo a subject - and it's hard to succeed with a problem that you feel you're "not allowed" to talk about. But if you're quiet by choice, and not because you're afraid of being judged for saying what you would love to be able to say, that's a different matter.

I think what it boils down to, is doing what you find most comfortable and finding what works best for you (unfortunatley those aren't always compatible goals - sometimes comfortable isn't what works, but only experimentation can tell you that).

Just talking about obesity and weight loss doesn't make the situation worse or better (though it has the potential to do either, depending on the individual).

What I think is most important is being respectful and protective of your own position. If you don't want to talk about it, you have a right to keep it private and to say "I don't want to talk about it." If you do want to talk about it, you have that right too (though it gives other people an invitation to do the same, so you have to be willing to listen to other people's opinions and stories too).
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Old 11-23-2011, 02:51 PM   #7
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I'm pretty open about my weight loss, but it's a very surface openness. I don't get real deep, revealing much about feelings, emotions and insecurities. It's about what I do, what I'm doing, some struggles and complaints, but really, nothing major. It really depends on who I'm spending my time with- like minded people who are also making efforts to lose weight or live a healthy lifestyle, or people who are clearly not interested for whatever reason or excuse.

I don't talk about it a lot, but everyone at work knows that I'm working to lose weight, and how I'm going about doing it. There is a push towards health where I work, and we can earn points by doing things that are healthy for us, including submitting monthly workout logs, receipts for preventative care, and gym memberships. That often brings up the topic because we might talk about classes being offered, ask each other if we submitted our workouts, or talk about how many points we've earned and what we'll spend them on (massages, movie tickets, free lunch, a day off....).

Meanwhile, I don't talk a lot about my weight loss with my family. Most of my family is overweight and while they complain about weight, they don't do anything to try to lose it. The last time I joked about how the food I was eating (we were at a restaurant) would put me on the treadmill that night, I got the middle finger. It was jokingly, but that joking-serious thing. After that, well, if they ask, I'll answer. Otherwise, I have nothing to say.

I think with certain people, if I talk about it too much, it's interpreted as bragging (since I'm successful). If I talk about it with my co-workers or friends, it's a topic of conversation.

In the past, I've kept things like this to myself. The fewer people who know, the fewer people will see me fail. No one knew I was quitting smoking. The last time I dieted, I said nothing until people started noticing. I don't' know why I'm more open about it now than in the past. Maybe because I've done it before, so I'm used to it. Maybe because I can't hide it. I don't know. I find it easy to talk about what I'm doing.
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Old 11-26-2011, 08:53 AM   #8
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I'm open about it, especially if people ask what I am doing. I love my gym and I didn't think I COULD calorie count until people on here talked me into trying it, so I figure if what I did helps someone else who asks, great.

Also, even at 258 I still think I was an attractive person who deserved love, respect, etc. I am not ashamed of who I was then. I think because I believe in Health At Any Size, I'm not daunted by talking about it.
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Old 11-27-2011, 01:48 AM   #9
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guacamole, i am very much like you in this area. i wont even admit my weight gain to my husband, even tho its obvious. im ashamed and embarrassed by it and i like to pretend the extra weight just isnt there. of course i know better...im uncomfortable, unhappy, my wedding ring is too small... its awful. ive never really openly discussed my weight gain until i joined here. maybe this is what i need...
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Old 11-27-2011, 11:50 AM   #10
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chicklett - I so feel you! I actually "hid" my weight from my husband too - until I couldn't anymore. For one thing, like you, my wedding band didn't fit and he was wondering why I wasn't wearing it (one little plug - just last week I was able to put it on again!).

Another reason I couldn't hide it was that I was having massive health problems (mainly weight related, although I wouldn't admit it), and when they were taking my weight at a doctor's appointment (don't you hate doctor's offices who have the scales in the hallway!) my husband was standing right there. The nurse actually asked if I was ok with her reading my weight out loud in front of him (if that didn't tell me I should be embarrassed about the number, I don't know what would!). Anyway, once the cat was out of the bag, there was no point in denying my weight problem anymore.

I still don't talk to him about my struggles in detail, though...just acknowledge that I am working on losing weight.
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Old 11-27-2011, 10:25 PM   #11
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I hid it from my husband too. As if he didn't notice. My husband doesn't know how much I weigh or how much I weighed. I would never tell him. I'm more open with strangers on line than I am with him! I also had to take off my ring for a couple of years, until last year. At the doc's office, I always avoided the CMTs telling me what my weight was by standing on the scale backwards. I felt that knowing my weight while trying to lose it would deflate me and demotivate me. If I only knew back then..... Now I stare down the scale!
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Last edited by twinieten : 11-27-2011 at 10:26 PM.
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Old 11-28-2011, 01:07 PM   #12
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this is crazy how much the two of us are alike in this way! its so nice to know that im not alone... this denial thing sucks. im afraid to have my weight checked in front of my husband too, i dont even want to know it! guacamole, congrats on getting your ring back on, you must be excited!! mine is in my jewelry box, i tried it on the other day and could have forced it if i wanted to cut off my circulation LOL.
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Old 11-28-2011, 01:28 PM   #13
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I'm open about. I figure sharing information and knowledge about what I'm doing may also help someone else. I don't brag etc...but if someone asks me I tell them. I don't care for pepole who do it for attention, that's annoying, but if the discussion goes that way and someone is keenly interested yup, I don't have a problem sharing. They might need to hear that somone who is losing also finds it hard at times. I do it to encourage others and to show them, I too am very much struggling with binge eating etc. at times. Anything to help awareness
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Old 11-28-2011, 11:03 PM   #14
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I sat in a meeting where the leader said ... oh and Donna lost "X" this week--whatever it was--and I said yes, I'm down to "X" whatever it was. For sake of argument, lets say it was 180 pounds. Not necessarily slim you see...and she says WOW I love how you have no problem telling a room full of people how much you weigh. My answer was well, if I told you I weighed 120 would you believe me? Its pretty obvious what I weigh...it isn't a secret I can keep from your eyeballs.

If you want to know something, ask me, I have no trouble sharing.
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Old 11-28-2011, 11:33 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 124chicksinger View Post
Its pretty obvious what I weigh...it isn't a secret I can keep from your eyeballs.

If you want to know something, ask me, I have no trouble sharing.


LOL!

Yeah, I never understood the lies about something so obvious. Especially because we make the "number" more important than the visual reality.



If you claim a healthy number, but you look overweight anyway - you're either lying about the number, or you're "skinny fat." Why is the "number" more important than what we can see with our eyes.

I've always hated that we have to pretend we don't see the "reality" behind lies about weight and age.

For years, I've said "if I ever am tempted to lie about my age, I'm going to lie up (tell people I'm older than I actually am) so that people will tell me I look good, rather than assume I am lying or look terrible for my age).

The same could be said of weight. If you're going to lie, why not lie "up" so that folks will say "No way, you don't look nearly that big."

Of course that doesn't really work - because women in our culture have been lying down for so many years, that virtually no one knows what "real" weight looks like.

Over the years, I've actually argued with people over what my weight could or couldn't be, because people would say I didn't "look like" someone who weighed over 300 lbs (even when I weighed nearly 400). I would argue that I looked exactly like a woman who weighed 3XX pounds, and that most people have no idea what 300 lbs or any other weight looks like, because the lies are more prevalent than the true admissions.

By lying about the numbers, and lying about a whole lot of even more important things when it comes to weight loss, we've learned to believe that we're failing and "everyone" is doing better than we are, when we're succeeding far above the average. We don't know what weight looks like, and we don't know what normal weight loss looks like, but whatever it is, we judge ourselves as failing, because we don't know what everyone else is doing.

That's why I believe that being open is the key to weight loss success becoming more accessible to more people. People need to know that they're not failing when weight loss isn't as rapid as they've learned to expect (because people are only sharing the extraordinary results, not the entirely ordinary and even truly slow ones).

When we only hear about the people losing several pounds per week, we never learn that 2 lbs per week is NOT (anywhere near) the true average.

Even if you're losing only 1/4 of a pound (even at nearly 400 lbs), you're still doing better than most people. But we don't see that. The enemy of weight loss isn't failure - it's seeing success as failure, because we don't know what "normal" really looks like.
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