Oh, where do I even begin here? I do appreciate all the responses, I really do. And I'm not sure how well I conveyed the situation in my original post.
It's not that I'm judging this lady's goals as not being "lofty enough," it's more that she appears to be so overwhelmed that she's become venomous. That's what I feel bad for her about, that she's angry and seems to have lost hope, that she takes it out on people that are making progress. I'm not even saying she needs to reach her goal weight (whatever it might be) or that she must aspire to maintain it. The issue is that she continues to tear other people down out of her own frustrations and doesn't even seem to realize it.
These are the kinds of responses I get out of her when I host a program or speak of my own journey.
- "Oh, you started running? Good for you, you're going to blow out your knees."
- "How could you even like veggies? You shouldn't be eating spinach every day as that's unhealthy."
- "You're skinny now, I don't know why you'd want to keep losing."
- "Well aren't you already healthy at the weight you've reached? Do you want to look like a stick?"
- "Your doctor wants you to weigh what?! You can't trust anything a doctor tells you."
I suspect that she was coming from a similar angle when talking about not wanting to reach her goals.
It would be easy for me to dismiss her, but I do care about what happens to her. I can relate to being there. I've known her for 5 years and she's maintained her weight in that time, which is about at my own highest. She has a lot of trouble getting around because of it, like I once did. I'm extraordinarily careful when I speak of my past to not describe myself as "gross" or "ugly" when I was at my highest weight (I don't believe I was anyway), just that I was extremely tired, overwhelmed, and sad that I couldn't accomplish the things that I wanted. So I made a plan and fought tooth and nail to set it into motion. I do want to help others, and I understand that journey is different for each of us. I realize that whatever made me click won't work for everyone; we all have to find what clicks for us (I certainly wouldn't wish a miscarriage on anyone in order to get them restarted, for example).
Reaching my goal weight is important to me, but it's not the end-all, be-all of existence. I do try to emphasize to everyone that it really is about feeling better, gaining confidence, becoming strong both physically and emotionally. And yeah, I'll definitely take looking better along with it; who wouldn't?
She once broke down crying in front of me upon finding out her weight for the week, and I hugged her and told her to keep trying. That's all we can do, right? I'm sure I was just as negative as her when I was younger, as I spent years seeing myself as a victim (which, looking back, got in the way for any potential success). I do my best to try to come from a place of understanding, and maybe I just needed to vent a little here and get some insight from others. And I thank you all for that.
Jane, you're probably right in that she appreciates it more than she lets one. I'll do my best to keep that in mind.