Weight Loss Support - How to deal with friends encouraging bad habits.




Mikayla
06-18-2009, 09:28 AM
Warning long, mostly venting post.

Yesterday it stormed all day, so me and a friend(who I spent A LOT of time with and who also wants/needs to lose weight) decided to walk around the mall since we could not walk outside. I made it a point to eat dinner before I went to the mall so I would not be tempted by anything there. My friend ate a little bit before going and had a small bit of what I had for dinner as well.

We were not at the mall for 5 minutes and she announced she was hungry and had to eat at Chick-fil-A. So I sat down with her and watched her eat her food, then we walked around the mall a few times(about 3 miles). After our walk I decided to get some iced green tea, my friend got a blizzard from DQ.

Now we talk about dieting all the time, she knows that having tempting food around is a real struggle for me and I make it my mission to avoid situations like last night. So why did she feel the need to consume food she knows I have a hard time resisting in front of me?
Afterwards I asked if next time, we could either plan to eat at the mall( it would not be nearly as bad for me if I could have eat something while she was eating(like subway) or if she/we could eat before the mall. She told me maybe I should learn to deal with it because there was always going to be someone eating the foods I was trying to resist.:mad:

Is she right? I know I can't control how others eat, but is it asking too much to NOT eat fast food in the middle of exercise?:?:


time2lose
06-18-2009, 09:40 AM
It is definitely not too much to ask her not to eat fast food in the middle of exercise. I think that she is sabotaging you either consciously or maybe unconsciously. You have to decide how important her friendship is to you. She may make changing to a healthy lifestyle difficult for you. At the least, it sounds like she is not a good person for you to exercise with.

Will her eating this food in front of you cause you give in and eat some too? That is an important question for you to ask yourself.

She is partially right. There will be many times when you will be around someone eating the foods that you are trying to resist. But in this situation, one on one with a friend, you should not have to deal with it.

forestroad
06-18-2009, 09:42 AM
It's not unreasonable to suggest some sort of a compromise, especially since she is your friend and not just some random acquaintance. Though she has the right to eat what she wants, I think a friend should be more supportive than just telling you to "deal with it." It sounds like that's coming out of her own insecurities with her weight, but even so, I wouldn't think about the fact that she wants and needs to lose weight also, since she needs to make the choice herself to actually do something about it. The best you can do is set a good example, and when she's ready, be more supportive to her than she's being to you.

So, how about suggesting that just once or twice a week, you do a healthy activity together, as a gesture to meet her half way? If she still sabotages the healthy activities, maybe you need to stick to only doing things with her where you know there won't be junk food readily available, like inviting her over to your house on a rainy day, or walking around a museum/ non-mall dept store?

Good luck! Kudos to you for taking the initiative to get healthy :)


Devsmama
06-18-2009, 09:48 AM
MOTTO: If you can't change the people around you, change the people around you.

TJFitnessDiva
06-18-2009, 09:54 AM
It does sound like she's being insecure. No, it's not unreasonable to come to some sort of compromise with your friend but if she isn't willing then control the situations (like what the others have said above me) ...or if you are like me & you have the car keys :lol: I would have left her to her Chick-fil-a and went walking on my own. It sounds means but will drive home that you mean business.

It was hard to set my boundaries at the beginning with certain friends but to ease your mind I'm almost to goal and the ones I had problems with trying to sabotage my efforts are still friends...some people just don't want to change (not that they need to) when you do!

teresab
06-18-2009, 10:16 AM
People grow and change. Sometimes relationships are not strong enough to grow and change with them.

Good for you not giving into temptation! There will always be situations where people around you are eating junk. So many special events revolve around a meal. It's all about staying on track!

KnitALisa
06-18-2009, 10:18 AM
Mikayla - Irritating friend aside, way to go resisting the Chik-fil-a! Again, she was being kind of a jerk but she is right that you're going to face more temptations like that. But the great news is: You are strong enough to resist. You know that because your resolve has been put to this test. If you have the power to resist those waffle fries ;), you can do anything you set your mind to!

All that said, this doesn't sound like the best workout/diet buddy for you. Don't let her sabotage your amazing success!

beerab
06-18-2009, 10:31 AM
She's right to some extent- but there is such a thing as flaunting it in your face...

Me personally I just wouldn't exercise with her anymore if she continues to order food with you when you are trying to get some exercise in.

Lori Bell
06-18-2009, 10:47 AM
I would NOT have sat there and watched her eat... If she had the balls to order crap and eat it knowing you are on a weight loss mission, you should have had the balls to say, "Hey I'm going to do another lap while you are having your dinner, call/text me when you are done and we can met back up."

I don't know if she was trying to be rude or not, but if she was, that would have taken care of the situation nicely. No one preforms without an audiance.

melwolfe
06-18-2009, 10:55 AM
I'm with them. What she said is true, but to say it that way when she's supposed to be your friend is rather rude and b****y IMO. I would just take some healthy snacks with me and pull them out if she pulls this stunt again or as the poster above said, leave her to eat alone and then meet back up later. At that point I would also make sure not to include her in that sort of activity again.

I agree that she's probably feeling threatened by your new healthy lifestyle for some reason so is consciously or not trying to sabotage you.

JayEll
06-18-2009, 10:56 AM
I would bet that she was just as uncomfortable because you wouldn't join in with her.

I agree that you don't have to sit there and watch her eat. If she does this next time (if there is a next time) then keep walking, as Lori Bell suggested.

Your friend is right that you cannot control what other people decide to do/eat, but you don't have to participate or witness it, either.

It sounds to me as though your friend isn't really interested in losing weight, in spite of what she says. More like she's looking for a "partner in crime" who will "pretend" with her that she's getting healthy by walking and then eat as a "reward." So, if you are serious, you may find that these walks at the mall become increasingly irritating for both of you.

Jay

Mikayla
06-18-2009, 11:06 AM
Thanks guys, afterwards I thought about how I could have just walked while she ate, I didn't think about that at the time, next time I will do just that.

We have never walked at the mall before, but she does walk with me every Wednesday, it was just so gross out yesterday and we needed a free place to walk.

MileHighMama
06-18-2009, 11:24 AM
I think your friend was being mean and rude to eat all that food in front of you. I'm surprised that she wasn't embarrased to order a blizzard when you ordered a green tea. One way I get around people like that is to just feel happy that I'm eating/drinking the way I want to and let them have the high calorie crap. Afterwards, I'm always glad I didn't give in. After all, deep down I think that's what your friend wanted you to do.

Pam

CLCSC145
06-18-2009, 12:12 PM
It's such a yucky feeling to be the one who has lost an eating partner - she's hurting because you are moving on and she can't find the inspiration inside of herself to make the change too. Yes, your friend longs to lose weight - haven't we all wished for it while eating something completely incompatible with that idea? She's not ready. And your being ready highlights the fact that she isn't ready to try yet. I'm sure in her eyes, things would feel so much better if you would just go back to the way you used to be. In the meantime, she has decided she's going to eat like she always has and wait for you to come join her again so your friendship can go back to what it was. She's feeling left behind, abandoned somewhat. But it's not your fault either. It's just the uncomfortable spot friendships frequently land in when one person tries to grow and the other wants to remain in the safety of what was.

You don't need to avoid your friend, but be prepared for her to eat in front of you. She's not required to submit all of her choices to you for approval. Personally, I gain a bit of strength in knowing I can stick to my plan in situations like that. Try to plan activities where food is not an option. And if she does what she did this time again, wander off and window shop. You don't have to torture yourself by sitting and watching her eat it.

Ufi
06-18-2009, 03:11 PM
The very first thing that came to mind when I read this is that I would NEVER say such a thing to my friends who are struggling with alcoholism. I would ask them if my having a drink in front of them bothered them because I want to treat my friends with respect for what they're going through.

Does she have any suggestions on HOW you are supposed to "deal with it?" It's easy to tell someone to deal, but it would be interesting to see how she would deal if she was in your shoes.

chickiegirl
06-18-2009, 03:42 PM
She didn't need to respond like that. That's pretty harsh for a friend. And I think she probably misses her eating buddy and on some level wants you to join in.

It's not like you asked her to starve. You asked if NEXT TIME you could compromise.

I think she needs to learn to deal with that, since not everyone will want to eat at places full of crap.

My guess is if you stand firm, she'll come around.

kiramira
06-18-2009, 04:09 PM
Hi there!
FIRST of all, WAY TO GO on your determination!!! :carrot: :carrot: :carrot:
You have to keep it up, but you already know that.

There is ALOT going on here.

First of all, your friend wants to lose weight but hasn't seem to have made the connection between what she eats and the weight she is carrying. If I had a nickel for every time I heard my dear SIL God Love Her talk about her weight and not do anything about it, I'd be able to hire my own personal chef! So it is quite possible that she just doesn't see her actions in the same way that you do.

Second of all, she has lost an eating buddy! She wants the relationship that you HAD, when you BOTH talked about weight loss then gorked out on DQ. This is, IMHO, a bit of sabotage on her part. Hey, come on and eat with me, like we used to!!! You need to recognize this for what it is, and don't take the burden of making her happy by eating with her. And don't feel bad for making the best decision for YOU. You may be able to handle these food challenges down the road, but for NOW, you HAVE to do what is right for your health and your eating plan.

Finally, and maybe MOST importantly, this is an issue of respect -- respect on her part for your needs and choices, and also for her needs and choices. So you've taken the first step -- you've tried to sort out a compromise. She SHOULD be able to respect your decision, but you need to know that she has every right to eat crap. If you go for a walk, it is her choice to stop and sit and eat crap even if you plan not to at the beginning. But it is equally valid for you to excuse yourself and say "I just can't sit here because this food is too tempting for me, and I want to change my life, so I'll meet you back here in 30 minutes"...don't feel bad about this, because IF this is hard for you, and IF she respects you, it won't be an issue. If it IS, then you might have to reevaluate this relationship and work your time together definitely NOT around meal times...
SO SAD, but SO COMMON...I've lost more eating buddies than I can shake a stick at. People change, interests change, and sometimes you just have to move on.
:hug:
Kira

teresab
06-18-2009, 04:25 PM
Let's change the addictive behavior.

I used to work as a hairdresser for years and years. Alot of hairdressers smoke. It was like a little club "I have a few minutes! How about you? Let's go outside! Yay!!" We would even joke around saying things like "Wanna go have a date?" Like it was some big secret what was going on.

When a good friend would quit I would be sad that they wouldn't be able to share those 5 minutes with me, and I would feel like a failure for still going to have one. Or if I would give quitting a shot, my friends would say "Good for you! But you suck." I could see in their eyes they wanted me with them.



It doesnt' feel so bad when you have a partner in crime.

shelleymarie30
06-18-2009, 04:27 PM
I totally understand why you got so upset. My husband is 6'1 and 180 pounds. He is very active and has to consume at least 2700 calories per day, or he will lose weight rapidly! His food choices are not extremely unhealthy, but I do have to sit and watch him eat carbs and other things I can't enjoy! It is frustrating, but I can't tell him to give it up. Your friend is VERY different. If she is serious about her weight loss goals and serious about being supportive, she needs to listen when you tell her how you feel about her eating in the middle of a workout!

Keep up the good work!

Wannabeskinny
06-18-2009, 04:53 PM
Your friend is not strong enough to help herself and she certainly can't be strong enough for you. That doesn't mean she's a bad friend and it doesn't mean she doesn't care about herself either. It just means that you can't depend on her for "this."

My advice is to keep your weight loss efforts to yourself. Other people will always interfere and sabotage you whether they mean to or not. Your food and weight issues are your own and you don't need the extra pressure of keeping her on track or vice versa. I think it's great to get together once a week and exercise together but if these sort of issues arise constantly then you will have to exclude her more and more from this part of your life and she must do the same. Or set up some rules and guidelines of what "exercise" means. It might mean walking leisurely and catching up with eachother's lives which might be pleasant, or it might mean playing a sport together (tennis!) or any other fun activity.... but it certainly does NOT mean going to DQ together and that should be a strict rule!

ringmaster
06-18-2009, 11:32 PM
I don't know...I think your friend is right, there will always be foods around and those of us that have a problem resisting them do have to deal with it. Your friend as a friend can not eat the foods in front of you and be more supportive; but what happens when you aren't around friends and can't tell people to not eat that in front of you? I would feel uncomfortable telling someone, even a good friend, they can't eat things in front of me because I can't control myself with food.

Mikayla
06-18-2009, 11:58 PM
I don't know...I think your friend is right, there will always be foods around and those of us that have a problem resisting them do have to deal with it. Your friend as a friend can not eat the foods in front of you and be more supportive; but what happens when you aren't around friends and can't tell people to not eat that in front of you? I would feel uncomfortable telling someone, even a good friend, they can't eat things in front of me because I can't control myself with food.

Don't worry she is defiantly the kind of friend I can tell things to. We're like sisters, we share everything. I never, ever feel uncomfortable around her but she does irritate me at times(like last night) I just thought she was being rude and was frustrated and decided to vent here.

I can turn down food. I can not eat AND I'm getting pretty good at it I might add. But it is a struggle. I'm sure it will get better, with time.

Lekhika
06-19-2009, 05:48 AM
She SHOULD be able to respect your decision, but you need to know that she has every right to eat crap. If you go for a walk, it is her choice to stop and sit and eat crap even if you plan not to at the beginning. But it is equally valid for you to excuse yourself and say "I just can't sit here because this food is too tempting for me, and I want to change my life, so I'll meet you back here in 30 minutes"...don't feel bad about this, because

IF this is hard for you, and IF she respects you, it won't be an issue. If it IS, then you might have to reevaluate this relationship and work your time together definitely NOT around meal times...
SO SAD, but SO COMMON...I've lost more eating buddies than I can shake a stick at. People change, interests change, and sometimes you just have to move on.



The above is just what I wanted to say. Bravo on conquering temptation! But you really have every right to say, I'm going to walk around as you eat this food that may derail me...

Stella
06-19-2009, 01:14 PM
I think you are both right.

There will always be temptations in front of you, but as a person knowing that you want to los eweight and as you have specifically asked her not do put this stuff under your nose, it would be rude from her to continue to ignore you.

Stella
06-19-2009, 01:33 PM
"I just can't sit here because this food is too tempting for me, and I want to change my life, so I'll meet you back here in 30 minutes"...

Yes, that`s a good one. I could actually imagine that it would put the friend off eating, as a big part of eating something in a cafe etc is doing it in company. She may no longer enjoy it if she needs to do it on her own (especially if she really wants to sabotage you)

Ija
06-19-2009, 03:40 PM
Personally, I don't expect other people to change their lifestyles to make mine easier, so no, I wouldn't tell her to abstain from the food court if that's what she might normally do. From my perspective, that's just being a diva. Truth be told, when I was at my heaviest, I would wander over to Chick-fil-A or Sbarro's and get some greasy food after only a few minutes at the mall even if I hadn't intended to eat... the lure was just too strong. So I wouldn't necessarily assume sabotage (though I wouldn't rule it out, either). However, I think it's reasonable to ask her to be more considerate, but not necessarily expect it. If she chooses not to make compromises for you, then it's certainly reasonable to go off on your own or make different plans.

Stormkitty
06-19-2009, 04:41 PM
I have a similar problem but it is with my father. I live with my adult son and my father. My mom passed away a few years ago and I am the primary chief cook and bottle washer. I feel sometimes he is threatened somehow by my weight loss efforts and attempts to eat better. He is always buying or having me buy cakes, cookies and the such which sometimes are mighty hard to resist. He's even commented that "I'm glad you're trying to do good but why do the rest of us have to suffer?" If I cook something that is different/healthy, he'll turn his nose up. When I want to put myself first and make exercise a priority, I get a comment or a look. It's tough. It's not that my father is a bad person, he's just used to things a certain way and when my mom became sick several years ago he hasn't adjusted all that well. So I just try the best I can.

Just wondering how others have dealt with family members who aren't totally supportive.

Jacqui_D
06-19-2009, 05:04 PM
Personally, I think she was being rude. I don't expect my friends to tell me to "deal with it." That's an aggressive thing to say, not a friend-ly thing to say. And to say it in response to you trying to find a compromise that would benefit both of you makes it even more unacceptable in my view. Yes, you are going to run into temptations in life, but your friends shouldn't be the ones tempting you if they can help it. I agree with those who said next time just keep walking.

kitchencurtains3
06-19-2009, 06:17 PM
I like the idea of walking another lap. That way you're doing something positive to help yourself. How is her weight loss going? She might be a little ignorant of calories in vs. calories out. My husband, for example, thinks if he exercises for half an hour he can have pie and soda. He doesn't understand that junk food can have way more calories than what he just burned with exercise. Maybe your friend thinks three miles is like a marathon, and she doesn't know that the DQ probably had more calories than what she just burned.

As for family, I think the issue with the father might be that he thinks his meals have to change just because your meals change. He always has the option of cooking for himself, or getting take-out/deli from the grocery store. But I think the person who does the cooking, serving, and cleaning should get to decide the menu. :)

Stormkitty
06-19-2009, 08:44 PM
As for family, I think the issue with the father might be that he thinks his meals have to change just because your meals change. He always has the option of cooking for himself, or getting take-out/deli from the grocery store. But I think the person who does the cooking, serving, and cleaning should get to decide the menu.

True. Maybe I just feel too responsible to make Dad happy because my mom is gone. A lot of things should have been nipped in the bud earlier on but it didn't happen. I did sneak extra fiber in his diet tonight. Made pancakes with Fiber One pancake mix. Eh, it was okay. Bit dry though.