I generally find it easier to lose weight if I feel well supported. Although I chose people wisely, I still encounter negative reactions.
In my (non-diet related) blog someone suggested (again!) that focusing on one`s weight is superficial and that weight should not matter. She is not the first one who tell me this. It`s generally people who could do with joining in themselves or those who are slim and never had weight probhlems. They say losing weight for cosmetic reasons seems superficial and self indulgent They point out that I`m a healthy person and say that the size of my stomach does not matter (and if it does to me, I should get a life!).
I am deeply hurt by those comments. I`m not a superficial person, but I do want to love the body I live in and I`m giving it my all at the moment to make this happen. I don`t want praise, but I want to be supported. Instead, I receive criticism for "taking it too seriously" just because I refuse an ice cream which I simply do not fancy at that moment. People tend to be sceptic when I tell them that I am losing my cravings and think that I`m denying myself, but I see no reason to eat things which are not good for me unless i really, really fancy them.
Have you ever encountered a reaction like this? It seems to me that it`s always people who do not know what it feels like to be unhappy in one`s body - either they`ve got a beautiful one or they don`t but simply are not bothered. They however seem to find it hard to accept that I want to change mine and attach all sorts of negative character traits to such a desire.
07-13-2009, 01:49 AM
I get these comments all the time, and read them even more. People who think that watching your food intake is "superficial" or "not sustainable".
What I find funny is that people who talk about "eating whole foods and getting exercise" aren't superficial...they're just focusing on being healthy! But if they're doing it to lose WEIGHT? Well, that's just self-centered. They're the same thing...doing what you can to be as healthy as you can!
My answer to this would be similar to:
"I have learned that, when I don't watch my weight, I end up at a weight that is unhealthy for my body. Watching what I eat makes me happier and healthier, not only because I'm more content with how I look, but also because my body is performing better. I'm really enjoying the way I feel, as well as the way I look. To you, that may be superficial. To me, it's just making sure that I devote some time to being the healthiest, happiest me I can be, because I am worth that effort.
07-13-2009, 01:56 AM
"Not sustainable" and "unhealthy" are some other ones I had - how could I possibly have forgotten these? It`s almost as if they grudge you it.
The thing is - if I did it for medical reasons, they would all be supportive (and probably even pity me for having to do it).
I like the "I`m worth the effort" bit, but all "they" would probably chose to hear in that would be one word: "So it`s an effort, is it? So why bother?"
07-13-2009, 02:05 AM
And then you say "because I am doing everything to ensure I have a long, happy, and healthy life". If they argue whether your life will be longer/healthier, you cite any number of studies on the fact that it will, in fact, do just that. And if they argue about whether it will be happier, you can say "Well, for now, it's making me happier than what I was doing before. If that changes, I'll make a change."
And then you repeat, ad nauseum, until the subject is dropped. And if all else fails, you go with the generic response for people who won't mind their own business..."Hmm, that's an interesting way of thinking about it...I'll have to give it some further thought". Which almost invariably shuts them up, because they feel like you are listening, while you actually didn't agree to a thing.
07-13-2009, 03:08 AM
Creeps! I've never had comments like that, what very odd people there are in this world.
07-13-2009, 03:38 AM
It seems it's so easy for certain people to attack others for being "superficial," but really, why should they care about how you or anyone else looks? Why should anyone be shunned for wanting to look and feel their best?
07-13-2009, 03:52 AM
I'm surprised people make those kind of comments when everyone seems to know the negative effects being overweight can have on a person's health.
I am not dieting to be beautiful, I am doing it because I want to have children and live a long life. Neither are likely to happen if I don't lose weight.
07-13-2009, 05:22 AM
Ouch... *hugs* Superficial comment, I can see how that and other comments like that can hurt. :(
I don't think watching our weight is superficial, I think it can be obsessive. I guess I never considered weight watching along the lines of something to be considered superficial, but maybe that is just me.
You want to be healthy and I think we all want health and want to look better to make ourselves happy. That to me is a normal thing and it is okay to concern one's self with how you look. I mean we all do. I want to look better too...I want to fit into better things, same thing. I don't see that as superficial as it is a packaged deal, health/looks.
One thing I can say that I have often viewed people who I thought were "perfect" and when you actually talk to those people they don't think they are. In fact they sometimes will focus on negative things about themselves and maybe, just an idea, they make those comments in order to make themselves feel better. A possible idea, other than being "helpful."
07-13-2009, 05:37 AM
In my experience, people who complain that other people are being superficial do so because they don't have good self-esteem in whatever "superficial" area is being discussed, and they project their "you (I) should love yourself (me) just the way you (I) am" onto you. If someone secretly feels that they're fat, it's easier to tell another overweight person that they're obsessing than it is to change the fat feeling in themselves, if that makes any sense.
Don't let it bother you -- the fact that someone would make that comment says far more about them than it does about you. :)
07-13-2009, 06:23 AM
Wow, people will say anything I tell you........ Anyway, I definitely resent superficial comments like those!!!! Do any of those people who made the comments wear makeup? If they do, then I guess they're superficial. Do they ever try to dress nice? Then I guess they're superficial. Have they ever tried to get rid of one or 2 acne blemishes? Then I guess they're superficial! See what I mean? ALL of us have things that we want to improve, and sometimes that includes out health, and other times that includes looking HOT! And you know what?.... That's not superficial at all. It's called looking out for yourself and being the best person you can be in all facets of your life!
07-13-2009, 07:05 AM
I watched a wonderful girl in a Facebook weight loss group I belong to tonight being attacked and accused of being 'obsessive' because she posted about being concerned at her (stellar thus far) weight loss slowing down, and that she was re-evaluating what she'd done over the last week and how it may have affected her loss.
The woman who responded to her trotted out every cliche under the sun, and finished it up by calling her obsessive. This girl is not obsessive - she's dedicated. She's young, and she wants to feel young and be a good mom to her two boys. This other woman, in contrast, clings to every crutch, rationalisation and excuse not to fully commit to her professed intention to deal with her weight issues.
So yeah, even though the above is not even my problem I'm upset by it. I don't think wanting to lose weight is superficial at all. I think it's vital to our quality of life. I don't want to be imprisoned by my excess weight any longer. It spills over into too many dimensions of my life - my confidence, my energy levels, my emotional wellbeing. I think I'm doing the best possible thing for myself and for my little girl, and I hate that there are these people out there that will be so dismissive and even try to undermine our goals!!
Argh. I'm just a big ranty-pants tonight! LOL
Thanks for the extremely practical tips above on how to respond to these people.
07-13-2009, 09:20 AM
I'm having trouble expressing my thoughts this morning, but perhaps sometimes our efforts do appear to be obsessive. I have to BE a little obsessive, I think, because I don't have that natural "stop eating" signal. I am still trying to develop my sense of how much to eat. So I have to do things that appear to be (are?) obsessive--calorie counting, spreadsheets, daily weighing, lots of thinking about food. It's all necessary for me, even the spreadsheet because it nurtures my inner geek. :)
As far as the superficial comments--pfffft. So what. Yeah, I want to look good and I don't see anything wrong with that. It's not my sole motive, but even if it was there would be nothing wrong with that. I do lots of things that might be considered superficial; I try to wear flattering colors, I get my hair colored, I do my nails. If that makes me superficial, then bring it on, baby, because I'm not going to stop doing those things OR watching my weight.
Envy does funny things to peoples' minds, and I think that's what some of these comments are. Envy, or just a total lack of empathy.
07-13-2009, 10:33 AM
[QUOTE]I don't think wanting to lose weight is superficial at all. I think it's vital to our quality of life. I don't want to be imprisoned by my excess weight any longer. It spills over into too many dimensions of my life - my confidence, my energy levels, my emotional wellbeing.[\QUOTE]
couldn't have said it better.
it's true that people will say anything, say the sky is blue, and someone will spend the energy to point out all the scientific reasons and occasions when it's not.
[QUOTE]I do lots of things that might be considered superficial; I try to wear flattering colors, I get my hair colored, I do my nails. If that makes me superficial, then bring it on, baby, because I'm not going to stop doing those things OR watching my weight.[\QUOTE]
07-13-2009, 11:22 AM
Look - I've spent 3 decades of my life eating in an out of control manner. I was obsessive over food and getting as much as possible in my mouth, as often as I could. I would be SAD if I was too full to eat.
So exccuuuuuuuse meeeee for counting calories, counting steps, weighing food, and doing other "obsessive" things to get healthy.
So what if people are obsessive? You're doing this for you, not for them. If they're saying things you don't like then maybe you should stop talking to them about this. Cut the negativity out of your life.
07-13-2009, 11:33 AM
People start to bring this up with me occasionally, but I just say, "Listen, if I can do something that's both good for me and makes me feel really good, I'm going to do it, and losing weight along with getting in shape has made me happier and more confident than I've been in years."
They usually understand after that, or at least they shut up about it.
07-13-2009, 12:03 PM
This is what held me back from starting to lose these almost 40 pounds. I kept thinking - well, I'm not unhealthy, it's really just for vanity. And then I realized - that's ok. It's ok to want to lose weight for no other reason than looks.
I realized that I get my hair cut regularly because it looks nice. I'm not "obsessive" because I shower every day and blow dry my hair. I'm not superficial because I select nice clothes to wear.
I think those people who are worried about your being superficial probably are feeling insecure about themselves.
07-13-2009, 12:33 PM
I can't even imagine EVER saying anything like that to someone who is losing weight. I LOVE to see people accomplish their goals and get to where the want to be in life, and achieving a healthy, happy weight is one of them! Shaming people for doing better for themselves is pretty sick. Obviously, these people have alot of their own issues and demons they are dealing with if they can't be happy for the people who do well around them.
07-13-2009, 12:38 PM
Even the "deepest" person has thousands of superficial and shallow pursuits. They still as seagirl said, bathe, dress and comb their hair. They still have hobbies without "deep" significance.
On one hand, I think that our culture makes the quest for beauty more important than the quest for health, and that kind of superficiality sometimes should be mentioned/discussed, but pointing fingers at someone else is generally a stupid way to go about it.
I also know that during most of my lifetime, I didn't really care about the health aspect. I was willing to jeopardize my health in order to become more socially acceptable in appearance. When the deprivation got to be too much, I'd give up because I'd think "who cares what everyone else thinks."
I forgot about thinking about me - really thinking about what I really wanted, and what was in my best interest.
People are always going to give you their opinions, especially after you've voiced yours or when you've put your opinions out in a public forum. They feel you've opened the door by talking about it, but that doesn't mean their opinions are considerate, true, good, valid, or of any significance whatsoever.
07-13-2009, 01:11 PM
Well, in my case, according to my mother, watching what you eat makes you a dull, antisocial person. :( Why does it make you less "fun" if you want to eat grilled chicken instead of fried chicken, for example?
07-13-2009, 01:40 PM
Sorry it took so long to reply. I had to wait for my nails to dry. Yep, I often inhale a little acetone just to put some color at the end of my fingers. A couple of months ago, I sat for 3 hours and inhaled some really harsh stuff in order to have my hair permed so I can get it to look the way I want. The makeup I put on before I painted my nails really didn't do anything to increase my heart rate or make me stronger. Same with the deodorant. :dz:
Losing weight and exercising has made me feel a whole lot better when I'm moving around and taking care of my family. I also get a good endorphin buzz and a chance to meet my neighbors when I do my nightly walk. It also kinda feels good when I hear, "Nice A**!" when I walk by.:s:
Oh well, guess I'm just a vain and superficial bi*ch. At least now I have the strength and muscle tone to knock anyone on their butt that would have the nerve to say it to my face. :p
07-13-2009, 01:46 PM
I would say that focusing on the number on the scale can be obsessive (and we have seen examples of that here on the forums). But, I have to explain that by the previous comment I mean when people obsess too much about the daily number that, as we all know, is tend to flunctuate depending on the amount of water one drank, the regularity of bowel movements, salt intake. on the constellation of the stars and other celestial bodies and probably also on the distance between Mars and the Earth (which, I am told, will be extraordinarily close on August 27th). Ok, having said that, I don't believe that trying to lose weight is superficial at all. Who cares what motives each of has? For some the goal may be to fit into smaller clothes and be able to wear "cute" stuff, for others it may be health issues. Who has the right to label you as superficial because you are on the verge of diabetes unless you lose weight? I bet that the skinny people have something that they wish for themselves, too. Do they have their teeth whitened? Heck, isn't THAT superficial, too? As long as the teeth are healthy, who cares what shade of white they are, no?
If you look at things from the proper angle, almost anything can be classified as superficial.
07-13-2009, 02:08 PM
I myself go back and forth with wondering whether my quest for losing weight is really worth it--after all, shouldn't I love myself for what's inside? And I do, but I want to be at peace with the outside, too.
I get these comments from time to time, but always from thin, pretty people. These people have never had to struggle with being 100 pounds overweight.
Thighs Be Gone
07-13-2009, 02:21 PM
As others here have mentioned, I feel better when I am taking care of myself. I AM worth it. I am worthy of having my very best. My family is worthy of having my very best. I NEED to be @ my very best to deal with whatever life throws at me.
Genetically, the writing is definitely on the wall if I don't take care of myself in regard to nutrition and activity. I don't want to go through chemo if I could alter that circumstance now! I don't want to lose my hair. I don't want to be in a wheelchair. I don't want to have scars all over my chest from heart surgeries.
Do I look better too? Absolutely and I guess I am just vain enough to admit that yes, I enjoy that aspect as well.
Lets face it. If we don't do this for ourselves for whatever our own rationale is, no one else will.
07-13-2009, 02:52 PM
Call me a superficial obsessed psycho then lol.
Next time someone says that just delete their comments- you don't have to approve all blog comments.
Though me I'd probably tell his person "figures YOU would say that" and leave them wondering what that meant... lol ;)
I arbitrarily chose the number 140 just to have a number, and who knows, maybe at 150 I may say I look great- or 140 may come and I may say hmm I got some ways to go.
It's hard but try not to let those people let you down... *hugz*
07-13-2009, 03:13 PM
I'm sorry you had to deal with the negative comments. I have come to believe that there are 2 types of people in this world. Those that are supportive and those that are not. There doesn't seem to be any middle ground. Besides family and a handful of friends, my Doctor, Dentist, Beautician, and Pharmacist are ALL very supportive of my weight loss efforts. They shower me with compliments and brag on my glowing health. Besides that, I don't give a crap anymore. I'm so sick and tired of (some) people preaching to me. After reading a few comments in this thread I have just come up with a new come back for the naysayers. "Gluttony is one of the 7 deadly sins just as envy is...I'm losing weight to correct my sin, what is your plan of action?"
07-13-2009, 03:21 PM
"So I'm superficial and obsessive. What's it to you?"
Their reply, whatever it might be.
"My body, my choice." Repeated as needed.
07-13-2009, 03:23 PM
Oooohhhhhh, Lori, GOOD ONE. I will be using that in the future.
07-13-2009, 03:26 PM
After reading a few comments in this thread I have just come up with a new come back for the naysayers. "Gluttony is one of the 7 deadly sins just as envy is...I'm losing weight to correct my sin, what is your plan of action?"
This is a GREAT comeback!
07-13-2009, 03:40 PM
Or the old standby, "I know IT'S CRAZY, isn't it?! Anyway so how's your marriage?"
07-13-2009, 03:41 PM
Ah, but very unkind in spirit, but using the Bible to make a point. I don't think it quite works.
07-13-2009, 04:16 PM
Or the old standby, "I know IT'S CRAZY, isn't it?! Anyway so how's your marriage?"
I LOVE IT!
07-13-2009, 04:34 PM
Ah, but very unkind in spirit, but using the Bible to make a point. I don't think it quite works.
:devil: Pathetic isn't it? But I neglected to mention that in my case it seems appropriate considering I get most of my grief at CHURCH. (Isn't that a hoot!):D
07-13-2009, 05:55 PM
I think, for me, it's that it has been drilled into me that I'm a modern, independent, empowered person - and to want to do something like this for myself, something that feels so much like vanity creates a weird, almost shameful sense of guilt.
The strange this about this is that I don't apply this to anyone else. Seriously, all I ever am is impressed and amazed by other people's efforts, and I have the greatest admiration for anyone who makes the decision to make their lives better, whether it be for asthetic or health reasons.
Maybe this person experiences this guilt, mixed with envy? Not that I think what she said is in any way excusable. People who think that weight loss is superficial probably haven't experienced being overweight, or haven't come to terms with their own issues.
I didn't mean to sound so analytical! It just really gets to me how judgemental people can be.
07-13-2009, 06:01 PM
Do any of those people who made the comments wear makeup? If they do, then I guess they're superficial. Do they ever try to dress nice? Then I guess they're superficial.
:-) I actually said that to a few of them (others really don`t care about their own looks!), but to them, it does not seem to be the same thing: They think I`m depriving myself for a low weight while doing up one`s own hair and dressing fashionably is a pleasure to them.
It`s easy to justify why you want to lose weight if you are very large. But as I am not obese or in any way unhealthy through my weight, I seem to constantly need to defend myself for dieting for cosmetic reasons!
It seems to me that (the large people, at least) want to find a reason for not having to do it themselves, and they can achieve this by attaching all sorts of negative vocabulary who make the effort.
07-13-2009, 06:09 PM
"Gluttony is one of the 7 deadly sins just as envy is...I'm losing weight to correct my sin, what is your plan of action?"
Thanks for all the other suggestions, too - I`m getting the idea, although the one with the marriage may be a bit too impertinent for my style. :-) Have you ever actually used that, and how on Earth were the reactions?