Weight Loss Support - I could really use advice




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Bulanova
11-30-2011, 02:15 AM
Hello, all.

This is the first time I think I have ever reached out to a support group for weight loss. I have quite a background, but I'll try to keep it brief (or else I'd post in the introductions section) :)

I have been overweight my entire life. Around age 20 after I had moved out and was living on my own, I dropped over the course of maybe 1.5 - 2 years a total of about 145 pounds through simple diet and exercise (my highest weight being 315 and my lowest being 170). It started out as a two-week trial to see if I really could lose weight, as I had been trying since I was 9 years old but never really understood the mechanics or gave anything a real chance. I did lose weight in two weeks, enough to keep me going and going until I eventually reached 170.

A few years later, I was no longer living alone as my then-boyfriend, now-husband, moved in with me. I did notice it was a lot harder to keep the weight off and silence my desires to indulge than when I was by myself. I am a stress eater, a boredom eater, and a celebration eater. Every special occasion, I want to eat - holidays, birthdays, anniversaries, even just heralding in the weekend on Fridays!

Anyway, after reaching 170 on the nose several times (soooo close to 169.9!), I spiked back up to 180. At that point, I was burned out from all the dieting and exercise I had been doing and I wanted to take a "break." During this period, I got back up to 205 pounds. When I was ready to lose weight again, I started back in doing the same things I had done before, only it didn't seem to be working as well this time around, so I saw my doctor.

My doctor put me on a program called Medifast. It worked really well aside from ultimately giving me gallstones and requiring a cholecystectomy (fun :dizzy:) and got me back down to 170 pounds again before I hit rock bottom. Medifast essentially starves you and I was so restricted that when I finally rebelled against it, I rebelled HARD. REALLY. FREAKING. HARD.

It's been about a year or so since the whole Medifast fiasco and I now sit at 250-260 once more (I'm not 100% sure on the weight as I am far too ashamed and afraid to actually weigh). It's frustrating and frightening to watch myself gain so much back and so fast. I see my cheeks filling in and I see my collar bone disappearing once more. I see myself buying pants increasingly larger. All the while I'm mortified but feel like I am watching it all from a distance. The wrong part of me feels so in control that it's like I'm not in control at all.

I really want to take the reins again and get this weight back off, because I know I can! I did it before! Even if I am living with someone that causes me to trigger and desire food moreso than if I were on my own, I know I can do this.

I am finding that my biggest problem seems to be boredom and stress eating. When I am entertained, I forget to eat sometimes! When my husband is home from work, I find myself wanting to do nothing but eat (our marriage is wonderful, by the way, so I don't really know why his being home triggers me so much - still working on figuring that all out). I don't have nearly as much trouble when he is out at work.

But the worst part of all, and this is the part I have not learned to deal with, and the reason I signed up to a weight loss forum after all these years to finally ask for help is the voice I hear sometimes. When it rears its hideous head, it is constant, nagging. It does not shut up. All I hear is "go eat." I get flashes of different foods I know are in our cupboards. No matter how much I ignore it, no matter how much I tell it no, bargain with it, set specific times to eat, etc., it persists. It persists about every 30 seconds to a minute. It is like a baby crying. It almost always ends in me getting up to eat something (sometimes without even fully realizing it, like I've given up even listening to myself) just to shut that stupid voice up! Just to stop getting flashes of food in the pantry!

PLEASE help! I don't know how to get through those times or what to say or do. It feels like a very primitive part of me. Like maybe I've been saying "Okay" so long, it's just a natural part of me now, ingrained in my brain.

I have tried everything I can think of. I try to distract myself with other things I find interesting, I try to go for a walk or do an activity, I work on puzzles to stimulate my brain, I tell myself no, I try just a little of whatever it is I'm craving instead of the whole thing, I tell myself I can't eat right now but I can in X minutes/hours, I rant and rave about how upsetting it is to my husband, I write in a journal or vlog privately about it, I leave myself notes after I eat to read in trying times telling my future self how horrible it will make me feel if I give in...

None of that has seemed to work yet. I ALWAYS seem to end up eating, even though I am not hungry, just to stop the voice telling me to eat. Any advice on how to get through these most trying times will be greatly appreciated. Does anyone else have these horrific periods? It's almost like there's an invader in your brain trying to mind control you, it's so persistent. I hope I'm not the only one who has these!

I apologize for being so long-winded, but there has been a lot building up inside me for the last few years and I just needed a place to finally get it all out. I'm really just at my wits' end. If you have the patience to make it this far, bless your heart. :carrot:


shannonmb
11-30-2011, 05:25 AM
Welcome! :hug: What a very thoughtful post. I don't know if I'm blown away by it because you are so eloquent and have such a voice when you write, or because I know *exactly* what you are talking about! Either way, I'll give you my thoughts on the subject of that voice that will just not shut the heck up about eating! ;)

I'm 40 years old and have yo-yo'd a few times in my adult life. One time back in my early 20s I lost 70 lbs, taking me to a low of ~190. When I did that, I was on the low-fat craze, and ate maybe 10 fat grams a day at the most. My diet consisted almost exclusively of empty carbs, and my pattern was to eat my empty carbs, then lie down on the couch every evening and fantasize about food. What will power I have deep down inside me to fight that all-consuming urge to pig out for long enough to lose 70 lbs! One trip to New Orleans, though, and it was over. Steadily gained for awhile, then would get motivated enough to lose 30 lbs or so over 3 or 4 months, gaining it all back in no time as soon as the motivation left me.

I wondered for a long time what in the world must be wrong with me that I should be so consumed with food! Do I have some freaking Daddy issues I don't know about? Was I starved in a past life? What the **** gives, because "normal" people don't have to fight themselves from gorging on food!

About 5 years ago I moved to night shift at work. Looking back on it, it is amazing how much the sleep deprivation and inconsistent schedule led me to an all-out 3 year food fest. What I had barely managed to keep a handle on my whole adult life was completely thrown to the wind and I gained about 100 lbs in that time. Finally, at 350 lbs, I switched back to day shift (even though it was quite a bit less money), and when I wasn't feeling much better I went sobbing in to my doctor about how I was going to die soon and couldn't afford to because I have a little girl!

I got hooked up with a sleep study, and got on CPAP for sleep apnea. It is absolutely amazing what a good night's sleep can do for the appetite control. I totally wasn't expecting it, but pretty abruptly I found myself less consumed with food. I went on with the way I had been eating for about a month, but then the change was so noticeable that I decided to see what would happen if I really got myself on a sustainable, well balanced eating plan. That was in May of 2009, and I have lost the weight on my ticker since then. My sleep doctor said that in sleep deprivation, the hunger hormone that signals that you are full goes way down, and the one that signals you to eat goes way up. Humph! I can't stress enough how important that 7-8 hours of good sleep and keeping the circadian rhythms steady has been for me. I'm pretty much obsessed with my sleep at this point and don't let many things get in the way of it these days!

The way of eating I chose was just intuitive for me, but it turns out to be a higher-protein, lower glycemic index type of diet. Basically I eat lots of meat (which I really love), carbs here and there, but most always with a good protein source to level out the blood sugar spikes, dairy, and then fruits and veggies to my heart's content. I started eating this way, and at first of course I had to hold myself down to get into the groove. But within a few weeks, the hunger monster started quieting down, and I began to discover that I could go from mealtime to mealtime seldom even thinking about food. What an amazing turn of events!

So in my very humble opinion and experience, all those years of searching for the mental defect I must have to be the way I am was pointless. It seems to be a chemistry thing. I must sleep well and watch the empty carbs, and then I can live like a "normal" person just fine! I do indulge from time to time (went to Disney a few weeks ago and ate reasonably but definitly more than usual, then Thanksgiving!) and I find myself particularly hungry/cravy after those events. But if I can get right back to my way of eating and stay with it for 3 or 4 days, I'm right back to my non-craving new lifestyle. The call to eat can be loud at times, but I am fine with it for a couple days. Just knowing that it will go away if I get 3 good days under my belt is enough to take the fear, or the "what's the point, I can't fight this forever" mentality. No, I have proven over and over that I can't fight the voice that begs me to go eat forever, but I can do it for a couple days if necessary! And just knowing that I'll have to go through that couple days of hungries is enough to keep me from over-indulging very often!

All of this said, somewhere along the lines I did figure out that numbing myself could happen with food, not something I'm glad I discovered! I remember back in the beginning of my new way of eating a few really stressful events happened, and I really made the connection that if I could pound down 2 Big Macs right now, I would get that sweeping calm feeling! I never recognized that I had that going on so strongly until I took that food out of the equation! Then I was left flapping in the breeze with no coping mechanisms for my stress! I actually signed up for a meditation boot camp for 6 weeks and considered anti-anxiety meds. The meditating helped a *tiny* bit, but I have found that the biggest stress release next to greasy carbs, really the only one that comes close for me, is exercise. Now that food is firmly out of the equation over time, my go-to thought when I'm feeling overwhelmed is a nice brisk walk. Honestly, the other day I was feeling really amped up and had a lot of nervous energy, and out of the blue I grabbed my ipod and went around the block a couple times. NEVER would I have thought that someday THAT would be my instinct! But it worked like a charm and I was in a whole new frame of mind when I got home 20 minutes later.

I have been here long enough to know that everyone's weight loss journey and life experience is a journey of one, we all have our issues and ways of dealing with them. I hope this helps, and I really hope you figure out what will work for you!

Unna
11-30-2011, 05:48 AM
There seems to be a few different problems here (I identify with each!, I think we could become good friends):

1. Urge to eat when your husband comes home (I'd call this happiness, celebratory eating). I totally do this, so I had to start saving the majority of my calories for evening, when he is home.

2. Constantly thinking about eating, the urge overtakes you when you are the slightest bit bored. I am also a huge victim to boredom eating (Is it possible to only keep fruits and veggies onhand, eliminate the problematic foods?)

3. The way you lost weight the first time doesn't work anymore (what was this exactly, btw?). The way you lost weight the second time, Medifast, happened to make you sick, so you don't want to go that route again. So, how should you do it? This part requires a lot of trial and error. Some people find low carb is best, others vegan, others say simply calorie counting works (regardless of what type of foods it is). Anyway, figuring out what works for you is your responsibility - it is part of your "journey". I wish I could help, but I can only say what works for me.

4. the voice that screams to eat, what types of foods is it telling you to eat? Many find that certain foods are particularly addicting (peanut butter, chocolate, etc) and cannot have it in their house at all. Is it possible that you aren't eating enough protein in the morning - leading to intense hunger pangs throughout the day?

Anyway, I wouldn't tackle all of these problems at the same time. But, maybe start really reflecting on one at a time and try to think of a practical solution to try. Then tell us about it! We all need help too!


toobig
11-30-2011, 06:03 AM
I struggled with some of the same issues. The one thing that helped me is calorie counting. For almost two years I have counted every single calorie. Some days I go over, some days I go way over! But I count the calories. This makes me the one in control. There is something about tracking and haveing a food journal that makes me feel more in control.

Bulanova
11-30-2011, 06:09 AM
Thank you so much, Shannon! You brought up a point I had forgotten about. While Medifast was ultimately a disaster, the low-carbing really did make my cravings go away. I remember, vaguely at this point, being able to walk down the bakery aisle of the grocery store and not find any of the cakes or cookies appealing in the least!

I also remember getting a cake once, having a small piece, and leaving it in my parents' freezer. My mother asked me if I was ever going to eat it a week later and I said I had forgotten about it. She guffawed and said she could never forget about a cake in the freezer (yes, my eating habits are definitely inherited). Looking back, being in that place where I could forget a cake in the freezer seems magical now and I feel like guffawing as my own mother did.

When I was on Medifast, if I recall correctly, I believe it took me about a month of low-carbing to get rid of my cravings. I had forgotten about what now seems like a little ace in the hole! I will try to just bear through it the next few times it comes up and limit my carb intake. That is the most solid lead I have had on it yet.

Thanks so much for your input.

By the way, is your avatar picture taken in Hawaii? It looks like it. My own avatar photo was taken in Hawaii last year for my December honeymoon! :) Now there is a place where it's hard to be bothered by stress.


----

Unna, I think you are spot-on with eating in happiness when my husband comes home. I have noticed I am a very big celebratory eater, yet I hadn't managed to put two and two together the way you have. Amazing what clarity can be seen when on the outside looking in!

Keeping healthy fruits on-hand for boredom eating might be a good idea. If I don't feel completely satisfied from boredom eating (in other words, if I don't eat exactly the thing I want to eat), I feel like I tend to over-eat a lot of other small things trying to fill that void. So I end up feeling like I eat a lot even though eating, for example, three apples is not nearly as bad as eating half a chocolate cake! I think I should be less harsh on myself and less scolding when I feel like I have over-eaten, especially if it is with healthier choices.

The way I lost weight the first time was by gradually introducing leisurely exercise, then slowly upping the time and intensity, then working on the diet (switching all to low-fat or fat-free, monitoring recommended serving sizes, eating only when I was truly hungry, etc.) It is possible that it does still work the same and it just seemed like it did not work as well because it was harder to stick to with my husband living with me. I am currently trying this approach again by introducing fun, leisurely badminton twice a week for an hour, and gradually work towards biking on days in between badminton. I am convinced exercise, even minimal, plays a huge part in weight loss and overall health!

The voice that tells me to eat is so basic and primary that it often doesn't seem to be telling me to eat anything in particular. It just says, "Eat." Then I start thinking of all the food choices we have in the house. As I run through them in my mind, one or two will stick out to me and then I will keep getting flashes of them in my mind all night maybe every thirty seconds to every minute until I give up and go eat it. If nothing in the house is appealing, I find myself mechanically getting up every 5 to 10 minutes rummaging through the cabinets to see what we have, as if maybe I have overlooked something delicious or something will magically appear. Those nights end with me either going to the store to get something or eating about 4 or 5 different things I don't really want to eat in hopes it will be "enough" to quiet the voice. It never is, though, and I just end up feeling even crummier for eating things I didn't even want to eat!

---
Toobig, calorie-counting is one thing I have not been able to stick to. It makes every meal, drink, snack seem like a huge chore. I did try it faithfully for a few weeks during one of my first plateaus, but I found I just ended up hating it, and I realized it was making me think obsessively about calories, fat grams, sodium, etc. I had a hateful, terrible relationship with food because all I saw it as was in terms of calories. Nothing seemed enjoyable.

However, it may yet be worth retrying. Perhaps I could keep a journal of food without fiddling with calories and fat, and just kind of keep tabs on what I am eating and how often. That way I'm not consumed with details and math and columns of information to get mired in, but I'm also staying accountable for my choices. :)



Thank all of you for your thoughtful suggestions. I sure do appreciate it! I feel like I finally have hope again. Reaching out seems to be one of the best decisions I could have made.

DezziePS
11-30-2011, 10:41 AM
Wow- I'm really impressed you lost 145 lbs without calorie counting! I definitely couldn't have done that- too much guess work for me! You obviously know how to do this! To be honest- I've been married twice and both times, I gained a LOT of weight in the first couple of years. I slimmed down to 170 at the end of my first marriage and then got remarried, gained it all back, and am working on losing it again. I think other posters are right, a lot of it is "celebratory" eating that my husband is home and we are together and spending time together. For me, it's also that when I'm alone, I'm less likely to cook fatty/delicious meals for just myself- it's a lot easier to eat more spartan, healthy food when I'm not cooking for someone else and their tastes and wanting it to be good for them. I am trying to realize that my husband REALLY needs to lose weight (he weighs exactly 100 lbs more than me!) and the butter or cream or cheese I'm adding to stuff is killing him. Also, I'm the type who tends to think I can "keep up with the boys." When I sit around eating dinner with husband, I often eat just as much as he does, which I CAN NOT do. He eats more than he should- I definitely shouldn't be keeping pace with him! All that said, I do still have to save the majority of my calories for when he is home or I will go over. I try to make sure I have enough for a reasonable dinner and a snack or small dessert. I have been able to do this on around 1400 calories a day and so far it is working. Best of luck! You can do this- you've done it before!

Oh- and I tried Medifast for a while- I'm definitely impressed that you were able to stick with it so long. I burned out after about 2 weeks because it was so awful and I missed real food so badly. Plus all the artificial sweeteners were starting to overwhelm me. I don't mind them sometimes but it was just gross.

dragonwoman64
11-30-2011, 01:47 PM
loved your post, Shannon. I experienced some of those very same things.

Beach Patrol
11-30-2011, 02:39 PM
:hug:

"When we eat for any reason other than hunger, we're eating for the wrong reason."

It sounds like you may have a "food addiction". Eating out of boredom, or happiness, or fear, or anger, or "just because it's there & I have a crazy craving & OMG I want it so bad!" etc - we should use food as sustenance, not as a lover, friend, boredom-buster, etc. Believe me, I've been there! - sometimes I STILL go there, but it's only a very tiny occasional once-in-a-while thing, and I now have more strength to quell that nasty voice that tells me to eat, even when I know damn well I'm not hungry. I have learned the quick'n'easy technique of asking myself "WHY do I want to eat?" and if the answer is anything other than "Because I'm hungry!" then I find something to do to shut that voice up. You mentioned walking or other activities or puzzles... these are all good ideas - but you need to make a list of SEVERAL things you can do to take your mind off the calling of food.

My own lists consists of many things, including
playing with the dog or cat
give myself a manicure
clean out a closet (or drawer or storage shed, etc.)
go for a walk
do laundry, dishes or other housework
take a bath
look at myself naked in the mirror (that'uns a doozy!!!)
masturbate (nope, not kidding!)
GET ON THE COMPUTER & HIT UP 3FC FORUM!!!! - whatever it takes.

Because I want this weight GONE and GONE FOR GOOD. And I've come to the conclusion that in order to shut that food voice up, I have to drown it out with positive, enjoyable things. And continue talking myself out of a binge... "No, I'm NOT hungry. I'm NOT hungry. Food is for SUSTENANCE. I don't need to eat if I'M NOT HUNGRY." (also, a tip: the book The Beck Diet Solution - very helpful! - no matter what diet you choose to use)

And ya know, practice makes perfect, and sometimes we're stronger than we know. :) :hug:

JayEll
11-30-2011, 02:42 PM
I just wanted to say a few words in support of Medifast.

First of all, I don't believe that Medifast caused your gallstones. I am not a doctor, but my guess is that they were there and growing all along, and going on the program precipitated a crisis. This happens often to obese people who embark on a diet, any diet. It also can happen unrelated to eating changes.

Second, Medifast is indeed a low calorie diet, and that's why one is not supposed to stay on it for more than 4 months unless medically supervised. If one is following the program correctly, you do not feel starved. If that does happen, then the thing to do is to transition into maintenance. Medifast does have a transition plan and a maintenance plan--skip these, and it's easy to wind up back at square 1.

I'm not suggesting you go back on Medifast, since you no longer trust it. Here are just some ideas you can think about:

Do you get enough protein? Many people don't realize they are not eating enough protein, and if you aren't getting enough, it can add to your hunger. Sometimes people eat more and more carbs, when what they really need is protein.
Limiting carbs is often helpful for controlling overeating, as you know. But it can be hard to do. Portion control can help, but so does avoiding refined sugar and refined flour products. Use whole-grain products and measure how much you are eating.
Have you talked to a therapist, counselor, or registered dietitian who is knowledgeable about issues with food? The fact that you feel more driven to eat when your husband is around indicates an emotional issue. You say it is happiness--like "He's home! Yippee! Let's eat!" It might be easier to tackle this with a third party.


Good luck, and welcome to 3FC. I wish you success! :cheer2:
Jay

berryblondeboys
11-30-2011, 03:02 PM
Basically I agree with everything Shannon wrote (like usual). And I too find that lack of sleep is what led to a lot of bad eating... And then the heavier I got, the worse I slept so it became a vicious circle!

But about eating. Just do things in moderation. Things you can change now and can live with for the rest of your life. So, if you decide to go low carb (which is what I do) don't go super extreme. Just git rid of the simple carbs. Those are the carbs that make you crave food. Once you take out those (etake out the starch in your dinner and eat my veggies instead and a good protein). You will find you will stop having this urge to eat just to eat. That really is the secret. And I notice every time I have a sugary sweet, I then get snacky and crave more. Took me three days to get rid of the desire for sweets and food in general after Thanksgiving.

You don't have to do low car, but just lower the carbs. I eat 100 net carbs a day and that does the trick for md. I still eat fruit and any veggies I want. I just skip rice, cereals, breads, sweets and sweet potatoes. For snacks I always grab something with high protein. Peanut butter with an apple and cinnamon, a cheese stick, an unsweetened yogurt, a low carb nutrition bar, etc. Keeps me full, keeps my blood sugar from spiking and dipping and then I eat less overall.

Kahokkuri
11-30-2011, 07:49 PM
The voice that tells me to eat is so basic and primary that it often doesn't seem to be telling me to eat anything in particular. It just says, "Eat." Then I start thinking of all the food choices we have in the house. As I run through them in my mind, one or two will stick out to me and then I will keep getting flashes of them in my mind all night maybe every thirty seconds to every minute until I give up and go eat it. If nothing in the house is appealing, I find myself mechanically getting up every 5 to 10 minutes rummaging through the cabinets to see what we have, as if maybe I have overlooked something delicious or something will magically appear. Those nights end with me either going to the store to get something or eating about 4 or 5 different things I don't really want to eat in hopes it will be "enough" to quiet the voice. It never is, though, and I just end up feeling even crummier for eating things I didn't even want to eat!
It's like you broke into my own head and wrote that. I experience the same thing. It's like whatever food my mind focuses on is suddenly imprinted on the back of my eyelids. Close my eyes and think about it, keep my eyes open and my brain will just yell it at me instead. It gets so distracting that sometimes I can't even focus on a TV show or book. It's like someone is actually standing next to me saying the food and showing me pictures of it.

The only things I've found that combat this are illness (because I'm generally just not interested in food when I'm sick) and sleeping. A couple months ago I was taking multiple naps a day just to avoid overeating. Then I became addicted to napping and couldn't go a day without 30 minutes or an hour asleep on the couch. That addiction was easier to ween myself off of than eating.

I wish I had an answer for you but I'm very much still looking for one myself. Just know that there are absolutely other people who are experiencing the same frustrations you are.

Bulanova
12-01-2011, 02:35 AM
It's like you broke into my own head and wrote that. I experience the same thing. It's like whatever food my mind focuses on is suddenly imprinted on the back of my eyelids. Close my eyes and think about it, keep my eyes open and my brain will just yell it at me instead. It gets so distracting that sometimes I can't even focus on a TV show or book. It's like someone is actually standing next to me saying the food and showing me pictures of it.

The only things I've found that combat this are illness (because I'm generally just not interested in food when I'm sick) and sleeping. A couple months ago I was taking multiple naps a day just to avoid overeating. Then I became addicted to napping and couldn't go a day without 30 minutes or an hour asleep on the couch. That addiction was easier to ween myself off of than eating.

I wish I had an answer for you but I'm very much still looking for one myself. Just know that there are absolutely other people who are experiencing the same frustrations you are.

Oh, thank goodness there are other people who go through that and understand what I mean! I hate to laugh, but I did because I actually went through exactly the same thing ending up getting addicted to sleeping! Sounds like we're peas in a pod! A very frustrating pod, but a pod just the same. :D Thanks, I do feel better just knowing someone else out there can relate.

djs06
12-01-2011, 11:11 AM
:welcome3: Bulanova!

Sounds like a LOT of us can relate to what you're going through!

My gf and I moved in together a year ago, and before that I'd lived alone for 3 years (plus it was a move of a significant distance and a new job, which added stress). I found it a lot harder to turn off the "I want to eat" valve. I was happy, for one (why the heck is that a trigger?!) and two, it's a lot easier to justify poor eating choices when someone is willing to do them with you! I don't know how your husband's eating habits are, but often couples are very similar in this regard, making it difficult to make a change.

Since I do most of the cooking, I'll usually make things that she enjoys but are still diet friendly. Or I'll make modifications (such as using fibergourmet pasta instead of regular). I also am the primary grocery shopping person, so I do my best to not buy anything triggering. Yes, sometimes wanting to smash on something will cause me to get in the car and drive to a fast food joint, but at least once it's over, it's over! You know? Anyway, I find it much harder to stay motivated than when I lived on my own, for whatever reason. Not that I'd change it, obviously! I just need to continue changing my behaviors.

Some things that have really helped me:

1) Regular exercise. I work out in the morning before work, and that keeps me focused for the day.

2) Minimizing the amount of junk food in the house.

3) Having a free meal (the challenge is limiting this to one meal per week, because it often triggers an entire off day. But still, I think it's better than absolutely limiting myself, and when I'm on plan I find that my desire for it tends to wane).

4) Reading 3fc. Even if I'm not posting a response, I catch up every day and it helps.

5) Finding some nice, filling recipes to keep on rotation.

6) This is a big one- and I actually haven't done it unfortunately but would like to work on- find something to do with my spare time. Volunteer, take up some kind of hobby, maybe even a (very) part-time second job. It's SO MUCH easier to lose control when not stimulated, and I think that's why my weekends are often a gigantic failure.

Anyway, I'm so glad you're here! We all understand what you're going through and we're here to cheer you on! :cheer: