Weight Loss Support - Changing phases... (long)

View Full Version : Changing phases... (long)

05-07-2012, 12:39 PM
Since I've been overweight my whole life, most people who know me have known me as being overweight. As I've been getting smaller, though, I've started to notice that people are starting to see me in a slightly different light. Before, it was almost like my weight never got addressed at all unless I brought it up. People agreed with my perception of myself; I guess this was to appease me me and to not hurt my feelings. But the reality is, I was fat. Not chubby, not just a little extra; I was fat.

Now, when almost everyone sees me, if my weight gets brought up, it's like "Well, you're not even that big!". It's like I've changed into a different "fat" phase, or a different kind of fat person, like even though I'm still not skinny, I'm not near as fat as I was, so now I'm moving into the more "acceptable" stages of being overweight. I don't really know how to feel about that.

On one hand, it's kind of degrading. Like, I wasn't acceptable, or I wasn't worth standing up for before, or I wasn't worth getting complimented on. Like, if people had a problem with my weight BEFORE, then rightfully so because I WAS really big, and I WAS fat, and that was a problem: I was the big pink elephant in the room that everyone knew was there but didn't acknowledge in order to save face. And, now that I'm smaller and not SO fat, just chubby or whatever, then now it's okay to stand up for me, compliment me, do whatever it was they weren't doing before. I'm more acceptable to people now because I'm at a more acceptable size. Close to 200lbs? No big deal, you're not THAT big. 200lbs isn't THAT big. But when I was 280, close to 300? (Granted, I told everyone 240-250)? Or even actually being 240-250, oh **** no. THAT was a big deal; I was fat, ugly, unacceptable, and no one would dare say it because they didn't want to hurt my feelings. But every time my weight got brought up, I could see it in their face. I was less of a human being because I weighed 65lbs more than I do now.

On the other hand, sometimes it's quite the opposite feeling. Because, not only do I feel more accepted by others, I feel more accepted by myself. Even though I felt like the pink elephant before, I don't really feel that way now. I don't know if that just stems from me feeling better in general because I lost weight or because well, since other people seem to think it's okay to accept me now, then it's okay for me to accept me too! It feels nice to feel more normal amongst my peers, like I'm no longer the token fat chick or the easy pick-up. Like, for once, I'm part of the "normal" crowd of people. Granted, I still feel silly doing things like going into the misses department in addition to the plus size section of stores; I really just feel like I don't belong there. However, the feeling that I can actually pull clothes off the rack and have the possibility of them fitting me is a nice feeling, not only because I'm a smaller size, but it's because it's more acceptable to shop in the misses section than the plus size section, so I don't feel like I'm being AS judged (i.e. I feel like I'm judging myself more than other people are judging me).

Do/did you have any of these same feelings as you've lost weight? Like you're pissed off because you've been you this whole time and people are just now starting to see it, but you're also ecstatic because, well, people are noticing you now! I don't really know how to process these feelings.

(I'm also thinking I should start a blog for these moments, lol. This was a really long post.)

05-07-2012, 02:12 PM
I definitely think people don't say anything when one is bigger because it's rude! Now that you're losing weight that's considered a positive thing so people are giving you positive feedback. No one wants to say something negative to a friend they care about. I don't know these people, but I would doubt they thought you were less of a human being!

I kind of see fat as a suit of armor, for me at least. People don't make comments as I'm gaining, don't compliment my looks etc. But when I'm losing weight I get comments and compliments. I don't mind it, perhaps sometimes it makes me uncomfortable if someone really calls attention to it. When you're fat (this is just my opinion on my personal experiences) you become invisible in a lot of ways. I feel neutral about that, if not a little thankful, which is probably a reason why I've put weight on, to kind of disappear. It can be an adjustment going from invisible to "normal".

05-07-2012, 03:03 PM
Woah, totally could have written your post, lol.

I'm past the 'huge' phase, and past the 'normal overweight' phase and I'm entering the 'smaller than most in my family' phase, and let me tell you, boy is it weird! :lol:

05-07-2012, 03:35 PM
Yep, and we're about the same sw and cw so I can relate. I think for a lot of us maybe it's our own acceptance like you said . I didn't have a shell or suit of armor as some people like to phrase it, but I never wore makeup or dressed all that nicely so perhaps some of the reactions are in part to that.

I definately feel the move to 'more acceptable weightness' as opposed to being totally out of control.

05-07-2012, 03:39 PM
For me, personally, it doesn't offend me because I was fat. Plain and simple. I am 5'6 and my highest (recorded) weight was 230. I wore a size 18 or 20. I have definitely noticed huge changes in the way people treat me as I've thinned down, and while I find it incredibly sad that people are treated different soley based on looks...I also know that's reality for everyone, not just overweight people.

So no, I don't take it "personally" as a formerly overweight person. It was reality, I was fat. I find it sad that anyone is looked down upon because of the way they look. :(

05-07-2012, 03:43 PM
Yep, I'd agree that there are definitely different phases of weight loss. At my biggest NOBODY commented on my appearance one way or another. As I started to lose (and dress better) I started getting more compliments but they were more along the lines of "that skirt is cute on you", not real comments on my body. Now that I'm almost at a healthy weight I get more comments about my body itself, how it looks etc.

It's strange but I think like others have said it's a bit of murky waters for friends and families when it comes to weight loss comments. They very well might not want to offend you when you're at your highest so they don't say anything but once weight loss is clear (and it's intentional) they might want to be supportive, hence the compliments.

I'd just take their comments on face value and not stress about their thoughts on you before losing. They obviously love and care about you and that really is the important thing here. ;)

05-07-2012, 03:48 PM
I definitely noticed changes in how people interact with me, but I try to focus on the positive. Specifically, I pay attention to how much better I'm treated now and appreciative of that benefit to my weight loss.

06-14-2012, 10:57 PM
Good post! I was just thinking about this issue today. It's like, now that I am smaller, I am getting all of this positive attention and feedback. I got nothing when I was fat. Am I only beautiful when I am smaller? Am I only worthy of praise when smaller? Am I only interesting and worth getting to know when I am smaller? I'm still the same person as I was before, and you never noticed me then. Can something so superficial as weight loss suddenly make me a better person to other people? Maybe I was mean before and I'm still mean now? My size has nothing to do with my personality.