Body Image and Issues after Weight Loss - Do you believe obesity is not your fault?




Roo2
04-17-2013, 05:36 AM
I have been searching the Web for surgical information and a ran across this phrase on the bottom of the page regarding Obesity......and it stated.. :dizzy:
Obesity is not your fault?

So my question is do you think Obesity is not your fault?:?:
and if it not our fault....then who's fault is it? This just made me stop and scratch my head...about the different theories why were fat.
Roo2:carrot::carrot::carrot:


punkrocksong
04-17-2013, 07:47 AM
I think obesity is a very complex problem that people try to apply simple answers to. There are a lot of factors that weigh in on what causes it and I think it very much varies from person to person. I would never dare to apply the same reasons to why I am fat to someone else.

I know some of it is genetics, my Mom's side of the family is filled with short robust ladies who are the most wonderful women I have ever met and they embrace their largeness in a way I never could. But in my immediate family I am by far the largest. My older brother is 6'4 and weighs about 220, my little brother is 6'2 and weighs about 200, my baby sister is 5'1 and weighs about 110. So I don't think I can blame my problem soley on genetics. They all have very active jobs, kids, and have never really had to worry about their weight. My Mom has struggled with hers over the years but she's kept off about 100 lbs for the past five so I think she finally found a diet that works for her.

Some of it is emotional for some people. I know I had a terrible habit of stress eating, but the weight gain was more of a consequence of deeper emotional problems I was dealing with. I don't think I was binge eating because I was sad about being fat because I really didn't realize how big I had gotten until about a month ago - denial can be an amazing tool when you aren't ready to deal with something.

It seems like us ladies trying to lose weight are dealing with a double edge sword. We are punished and denied by the "skinnies" of the world for not being the ideal but then we are also shamed by fat acceptance people who think we should just accept and love who we are and not try to change at all. And both sides try to use really "one size fits all" arguements to explain why we are the way we are.

I know for me I want to be thinner because I'm going to die at a young age if I don't do something given my family history. With rampant diabetes, heart disease, and cancer running on both sides of my family I need to take responsibility for myself and do what I can to prevent what I can. I have no desire to be really really skinny - I would just like to be able to fit in a booth at a restaurant without having an anxiety attack.

berryblondeboys
04-17-2013, 09:21 AM
Well, that's complex.

Did I have control over it? Sure. Is it harder for some people than others? Yes, I believe it is. So... is it my fault that I am an endomorph who didn't figure out for DECADES that carbs (any carbs) induce cravings and make it difficult for me to control my eating? When, even now, the ADA and many doctors still spout that "whole grain carbs should be a part of your diet." Maybe for MANY people that is good and OK, but it's not for me and a lot of people. Grains and starches are just bad news for me.

Is it my fault that my metabolism is fairly slow (and I know this is true now with watching how much I eat, burn and lose (or don't lose)?

So... when I get stressed or just want to cut loose and such and my husband who wants to do the same, the results are different. 2 weeks of just eating to fill hunger and "hanging out" for me can mean a 10 pound TRUE weight gain. For my husband, 1 lb, maybe. AND, because I probably ate a lot of carbs, etc, I then have to get over the sluggish blahness I feel to get back to eating right and the desire to exercise.

When one person has to be constanly vigilant and others just have to be somewhat watchful, that's a HUGE difference. And I'm not making excuses. It's a reality.


betsy2013
04-17-2013, 09:31 AM
In true Libra fashion, I would say yes and no.

Yes, I'm smart enough to know that as I was stuffing my face with several thousand calories a day that I would gain weight. My fault? Absolutely.

No, I can't do anything about being carb sensitive, coming from a family where both sides aren't just heavy, but flat out fat, etc., means that genetics played a role in this as well.

But, at the end of the day, now that I've figured out that I need to watch my carb intake, I will need to have a meal plan every day, I will need to always count my calories, I know that the ups and downs are basically "my fault."

joefla70
04-17-2013, 09:47 AM
Roo, I'm with you. I'm not going to blame anything else. What's the point? Its not going to make me feel any better.

Psychic
04-17-2013, 09:57 AM
I would say yes and no as well. I know I wasn't eating as well as I should have been during the course of my life. I also know that I wasn't exercising enough.

However, I am also aware that my family was at fault because they forced me to eat everything on my plate even when I was no longer hungry. From a very young age, they taught me to eat large meals multiple times a day and to eat a plateful of junk food every night. It was their responsibility to make sure I had healthy meals as a child (I'm only 21). Its also in my genetics to have a large body frame, which makes me appear larger as well.

mimsyborogoves
04-17-2013, 10:13 AM
I think it's a question that has both a yes and a no answer.

As for me, definitely yes, the majority of it was my fault. Nobody held me down in a chair and shoveled food in my face to make me gain all the weight I did when I was a child. I know I had bad eating habits. I could easily polish off a whole anything that was junky and tasted good, and I would. I know no one forced me to drive to all the fast food restaurants in town and eat whatever I ordered in my car cause I didn't want to wait til I got home to eat it. No one forced me to get 2-3-4 plates of food at a buffet. Those were all me, my choices, and no one made me do it. That wasn't anyone's fault but mine. As a child, maybe it was my parents' fault for not teaching me healthy eating habits early on, and maybe it was their fault for not stopping the little problem before it became a real problem. But once I grew up and had control over my own thoughts? I knew eating so much was bad for me, and I knew that if I stopped eating so much I would lose weight, but it was up to me to make the choice to stop those habits and no one else.

But as a general rule for all people? It's a yes or no question and depends on the person. Maybe you have a medical/mental issue that causes you to eat more than you would if you didn't have that issue, and no, that's not your fault. But if you're aware of this issue and you don't do anything to fix it, despite knowing you can and how to fix it, and you continue on with the behaviors anyway? I don't really see how that's not your fault unless you have some other issue that causes you to prevent the main one from being fixed, like financial problems.

There's all kinds of whys, hows, and what-fors for what caused us to be overweight/obese. The bottom line is we ate more than was necessary for our bodies and we didn't do anything to keep that from happening. Whether that was due to sheer ignorance, a medical issue, or apathy depends on the person, and it's really kind of an ambiguous thing to think about in terms of who's "fault" it is.

ladykahlo
04-17-2013, 10:34 AM
I pretty much agree with punkrocksong.

Why I think I'm obese:
- genetics
- honestly, because i wanted to be big to avoid male attention
- i binge eat
- it's my drug of choice

Why I think society as a whole is overweight/obese:
- fast food is designed to addict us. french fries are made so salty that we want to have a huge coke with it.
- we don't do as much activity anymore because we don't need to do much to get our food.
- we are all coping and struggling to cope with all the stress we have now days

I hate people it when people are discriminatory to fat people though. When they judge them. I think it's awful. People can be really nasty and say things like "all fat should go die" or "fatties should be sent to holocaust camps" and other stupid stuff like that.

nice question!

zoesmom
04-17-2013, 10:36 AM
Can I say 50/50?

I came from an obese family. Like, EVERYONE is huge. I mean, if genetics has a role in the world, my house growing up was a prime example, given NO one ate fried food or junk food. I was the only one who wasn't obese, at least while growing up. I was a vegetarian and extremely active. I was borderline overweight, but never actually overweight.

Then, when I was 16, I was told I needed to consume more protein and iron due to declining health. No one, not even the doctor, discussed my options. So, instead of being smart and making an educated decision by researching my options, I just started consuming meat...which netted me nearly a hundred pound gain in less than a year. Yeah. THAT was my fault.

Between the ages of 17 and 18, I was in a horrific car crash that did permanet and severe damage to my left knee and left me in multiple surgeries and unable to walk for 6-8 months. That netted me nearly 40 pounds gained due to a very active lifestyle to a very sedatary one. I decreased my consumed calories from insanely high to 1400 to make up the change in activity levels, but to no avail. That gain was not my fault.

When I was 25, I had reached a whooping 270+. I made a decision to lose weight and had managed to get down to 250-something before discovering I was pregnant. My doctor put me on bed rest for my entire pregnancy. I watched my calories/carbs and everything insanely close...but because of the bed rest, and pregnancy, I gained every last pound back plus some. That was not my fault, at least, I don't claim it, because I seriously tried.

After the kiddo was born, I put weight loss on the back burner. I had more important things to worry about. I ballooned up to 283. THAT was my fault.

I started going to the gym...I cut my calories down to 1400...I was doing everything right according to everything I had read, my doctor, and the trainers at the gym. I went up to 293/294. That was not my fault.

So...finally, I found something that worked. Gods, I swear. A battle of over a decade and I finally found something.

But my gain was both my fault and the fault of outside factors. Probably more me, but both none the less. My loss though...that is all me. :)

elvislover324
04-17-2013, 10:42 AM
I'd say a big whopping YES that my obesity was my own fault and to be honest, I didn't really give a care. I had some life issues and I felt better having plenty to eat and then plenty of drinks. Obviously eating was the easier part to do as I could do it all day long, the drinks had to wait for the appropriate time (after work, on the weekend, etc.). I never drank to excess in alcohol but the calories were a killer I soon found out!

I knew I was getting bigger, I knew eating a diet of Chinese food takeout, pizza takeout, anything takeout was not healthy for me. But seriously, I didn't care. Looking back that really scares me, how much I really didn't give a flying leap. I was literally killing myself with food.

I have read a lot of books in the last few months about what the food industry does to make food more enticing with chemicals, etc. and it makes me sick. But I can't blame THEM for my weightgain. Like someone said above, I wasn't forcefed anything. I freely ran to the store and filled up my carriage with the junk and stuffed it down my throat as much as I could.

I hope to never ever live like that again. But if I do, it's my choice again to go back and it will be my own fault. So sad the years I wasted on food.

LockItUp
04-17-2013, 10:56 AM
I suppose I can only speak for myself:

My obesity was 100% my doing.

I ate in excess, and I was sedentary. It wasn't my genetics. It wasn't some disease. It wasn't my metabolism. It wasn't an injury. Sure it's take a lot of hard work to get all that weight off, but there was NOTHING standing in my way except ME! Unless you count excuses and laziness as "not my fault", but I don't think either of those qualify as such.

Skettihead03
04-17-2013, 11:10 AM
Well let's see... in the end, my obesity is my fault. It didn't necessarily start off that way. My family has always eaten extremely unhealthy (sorry mom and dad) and those eating habits were the norm for me all my life. I blew up as a kid, and continued to eat eat eat even when I was old enough to make up my own mind and know better.

Another interesting thing, is because I was always stuffed full, even as a child, I thought that when I lacked that stuffed full feeling, I was hungry. I did not discover this for myself until about 2 years ago. That there is a feeling between hungry, and stuffed. So anyways, I have had opportunity after opportunity to change it, and I never did. So it is my fault. I think in the end I can blame a lot of contributing factors, but the truth is that it is my fault for not taking action until now.

rubidoux
04-17-2013, 02:05 PM
As for me, definitely yes, the majority of it was my fault. Nobody held me down in a chair and shoveled food in my face to make me gain all the weight I did when I was a child. I know I had bad eating habits. I could easily polish off a whole anything that was junky and tasted good, and I would.

You do realize, though, that there are a lot of kids out there who wouldn't do that if you promised them a day at disneyland in exchange? My kids are skinny little guys who want to run around every chance they get. It's hard to be in the house with them bc they are just running. And they don't want to stop and eat. They eat like birds. When I was a child I ate like you're talking about. I don't blame myself for that any more than I blame myself for starting smoking when I was 10. Where were the freaking adults? How could it be that my mother didn't know I was smoking in my bedroom (she didn't smoke) and didn't do anything about it? Does it really make any sense to say it was my "fault"? Same with the overeating, imo.

I don't think it makes any sense to assign blame at all, whether it's to the fat person or the parents or the doctors or the stupid food pyramid inventor. I personally do not think I am to blame and I don't think any fat person is to blame, any more than say, someone who has MS is to blame for their MS.

And the only reason this matters one iota is that without the blame/fault component, it doesn't make any sense to think it is okay to discriminate against and be prejudiced against fat people. As long as it is our fault, it is okay to yell dehumanizing crap out your car window to fat women walking down the street and to charge fat people more for their health insurance and to treat your partner badly because they are fat.

nitrus29
04-17-2013, 02:33 PM
Yup I agree !! I am fat cause of me and only me ! :o

I would love to put the blame on genetics "hey I got it from my family" but if you think about evolution in general, everything that isn't used by the body eventually ends up useless and gets kicked out.

So if I am fat, and if everyone in my family is fat that just means that no one in family ever ran a day in their life :D

Sad but true ! blame yourself.. get thin and you will make sure your kids are thin n so on n so on n on n on...... :dizzy:

Desiderata
04-17-2013, 02:36 PM
We're all a product of our environments, our genes, what happens to us through chance encounters. We're also responsible for the choices we make. It's a paradox -- one statement doesn't negate the other. Failing to recognize either truth leaves an incomplete picture, though.

For weight loss to be a sustainable life change, I think we all have to gain an understanding of how our personal histories interplay with our weight (everyone's problems look a little different, so the solutions look a little different) -- and also become accountable for the choices we make.

It's not either/or. It's both. That's what makes it so complex.

Candeka
04-17-2013, 02:55 PM
Naturally there exceptions to this rule (true and rare exceptions mind you) but in general, I would have to say that yes, you are responsible for your own obesity issues.

bargoo
04-17-2013, 03:07 PM
I was not a fat child. I didn't have weight problems until I made my own food choices. My obesity was 100% my fault.

Sum38
04-17-2013, 05:13 PM
Hmmm...60mg of Prednisone for 8 months started my weight gain. The drug was miserable one and I had this incredible appetite as a side effect.

But it has been over two years since I took the last pill. My weight climbed up another 10 pounds; after I was done taking the drug. So I really can not blame prednisone where I am today....

Yes initially my weight gain was a side effect, a nasty one. But I chose to stay heavy and keep eating large quantities of (junky) food.

I don't know if I would had ever hit obese category if I was not forced to take Prednisone....hard to say. On a flip side, I have had really "good times" with food and wine during the past few years; now the party is over and I am paying the price.

I cautiously and shyly say: Yes, I am the one to blame for becoming obese.

newleaf123
04-17-2013, 06:10 PM
Totally my own doing. It came from deciding I could eat as much junk as I wanted in order to deal with some difficult news. I own it.

IanG
04-17-2013, 08:27 PM
Not my fault.

Sounds stupid but I had to come to this forum to learn how to lose weight.

Nobody told me to use a scale. Nobody told me it's more about what you eat than how much you exercise.

So for the last 38 years I have been using my mirror as a guide to my weight and eating too much of the wrong staff trying to exercise my ar$e off to lose it in vain.

Now I have a scale and am eating fewer calories the weight is just dropping.

Couldn't someone like my doctor or even the feds have given me such simple information? Apparently not.

While Americans love it, personal responsibility is way over-rated.

AlmostMe
04-18-2013, 02:41 AM
Hmmm....

Yes and no.

I'm a smart girl and I know a lot about nutrition, etc. But there were times in my life I just didn't care. Why? Clinical depression - and I self-medicated with food.

I also grew up in a household with very bad food habits. My mother was/is a binge-eater. I saw her consume whole packs of cookies, whole big boxes of ice cream (never both at the same time!) as her way to deal with her unhappiness. Plus no concept of portion sizing and very little concept of nutrition. Couple that with an anti-sports attitude and the fact that my mom liked me to be fatter than her... On the other hand, my mom was always very active and enjoyed running for a long time. But I never enjoyed running for its own sake (still don't fully- I'm running for rugby fitness and for long term goals of reffing youth games). My father was always obese. He drank a lot and I've come to believe he binge ate, but was much better at hiding it (based on his behaviour as guest in my house).

On the other hand, there were times in my life I was in control and just didn't do what I should have done. Coupled with the fact that there were times I didn't like being at my lowest weight.

I also think I suffered from an 'all or nothing' attitude. If I can't be one of this skinny little things, then why bother? Guess what! I'll never be one of those skinny little things - I AM large framed. I do put on muscle easily and unlike most women I do somewhat bulk*. It's taken me a while to not just accept it but LOVE it. I can be a healthy attractive size for me!

___
*some dude tried to pick me up in a bar on Friday. Hint to men: "Wow, your biceps are bigger than mine" - is not a great line even though I'm proud of my muscles.

Rhiko
04-18-2013, 06:38 AM
As my signature says, it's all about perspective. I believe I am the one who made myself obese and I believe that I am like this because of the things around me. There are so many yummy foods out there, like chocolate, potato chips, takeaways, that are made to be addictive and more appealing than the healthier choices. I could gorge on the unhealthy stuff all day and night, but it's my decision to buy them AND put them into my body. Similarly, I think a lot of my food choices while I was gaining the weight was based on the way I was brought up and the food choices my parents made for me. However, since I've left home I've been more than capable of choosing the correct foods to eat (whether I chose them or not). Besides, parents can only do what they think is right, which doesn't mean that it is the best option. They have to manage a household, their kids AND go to work :)

Choosing to eat the unhealthy foods is mostly convenience. On days where I don't have the energy or patience to go into the kitchen and both prepare and cook a meal, I'll just go out and buy it or eat the microwave meals.
Again, that's my choice. A salad, or preparing re-heatable meals are quick and easy. It's easy to sit back and blame society for making me feel that I should do this or do that -like I'm some kind of brainless robot. As I've learned while losing weight, making the right choices is difficult and losing weight and keeping it off are, no doubt, going to be the hardest things I will ever do in my life. Therefore, being obese is the easier option, of course, until I'm diabetic or so overweight that I'm probably going to die from a heart attack before I'm 60.

A few years back, I would have blamed society for making me feel that I was less than useless because I was lazy and the food makers for tempting me to the dark side. Now, I'm more aware of the choices of foods out there. With some planning, will power and thrift, it is easier than I would have thought to eat healthy and make sure I don't set myself up to be obese [again].

Nobody told me to use a scale. Nobody told me it's more about what you eat than how much you exercise.
...
Couldn't someone like my doctor or even the feds have given me such simple information? ...

You raise a valid point that I hadn't considered. It's true that society puts a lot of pressure on people to lose weight and become healthier, but that's it. I agree that I had to come here to build on the small amount of knowledge I had about losing weight. I remember having discussions (sometimes heated) with my partner that I was sick of being told to do something, lose weight or better my personality by learning to 'let go of my pent up anger', and not being given a clue how to do it. Like you, I was pounding the pavement and not losing much, until I learned it was more about food than exercise. Even with the abundance of 'how to' guides on the internet, there needs to be that personal, human touch of guidance from those we care about, or doctors etc we visit.

I still stick to my point though that being obese is both my responsibility and that of outside influences.

zoesmom
04-18-2013, 07:58 AM
Hmmm...60mg of Prednisone for 8 months started my weight gain. The drug was miserable one and I had this incredible appetite as a side effect.



GODS! I forgot about THIS! When ever I start getting my weight under control, I end up with horrible asthma attacks or ARDS flair ups or whatever. I end up getting prednisone and injections and ALWAYS bulk up 20-30 pounds despite my best efforts.

I still maintain for me, it was 50/50...or likely 75/25. but all the same...both.

Radiojane
04-18-2013, 12:40 PM
I could very easily say "not my fault". My father was beyond morbidly obese. My grandmother was obese. My uncles on both sides, my aunts, great aunts, the list goes on. Weight eventually killed my father in his 50's. My mom, who is overweight but not completely out of control like dad or I, tells me constantly that genetics screwed me over. And oh boy, did I use that excuse. For well over a decade.

Yes, in some ways genetics did screw me over. I'm 6 feet tall and big boned, and as a woman who is very feminine in mind, I do not consider this a blessing. I have reproductive issues inherited from my grandmother. I have a stubby nose. The culture of my family didn't help me in any way either. Food was king, and it wasn't healthy food. It was sugar, flour, carb concoctions. (And from watching how my body has responded to primal eating, I wish my dad had given this a chance, like Melissa mentioned, some people just cannot handle carbs).

So with all this, it would be easy to say that I was doomed to be my dad.

But you know what? I BLAME MYSELF 100 PERCENT. In fact, I think I'm more responsible than most for what happened to me, because my future stared me in my face my entire childhood, and the worst part when I was in my early 20's and making my own decisions. And even after I watched my dad die, I kept eating. I didn't do anything that resembled exercise. The vegetables in my diet were the tomatoes in my pasta sauce. I would go days where the only fluid I put in my mouth was coca cola. I did this. No one made me. I wasn't 'genetically' programmed to do this. Cravings? Maybe. but I had a brain of my own, and I didn't use it.

Stephanie said it best:

I

My obesity was 100% my doing.

I ate in excess, and I was sedentary. It wasn't my genetics. It wasn't some disease. It wasn't my metabolism. It wasn't an injury. Sure it's take a lot of hard work to get all that weight off, but there was NOTHING standing in my way except ME! Unless you count excuses and laziness as "not my fault", but I don't think either of those qualify as such.

That being said, I have ZERO DOUBT in my mind that some of you have had the deck stacked against you, and you all amaze me. Some of the obstacles faced by members here seem insurmountable to me, yet you guys climb those mountains everyday. Just because it was MY FAULT in MY CASE, doesn't mean I assume the same for you!

joefla70
04-18-2013, 12:51 PM
Not my fault.

Sounds stupid but I had to come to this forum to learn how to lose weight.

Nobody told me to use a scale. Nobody told me it's more about what you eat than how much you exercise.

So for the last 38 years I have been using my mirror as a guide to my weight and eating too much of the wrong staff trying to exercise my ar$e off to lose it in vain.

Now I have a scale and am eating fewer calories the weight is just dropping.

Couldn't someone like my doctor or even the feds have given me such simple information? Apparently not.

While Americans love it, personal responsibility is way over-rated.

Ok, I can't tell if your response was meant to be tongue-in-cheek. If not, I'm calling B.S. on this one! (No offense intended).

Nobody told you to use a scale? Whose responsibility is it to do that? Our bodies don't come with instruction manuals. Its kinda up to us to figure out how to take care of ourselves. At first, our parents guide and teach us. But once we become adults we're on our own. Sure, we have doctors who give us check ups to make sure we're ok. And if your doctor never mentioned that you may have an issue with your weight, then maybe you could assign some blame to him/her. But, ultimately there is nobody to blame but ourselves for our weight.

I am curious about your statement in which you asked "Couldn't someone like my doctor or even the feds have given me such simple information?" Sure, your doctor could - and should - say something about it. But what information do you think the government should have provided you with? How do you think the information should have been provided? Because the information IS out there. You just have to find it. The government doesn't assign wellness social workers to people to make sure they're healthy. Its kinda up to you to try to find the information. Have you checked with the government for information on health issues such as obesity, proper diet, exercise, etc? While I don't think its the responsibility of the government to put out such information ... they do it. The Dept of Health and Human Services has a website: http://www.health.gov/ On that site, and others, there is a myriad of information on various health topics, including obesity, proper nutrition, exercise, etc. They even have a site devoted to women's health: http://www.womenshealth.gov You can find a lot of information about obesity on that site too: http://www.womenshealth.gov/health-topics/a-z-topic/pubs-orgs.cfm?topic=451

Check out this page:

http://healthfinder.gov/HealthTopics/Category/health-conditions-and-diseases/diabetes/watch-your-weight

I can understand people saying their obesity is not completely "their fault" because it resulted - at least in part - from factors beyond their control. But then again, we all have to play the cards we are dealt. I don't know if this is a myth or truth, but you always hear people say that some people are blessed with great metabolisms; that some people can eat whatever and as much as they want and not get fat. I don't know if there is any truth to that, but even is there is... so what? We obviously cannot. Our choice is to deal with the situation we're in appropriately... or not deal with it. If we do not, and we become obese, then it is ultimately OUR OWN FAULT... because we did not take measures to avoid it. Unless you can show me somebody out there who does every possible thing he/she can to lose (or not gain) weight, but is unable to do so due to factors beyond his/her control, I'm going to maintain that it is ultimately our fault if we become and remain obese.

Garnet2727
04-18-2013, 01:01 PM
In reading this thread, I just had an epiphany.

I'm done with blame and fault.

It truly no longer matters. What matters now is that I'm losing weight and getting healthy. I shan't be dwelling on the rest of it anymore. Y'all, that's quite an accomplishment for me!

stella1609
04-18-2013, 01:26 PM
I feel like if you (generic "you"--not targeting anyone specifically :)) made it to this forum on your own, it's hard to pass blame because you didn't know you were overweight/didn't know how to lose weight/etc. Obviously, when you decided to get help, you were able to find it. The help was probably there before, but you weren't ready for it.

Yes, there are genetic and societal factors that can make us more prone to obesity, but at some point you have to take responsibility for yourself. It's just like someone who is 45 years old and blames mistakes he/she makes on his/her childhood. I feel like personal responsibility is highly underrated these days.

rubidoux
04-18-2013, 02:04 PM
In reading this thread, I just had an epiphany.

I'm done with blame and fault.

It truly no longer matters. What matters now is that I'm losing weight and getting healthy. I shan't be dwelling on the rest of it anymore. Y'all, that's quite an accomplishment for me!

I think that's a great idea.

So, I wonder if you all believe that people of, say, the 1940's, 50's, 60's were on average morally superior to people today, since so many of us are behaving in such a blame-worthy manner?

Roo2
04-18-2013, 02:21 PM
I think that's a great idea.

So, I wonder if you all believe that people of, say, the 1940's, 50's, 60's were on average morally superior to people today, since so many of us are behaving in such a blame-worthy manner?

Hmmm ....so People who were born in those years are the only ones who "feel morally superior", Sound like someone is possibly being Should I Say Judgmental perhaps? Just wondering???:dizzy:

IanG
04-18-2013, 03:37 PM
Because the information IS out there. You just have to find it.

All I'm saying Joe is a leaflet or a TV advert would have been nice.

Despite whose fault it is if I am obese, we all pay for it after all. Which needs bigger Government.

And have you seen the BS on those websites you kindly provided? Tips like "Watch your weight". Er, yeah. I know I'm big. Now what?

Nothing. Zip. Diddly. On how to actually lose weight. It was much the same at the doctor. Exercise more was all I got. Or join a gym. Yeah right. That did not work for me.

rubidoux
04-18-2013, 03:39 PM
Hmmm ....so People who were born in those years are the only ones who "feel morally superior", Sound like someone is possibly being Should I Say Judgmental perhaps? Just wondering???:dizzy:

I think I wasn't very clear. I was just asking a Q so no judgement here... My Q is this... At a time when obesity was less prevalent, for example the 40s, 50s, 60s (but not meaning to exclude other decades before the "obesity epidemic", were people more upstanding, as evidenced by their not letting themselves get fat? It seems to me that if obesity is the fault of the individual, then something has happened during or since the 80s and 90s to make us each less responsible people. When it is like a widespread problem affecting people who are diverse in terms of background, ethnicity, socio-economic level and geographical location, it is hard to wrap my head around how they all came to be acting irresponsibly about this issue. KWIM?

I'm curious as to what you might have thought I meant???

ETA: Sorry, Roo. I think you and I must be on very different wavelengths bc you similarly read me to be saying something completely different from what I was saying yesterday. Sorry about the disconnect!

LockItUp
04-18-2013, 03:39 PM
In reading this thread, I just had an epiphany.

I'm done with blame and fault.

It truly no longer matters. What matters now is that I'm losing weight and getting healthy. I shan't be dwelling on the rest of it anymore. Y'all, that's quite an accomplishment for me!

So true. I like that!

zoesmom
04-18-2013, 03:44 PM
I think I wasn't very clear. I was just asking a Q so no judgement here... My Q is this... At a time when obesity was less prevalent, for example the 40s, 50s, 60s (but not meaning to exclude other decades before the "obesity epidemic", were people more upstanding, as evidenced by their not letting themselves get fat? It seems to me that if obesity is the fault of the individual, then something has happened during or since the 80s and 90s to make us each less responsible people. When it is like a widespread problem affecting people who are diverse in terms of background, ethnicity, socio-economic level and geographical location, it is hard to wrap my head around how they all came to be acting irresponsibly about this issue. KWIM?

I'm curious as to what you might have thought I meant???

ETA: Sorry, Roo. I think you and I must be on very different wavelengths bc you similarly read me to be saying something completely different from what I was saying yesterday. Sorry about the disconnect!


What changed was easily available mass marketed foods and junk foods. We had that in the industrial era, but it wasn't until the 40's, 50's and 60's it became the norm.

rubidoux
04-18-2013, 03:51 PM
What changed was easily available mass marketed foods and junk foods. We had that in the industrial era, but it wasn't until the 40's, 50's and 60's it became the norm.

Right, but the obesity epidemic didn't start until the 80s. So, I'm wondering what made people start behaving so irresponsibly at that point. Do you think that the mass produced junk actually caused us to be less responsible people? If so I wonder how much money was made by the sellers of those foods and also how it came to be that our govt was recommending that we eat the cheap high profit foods.

ChickieBoom
04-18-2013, 03:56 PM
Whoops...wrong thread.

Roo2
04-18-2013, 03:58 PM
I think I wasn't very clear. I was just asking a Q so no judgement here... My Q is this... At a time when obesity was less prevalent, for example the 40s, 50s, 60s (but not meaning to exclude other decades before the "obesity epidemic", were people more upstanding, as evidenced by their not letting themselves get fat? It seems to me that if obesity is the fault of the individual, then something has happened during or since the 80s and 90s to make us each less responsible people. When it is like a widespread problem affecting people who are diverse in terms of background, ethnicity, socio-economic level and geographical location, it is hard to wrap my head around how they all came to be acting irresponsibly about this issue. KWIM?

I'm curious as to what you might have thought I meant???

ETA: Sorry, Roo. I think you and I must be on very different wavelengths bc you similarly read me to be saying something completely different from what I was saying yesterday. Sorry about the disconnect!

I am sorry too if we are on different wave lengths ! And Not a problem cuz there is no right or wrong answers ...just different .... Which in my opinion is great....life would be Sooo boring and nothing would ever change if people did not see things differently!

I believe it is healthy and enlightening to hear and learn how others see things:hug.
I hope you know I value your opinion and am glad for everyone that has the courage to stand my their convictions....and I'm saying that without Judgement !
LOL:D
Roo2:carrot::carrot::carrot:

Lecomtes
04-18-2013, 04:04 PM
My fault. Having been obese from a young age, I think there were contributing factors, and the mistreatment I received along the way wasn't constructive or change-inducing...but that does not negate the fact that this is my fault. I have known for years about the risks and how-to's of weight loss...and so I accept that I hold all the power now.

That's not to say we shouldn't strive to improve the health atmosphere, and the treatment of the overweight/obese.

Lecomtes
04-18-2013, 04:08 PM
Right, but the obesity epidemic didn't start until the 80s. So, I'm wondering what made people start behaving so irresponsibly at that point. Do you think that the mass produced junk actually caused us to be less responsible people? If so I wonder how much money was made by the sellers of those foods and also how it came to be that our govt was recommending that we eat the cheap high profit foods.

I'm in a public health class right now and the prof. suggested that this epidemic did start earlier than the 80's, it just wasn't until the 80's that the epidemiology studies began amassing. Personally, I have no idea when it started, but it seems like a combo of cheap food, improving economy (post-depres.), and increasingly sedentary jobs.

joefla70
04-18-2013, 05:04 PM
All I'm saying Joe is a leaflet or a TV advert would have been nice.

Despite whose fault it is if I am obese, we all pay for it after all. Which needs bigger Government.

And have you seen the BS on those websites you kindly provided? Tips like "Watch your weight". Er, yeah. I know I'm big. Now what?

Nothing. Zip. Diddly. On how to actually lose weight. It was much the same at the doctor. Exercise more was all I got. Or join a gym. Yeah right. That did not work for me.

Wait a second! You said that nobody told you to use a scale, but now you're saying "I know I'm big, but now what?" ;) If you knew you were big, you knew to get on a scale to find out HOW big. I think sometimes its just easier to bury your head in the sand and NOT find out. Heck,I did that for a LONG time while I ignored my obesity problem.

I think the blame game is often a cop-out. We hold the key to solving our weight issues in our hand. Whether we use it or not is up to us. Yes, some people might have bigger obstacles to overcome than others. But it can be done. Many people on 3FC have shown that to us. So, when I hear people say that the information wasn't available to them to let them lose weight. My response is... you weren't looking hard enough. Again, in my case, I wasn't look at all for a long time.

Radiojane
04-18-2013, 05:12 PM
Right, but the obesity epidemic didn't start until the 80s. So, I'm wondering what made people start behaving so irresponsibly at that point. Do you think that the mass produced junk actually caused us to be less responsible people? If so I wonder how much money was made by the sellers of those foods and also how it came to be that our govt was recommending that we eat the cheap high profit foods.

The people coming up in those generations didn't want for much as a rule. I know in my mom's house, both her parents nearly starved during the depression, so they never limited food. Ever. I think in general things were just "easier". Fast food, less home cooking, more women in the workforce....

Megan33
04-18-2013, 08:10 PM
I am/was fat because of my actions, 100%.

Vex
04-18-2013, 10:12 PM
I'm done with blame and fault.

I think it's worthwhile for some people, like me, who were on medications for a very long time that can have a side effect of weight gain to be aware of those things so as not to get on them again if possible.

Yes, I overate. Why? Was it part of the effect of the medication or just myself? Who knows. I just know NOW to be fully aware of both - food intake AND medications.

LockItUp
04-19-2013, 10:51 AM
I think it's worthwhile for some people, like me, who were on medications for a very long time that can have a side effect of weight gain to be aware of those things so as not to get on them again if possible.

Yes, I overate. Why? Was it part of the effect of the medication or just myself? Who knows. I just know NOW to be fully aware of both - food intake AND medications.

This may be semantics, but I think reasons are different from blame and fault. Reasons are more neutral and objective and would definitely be important to know (medications, medical issues etc). I see blame and fault more as having a very negative connotation. Like I said, maybe sematics here, but I agree with you, Vex, that knowing the reasons WHY are important. To me, blame and fault have a shame factor involved in them -- whether one is shaming themselves or shaming someone else.

ReillyJ
04-19-2013, 04:43 PM
I'm in a public health class right now and the prof. suggested that this epidemic did start earlier than the 80's, it just wasn't until the 80's that the epidemiology studies began amassing. Personally, I have no idea when it started, but it seems like a combo of cheap food, improving economy (post-depres.), and increasingly sedentary jobs.

That and it seems like people have no concept of PORTION SIZE. Portion sizes are huge in America (and from what i've heard, other parts of the world) and it's ridiculous to "super size" everything, the amount of pop they hand you at Jack in the Box or Taco Bell is astounding.

Rhiko
04-19-2013, 07:14 PM
I'm somewhat frustrated by the remarks 'there is plenty of information to be found on the internet'. Have we as a society changed so much that finding information from others in face to face conversations is no longer possible? Should I find out everything for myself? Tell my future children to Google how to tie their shoelaces? I think as a whole, society is very good at telling people to do things (judgements) but not so good on the smaller details. They just assume, "this person is overweight so surely they know eating better and exercise is the way to go, right? It's basic". What about the emotional issues that come with exercising, such as "what do I do if my scales don't show less weight after several months of exercising? What foods are good and bad? Not everyone is so great at making these decisions when they start out.

It shouldn't be that we have to rely on digital information when there are people in our lives who are armed with the knowledge but then claim it's up to the person losing weight to do it on their own.

LisaMacG
04-27-2013, 06:59 PM
It took me 20 years to realize that I was not obese because I had a weight problem. I was obese because I had a MATH problem. It was my fault because my weight was my CHOICE, whether I accepted it or not. And I could only change it once I OWNED it.

That said, I think society is partly to blame. Yes...for a lot of the reasons mentioned, but also for creating this idea of "normal."

I remember reading "recommended daily calorie" charts and that did a lot of psychological damage to me. It was not until I was 45 years old and had managed to lose almost 130 lbs, that I had a EUREKA moment.

There is no such thing as a normal metabolism, a fast metabolism or a slow metabolism. There is only YOUR metabolism and it is NORMAL for YOU. Heck...even "normal" for you changes with activity levels, stress, types of food you eat etc. And the ONLY way I was able to figure out what that magic number was for me, was to RELIGIOUSLY and HONESTLY Measure and track everything I ate, my exercise, weigh myself daily and keep in mind where I was in my monthly cycle. Eventually I found patterns. Like, I realized I get much hungrier the week before my period. I also retain water...no not 10 lbs like I used to tell myself....but 1-3 lbs.

In the end...I had to accept responsibility. Now I am just MAD at myself for the damage I did to my body. If I had lost the weight 15 years ago, I would not have saggy skin and look so OLD and wrinkled. :(

Now I have a different body image problem.

Suzanne 3FC
04-27-2013, 07:16 PM
Every pound I ever gained or lost was a direct result of the choices I made. I alone am responsible.

Vex
04-27-2013, 09:20 PM
I wonder ...and it's just wondering, if women joining the work force more and more through the last few decades also contributed?

When I think about my childhood, my mother was home most of the time and cooked home cooked meals every day. Staple meals like a meat, vege, an starch.

Is it possible that as we sent more women out into the workforce, those dinners have really ceased to exist anymore? Now, it's take out a couple nights a week or more. If it is cooked at home, rarely is it from scratch.

I'm not bashing on women working in any way, in fact, I'm a career woman, myself. I just wonder if this could be a contributor to our woes in the U.S.

knoxie
04-28-2013, 03:48 AM
Do I believe my obesity is not my fault? Absolutely not. At the same time I don't know if it's allmy fault as I've been very overweight since about 5 years old. As an adult the food choices have totally been mine, and every mouthful of sugary or fatty food has got me where I am today, but part of me does really wonder why I started sneaking food out of the cupboards when I was 7 or 8 or why when I got a little older all my allowance always went on food. Regardless I eat the food so for me it is my fault. I don't berate myself for that but it's important to me to be conscious of how the decisions I have made have contributed to the size I am now.

LisaMacG
04-28-2013, 07:24 AM
Knoxie- I agree 100% with you that it is important to understand why we make the choices we make. Otherwise, you are treating the symptom and not the problem.

My weight loss ended up being a journey in self discovery. :)

Lecomtes
04-28-2013, 07:34 PM
I wonder ...and it's just wondering, if women joining the work force more and more through the last few decades also contributed?

When I think about my childhood, my mother was home most of the time and cooked home cooked meals every day. Staple meals like a meat, vege, an starch.

Is it possible that as we sent more women out into the workforce, those dinners have really ceased to exist anymore? Now, it's take out a couple nights a week or more. If it is cooked at home, rarely is it from scratch.

I'm not bashing on women working in any way, in fact, I'm a career woman, myself. I just wonder if this could be a contributor to our woes in the U.S.

I have often wondered this same thing Vex. Although I work and am in school myself, I wonder if a 2-working-parent household is really the best idea for my kiddos. My mom was very busy with work and rarely cooked, but she says my g-ma cooked 3 meals a day , every day, at the exact same times. Coincidentally (or not?) my mom and her siblings were thin, myself and 2 of my 3 sisters struggle with being bigger. It certainly seems like it has contributed to an increase in convenience foods.

angimom
04-28-2013, 10:54 PM
I blame me. . . I'm the one who stopped working out. . . I'm the one going through menopause. . . and I'm overeating. I can't change everything - but I can start to change somethings - though it's very hard, since I've allowed some bad habits to become routine.

But everybody's journey is different, right? There are lots of paths that lead to obesity. . .

586
04-29-2013, 12:20 PM
My rise to obesity was 100% my fault. While there have been a few other extended family members with battles with obesity, it was not an inherited gene, but an inherited coping mechanism. Bored? Eat! Depressed? Eat! Taste of everything on the buffet! Finish your plate! Have a second helping! Pants too small? Buy another size!

I don't think this is valid for everyone, but in my own experience my weight has always been a "I stopped caring" situation. Also, once I paid attention to what a portion is really meant to be? My weight began normalizing.

Song of Surly
04-30-2013, 11:16 AM
I blame my ignorance, mostly, which I think most people could say. And I guess that's just a round about way of blaming myself, but it does make it a little less personal. I do blame my doctors somewhat for not addressing my ignorance, but I realize that a lot of them are just as ignorant about diet as I was. I was 14 or 15 when I gained nearly 50 pounds in a year and was diagnosed with PCOS. I knew that I needed to lose weight to help with my PCOS. It was the first time a doctor had been interested in my weight, and she monitored it very closely with a few side-heapings of guilt. She was Cambodian, so I think there may have been a cultural divide there in which she unintentionally hurt my feelings a few times. She kept telling me I needed to lose weight, but no one addressed what I was actually eating. I went to a nutritionist, and she gave me a plan, but she never explained how calories work and that the foods I was currently eating had an absurd amount of calories in them. I was never really taught anything about nutrition or my body. I was just always given a plan of what to eat without understanding the “why”, and it has been the understanding of the “why” that I think has made me have more success as an adult.

I don’t know. I know the genetic predisposition toward insulin resistance and PCOS played a role in the initial gaining of weight as a teenager, but obviously I am losing weight now with those same issues. But really, all along, I have just eaten too much. I knew that I was eating too much, obviously, but really, until I was around 18, I had no idea the actual extent of just how much too much I was eating. You could say I should have done more of my homework before then, and you would probably be right. At that age, however, I was just not motivated. That is what it is.

I’ve struggled with weight ever since, and I’ve had a few regains, but even during those times, I’ve found that the root of the problem was my ignorance of one thing or another. Ignorance of how to handle certain stimuli. Ignorance of my own requirements for success. Ignorance of how to address backsliding in a conducive way. Ignorance of how to deal with moments of weakness. Just general ignorance of myself. I mean, yeah, I can blame myself for my ignorance, but you’ve got to figure out that you’re ignorant in a certain area in the first place in order to fix it.

tea2
05-02-2013, 01:26 PM
My mother was super careful about what I was allowed to eat when I was a kid. No sugary cereals or pop, no wagon wheels in my lunches. Yes, the occasional treat. She had me in swimming lessons. I was a normal-sized kid. 47 now.

After I left home? Sweet tooth took over. 100% me. Thanks to mom, I don't have a taste for sugary cereals or pop, but chocolate? Oy.

That's for *me*. For society in general, I think some of it is socio-economic. Fast food is cheaper. Not everyone can pay for a gym, for example. For an individual, sometimes there are specific/situational challenges. I still have troubles getting out to exercise during the winter when it's -28C, but it's possible.

PatLib
05-02-2013, 07:41 PM
I always considered it a mix. I mean I think genetically some people are more predisposed to be obese. Which means they typically have to work twice as hard to lose or maintain their weight than most people.

Then there is the factor of environment. How your parents raised you to eat or not eat. This is an incredibly difficult thing to rewire your brain if you have been basically "trained" to eat badly. Not to mention the impact your friends have on your eating while you are growing up.

Obviously, you still have control over yourself. But fighting genetics is incredibly difficult and so is rewiring your brain.

I think the idea of fault is damaging to a person's psyche. It's better just to not think of it as your fault, your parents' fault, or anyone else's.


Just decide that fault doesn't matter and just do what you need to do to get healthy.

Lecomtes
05-02-2013, 07:56 PM
"Just decide that fault doesn't matter and just do what you need to do to get healthy."
AMEN :) I need to get this tattooed in reverse on my forehead so I can read it every morning when I look in the mirror. :)

Andrea85
05-03-2013, 03:19 PM
For me, it is 100% my fault. It isn't societies fault, not my parents, not my ancestors....being fat was all me.

From my standpoint (and I am only referencing my life, in which I have had no medical issues resulting in weight gain, mental confusing to fullness, etc etc), obesity was absolutely my fault. I wasn't quite obese, but certainly overweight, so I will still chime in.

I don't think genetics, family history, or anything like that plays a role in being so heavy. My dad's side of the family is large. Just about every single aunt and uncle I have, plus most of my cousins, are overweight. I think it is because my family gatherings revolve around food and alcohol, so that is how those individuals approach their day to day life. It was how I approached mine. Food was to be delicious and consumed, as much as you liked. Alcohol was to be enjoyed, sometimes a little too much. But even if those were my surroundings, I still knew it was more than I needed....I just did it anyways.

Once I stopped eating so much, drinking so much, and started working out, I lost weight. It was as simple as that (although it was hard work to change my habits!). I still have some pudge. While I believe THAT could be due to the genetics on my dad's side (I have this whole theory on how where your ancestors are from determines if/how your body holds onto some fat; in a nutshell, if you are from a cold environment, it holds onto a little more for warmth; a warm environment, your body wants to get rid of it for easier survival in warm temps), I know that being overweight is never a necessity for survival so I cannot blame my genetics on that. So my main point is that I am nowhere NEAR overweight anymore. Maybe my body isn't perfectly toned and tight, but being fat was entirely me. It was my choices, it was my excuses, it was my eating habits.

amandie
05-03-2013, 03:48 PM
I wonder ...and it's just wondering, if women joining the work force more and more through the last few decades also contributed?

When I think about my childhood, my mother was home most of the time and cooked home cooked meals every day. Staple meals like a meat, vege, an starch.

Is it possible that as we sent more women out into the workforce, those dinners have really ceased to exist anymore? Now, it's take out a couple nights a week or more. If it is cooked at home, rarely is it from scratch.

I'm not bashing on women working in any way, in fact, I'm a career woman, myself. I just wonder if this could be a contributor to our woes in the U.S.

Very interesting post, Vex because I have been wondering the same thing. If my mom didn't have to work and stayed home, would I still be fat? She was a single mother working 60+ hours a week with her own tanning salon and there was a couple of years where my grandma got sick and she would go over there to help on top of that so I was left to fend for myself from 10 years old until 15 years old. That meant a lot of frozen packaged meals, PB&J sandwiches and/or hotdogs. That also meant since mom wasn't around, I could have as much hot cheetos, sodas and candy as I wanted. Mom met a guy and moved to another state, became a SAHM with then-BF who worked from home. Incidentally, I started to lose from 200lbs to 150-160lbs (15 to 17 years old) until I went off to college. Don't know if that was because she became a SAHM and I didn't have to fend for myself? :shrug:

While I'm not sure if it was/is my mom's fault, I still should have known better not to keep stuffing myself with crap that I didn't need. For now, I say it was my fault that I was morbidly obese.

Kscott
05-04-2013, 12:33 AM
Genetics--was not a problem for me--coming from slender parents. So I certainly can't blame my weight on them. I also grew up with healthy eating habits--there was no fast food in the 50's. My problem was myself. I got lazy with exercise--and became a snack monster after 5 p.m. What's worse I didn't get on the scale for years and when I did it threw me into a shock. Somehow 30 pounds just sneaked up on me.

But I got my act together when my doctor looked at me and wanted to do a diabetes test on me. I thought--wait just a minute here--I am not that overweight--maybe 15 to 20 lbs. But then I learned that you really don't have to be obese to get this horrid disease. So I went back to not stuffing myself--stopped the after 5 p.m. food addiction--and went back to my exercise class -- and now have just 5 pounds to go to get back to where I was.

lin43
05-04-2013, 07:12 AM
. . . we all have to play the cards we are dealt.

I feel like personal responsibility is highly underrated these days.

I agree with both of these comments. A few weeks ago, I was listening to the radio and heard someone say this: "You have to bloom where you're planted." I really loved that because it not only reinforces the control we can ultimately have over our behavior but also how we can flourish if we take that control.

So, I wonder if you all believe that people of, say, the 1940's, 50's, 60's were on average morally superior to people today, since so many of us are behaving in such a blame-worthy manner?

Well, "morally superior" is a loaded phrase, but actually, I do think they were "better" than us in many ways. Today, we're "softer" and more spoiled than people in the past. We're more self-centered as well, IMO. I think this is partly because we have so much excess. (I always think of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. As a nation, we've met all our basic survival needs, but unfortunately rather than reaching the improved "self-actualization" stage, all the excess has made us worse). It seems to me as if the people back then just took it for granted that they could not have everything and anything whenever they wanted (e.g., most didn't expect to have a great house as newlyweds as many couples today do). Now, did this translate into their eating? I think it may have. Women of my mother's generation can be almost militaristic about their diet when they have to. I think my generation tends to whine more and have this "woe is me" attitude when we have to deprive ourselves. Now maybe all of this is exacerbated by changes in our society (more fattening food that is widely available, fewer places for intuitive exercise, etc.), but I definitely believe it's also a difference in attitude.

PatLib
05-04-2013, 12:31 PM
I am not saying that we don't hold some responsibility because ultimately we control our own behavior. But you will never really understand or control your eating habits until you understand the root of them. A lot of times, it involves depression, bad examples, etc.

The human brain is incredibly complex, scientist are still trying to understand why a person does anything let alone understand emotional eating which involves a variety of different reasons.

One of my favorite movies is Grosse Point Blank and it has one my favorite quotes "Don't forgive and forget, forget about forgiving and just accept."

I think this can be used for us. Forget about blame or fault and accept this is where you are and think about where you want to be and put yourself on the path to achieve that.

Self-blaming often leads to depression and negative feelings (and over eating if that is how you deal with depression). We already have so many people telling us to feel bad about ourselves, from thin people who judge us for being fat to fat acceptance people who judge us for losing weight.

They spend a lot of time pointing fingers at us and we really don't need to waste time pointing fingers at ourselves.

I know I spend a lot of time being sad or angry that I let myself get fat and then stay fat. But I really don't need to waste any more time on those negative feelings.

We should just all focus on the fact that we actually finally decided to do something. Like join this forum. Or take a run or choose a salad over macaroni and cheese. Everyone of those is victories and we should treat them like that.

Okay, so my Lifetime movie of the week speech is over! Haha

wolfgirl69
05-05-2013, 09:21 PM
I hope you guys won't hate me for this response but here it goes...

I've never been obese but my being overweight through age 11-15 1/2 and 16-now (17 1/2) have not been-from my perspective-my fault. I was skinny and healthy from birth to 11.

At age 11 I was put on Prozac-an antidepressant-and during my time on that pill was the first time I was ever overweight. Then I started taking diet pills and lost the weight-went to 110.

And THEN I was put on Abilify-an antipsychotic ALONG with Prozac.... 10x worse. Went to 180 pounds-even though I was taking diet pills... at least in the beginning... till I gave up. Stopped taking Prozac and changed to Lexapro. Maintained 180 but still had a VERY terrible increase in appetite side effect so I couldn't lose the weight. Was given Topamax-an anticonvulsant with a decrease in appetite side effect-to counteract it and give me back my original appetite.


The reason I felt the need to respond to this is because there are people out there whom it really isn't their fault. Severe weight gain is a very common side effect of psyche meds. And then there are people who have illness' and conditions too.

But still losing weight is hard no matter how well controlled you are and we all need encouragement and support. And I personally never had a healthy diet or anything. This place is helping me out a lot.

shcirerf
05-05-2013, 10:53 PM
My highest, non pregnant weight was my fault.

I did not pay attention to portion sizes, food choices, and drank to much beer.

kaplods
05-06-2013, 02:15 AM
Personally, I only started to succeed with lasting results when I stopped looking to blame anyone for my weight issues, including myself. When I did play the blame-game, it was usually solitaire - even as an overweight 5 year old, I blamed myself.

I think assigning blame and fault (whether aimed inward or outwards) is generally counterproductive, making the problems worse, not better. Taking the blame out of weightloss has made the process easier, more enjoyable, and best of all, more successful.

So to answer the question, I don't know what or who is to blame for my weightloss and I don't care, because 30 plus years of blaming mostly myself, and occasionally others such as my parents, did me no good at all. Blaming no one has helped me lose more weight and maintain the loss than all my blaming years combined.

PrairieGirl
10-22-2013, 09:24 PM
I've been obese since childhood, so while it's my fault for staying this way, it wasn't my fault for getting that way in the first place.

shrewlu
10-23-2013, 03:10 AM
I think obesity is really complicated. Sure, people are to blame for their own actions. But, some people have a genetic predisposition to obesity - that isn't their fault. Some people have illnesses that limit mobility and lead to obesity - again, not their fault. So while there can be some personal culpability, it isn't the whole picture, imo.

And this will be different for everyone. For me, it's 100% my fault. I come from a family of "normal weight" people and I'm not. I like food and don't like exercise, but that trend is slowly changing, lol. But my circumstances don't apply to anyone else.

kaplods
10-23-2013, 03:32 PM
I don't think any of us can take on 100% of the "blame" for our weight, because we cannot seperate ourselves from our environment or our genes. We can't know how our weights might differ if our genetics, environment, choices, culture, socio-economic, education....... had been different.

Even a fat person in a thin family could inherit recessive traits or even could have been exposed to one of the viruses that can accelerate or interfere with the function of genes that regulate hunger and metabolism.

I am also the only super-fat person in my family (and the only one to have been obese or even overweight as a child). I am adopted.

Of course, being adopted, I do wonder whether obesity (especially super obesity) runs in my biological family, and to what degree? I wonder have they too struggled as hard to manage their weight as I have - and have they been more or less successful?

I do wonder sometimes what my life would have been like if I had been the thinnest person in a family rather than the fattest. Even if my weight were exactly the same.

Would people (including myself and my family) think differently of me if I were the only 300 lb family member in a family of people weighing 600 or more - rather than my actual life of being one of the few family members to have exceeded 225 lbs and the ONLY to exceed 300 lbs (let alone nearly having reached 400).

I don't really care where or with whom the fault lies, but it is mindblowing sometimes to realize that I'm not only the fattest person in my family, but that I weigh twice ascmuch as most of them and once carried almost 200 lbs more than the second-fattest.

My parents did the best they could, but they weren't really prepared to deal with a child with an appetite like mine. For the times (the 1970's mostly) our diet and the food in our house was on the healthier side of the spectrum. Too high in fat, carbs, and calories, but significantly better than average. I saw and ate more junk at friends homes.

My mother and grandmother had weight problems, but only in mid-adulthood and never to the degree I did, even as a child. Even as a child, I ate more than most adults (even if I had to sneak food to do it).


I think I was carb-addicted even as a child.

I think "blame" often interferes with understanding. If I blame only myself, I stop looking for connections to anything but myself. The more connections I identify and understand, the more control I have over them. I can more easily manipulate my environment to break those connections.

Personally, I think willpower (in the white-knuckle sense) is highly overrated. I think it makes more sense to set up your environment so that you almost never have to white-knuckle it.

Who or what you blame doesn't matter in the least. What matters is what you do to deal with the situation you're in.

Even if I'm dead wrong about the causes of my obesity - even if I blame the "wrong" person or thing - I can still succeed at weight loss and weight management. I don't have to be "right" to succeed.

I think that "whom to blame" is not nearly as important as our society makes it out to be. I don't think fault needs to be addressed at all. Identifying influences can be important, but I think more important is trial and error and doing more of what works, and less of what doesn't.

Blame and fault don't have to be addressed at all.

Sometimes it feels like assigning blame is considered far more important than fixing the problem. If it could be proven that people succeed more when they don't blame themselves, I suspect there'd still be a lot of people focused on assigning blame. It h,feels sometimes that our culture as a whole feel it's more important for a fat person to take on all of the blame than to lose the weight.

Who or what you blame shouldn't be more important than what you do about it.

Lily Wu
10-24-2013, 01:00 PM
We are in the over feeding generation. Companies try to sell a lot of stuffs like, supplements, snacks, new lifestyle with foods/sodas/drink/etc. Food-pornography through advertising, when the portion from the restaurant is larger than we need, when we takes more supplements than what we need (and freak out of lack of them). It is though to stay slim in such environment.
Anyway, honestly, I still have control to put in to the mouth what we need (not just what we want). The way I become overweight is my own responsibility.

PrincessKLS
10-24-2013, 03:18 PM
I'm on the fence. In my situation and environment growing up it was basically inevitable and I really did spend many years being slightly chubby, now I'm just fat. But anyway, in a way yes because I've educated myself as much as possible on diet and exercise but I don't put it to good use half the time. But than again part of that reason is due to depression and anxiety that causes overeating and lack of interest to exercise. I mean even when I pack gym clothes I struggle to work out. Genetically I'm predisposed to a lot of the illnesses I have now. So in my case you can honestly blame my jeans but I guess I just need an extra push. The thing is, I have a handful of reasons why I want to lose weight and then I get depressed, partially because I know the majority of my reasons are for superficiality purposes.

JulesMarion
10-24-2013, 08:18 PM
I feel like "If you want to take credit for losing it, take responsibility for gaining it."

kaplods
10-24-2013, 10:22 PM
I think there's a big difference between taking blame and accepting responsibility. I can take responsibility for messes I had no part in creating.

If someone eggs my car on Halloween. I am not to blame (unless I threw the eggs at my own car), but it is my responsibility to deal with the mess. How (or even whether) I choose to deal with it, is also my responsibility..

If someone (again, not me) eggs my neighbor's car, I can also CHOOSE to take on some of the responsibility of dealing withnit, by helping my neighbor clean up the mess.

You could argue that helping my neighbor might be credit-worthy on some level, I suppose, but do I deserve any credit for washing my own car, even if I did not create the mess? Personally, I think the answer is no.

I don't take any credit for the 100 lbs I've lost. In fact, the first twenty I had nothing to do with at all. When my pulmonologis predicted I'd lose some weight without trying as a result of sleep apnea treatment, I thought he was crazy intil it happened.

Even the next 80 were more a result of my accidentally stumbling across efforts that were successful.

I've also changed how I see weight management efforts. I now look at it as what I do to take care of and even reward myself, rather than something that deserve credit or praise.

Taking credit for weighloss seems more like taking credit for brushing your teeth or getting medical treatment when you're ill or injured.


We don't generally praise people for dealing with every day life events and even crises: "Hey I gotta give you props for brushing your teeth and bathing. Boy, that sure is great how you got chemotherapy for your cancer. Wow, good job on going to work every day and not ending up in prison. Good job on finishing high school, and bonus points for doing so without a reen pregnancy. Hey, it sure is awesome how you feed your kids every day."

Weight loss is difficult, and an aspiration many people value, but I'm not sure it should rank up there with any of the things we give people "credit" for.

Mostly, I think weight management should be a matter of personal priority, no more noteworthy or credit worthy than making any other life choice whether it be choosing whether to have children, or whether to pursue one career or field of study than other.

I don't get it when people are angry that friends, relatives, and acquaintences aren't acknowledging their weight loss with gushing praise. Why should anyone else care or be interested in how you attempt to modify your body (or not)?

Sure it's great to have friends who share your goals and interests whether it be in body piercing or weight loss, but why would you expect to receive or take credit for doing so?

I do find it interesting though that I started having true and lasting success at weight lost, after I decided that I deserved neither blame nor credit. Maybe because it took the pressure and stress off. Or maybe because my success has AND failure has less to do with me (and more to do with luck) thand I ever thought before.

I do know that even though the losses have been slow, I've worked FAR, FAR harder most of my life to lose even ten pounds as I have to lose the last 100.

Which is VERY fortunate, because I don't have a sliver of the energy, motivation, or stamina to put in that kind of effort. Too bad I didn't stumble upon the lucky weight loss boosting cooincidences when I did have far more energy, stamina, interest, willpower, and motivation.

It feels disingenuous to take any creditz for working less than I've ever worked before, just because I stumbled into a few "tricks" that have made success possible.

I might as well take credit for winning a scratch-off lottery ticket.

JulesMarion
10-25-2013, 06:54 AM
Ideally, weight loss shouldn't be viewed as anything but a life choice, but that's not often how it's portrayed. I understand what you're saying and I think it's great you have that perspective, I wish more people did. I lost a lot of weight in high school, and one of the biggest things I can remember is that I did not understand why I got so much more attention from everyone around me (teachers, other kids parents, principal, peers) and it bothered me because I felt like the old me was somehow less important and that because I was healthier they suddenly liked me more. When I recently expressed to a co-worker, who is tiny, that I was trying to eat better, she lit up and was "so happy" for me, and then went on to say how she was trying to get her morbidly obese mom (who is smaller than me) to lose weight..

Though, many people are proud they have lost weight. And perhaps "take credit" was the wrong verbiage. They are happy about it, as they should be. I just see people who are proud of their weight loss, but aren't willing to admit that the reason they needed to lose it was because they didn't have a healthy diet. All I was saying is that if one wants to be proud that they have lost it, they should first acknowledge and accept the fact that they had a part to play in it being there in the first place. To reference your metaphor, it's just like brushing your teeth. If I didn't brush my teeth, I'd have a bunch of plaque buildup. I'd be happy I removed it and I'd feel better, but I'd have to take ownership of the fact that the reason its there is typically because I didn't brush my teeth in the first place.

I do understand that some people have medical issues and take medications that cause weight gain, and some are predisposed to be overweight from genetics. Some things that work for me may not work for you, vice versa, and when you have a medical problem involved, other changes may have to happen.

kaplods
10-25-2013, 03:33 PM
My main point is that ownership can be taken without ever bringing blame, guilt and regret into the picture.

I've worked in law enforcement and substance abuse treatment most of my career and have found that blame actually tends to interfere with positive changes and permanent success.

Predictably, people who blame everyone but themselves do not take control of their lives, but surprisingly (to me, straight out of college, at least) people who blame themselves do not fare much better.

The most successful are people who spend the least time engaging in blame, guilt, and regret.

I was taught this in graduate school, and I saw it in the people I worked with (even when I left the psycho-social field for computer science) but it took me DECADES to apply in my own life:

When there's a problem, especially one that affects a lot of people, let's not worry about whose fault it is. Let's just all work individually AND together to work on solving the problem and getting the job done.

More often than not, seeking blame (no matter whether it's pointed outward or inward), usually just gets in the way of actually solving the problem and usually turns people against each other in the process which only makes the problem that much harder to solve.

Crime, poverty, mental illness, and substanced abuse were once entirely blamed on the individual with society collectively washing it's hands of people who didn't have the willpower and self-control to fix their own problems entirely on their own.

I don't think it's a coincidence that the less blame and more people involved in addressing the problems, the more complete and permanent the recovery rate.

It doesn't just take a village to raise a child. It also takes a villiage to support any behavior.

If no one in your village ever brushed their teeth, you probably wouldn't either. Even when we humans "know better," we tend to behave in ways that are consistent with what we see others in our environments do.

We're lemmings (actually more lemming than lemmings actually are - the "rushing into the sea bit is actually a hoax-based myth).

Unlike lemmings, humans acually will jump off a bridge if everyone else is doing it.

Learning to swim upstream and march to a different drummer (to use the cliches) is actually extremely difficult. Our instincts and perhaps even our biochemistry tells us to do what everyone else is doing.

Bucking the "system" is very difficult, especially since there are so few open communities for weight management when compared to other similarly severe problems.

Lack of control over diet and weight (especially if extreme obesity results) often carries more stigma than lack of control over drugs, alcohol, mental illness, sex, unplanned pregnancy, gambling, overspending.

And like those other problems that affect the individual AND society, change will work best if the work is done on many levels by many people.

JulesMarion
10-28-2013, 10:44 PM
I was not referring to anyone taking blame for anything, only taking responsibility.

skmyna
01-19-2014, 11:14 AM
I always had this "obesity" from my childhood but my parents are not fat at all.I think it is your metabolism how it works.If its broken then it starts storing more fat then a healthy person.I have come to know about this from a weight loss program which helped me immensely to lose weight.

HelloNurse
01-19-2014, 10:04 PM
I have this conversation a lot with some people I know who are always "looking to lose" or "planning to start dieting next week" or "trying but I get so hungry." I know that there are genetic factors that influence my metabolism and my hormonal state. I know that people in my family tend to gain easily, and that we are all apples. Some people in my family rest on that knowledge, and don't accept ANY of the blame for their health problems. However, I feel that despite any other innate factors of my metabolism, my weight is my fault.

I spent years knowing that I needed to eat fewer calories and exercise more, and not doing it. Those two things have been totally within my control and I didn't do them, so none of the other contributing factors really matter. The bottom line was that I wasn't doing my part to mitigate those factors.

It certainly sucks that I am short, and I don't have a great metabolism. It sucks that for me to maintain a healthy weight will require a low intake, about equal to what taller people reduce their intake to when they're trying to lose. It sucks that I have to work so hard to make any progress. But it's not an excuse, and it's time to suck it up.

diamondgeog
01-24-2014, 10:18 PM
I've read many but not all the responses but I have to disagree with many of them. Obesity, to me, is never just the persons fault. Now the solution IS very much personal, but not the 'condition'.

I am reading Salt, Sugar, Fat by Moss. It details much of the food industry since the 1940s. American companies have very conciously created the most addictive foods possible. They even have a name for the search for it, 'bliss point'. Food companies were behind the ridculing of sugar as a cause for heart disease and demonizing fat. Americans have followed advice and gotten sicker and bigger.

I often hear food companies just give people what they want. Really? Then why advertise? People want your stuff anyway right? Did you know for the past 30 years or so Phillip Morris, yes that one, owned Kraft and General Foods? They don't now but they did.

On the other hand I have heard people mention genes a lot. I think this is way overplayed. VERY few people were obese 100 years ago. Genes do not change that fast. I do think there is carb sensitivity but it is probably 80% of the population. We were never meant to eat that amount of sugar/carbs we do now. But that is great news. We are not fated to be overweight.
If we change our eating and move more.

It was very powerful to me to understand how toxic the food environment is. Especially in America. It gave me extra incentive and frankly anger to 'resist'. Now I still had to change. I cant wait for the food companies to 'play nice'. They aren't. But knowing they are trying their best to make me a food addict was incredibly powerful for me to resist them.

Arwen17
05-09-2014, 03:07 PM
Like a lot of people, I think it's 50/50.
There were things I could have done to take responsibility, but our society also makes it so hard to resist temptation at every turn. For example, I've lived in Japan before. It's so easy to be thin there without trying because of the way the Japanese live!


On the other hand I have heard people mention genes a lot. I think this is way overplayed. VERY few people were obese 100 years ago. Genes do not change that fast. I do think there is carb sensitivity but it is probably 80% of the population. We were never meant to eat that amount of sugar/carbs we do now. But that is great news. We are not fated to be overweight.
If we change our eating and move more.
It was very powerful to me to understand how toxic the food environment is. Especially in America. It gave me extra incentive and frankly anger to 'resist'. Now I still had to change. I cant wait for the food companies to 'play nice'. They aren't. But knowing they are trying their best to make me a food addict was incredibly powerful for me to resist them.

This is totally me. I have a lot of anger towards the food companies and big pharma/medicine industries for doing everything in their power to keep me blind for so long. I've always had a "rebel against the status quo" streak.

Wannabeskinny
06-22-2014, 03:38 PM
What an interesting discussion. I think "blame" is such an angry word. Pointing fingers has never done anything to help me lose weight. It just made me angry. And "fault" is an aloof word. It implies that there is a source. Out bodies just do as they do, they're obedient little creatures and they go with the flow. Give them too much food and they'll store it for you. Give them less and they'll start to need less.

I can't claim to understand genetics. Maybe someone has inherited a medical condition that requires a type of medication that is known to cause gain. I can accept that, that could be something to blame for sure. But I fear that the vast majority of people who say that their genetics play a role the source is their problems are actually behavioral. Last week I took my kid to chucky cheese and happened to see a family who were all obese right down to their 7yr old son. Maybe this family has genetic predispositions for obesity, diabetes, and blonde hair. But I am pretty sure that none if them are genetically predisposed to eat one large pizza each. So when someone says "all the women in my family are obese" it generally means that everyone on that family shares a lifestyle that contributes to their weight. I'd say it'a possible that genetics plays a role if everyone in that family was physically active and ate a healthy diet and was still obese. Yea that would suck genetically - but is that plausible scenario?

The over abundance of processed food and sedentary life styles are solely to blame for why so many people gain weight. The diet culture is another. On one side you have food companies flashing lights and telling you to get in your car and go but as many of their food as fast as possible. On the other hand you have the gazillion dollar diet industry telling you not to trust yourself around food, just eat what they tell you to eat, and when to eat it. Then sit at your computer and get all your Christmas shopping done with the click of a button. Obesity is NOT that complicated.

Eat some real food. Eat it when you're hungry. Stop when you're full. Enjoy it as much as possible. Forget it when it's gone. Go take a walk. These are the rules I live by.

Seana
06-24-2014, 09:53 PM
Just kind of skimming through. And yeah there are a lot of factors that played into my weight gain. Somethings I had control over and some I didn't.

But here's the thing...I don't think it's anyones or anythings fault that I am obese. I do think it's my responsibility though.

A few months ago a coworker did some really stupid and incompetent things that doubled my work. There were many people putting pressure on me to deal with the mistakes that my coworker made. I could have refused to add the extra work on my plate with variable results, but I would have passed the stress on and I probably would have continued to receive pressure from people about the issue. Instead I chose to deal with it, which in turn created more problems. The whole month of may was extremely stressful and I dealt with it by eating gummy bears.

The stress wasn't my fault. In fact I do a lot in my life to avoid stress because I don't deal well with it. But even with that, I don't live in a vacuum and a lot of my work is influenced by other people doing or not doing their jobs correctly.
I know that stress is a food trigger for me. I also know that stress messed with hormones and make you hungry. And quite frankly my will power was very weak.

But it was my will power. I did choose to eat gummy bears even though I knew they had no nutritional value to me.

So the questions isn't "whose fault is it". It's "what am I going to do next time?" I don't have the answer to it, but I am thinking about it.

2salads
06-30-2014, 01:24 AM
Well, my weight crept slowly up on me over the years. I had been thin in my youth, never yo yo dieted, and though I was still bullied and was diagnosed with depression at 14 I was never concerned about my weight. Ever. I was approx 130 when I married, I got pregnant with my first child on my honeymoon, and when I got back from said honey moon my mother, at age 45 was diagnosed with lung cancer and my weight skyrocketed. But again I didn't think much of it because I had never thought much of it. I never ate bags of chips or pigged out on cookies and cakes. I rarely drank alcohol. I never drink soda. I never did or ate all the typical things that people usually blame for weight gain so I remained unconcerned. I never lost the baby weight and my mother's death 2 years later saw me gaining even more. (This was a recent discovery for me at the time I didn't see the correlation.)

Is it my fault that I gained weight. Yes. But truly I never thought about the consequences of my innattentiveness to my body at a young age. Fast food three times in 3 years. I wasn't binging. It had to be my thyroid right? Nope. There was no reason, that I could see why I was gaining weight.

The truth is that we now live in a culture where we are taught that fat is ugly at an early age to try to avoid fatness when we are older. I have seen girls as young as two berate themselves for being overweight in pretend play. I have seen boys who work out relentlessly in the gym for similar reasons. So we have young girls dieting, eating disorders, etc ets. Then we add on stress in the form of work where we have to accrue vacation days and work on holidays or someone else gets our job. Then we have kids, and school and a deaths in the family. Stress puts you into fight or flight mode and your body itches for energy to keep up. We can control how we deal with stress. Some turn to food. Other substance abuse. Others religion.

ICUwishing
07-02-2014, 12:06 PM
It was very powerful to me to understand how toxic the food environment is. Especially in America. It gave me extra incentive and frankly anger to 'resist'. Now I still had to change. I cant wait for the food companies to 'play nice'. They aren't. But knowing they are trying their best to make me a food addict was incredibly powerful for me to resist them.

Same here. "The End of Overeating" and "Nourishing Traditions" were both paradigm-shifters for me. When I reached the conclusion that big business (Ag, Govt (yes it's now just a business), Pharm, Med) were all in bed together to try to keep me just a little bit sick for as many years as possible and extract as much of my money as they could, I got angry too. As the quote goes, "When you knew better, you did better." As a result, I went digging, and now I do better.

I have never liked the word "blame". Nothing has ever been fixed because of it. Problem solving is a complex skill, and this problem has multiple root causes. Personally, if a finger is to be pointed, I would choose to aim it at the human failing of "Greed."

giselley
07-07-2014, 11:53 AM
I think that children eat as much as their parents tell them to eat, and the family culture; what is considered a meal serving and whether seconds are involved, is also instrumental in creating a child prone to obesity. Child obesity is the fault of the parent. Feeding kids 16 ounce bottles of coke or apple juice. Feeding them adult sized meal servings. Having obese parents who do no exercise and encourage eating snacks while watching television. That is the parents fault.

On the other hand the person who grows up at a normal weight and then gets lazy, drinks tons of beer, eats huge amounts of food, does no exercise. Those people are responsible for their own weight gain.

On the other hand, think of the people who cannot walk around their own town or neighborhood for fear of violent crime. The poor people who have little to spend and who reason that they can get the best value in poor quality fatty foods. The society that makes vegetables cost more than dairy, starchy vegetables. The country that subsidises farmers to produce large amounts of high fructose corn syrup that finds its way into every food product. The country that grows tons of grains for the huge amount of animals slaughtered every year. The farmers that feed the cattle growth hormones that get into your body and (possibly have some bearing on whether you are gaining huge amounts of weight yourself). Society.

I guess you can say I feel it is a combination of reasons. It is so very complicated that blaming one or the other is not totally correct.

By the way, I now work in a school system. Do you know how many pieces of candy your kids get at school? They use them like dog treats to get the kids to cooperate. Its almost like the school system sabotages and undermines any parent out there trying to feed their children correctly.

Wannabehealthy
07-08-2014, 12:13 PM
This thread has been going for over a year and is a very interesting topic. There is no wrong answer, as different things cause obesity for different people. There are many medications that can cause weight gain. Family history has a lot do do with it, maybe not genetically, but if a child grows up in a family with a lot of obesity, they tend to follow that trend, too. The parents provide the type and amount of food. If the parents do a lot of snacking on salty snacks and sweets, the kids tend to, also. My family ate poorly. We didn't have a lot of snacks, but we ate a lot of carbs and fried foods because they were cheap and filled everyone up. I was not a fat child because I ran around playing outside and burned it all off. When I became a young adult, I didn't want to be fat. When I went out on my own I ate differently and exercised regularly to prevent weight gain. I was not naturally thin. I knew it was not going to happen without some effort from me. When I got married my lifestyle changed and my good eating habits and exercise went by the wayside and I am now obese. So, it was my fault. I could blame my husband, as he might have influenced me to eat poorly, but he didn't put the food in my mouth. I knew the processed foods weren't good for me but I ate them anyone. I knew I shouldn't be going back for second helpings. No one forced me. I had choices and I made the wrong ones. I can be around a roomful of smokers and still choose not to smoke. The same with alcohol. I can drink ginger ale while everyone else is having wine or beer. It's the same with food. It's up to me to eat the choices and quantities that are beneficial to me. I didn't get fat because some farmer injected his cattle with hormones or sprayed his crops with pesticides, not that I think it's OK. I got fat because I put more food in my mouth than I needed.

kaplods
07-08-2014, 03:08 PM
Even blaming parents is a gross oversimplification. I was adopted as an infant and became the first and only person in my adoptive family to be obese or even overweight as a child. My parents did everything they could to try to help. They weren't highly educated, money was tight, and they made mistakes, but they did their best with what they knew and were told by my pediatritian.

Once, at the grocery store, a stranger stormed up to my mother and started yelling at her, ranting about how my mother should be ashamed of the way she was neglecting and "starving" my skinny baby brother and overfeeding me and that she should be feeding my brother instead of me.

I started crying because I was terrified that my mother would listen to the angry lady and would stop feeding me. I was already at 5 on a strict diet and was HUNGRY all of the time. My parents were always trying to get my brother to eat more (and more sugary and fatty "treat" foods) and me to eat less. We both had a treat jar at home (ceramic canisters, and I got the smallest one). My brother could have one a day and two on Saturday. I could have one on Saturday.

I snuck food whenever I could because I was constantly hungry which only made my parents more desperate and guilt-wracked, which only made me find more creative ways to sneek more food.

Because my mother was overweight, she got and took a lot of unearned blame for my weight. The blame only made it harder to get to the real issue - the metabolic and biochemical issues that were causing what I eventually (as an adult) would come to call the "rabid hunger" I felt all the time.

There were signs that I was carb sensitive (perhaps even carb addicted) and had insulin/blood sugar issues, but noone at the time thought to test prepubescent children for blood sugar issues.

Once a month or so, my parents would take us for donuts after church. Even as a small child I has learned that I couldn't eat sweets for breakfast without getting sick about 20 minutes later. So while my brother would have a huge filled donut, I would just have 1% milk. I could pick a donut or two, but couldn't eat them until later in the day (and I would pick french crullers because they were the lowest in calories and sugar).

Even today we have never had any overweight kids in the family besides me. In fact, no one under the age of 26-28 has had a weight issue. On my mother's side the women gain weight in their late twenties (and almost exclusively in the butt and thighs). On my father's side, everyone is slim, and noone is even a little overweight until retirement age.

I think assigning blame and fault only makes the problem harder to address.

superfluous
07-08-2014, 03:36 PM
I believe genetics plays a big role, I guess that doesn't absolve blame, but it should absolve shame.

I have 2 kids, my son is naturally thin, if you wait an extra hour for lunch he won't even notice. My daughter however begs for food and snacks constantly, even right after big meals, all throughout the day. My son is going to be fine, but I can tell that weight is going to be a major challenge for her.

AngryShroom
07-09-2014, 09:53 AM
I don't fully blame myself for my weight. Fact is, a lot happened when I was a kid and those are all things I can't blame myself for.

In our house, it was normal to drink cola each day, every day. My parents never drank water. Just, lemonade and cola (and I hate lemonade, so that became cola). Only other beverage choices included alcohol (which I obviously didn't drink), coffee (again, I didn't drink) and milk and chocolate milk. Not the healthiest of choices.

Although my dad ate breakfast, my mom didn't. As a kid I first did eat breakfast, but it was the wrong kind: those overly sugary cereals, advertized for kids as a healthy choice, but, trust me, they are NOT. It's wrong to advertize such cereals, chocolate milk and a certain kind of chocolate spread as a healthy choice for kids. To me, it's more than wrong, it's immoral and can never be justified. As I got older, breakfast got skipped as well. Another very unhealthy choice, mainly because my Mom didn't eat breakfast.

Then there were school lunches. In the beginning, they were doable, but as they changed the supplier of food, their food became really bad. So bad they forced everyone who stayed in at school, to eat those warm lunches. Bringing your own sandwiches was no longer allowed. Now, although my Mom's cuisine isn't exactly healthy, it's delicious and in school, food was terrible. I was 7-8 or so at the time and they would literally force the food down my throat. Two adults. One to hold me, the other to shove it down my throat. My relationship with food had taken a turn for the worst.

Not just that, but obviously when I came home at 4PM, I was starving. Since my Mom came home a little later, I was first at my granparents and as we all know, they have cookies and chocolates. So, I ate that. Not my fault, I was 8 years old, hungry as **** and there was nothing else to eat!

As I became older and more aware of my body image, my hatred towards food increased even more. Taking into account my father's accident at age 11, my Mom had little time to cook (often there were people visiting my Dad at our house, staying till 10PM, and then we still had to eat!). Now at secondary school, I could finally take my own food, which I soon traded for my Mom giving me money to buy a sandwich. Which I didn't buy. I didn't often eat normal at my home as well, so I skipped many, many meals and even days went by where I'd survive on a few cans of cola and no solid food, unless maybe a chocolate bar if the hunger became too big of an issue.

If you thought I was skinny at that time, you'd be very wrong. Because I obviously did still eat and when I did, it was unhealthy. Cola doesn't help either with losing weight. But I hated food and I just ate when I felt weak or when someone forced me or it was my favorite food (I love sprouts, fries, steak, cabbage,... So it's not all unhealthy, but when I ate, I overate.)

After a while, I finally started to eat more "normal", more "regular" again, but then my weight started to yo-yo for no apparent reason. I'd excercise less and eat more and lose weight. To slowly gain it, without changing anything. Heck, even "being careful with what I eat" made me gain weight. Then, suddenly, wham, lose weight again. Apparently, that's my thyroid not knowing whether it wants to be hyper, hypo or normal. Djee, thanks a lot, thyroid! :D

Then I quit smoking, gained a lot of weight again. My GP said: "Yeah, it's just your metabolism slowing down", thanks, doctor! Now I know why I'm getting FAT again. Later on, I was there for something else, and we talked about how I still didn't smoke, but I had gained so much weight, he said "You do realize it's still healthier with the extra weight?" Well, back then, it was the truth, but I gained again afterwards as well. ;) So it's no longer true.

But, for the weight gain AFTER I moved in with my boyfriend, for those pounds I am fully accountable. I was 23 at the time and I should have been old enough to tackle my issues with food already. Which I thought I had, but that was in the form of "cutting calories till the point I can lose the weight of a once/week fastfood". Which, in my case, meant something like 500-700 kcal/day, and then once a week 3000+. No, I'm not proud of that. No, you shouldn't do it either.
But living with my boyfriend, meant I had someone who noticed how much I ate, so I could no longer do the restriction-thing. Meant extra weight. Meant being shown black on white (or on a scale) that I still had severe issues with food. No longer was I able to run from my issues. They were there, presented to me under the form of a decreasing health, fitness level, increasing blood pressure,...

That's why I say, I am not responsible for 50 pounds of my excess weight, but the other 60 are my fault and my fault alone.

jeminijad
07-12-2014, 11:36 AM
I am just plain flabbergasted by the earlier post where someone didn't know they should use a scale, and weight themselves, and the federal government should have told them. I cannot even comprehend living life without intellectual curiosity and the desire to seek out information.

As for blame - 70/30, with 70% being my own fault. Fault. Blame. Yes.

The 30% does come from upbringing; I was given large plates of spaghetti, and had to clean the plate before I left the table. Due to our religion, school sports were not allowed. I probably have a very middle of the road build and metabolism, but was always a bit chubby due to the way we lived our life.

But by age 18, I knew good and well that I needed to move my body and eat whole foods. So the 30lbs extra I packed on top of the 20 my parents gave me was all me. Did I have it a little harder than my peers who played soccer daily and were never taught to eat large portions? Sure. That is the 30%.

But anyone who told you life is fair was lying; we don't start on an even playing field. Some of us have a ton of work to do in order to maintain a healthy weight, and some of us don't. Some of us had to do 3 hours a night of homework to pass, and some of us got As without trying. That is life.

faiora
10-15-2014, 06:04 PM
I'm actually going to go against the grain here and say:

No, I don't think obesity is my fault.

Now, first let me qualify this: I am NOT saying it's out of my control. Now that I have the knowledge and tools to tackle my weight, it is absolutely my fault if I don't work towards being healthier, which means consistently setting myself up for success. But here are the reasons I personally could not have been expected to stay in a healthy weight range:

1. Food today is designed to be delicious and addictive, not necessarily healthy

We all know this. Even companies that market themselves as healthy put priority on tempting us to indulge, because that's how they make money. For example, Subway - well known for marketing itself as healthy and a place to go to lose weight - pumps scents into the air at their locations so you can smell it from down the street. They want to entice you in, and make your mouth water for their food. They're not the only ones who do it - just one example. (This is not to say that I think Subway is necessarily unhealthy or anything).

Similarly, snacks are loaded up with salt/MSG/other chemicals so they taste great. Salt also makes us thirsty, which is often mistaken for hunger, so we indulge in chips until we've eaten the whole bag.

There are SO MANY examples of how food companies try to make us eat more. Most of the time it isn't even unethical - they're just giving us what we want. But it's a problem, and we aren't necessarily aware of it because we don't know what to look for. Which brings me to:

2. Health care providers can't make up their minds

The story has changed SO much over the years: Fat is bad? No, carbs are bad. No wait, it's hydrogenated fats that are bad. Butter? Also bad. Eat margarine. No wait, butter is okay-ish. Ditch the margarine. Actually, you shouldn't be eating dairy at all - ditch the butter. HALT, the only fat you should be using is... olive oil? Wait, isn't it coconut oil now?

Studies change our minds about things all the time... I think the doctors are even fed up with it, because they know they look like traitors every time science tells us something new.

3. I never learned about eating healthy, or how to cook

When I was a kid, my mom (a single mom) was away constantly working 2-3 jobs. So every day I had whatever toast or bagels we had for breakfast, went without lunch, and every night I opened a can of baked beans and made a box of Kraft dinner (Mac & Cheese to you Americans), and ate that with my sister.

Similarly, no one ever taught me about handling money. I mean, I knew how money worked in a general way - enough to get credit cards, for example, but not enough about the consequences of not paying them off - but I didn't learn how to manage my finances so I could be successful into the future. That's something I had to teach myself very slowly, once I realized I had a pretty big, unhealthy problem.

It's exactly the same with my obesity. For a long time I said to myself "I guess I'm lucky, and I just don't gain weight" - but when I got into my 20s I wasn't equipped to deal with the weight that inevitably added up. I could no longer eat whatever I wanted and not gain, and although I had heard people say "careful, you'll start gaining weight when you're not a teenager anymore" no-one had equipped me to deal with that.

Conclusion:

So overall, I don't think I ever received education about healthy eating, and importantly, I had no-one to set a good example for me. I think that's the case for a lot of us. Our parents' parents might have been a healthy weight, but then HFCS was added to the american diet and they gained a bit. And by the time our parents were born, that was a regular staple and it's what they grew up eating. But they've had no idea how to educate their children about food, so here we are.

It makes me bitter sometimes, but I think the key is that now I have enough knowledge and tools available to me to take some real action. I know to look at the ingredients on food labels, not just the calories, and I know to take it all with a grain of salt because the research keeps changing. I know that I need to work with my body to find out what works for me, and pay attention to the way I eat and live. And I know that as long as I'm always being mindful of my body and its real needs, I'm on the right track, which is good enough for me.

kaplods
10-16-2014, 03:04 AM
I hate that obesity is still tied to stigmatizing words like fault and blame. We don't expect people to blame themselves for allergies or arthritis, or even lifestyle-mediated conditions such as high blood pressure, heart disease or diabete.

We don't assign blame to the unhealthfully underweight, so why do we feel it necessary to assign blame to obesity?


Blame is counterproductive. The success rate for addiction and mental illness treatment drastically improved once we stopped blaming, and I think the same will be true for obesity.

I know MY success has certainly improved since I stopped blaming myself.

faiora
10-16-2014, 01:06 PM
I hate that obesity is still tied to stigmatizing words like fault and blame. We don't expect people to blame themselves for allergies or arthritis, or even lifestyle-mediated conditions such as high blood pressure, heart disease or diabete.

We don't assign blame to the unhealthfully underweight, so why do we feel it necessary to assign blame to obesity?


Blame is counterproductive. The success rate for addiction and mental illness treatment drastically improved once we stopped blaming, and I think the same will be true for obesity.

I know MY success has certainly improved since I stopped blaming myself.

I think there's a difference between blaming yourself and beating yourself up. I mean, as I said in my post, I DON'T blame myself for my weight, but even if I did, I don't find it productive to get angry with myself about it.

I have to treat myself like a little kid; just realize I didn't understand or wasn't staying aware of things, then find ways to productively discipline myself so it doesn't happen again. Getting angry doesn't solve very many problems.

I think people DO find fault or blame for diabetes and high blood pressure when they are caused by obesity. Because the thing is, those DO come from factors we SHOULD have control over. That's not the case (as far as we know) for allergies and arthritis.

I think a lot of people think it's easy to lose weight, and that obese people have no self control. The reality is, we have just as much as skinny people, but eating the right volume of food doesn't come naturally to us, and sometimes we're genetically predisposed, and there are many other factors at work, like poor examples set by our family members, and poor or inadequate advice even from official sources.

Obesity isn't a "disease" that we have no control over. But nor is it the sole responsibility of the people it affects.

kaplods
10-16-2014, 03:35 PM
I think there's a difference between blaming yourself and beating yourself up. I mean, as I said in my post, I DON'T blame myself for my weight, but even if I did, I don't find it productive to get angry with myself about it.

I have to treat myself like a little kid; just realize I didn't understand or wasn't staying aware of things, then find ways to productively discipline myself so it doesn't happen again. Getting angry doesn't solve very many problems.

I think people DO find fault or blame for diabetes and high blood pressure when they are caused by obesity. Because the thing is, those DO come from factors we SHOULD have control over. That's not the case (as far as we know) for allergies and arthritis.

I think a lot of people think it's easy to lose weight, and that obese people have no self control. The reality is, we have just as much as skinny people, but eating the right volume of food doesn't come naturally to us, and sometimes we're genetically predisposed, and there are many other factors at work, like poor examples set by our family members, and poor or inadequate advice even from official sources.

Obesity isn't a "disease" that we have no control over. But nor is it the sole responsibility of the people it affects.



Much of your response really proves my point. As you said, we blame or find fault with folks with diabetes and high blood pressure for these conditions when obesity is present.

However when the person is thin, we generally do not cast blame, as if obesity is not only the sole cause, but also the only controllable cause for health issues such as high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease.. - even though much of the research suggests that obesity is often the result, rather than the cause of many disease processes.

If you're thin, you get unquestioning support, and if you're fat, you get contempt and blame, even though your self-control, diet, and behavior may be virtually identical to thin folks with the same diseases - yet it's the fat diabetic's fault and the thin diabetic was just unlucky or undereducated (so even when they get the blame, the blow is softened).

The obese person is lazy, crazy, stupid, or selfish, but the thin person with lifestyle diseases is somehow an innocent victim who just needs a bit of help.

For the thin person, lifestyle diseases are a health issue only, but for the fat person, the diseases and obesity itself are a moral issue, first and foremost. If you're thin and sick, you're allowed and encouraged to focus only on getting better. If you're obese, you're also required to not only blame yourself, but repeatedly and continuously acknowledge that blame.

It has more to do with punishment than taking responsibility, because even the thin diabetic has to take responsibility, but only the fat diabetic has to accept blame.

Tai
10-16-2014, 04:10 PM
Much of your response really proves my point. As you said, we blame or find fault with folks with diabetes and high blood pressure for these conditions when obesity is present.

However when the person is thin, we generally do not cast blame, as if obesity is not only the sole cause, but also the only controllable cause for health issues such as high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease.. - even though much of the research suggests that obesity is often the result, rather than the cause of many disease processes.

If you're thin, you get unquestioning support, and if you're fat, you get contempt and blame, even though your self-control, diet, and behavior may be virtually identical to thin folks with the same diseases - yet it's the fat diabetic's fault and the thin diabetic was just unlucky or undereducated (so even when they get the blame, the blow is softened).

The obese person is lazy, crazy, stupid, or selfish, but the thin person with lifestyle diseases is somehow an innocent victim who just needs a bit of help.

For the thin person, lifestyle diseases are a health issue only, but for the fat person, the diseases and obesity itself are a moral issue, first and foremost. If you're thin and sick, you're allowed and encouraged to focus only on getting better. If you're obese, you're also required to not only blame yourself, but repeatedly and continuously acknowledge that blame.

It has more to do with punishment than taking responsibility, because even the thin diabetic has to take responsibility, but only the fat diabetic has to accept blame.

I hate to mention this but sometimes even once you're thin, medical professionals will still find a way to blame health issues on past obesity. I have bad arthritis in my hips and knees. A few days ago my nurse practitioner told me it was likely due to decades of being morbidly obese. I don't know if this is true or not and it really doesn't matter but it still made me feel awful.

kaplods
10-16-2014, 04:56 PM
I hate to mention this but sometimes even once you're thin, medical professionals will still find a way to blame health issues on past obesity. I have bad arthritis in my hips and knees. A few days ago my nurse practitioner told me it was likely due to decades of being morbidly obese. I don't know if this is true or not and it really doesn't matter but it still made me feel awful.

Yes, obesity stresses and wears on joints, which can cause arthritis. Other "wear and tear" joint stressing activities such as dancing, running, sports, and jobs involving a lot of motion, standing, or weight bearing can also cause arthritis.

Would you have felt as awful if your doctor had attributed your arthritis to your job or hobbies, rather than to your weight history?

I'm guessing, probably not, because our culture doesn't tend to ascribe moral weakness to these other causes. They're seen as morally neutral or even virtuous.

If obesity wasn't seen as a severe, almost evil, moral failing, then obesity-caused arthritis would be seen no differently than arthritis caused by ballet or football.

The treatment is the same regardless of the cause, adding the extra burden of blame just seems so pointless and unneccessary.

We don't feel the same need to blame with other behavior-related health issue, and I just wonder why we feel the need to hurl blame at obesity. Especially in an era where we give much more generous sympathy to behaviors with much worse health (and even legal) consequences.


Somehow severe obesity is seen as a worse social crime than drunk driving.

Tai
10-16-2014, 10:34 PM
What a nice reply; thank you so much for that Kaplods. I have been mentally beating myself up so the things you point out help me look at things more rationally.

You are so right that severe obesity is seen as a social crime. Since I was overweight or morbidly obese for my entire life until I lost the weight seven years ago, I experienced this stigma a lot. That's why I never mention the weight loss when I go to a new practitioner now. Unfortunately, once I'm undressed, they figure it out pretty quickly!