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600 pound life

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Old 02-12-2014, 08:58 PM   #1
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anybody watching it? i've seen a couple of episodes and i'm either really confused or very annoyed - no middle ground. it seems that these folks go see a surgeon in Dallas [or Houston] for gastric bypass [never another choice - which is probably reasonable. And there's a lot of info about how they can't or won't follow the pre-op instructions, and then a lot of focus on all the 'i don't want to' after the surgery. Surprise, surprise, the person loses very little weight, or even gains.

there's nothing about counseling or the need for behavior changes or finding a support group. The focus is definitely on surgery as THE answer. THE ONLY hope - and no work is needed.

am i missing something? should i watch more episodes? whaddaya think?
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start: 506 [Sept 2001]
weight at gastric bypass [Jan 29, 2002]: 409
current weight: 225
weight for plastic surgery: 200
final goal: 180

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Old 02-12-2014, 09:20 PM   #2
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Really, I think this only feeds the publics misconception of "once I get the surgery" life will be all sunshine and roses and I will never diet again.
As I write this, I am researching and planning my plan of attack when I get my surgery in 2 weeks...... I know it is not a fix all, I know I still have to work..... but I only found this out through research..... as the media and others paint a end all, cure all for obesity....


So, you did not get the wrong impression.... it does focus on that A LOT.... maybe not entirely, but a lot.
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Old 02-13-2014, 10:18 AM   #3
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glad you've done your homework - which surgery are you having? gotta tell you that even 10+ years postop, there are STILL issues that trip me up and are surprises.
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Keeping it off is a hundred decisions a day that help you maintain what you achieved. And that's the hard part. - L Sanders

start: 506 [Sept 2001]
weight at gastric bypass [Jan 29, 2002]: 409
current weight: 225
weight for plastic surgery: 200
final goal: 180

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Old 02-13-2014, 10:37 AM   #4
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As someone with a parent who did an end run around all the psych requirements, went into surgery completely unprepared and ended up suffering a stroke 6 weeks post op and eventually dying, I barely made it through one episode of the "can't/won't this is so hard crap". It's exploitative, not informative.

There is so much misinformation as it is when it comes to WLS. I still have people that knew my dad come up and ask me why I'm working so hard to lose when I could "just" have WLS. Shows like this feed that myth as well as the myth that we all lack self control.

You have more of a stomach than I do if you can keep watching!
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Old 02-13-2014, 01:18 PM   #5
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actually, Jane, i sit here and yell at the TV!!!! and i really don't have much of a stomach for it [literally!]. I've been considering writing to the producers and telling them how offensive and unrealistic the show is, and how it does such a disservice to people who are facing these decisions and must learn to live with them.

and I'm so grateful for the reality check of your comments, and others. The loss of your dad was so heartbreaking. You're doing great on your path.
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Start your day with a smile, and get it over with.
Keeping it off is a hundred decisions a day that help you maintain what you achieved. And that's the hard part. - L Sanders

start: 506 [Sept 2001]
weight at gastric bypass [Jan 29, 2002]: 409
current weight: 225
weight for plastic surgery: 200
final goal: 180

Posts by members, moderators and admins are not medical advice. See your physician before taking advice found on the internet.

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Old 02-13-2014, 01:47 PM   #6
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I have seen a few episodes and have noticed that the ones who fail actually eat more volume than I do.My understanding was that the stomach is made smaller to hold less food and therefore less calories but many sabotage the surgery by eating many calories and often these foods are from fast food places.Do they not run the risk of bursting the stomach if they eat too much.
It looks like the failures could be left with a serious absorption problem and no significant weight loss because they did not understand or take seriously the amount of work and control they had to use
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Old 02-13-2014, 02:21 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jiffypop View Post
anybody watching it? i've seen a couple of episodes and i'm either really confused or very annoyed - no middle ground. it seems that these folks go see a surgeon in Dallas [or Houston] for gastric bypass [never another choice - which is probably reasonable. And there's a lot of info about how they can't or won't follow the pre-op instructions, and then a lot of focus on all the 'i don't want to' after the surgery. Surprise, surprise, the person loses very little weight, or even gains.

there's nothing about counseling or the need for behavior changes or finding a support group. The focus is definitely on surgery as THE answer. THE ONLY hope - and no work is needed.

am i missing something? should i watch more episodes? whaddaya think?
i had a problem with one episode. It was the one with the 22 year old, and after surgery she was having trouble eating and having extreme abdominal pains. That weight loss surgeon says (paraphrasing)"Well, some may have gall stones, but that's not the case with her, we need to watch what she's eating", i.e. he thinks she was not going along with her diet. Lo and behold, her gal bladder crapped out on her and needed it to be removed! If he would've checked on her before and not assumed she was just lying, she probably would have a better recovery. That really pissed me off watching it.
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Old 02-13-2014, 02:34 PM   #8
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Gall bladder issues are missed SO often. I have a friend who was told to exercise more because she was just "stiff". She was very sick before they finally caught on.

Thank you, Jiffy. I try to keep my nose out of most WLS threads because I would never presume to know what it's like to actually have to make that decision myself, but that show makes me violent! Reality TV does not show a very good side of humanity.
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Old 02-13-2014, 03:56 PM   #9
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As someone with a parent who did an end run around all the psych requirements, went into surgery completely unprepared and ended up suffering a stroke 6 weeks post op and eventually dying . . . .
Sorry to hear this . . . that must have been really hard
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:13 AM   #10
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I am so sorry to hear about your dad, RadioJane. That is truly tragic. I lost my dad to smoking and alcohol consumption. It was hard to face that ultimately there was nothing I could do.

I have not seen this show but have been facing my own difficulties with my WLS doctors. At the program I went through, you have to be followed by an endocronologist.

I have gotten nothing but grief from my doctor's even though I have been compliant and lost 160 pounds. Anything that is wrong is somehow my fault. It has been extremely disappointing. You want to think your physician will be supportive, but some are too self absorbed to even see you as a person. Very discouraging.
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Old 02-17-2014, 11:45 PM   #11
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I cannot watch reality shows of any sort as I know they are far, far, far from reality and particularly reality shows about obese people bug the crap out of me. I can't watch them. I can't stand the raw emotions because it's too close too home and it makes me angry because I wonder if these people are genuine or just really good actors because not for a million dollars would I go on tv and bare my soul about being overweight. I truly hope these people benefit from being on tv and get whatever help they made need.
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Old 02-18-2014, 11:33 PM   #12
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I've been watching/following the show with great interest for a variety of reasons.

I understand, it's a TV show.

That aside, I do have a few thoughts. Not intended to make anyone angry or sad. Just some things I have observed. Take it for what you will, other thoughts and comments welcome! Maybe it will help some one else who might stumble in here looking for help or advice!

These are very dysfunctional co-dependent relationships. Much like alcoholic or drug relationships. The patient and the family want them to lose, quit drinking, drugging yet no one does the right thing.

No one ever says NO.

If the obese person is no longer mobile, can't get out of bed, why does the caregiver keep feeding them bad food in large portions? It's not like they can get out of bed and do you physical harm. But they yell, and whine and moan and groan. It's the whole mental, emotional, dysfunctional, co-dependent relationship.

But, that's no different, than the family of a drunk or druggie, who will pick them up, buy the beer, give them a ride to the drug dealer, pay the cell phone bill, give them gas money, pay the rent, buy groceries or whatever.

In one particular episode, with a young married woman. Her husband and her mother cared for her.

Ok, I get that. She needed the care at her weight. She did get surgery, and struggled, but somehow gutted it out, and began to have success. But the family was no help. I wondered, if she lost the weight, what would change for the Mom and the husband? Why were they not as supportive as they should have been?

Most likely the patient is on disability, and the Mom and husband also get paid by medicare or medicaid or whatever, to care for her. So, if she get's healthy, the pay check, the food stamps, the rent and energy assistance, and so on, goes bye bye! Now Mom and the DH, have to get a job! On top of that, what if she is successful, will she march out of the house, find a new life and tell them to go pound sand?

Lots of emotions!

I believe, that these extreme cases, are extremely complicated. The surgery is just one tool. However, most likely, the family dynamics need to be examined and addressed, and if you can't get all on board, much like an intervention, with an alcoholic or drug addict, the chances of success are very small.

I feel it is very sad, that while weight loss surgery is a great tool, our medical community is terribly lacking in further examination of the family dynamics, educating people on healthy lifestyles, nutrition, healthy cooking, portions, where do you go from here, etc., and the mental health care that is needed to make the treatment totally comprehensive.

But, that does not happen with drug addicts, drunks, soldiers who suffer from post traumatic stress syndrome, etc., either.

A dear friend, former Marine, is back in rehab (drinks) again! He will never succeed, unless, at the very least his current wife, is willing to make changes, and he is going to need to make changes in lots of other relationships as well. I highly doubt, he will live another 2 years and he's only 43.

For me, I think some (not all) of the extreme obesity cases, are not that much different, than those of people and their families that choose other paths of addiction and the dysfunction that goes along

with that chosen path.

For those who have succeeded! I'm sure it was not an easy journey, but you did it!

I admire you!
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Old 02-19-2014, 07:55 PM   #13
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really intreresting points - and sort of related to some of my <very general> comments. We can't succeed at ANY weight control method without changing our relationship with food. With surgery, we're pretty much forced into doing without it immediately. There's no 'weaning' down of certain things.

With gradual weight loss, these changes generally happen more slowly.

And as our relationships with food change, so do our relationships with family and friends. and as you've pointed out, there's a WHOLE LOT of dysfunction going on here. once the person becomes more mobile, less dependent, more controlled, everything's turned on its head. and these are NOT points that are made in the show.
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Start your day with a smile, and get it over with.
Keeping it off is a hundred decisions a day that help you maintain what you achieved. And that's the hard part. - L Sanders

start: 506 [Sept 2001]
weight at gastric bypass [Jan 29, 2002]: 409
current weight: 225
weight for plastic surgery: 200
final goal: 180

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Old 02-19-2014, 09:27 PM   #14
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Jiffypop, I think you would make a wonderful consultant to this show!
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Old 02-20-2014, 03:13 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by ladyrider72472 View Post
Really, I think this only feeds the publics misconception of "once I get the surgery" life will be all sunshine and roses and I will never diet again
I'm not really getting that from this show at all. So many of the subjects have had minimal success. The one lady with the oxygen ONLY lost weight before the surgery. Because she assumed it was a quick fix, she did not lose weight after the surgery because she didn't bother to actually make changes to her life. (She was very manipulative though, probably has a major personality disorder) Even the success stories struggle to lose weight after surgery.

I watched Hoarders quite a bit, and I experience a lot of the same frustration watching this show that I did watching that. The behaviors that seem so obviously irrational to the viewer are perfectly normal for the subjects. It's interesting to see the personalities.

I think the show's producer is Dr. Now's son, which would explain some of why this show has the P.O.V. that it does.
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