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Old 10-04-2011, 12:51 PM   #1  
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Default Going out with heavy friends...help!

Hi y'all,

This weekend, I'm going to visit my best friend, who lives in a different state. Here's the problem: she's significantly heavier than I am and really touchy/resentful when it comes to weight stuff. She pretty much stopped speaking to this girl she used to be quite close to, and when I asked her why her answer was, "she lost a ton of weight...I dunno, I couldn't handle it." She hasn't seen me since I started making a lifestyle change, and doesn't know about it.

This puts me in a bad place, sort of. How do I stay within my calories without drawing a ton of attention to it? Obviously I'll have to rely on what's in HER fridge (which I guarantee you is lots of processed foods), and I'm sure we'll be eating out a lot. I'm also certain there will be a whole lot of liquor.

Help, please! I have no idea how to navigate this situation.
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Old 10-04-2011, 01:08 PM   #2  
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well, she is going to have to deal with your weight loss at some point.
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Old 10-04-2011, 01:28 PM   #3  
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If she isn't happy for you and supportive (I use supportive loosely), then she doesn't deserve to be in your life.
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Old 10-04-2011, 01:36 PM   #4  
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I agree with the above. However, maybe you can convince her to try to start losing with giving her tips on what you have done. I wouldn't force it on her, by all means, but if she asks.
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Old 10-04-2011, 01:40 PM   #5  
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That's a tough situation. It sounds like your friend has some self-esteem/body image issues of her own - but don't let her issues affect the healthy changes you've made for yourself. Just make sure you're reading labels and estimate the calories the best you can. If you know where you're going to be going out to eat, most chain restaurants post their nutritional info online now, so you can plan what you're going to eat ahead of time to help avoid going over your calorie limit. Good luck!
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Old 10-04-2011, 01:48 PM   #6  
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Wow that sounds like a harsh "friend". I'm not sure I would call someone who can't respect my decisions to better my health a real friend. Just go and keep in mind that some "friends" are not the friends you hang out with for all occasions.
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Old 10-04-2011, 01:51 PM   #7  
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I would just do the best you can and not make a big thing of it. If she serves you something calorie dense just have a few bites of it and say you're not very hungry. Take a few power bars or something with you. Then get right back on plan when you get return. A few days a little off plan will get your metabolism going. You'll be primed for a big loss when you get back.

There's probably not a great way to bring it up without making her feel self conscious. I wouldn't even try. JMO
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Old 10-04-2011, 02:02 PM   #8  
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Well- I don't know what your back story is but in my case my doctor told me to lose weight, and my doctor told me how to eat. I've found that I get a completely different reaction to "I'm allergic to that" or "My doctor told me I need to eat this way for my health" than if I just say I'm on a diet. And in my case, it's true. I have an autoimmune condition and I'm allergic to dairy and people just take me at my word when I say I can't have something. No one tries to push food on me when I tell them it's for medical (rather than weight loss) reasons. If you have a similar story, tell her it's medical.
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Old 10-04-2011, 02:22 PM   #9  
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Does she know that you've lost weight?

If not, you should tell her before you just show up. Since you know she's sensitive (and sounds like she knows it's her problem by saying "I couldn't handle it," rather than claiming, as is common, that the weight loss changed the friend's personality).

This will give her a chance to prepare herself.

You're not responsible for her feelings, but you can be sympathetic and sensitive to them without sacrificing your needs.

She may want to be happy for you, but she may not be able to - and I don't think that has to be a friendship breaker. In an ideal world, we would all be perfectly supportive and perfectly happy for our friends, even if they have what we want desperately. It doesn't always work out that way. I had a friend who was having a very hard time remaining friends with the "mothers" in our group, because she had suffered repeated miscarriages. She didn't want to hate and envy her friends who had children, but it was very hard for her not to be angry and jealous of the "lucky" ones in our group. She was able to stay friends with the parents who could be sensitive to her feelings and limit the child talk, and picture passing, but she withdrew from the friends who couldn't help but constantly talk about their kidlets.

She doesn't have to be perfectly compassionate and happy for you, and you don't have to be perfectly accomodating to her feelings, either. You both just have to be willing to try to be as understanding as you can.

Minimize diet talk and bragging (yes, you have bragging rights - but there are a lot of people you can brag to, so hold back with her. She's not ready to hear it. Some day, she may be. Some day, she may be happy for you. Today may not be that day. Or perhaps the only way she can be happy for you, is to not think or talk about it much).

If she asks, go ahead and talk about it, but try to be sensitive and non-judgemental of her choices (that may be as hard for you, as "handling" your weight loss may be for herl.

When you go out to eat together, don't make it obvious that you're choices are motivated by the diet. Instead of commenting on the high calorie or fat content of the food you're NOT choosing, make it about what looks good to you.

I've noticed that many people are very uncomfortable with dieters. It makes them very self-conscious of their own choices. Should they order something light to support me? If they order what they want, would that be rude? Will I think they're "bad" for choosing bad food? Should they encourage me to "splurge," or is that being unsupportive? Am I judging their choices?

It often makes the meal awkward. I've found that a little creativityremoves all the awkwardness. It seems to me that people don't really care what you're eating, as long as they think it's what you really want, not what your forced to choose because you're dieting.

We've all been with the dieter who acts the martyr in a restaurant. Making a huge fuss over the menu - deeply sighing or complaining about the choices, how there's nothing on it they can eat - or they'll choose something they make obvious that they're not going to like, but they'll choke it down because it's on their diet. It takes all the fun out of going out in the first place.

There's a big difference between

(Sighing deeply) "I guess I'll have the cranberry, chicken salad because there's nothing else on the menu I can eat. And (deeper sigh) can I have the dressing on the side, and can you leave out the walnuts.

or

"Mmm, the chicken and cranberry salad sounds so good, but I'm not sure I'll like the dressing that comes with it. Could I have that on the side, please? (and then eat around the walnuts, or find another non-diet reason to leave off the walnuts).


I'm not saying you have to pretend you're not dieting, but you also don't have to make your choices in a way that rubs your friends nose in it, either.

You can tell your friend, you'ld like to visit a farmers market in her area. Instead of focusing on the diet and health reasons, focus on the "taste of good food" and fun of shopping reasons.

I've done this with friends and family who've visited me, who are "anti-dieting." I put the farmers' market on our agenda as a fun thing to do. I've even tempted them with the parts I'm not interested in (there's kettle corn and baked goods and all sorts of yummy food vendors). And then when we're there, I only buy stuff that fits into my diet - but I don't say that. I say "ooh, fresh snap peas and honey crisp apples, these are sooooo good!"

Some people think this is deceptive, but I think it works wonders - and not only with my friends, but with ME. When I remind myself that I"m making choices because I WANT to, not because I have to, I'm happier too. I'm not looking at my friends' food at a restaurant, wishing I could eat what they're having.
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Old 10-04-2011, 02:36 PM   #10  
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Don't discuss your dieting with her at all. If she notices your weight loss tell her you ended your dieting and are debating whether or not to go on a diet after the New Year again. That might defuse the situation, but just for a few more months.

I have a friend that is very overweight, been so all her life, and I told her all about my diet plans last year. She was interested at first and she lost a few pounds.
Then I think she went off her plan and regained the weight.

She is really nasty and ornery now to me. She is argumentative about everything I say, no matter the subject, so I call her just twice a month now.

She says she cannot diet because she goes to too many social functions and dinners. Then she cusses about the d#@%^d diets.


She has a lot of excuses for staying overweight. Some people really like to eat a lot and don't want to stop.


When I finally reach my goal weight and am skinny again, I really don't think she will be my friend at all.



Oh, well. I won't stay overweight just to please someone. I have a lot of skinny friends that are very happy to see me slimming down.

I count calories too. Why not go into maintenance mode for the weekend, and up your calories for a few days? You might gain some water weight, but that will go away in a few days.

Your friend is probably planning a lot of nice meals and treats just for you, so enjoy the visit and try to eat just a little bit of everything.



"If we defend our bad habits, we have no intention of quitting them."
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Old 10-04-2011, 02:48 PM   #11  
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It could be the case that there were other things going on with her other close friend, but it doesn't sound like it. I really hope so, though, because any rational person should be able to muster up happiness for a friend who achieved an important goal. I have a good friend who lost a ton of weight and talks about it ALL.THE.TIME. And hey, I'm happy for you, but can we talk about something else too please? I'm sure there's a tiny bit of the green eyed monster coming through, but that's not all of it.

I'm not saying that's the case for her, but I'm just hoping there's more to it than meets the eye.

I agree with the advice you've already gotten- don't rub her nose in it, just navigate the best you can without drawing attention to it. It's sad, though, because there shouldn't be those kinds of 'off limits' topics with a close friend.

Keep in mind, though, that it's tough for friends, family, partners, etc to adjust to a different idea of you and what you guys do together. If you guys always went out to dinner together, or out drinking together, it takes some getting used to that that has changed and won't be part of your everyday routine together.

I'd also recommend stashing some healthy snacks in your bag if at all possible.
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Old 10-04-2011, 02:58 PM   #12  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djs06 View Post

Keep in mind, though, that it's tough for friends, family, partners, etc to adjust to a different idea of you and what you guys do together. If you guys always went out to dinner together, or out drinking together, it takes some getting used to that that has changed and won't be part of your everyday routine together.

I'd also recommend stashing some healthy snacks in your bag if at all possible.
These are wise words! So much of our lives/relationships revolve around food, and when you're making a change in lifestyle it can be difficult for others at first.
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Old 10-04-2011, 03:02 PM   #13  
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I agree 200% with what kaplods said.

I had a friend like that, we both lost weight together, and then she re-gained it and tht was the demise of our friendship (it's a lot more complicated than that...) You can't change the way she feels, but you can be aware of how you're acting around her.

And I'd shy away from giving her any sort of weight loss tips, solicited or unsolicited. Maybe recommend a resource for her IF SHE ASKS, but in my experience, any sort of suggestion around someone's lifestyle and eating can be taken the wrong way, especially if she's already sensitive about weight loss.

Another suggestion - if you're staying with her for the weekend, could you bring some food with you? Not as a "OH, I'm dieting, I can't eat your stuff" but more of a "hey, you're opening your home to me, I cooked for you to make it a bit easier on you!" I used to do that when I stayed with friends for the weekend.

I'd make low-calorie muffins and desserts and passed it off as a special treat for us. Also, as struggling post-college students, they seemed to appreciate the extra groceries.
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Old 10-04-2011, 03:48 PM   #14  
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To clarify, I know this post made her sound like kind of a monster, but she's really not. She's a wonderful person and one of my best friends, she's just got pretty serious self-esteem issues. She's in kind of a "binge" phase right now (just started grad school, and has been eating a LOT to cope with the stress), so I think I just posted this because I know it'll make her uncomfortable when I'm not gobbling down that giant hunk of chocolate cake with her. Like a lot of you mentioned, it's crazy when you finally stop to realize how much of our social interactions revolve around food!

I will definitely be sneaking in some Lara bars...and maybe taking Stellarosa's suggestion and offering to cook/bringing a "treat" for us/etc. Hopefully all of this will make things a bit easier...also, two of our other friends are coming with me, so maybe there will be enough commotion that she won't notice what I'm doing.

Thanks again for all the help!
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Old 10-04-2011, 04:00 PM   #15  
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i would also eat slowly. you can have small portions of what you are enjoying together. thats what i noticed happened when i was larger and would go out with my skinny friends. we would eat the same thing, they would just eat significantly less than i would.
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