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Old 05-12-2010, 10:17 PM   #1
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Default Help... please... teen here... so be nice...

Ok… I’m seventeen. Now, some of you might say “hmph… a seventeen year old on a weight loss forum? Yeah right, like she has weight to lose”. And yeah… I see where you’re coming from. Just hear me out before judging me though… please.

I’ve been on various diets ever since I was 11. Not long before I turned 11, my Dad began suffering from vertigo… having very bad attacks. He was diagnosed with miniears, and was told that he had lose weight. He was around 280 lbs at that time. I was around 120… and at 5’1” (or… I think I was a bit shorter than that actually), it made me a bit plump. So… the whole family went on Atkins. Throughout the six months we did it, I continued to cheat. I would go out and buy a chocolate bar, or do something else. I just did. I didn’t want to go on the diet in the first place. But I eventually did get down to 99 lbs. I felt amazing… I looked amazing… for an 11 year old.

And then… everything went downhill from there. We were living in Serbia (my parents are missionaries) at the time we started, and moved back to the USA for six months. During that time I began eating more (I never knew, and still don’t, how much I SHOULD eat), and slowly regained all of the weight I had lost by the time I was 12. And since then I’ve just been gaining and gaining. At 17 years old, 5’11”, I am around 220 lbs. I’ve tried calorie counting. I’ve tried going low carb again (I HATE eggs, bacon, sausage, and most meat products period)… nope. I’ve tried just exercising more… that hasn’t worked much. I did go from 215 to 180 last summer… but I’m back up again. I know that for some of you guys… 215… wha? Is she kidding me… I wish I was that thin… but… well… 200 period was always my high point. I feel ashamed. I feel out of control. I feel stupid. I often feel ugly. Not always. I like my curves… the good ones. However, I have way too many curves.

One thing I have to mention is that since I was 11, I have not lived in one place for more than a year. And no… I’m not talking city, or house… I’m talking about COUNTRY. I’ve been from the US to Serbia to Germany to Serbia to Germany to the US again. I have few friends. My dog is my biggest stress reliever… and she is currently living four hours away. I have a job at a vet clinic… but this is my last week working there, Saturday is actually my last day. I have no other stress reliever. I like to sleep… but I rarely get much because I’m always having to get up for school… which… is necessary. But I can’t go to sleep early because of school… so… it’s a lose-lose situation.

With the exercise, unfortunately… I have a condition that keeps me from doing that a lot of the time. It’s like heat rash… I break out in REALLY itchy hives every time my body heat elevates quickly. And if I don’t sit down or rest, I begin to feel VERY faint, there have actually been a couple times where I nearly have fallen to the floor in a dead faint, I usually sank to the floor like… a minute before that happened though. And… in most forms of exercise… your body heat elevates quickly… and… I really CAN’T push through this. I’ve tried going running… and it’s not that I have a stitch in my side, or that I’m physically exhausted necessarily… I just break out in hives and end up at a point where I can barely see strait for all the dots flying around in my head.

And to be honest… there really is no cure for this. Antihistamines do help… a little. Hardly at all though. After about a month and a half of Claritin every morning… I just stopped. It was doing me no good.

But yeah… with the weight. I feel as though I’ve tried everything. Half the time though… it’s not that I PURPOSELY decide to stop, or say “I failed, I give up”… I just… I forget. I forget that I’m supposed to be eating healthier, and I’ll grab the donut instead of the apple (ok… pear… I hate apples… ). It’s not a purposeful thing… It’s a subconscious thing.

Another reason why I don’t seem to keep with anything long… is as soon as I start something, and am feeling good… my mom takes over. And… if it helps anything… my personality type is an INTP. I can’t STAND being controlled… by anyone. Especially not my mom. And… my mom is an ENFJ. She likes to take control over things. She likes to be in control. And so… I’ll be calorie counting… and three days into it, my mom starts telling me what I should be doing, how I should be doing this or that… and yeah… I’ve TOLD her that I don’t like it when she does that, that it doesn’t help me AT ALL, and she’s like “oh… ok… I’ll see what I can do”, and literally… honestly… ten minutes later… she’s doing the same thing she was, telling me how I should do my weigh-ins/measurements, etc.

I’m a size 16, sometimes 14 depending on the piece of clothing. I want to be able to fit into a 10. An 8 would be nice… but not necessary. I want to be able to go to a store with friends, and not stand around awkwardly or start crying in the dressing room because the XL I grabbed just doesn’t fit around my boobs, or looks awkward, or… well… is just plain too small.

I just spent an entire hour looking around for a dress to my school’s Fine Arts Banquet (a dance for people in a Fine Arts class). It’s not that I didn’t find what I didn’t like… it’s that I couldn’t find one that FIT. I rarely buy anything because I like it… I buy it because it fits. I wear jeans and t-shirts. Rarely do I wear anything else… because I just don’t HAVE anything else.

My whole family on my Dad’s side is larger. Maybe my genes are just predisposed to be larger. I didn’t get the skinny gene from either side. There are members in that family who are thin… there are. I just didn’t receive that genetic luck.

I just… I feel like a failure. I’ve been trying to get to a HEALTHY weight… forget thin. Forget perfect. I just want to be at a healthy weight. I’ve been trying since I was 11. And look where I am. Nowhere. I’ve posted hundreds of these posts on various forums. I’m at a loss.

I eat… not because I’m upset. Rarely is that so. I eat sometimes because I’m bored and I have nothing to do… or I’m enjoying a movie or book… and it’s something to do. I eat more than I should simply because I don’t know how much is enough. I don’t know WHY I eat most of the time.

My parents say I’m being stubborn, or I don’t care about my life… that I have no self control. The thing is… I don’t know WHY I do the things that I do. My parents also say that I shouldn’t be trusted with anything if I don’t know why. I’m just… frustrated. Maybe they’re right. I don’t know. Maybe I’m scared of becoming pretty. Maybe I’m scared of what might happen if I lose the weight. Maybe I don’t really want to be healthy. I don’t know. I just really don’t know. I don’t know what to do…

I don’t want a lecture on how “take control of your life”. Yeah… I know that. But how? Most of the time I just FORGET that I’m doing this or that… it honestly just slips out of my mind… and… well… I don’t know what to do. I’ve tried notes. I’ve tried notebooks. I’ve done online and paper food journals… and exercise journals… I just… I don’t know what to do anymore. I can’t spend money on special pills or meal plans… I just can’t afford that.

Maybe I just keep making up excuses for my own laziness. I don’t know anymore.


OH... and cookies... umm... should I say calorie free but completely delicious chocolate chip cookies? To anyone who read that... *sigh*
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Old 05-12-2010, 10:25 PM   #2
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At 17, I weighed more than you AND was shorter. So, before I say anything else, please don't believe that anyone would discredit your plight due to age.

I realize that its really difficult to lose weight when you can't control everything you're eating. But I really think you need to sit down with your parents and explain how you're feeling. Tell both of them that you want to eat healthier, count calories (or whatever you pick) and that you need to be allowed to go from there. Maybe you and your mom could make a code word...when you say it, its her cue to just back away. Nothing more.

If you really don't feel like you can commit fully, start small. Stop drinking soda, don't eat fried foods, always get 5 veggies in a day, stop eating refined sugar...whatever you think you can handle right away. Sometimes, small changes can have a major impact.

As for the body temp issue...what about walking? Just gentle walking, so you don't raise your temp too much. Any little movement can help. Maybe try swimming? I would speak to your doctor and see what they suggest.

Good luck. It may be hard but its worth it. Please keep posting
“There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstance permit. When you're committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results.”

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Old 05-12-2010, 10:34 PM   #3
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Oh, I feel so much for your situation! *HUGS* to you. Firsat I want you to know that I am not trying to beat you up, just give you some suggestions. They might be good ideas...they might just plain suck and be useless. Please feel free to do with them whatever you wish, and know that they come from a desire to help.

I'm wondeing if you could swim for exercise? I know you might be embarassed to wear a swimming suit, but if you could get over the fear, you could maybe increase your activity level without raising up your body temp so much. Just a thought. You could call your local recreation center and see when they have classes for women only if that would help. Also, you don't have to run or do aerobics to get benefits from moving around. I would recommend just walking a bit. That's what I did 11 weeks ago when I started on my new lifestyle, becuase I could barely waddle around the block due to being overweight and having a disc problem with my back. Now I am able to hike and do a lot more, but I worked up to it little by litte. You don't have to do everything at once.

If you can cut out junk food and just eat good healthy food, that will be a big help to you too. Drink more water. Eat more vegetables. Cut down on fat and sugar. IMHO, a blanced diet is the way to go. Maybe at first, just make small changes. Each week or couple of weeks, change something about the way you eat now to something that is more healthy and eventually, you will be eating almost completely good food. Chances are you will need to be somewhat active and eat well for the rest of your life, so pills and quick loss diet plans aren't really the way to go. Any changes you make have to be doable for the long haul or why on earth would you want to keep doing it?

Also, if you are able, hang here and post for help or ideas. Read the stories of people who are further along their journey and learn from both their mistakes and their successes. There are a lot of really nice and helpful folks here who will support and encourage you.



Last edited by angelskeep; 05-12-2010 at 10:36 PM. Reason: Ducky posting at the same time as me...I see the advice is similar.
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Old 05-12-2010, 10:38 PM   #4
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First off, I read all of that and can relate to most of it I also have been on and off of diets since I was 11.. not because I had to but because kids at school called me the fat kid and I was trying to regain some self esteem. Unfortunately.. they never worked for me either. I also forget a day into it that I was dieting and at a couple of pizza slices or some way too delicious candy bar. When I was 15 I worked with a girl who had a been a personal trainer and traded her the training for my babysitting services for 3 months. I was 210 pounds when I started and 170 when I ended. I was so angry at myself for gaining all that weight back.. but I think I got cocky at all the compliments and all the people (guys in particular) noticing my new figure. I am now 19. I ended my senior year 240lbs.. got mono and that turned into 234. Lost a little weight and spent the rest of 09 at 228. Went on vacation and skyrocketted to 249. So, after all of that what I am basically getting at is.. you have to hit a point where you know what you really want.. and then you dont let anyone get in the way. Tell your mother your a young adult and you would like to be treated like one, this is something you need to do for yourself and that you understand she's just trying to help. That's what I had to tell mine when she would hand me greasy chicken finger and tell me one wouldn't hurt. Hope this helps
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Old 05-12-2010, 10:51 PM   #5
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duckyyellowfeet -

I actually hate the taste of almost all fried foods. I love salads. My mom has been on an "all-natural" health food kick for the past month. She goes through phases with this all the time. From Atkins to All-Natural to Low Calorie to Only Home Cooked and so on. My biggest "weakness" if you can call it that is that when I'm craving something and can't eat it (either because it doesn't exist in this country, isn't immidiately available, or is really expensive), I eat a lot of something else (and usually it's not something healthy) in order to make up for what I'm "missing"... but I'm never quite satisfied.

I would sit down and talk with my parents... but at the moment... they're upset about me because apparently I have no self control when it comes to getting my homework done either. And I just had one of my weekly (almost daily) lectures from them about how I never change, that I don't care enough about my life to even try and make a change, and all of THEIR assumptions about how my mind is thinking. However... it's annoying because everything that my dad says I'm thinking... I have never thought... whether conscious or subconsious. Those are definately not my motives.

As for soda... I drink only diet. I can't stand the sugar level in normal soda. At the moment... I feel as though I can't give that up. I'm willing to give up something else... but I don't know what. It'll be easier starting this summer... because I don't have to worry about the nasty, greasy school food.

angelskeep... I actually really like my swimsuit. It's like... my one piece of clothing I actually LIKE to wear (though I would rather have board shorts instead of the skirt thing I have now).

As for the fruits and vegetables... I currently usually have either a pear, a bunch of grapes, some berries or something in the morning as half of my breakfast (along with a piece of whole grain toast either with or without sausages inside to add some protein). In lunch, I eat a lot of the normal stuff... the nasty greasy stuff... with a bunch of the steamed vegetables and all... and when dinner comes around, my mom always has a bunch of salad and green beans and sometimes another type of veggie. So... I might not be getting as MUCH as I need... but I am eating fruits and veggies. I actually prefer to eat them.

Another one of my weaknesses I think is candy. In the past, I guess it was a comfort food. It's not as much anymore... that I know of... more of a habit I think. I dunno.

The swimming is a good idea. I'll actually have more time next week. I am resigning from my job I've had since August due to me moving (again), and a really busy summer. And I decided to do it before finals so I'd have a chance to study and be ready for that.

I dunno... I think I just eat too much... but... I don't know. I really don't. And... I feel terrible about eating the bag of M&Ms and the Pop Tart... but... it's there... so I usually just grab it... even though I know I shouldn't...

It's also frustrating for me because my parents are in the mindset that you have to weigh every day and measure once a week... or you'll get nowhere in life. I can't do that... seeing the scale go up and down all week... I go nuts. I end up more stressed than anything else... but when I don't... I get yelled at because I'm not taking control... or something. I don't know anymore.

Thanks... and I'll hang around... I like forums. I'm on a horse one as well.
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Old 05-12-2010, 10:53 PM   #6
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I'm 15 years old and losing weight.
Wanting to be healthy and feel comfortable in your skin has
no age. And I can relate to moving around so much. In 6th grade
I moved from Ohio to Pennsylvania, Penn to Florida, then Florida back
up to a different area of Ohio. SO STRESSFUL!

Hang in there and good luck to you.
Sierra Maria. 21. Married. Mother.

An it harm none, so mote it be.

Last edited by Ciao; 05-12-2010 at 10:53 PM.
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Old 05-12-2010, 11:07 PM   #7
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Hi -

Serbrider, I feel for you. Hugs to you. Keep posting here, it helps. I might have missed this, but are your parents a normal weight now? I know your Dad was told to lose weight 6 years ago, but I didn't get how they are now. It sounds as though they are both trying to diet also and are unhappy with their weight also.

Good luck, and keep us posted.
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Old 05-12-2010, 11:19 PM   #8
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My Dad is currently at 180... healthy weight for his body shape, type, and height, could lose a bit more, but doesn't NEED to. My mom is at a healthy weight as well. My little brother is in the obese range as well. Not majorly... but... like... barely there... and my older brother is at a healthy weight as well... he's actually the skinny one.

Last edited by Serbrider; 05-12-2010 at 11:19 PM.
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Old 05-13-2010, 12:57 AM   #9
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Well, the fried/sugar idea was just a suggestion

Ok, what about cutting out candy? I know it seems hard at first, but the less you eat it, the less you crave it. Replace that snacking with something healthy, maybe some protein?

Its hard sometimes, but worth it. Small changes CAN add up, if you're willing to stick with them. I hate journaling all of my food too but it keeps me accountable. Sometimes the hard things we don't want to do make all the difference. You can play around with it, figure out what is going to work for you...but once you figure it out, you just have to stick with it. Through the slips (so you ate a poptart? does that mean you have to eat the whole box?!) and through the tempting treats people shove at you...and you'll find the results you're looking for.
“There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstance permit. When you're committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results.”

Gastric Sleeve Date: June 10th, 2014

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Old 05-13-2010, 02:40 AM   #10
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Hey Serbrider,

I read all of that and all I could think was how much I could relate to your feelings. I'm 18 and I've been overweight all my life. You sound very similar to me-- I'm an independent person too. Its been hard coming home from college and realizing that other people have control of me again.

That said, I think you can do this. I know this has probably been said, but you just have to find something that works for you. Journaling at first is probably the best option. Write down everything you eat, because sometimes we don't even know/realize how much we are eating and then take it from that. You have to find the problem before you can find a solution. I know that eating due to boredom is my vice as well. I try to chew gum and drink water when that happens. As for exercise, have you thought about yoga or pilates? I took a pilates class last semester and I loved it as a person who really dislikes exercise. It actually destressed me, which is always a plus.

If you are looking for a buddy, feel free to PM me. It's nice to see someone my age around here and its always nice to have a friend to talk to.
"Wish for what you want. Work for what you need."

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Old 05-13-2010, 11:39 AM   #11
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I think you need to try sitting down with your parents and maybe coming up with a plan "together". Perhaps if they feel like they had some input in your plan, they would feel less likely to "butt in" later on? Set a few clear goals, and maybe ask their input on them. Let them know that you would like to gain control over your life and your eating habits. You would like to listen to their input, since your dad has lost weight and your mom is at a healthy weight, but ultimately, the decision is yours and yours alone for what you do.

Weighing daily does drive some people nuts (I'm not one of them, I'm the opposite, admittedly) Maybe decide to weigh once a week, and measure once a month? Commit to just a few simple "challenges" so to speak for the next month- perhaps drinking enough water each day, getting 30 minutes of exercise, and writing down all of your foods. Develop a way to check off these things each day, a check list, a calendar, etc. (I personally use star stickers on a calendar). If you commit to writing down all of your foods, you'll start to be more aware of what you eat. From there, you can develop a good plan for what you need to change in your diet. You say that lunch is a lot of the normal greasy stuff? Can you pack your lunch? Maybe a sandwich, some fruit, some veggies, and a little treat?

For exercise- swimming would be great! You could also try walking, even if it means splitting it up into 2 15 minute walks (maybe once before school and one after?)

You can certainly do this. But you need to take responsibility for what you put in your mouth. You will always have temptations, life will be stressful, but you need to determine how you want to handle it. Sit down calmly and explain what yuo're trying to do with your parents. Let them know thatyou listen to them, that you value their input. But also let them know that you are at the point where you also need to make decisions for yourself.

Good luck!!

Fighting back from the regain

Strong is the new skinny.
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Old 05-13-2010, 02:14 PM   #12
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Hello, and welcome!

I relate to a good chunk of what you wrote up there. I've probably been some form of overweight since I was in around fourth grade or so, or at least that's when I start seeing it in the old photos of me. Right now, I'm less than a month from my nineteenth birthday...

Back when I was a freshman in high school, the last unit we did in my PE class before summer was swimming. We were swimming for at least an hour every day, five days a week, and let me tell you - I was pretty freaking hot at the end of it, at 190 pounds(The beauty of being tall is that we can still look good at *some* higher weights! ). That's the lowest I remember weighing in any remotely recent history. Several months ago, I weighed myself at 240 pounds or so, and I was not happy. Unfortunately, I just didn't have the will or the drive to do anything about it at that point... It's something I've struggled with for a long, long time now. Always on again, off again with my dieting.

About three weeks ago we got a new scale, and it didn't tell me very nice things. 266 pounds? Really?? Where did all of that come from!? In reality I knew it was going to be bad, because I'd noticed clothed weren't fitting me as well as they once had(Jeans in particular) and I was just... Less happy with my body than usual. So here I am, 11 pounds down and determined to weigh less than I ever remember weighing. I just can't begin to deal with being this size anymore, so I have to make things happen.

I think that's a big part of weight loss; You need that catalyst moment that makes you realize you HAVE to do this. You NEED to. It just sort of overtakes you and all of a sudden your making changes wherever you feesibly can.

Like others have said, if you're struggling, start small. For me, one of the biggest lessons I'm having to work on is portion control. I don't really have a "full" sensor in my stomach, or so it would seem, so I have to think to myself, "Okay. You've had enough, you don't need more than that." I would also suggest trying to cut out candy as a small but very good change. Hold on to your diet soda for now - Just take it one step at a time. Maybe eventually you'll cut it down to one or two a week. Drinking more water can do wonders, too.

As for exercise, I would have to agree with others that swimming is probably a fantastic option for you. Like I said above, it did some pretty wonderous things for me when I was swimming almost daily... But even three times a week would be a pretty fantastic start!

I'd also agree that talking it out with your parents might be a good idea. Get their input, but ask them not to be so imposing on this subject. It really is the kind of thing that only you can do for yourself, in the end, and I don't know about you but when people try to get super pushy with me about my weight loss.... It just makes me want to quit. This is my journey, either cheer me on or don't say anything!

Sorry this is such a long post. I didn't mean to hijack your thread!
Overall Goal:

Taking it 15lbs at a time, all the way down!

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Old 05-13-2010, 02:56 PM   #13
Short dresses here I come
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I have three things to say to you:
1. I'm also 17, 4 months ago I was a 14. A tight 14. Now I'm a comfortable 8~ UK size.
2. The most important thing isn't location, or age. It's having the dedication, the drive, and the want to change yourself for the better. Persistance is key; it get's easier.

And 3. I really reccomend looking around the different styles of weightloss here, personally I calorie-count~ But you should look for the right kind to suit you.

good luck!
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Old 05-13-2010, 02:58 PM   #14
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You're just in a mindset. You've inadvertently programmed your brain to behave in a certain way... overeating, craving, etc. You have to reprogram your brian. I've done it and it's difficult. Sure, I still have cravings, but I'm starting to only eat a little instead of a lot. You have to get out of the mindset of overeating.

In regards to the rash, I get it too. But sometimes you just have to suffer through it. And I think the lightheadedness comes from simply being out of shape. I will admit I haven't worked out in a while, but once you start dropping the pounds, it gets easier.

But in the end, it's the food you eat that matters. You have to start thinking differently about food. Start by eating less. Sure, it'll be painful and you'll want to eat more, but I weigh myself every day (well, twice a day, I have a thyroid condition and I have to very closely monitor my weight), and I always think "Do I want to see the scale move up or down tomorrow?" and then I force myself to stop eating.

For example, last night my fiance went to the Olive garden for dinner. We split something, and even then, I barely ate half because I knew if I ate more I wouldn't lose weight. I had a bowl of soup and three breadsticks, so I had to balance it out. It's give and take. And it really comes down to the fact that you really don't need *that* much food to live on. You only think you do. And I've been there for years.
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Old 05-13-2010, 02:59 PM   #15
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There have been so many strong wise suggestions made that the only one I would add is to keep a truly open mind to see how they would fit it in your life.

As we're the same height I have a good idea of the stages you have gone through. We're bigger no matter what we do. When we're considered "normal" weights, we're still bigger than the average! It's just something that in time you will embrace I'm 27 and it has taken a long time and a lot of learning.

I can also say from personal experience, I reflect back on when I was a teenager and admit now that my parents certainly had their hands full. The way I behaved back then is the kind of thing that makes me shudder to think that I may have a daughter one day where I will go through what I put my mum through. My parents suddenly became the wisest people in my life when I got old enough to see it.

When I hit 215, I reflected on why I forced myself up to the point of being so uncomfortable in my own skin. That's when I pinpointed what was wrong in my life ... what *I* was doing to make myself so unhappy. I came up with a game plan to get my life back on track and that's when the majority of the weight I had to lose melted off without even really trying. I'm pretty sure the most obvious reason was because I wasn't buying snacks, meals, chocolate, and candy on the side. I started walking consistently and using that as my happy time where I could relax in peace.

You may be more worldy than the average teen and have gone through a lot but you're not alone on what you're going through. Everyone has their story and you will grow and learn from it to become a confident, beautiful, you.
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