Five Signs that You’re Not Ready for Weight Loss Surgery
If you are on the fence about it, take your time coming to a decision. Even if you are theoretically eligible for it, you might have a funny feeling about it still. Here are five signs that might be saying that you are not yet ready for WLS.
1. You want to know how soon you can have …
Whatever “…” may be, if you are counting down the days until you can have it after your surgery, you might be missing the point. This is a lifetime commitment. It is not a 30-day period of abstinence from alcohol or from pizza. If your mindset is that this is a short-term race to goal weight, bariatric surgery might land you where other diets have: at goal weight and then back to starting weight, plus a few pounds.
2. You’re looking for any excuse to be found ineligible.
You may technically qualify for weight loss surgery based on your BMI and any obesity-related health conditions you may have, but are you ready? You might not be if you are grasping at straws to come with reasons you that you “should not” have surgery. For example, you practically ask a doctor to disqualify you because your great-grandfather (who was a smoker) died of a heart attack at age 92 and therefore you worry your heart is not strong enough to withstand surgery.
(Note: it is absolutely the right thing to do to explore all of your health history to be sure that the surgery is a relatively safe option for you. Just distinguish between real and imaginary reasons).
3. You are seeking fourth, fifth, and sixth-second opinions.
Let’s say your primary care doctor recommends that you have the surgery, and you found a surgeon who gave you the go-ahead. It’s one thing to ask another expert for a second opinion, just to be sure that you are making the right choice. It is quite another to ask several more experts for their opinions, hoping that one of them will advise against surgery. If that is the case, it might be a sign that you are not ready to commit to weight loss surgery and the lifestyle changes that are part of that commitment.
4. You are not sure how it would be different than dieting.
Bariatric surgery is worlds away from dieting. If you are thinking of bariatric surgery as a new diet that you will follow until you reach goal weight, you probably will not be prepared to sustain your new eating habits for life, and the weight will come back, just like it may have after countless diets. If you cannot explain to yourself why this is different than previous diet attempts, you might end up with the same results.
5. Your SO is doing more research than you.
It seems like every day, your significant other or your mom or your sister is telling you factoids about surgery that they discovered while researching online or talking to people. In the meantime, you have not seemed to be able to find the time to look things up. The fact may be that you are just not that engaged, which may be a sign that, deep down, you are not ready to take the plunge.