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How to Tell Your Loved Ones about Weight Loss Surgery


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Your weight loss surgery decision is your own. So is your Weight Loss Surgery journey. Those facts, however, do not mean that others do not count. Having your loved ones on your side can pave the way for success, while their disapproval or outright sabotage can make your journey that much more difficult, from finding a ride to surgery to keeping trigger foods away from the home.



Try to see their side.

You are asking them to see it from your perspective, so it is only fair that you try to see it from theirs. What are the reasons they may be against your Weight Loss Surgery, and how can you address them? In many cases, their concerns are legitimately about your well-being, and things you should consider if you have not already. They may worry that:

  • You will not hit your goal weight this time since they’ve seen disappointment before.
  • You will suffer complications from surgery.
  • You will regret having a permanent

Sometimes, their concerns are selfish but still worth discussing. They may worry that:

  • You’ll stop feeling attracted to them.
  • You will pressure them to give up their own favorite foods while you eat healthily.
  • They will feel left out.
  • You will not want to spend time with them.

Reassure them.

Address their concerns directly. Explain why you feel the surgery is safe, and how much research you have done to learn about it as well as find a surgeon. Tell them why you think Weight Loss Surgery will work for you even if previous diets have not.

Let them know that you need to do this for yourself, not for them and that this will not change the way you feel about them – you will still love your SO, and respect your parents, for example. Tell them how you see yourself spending time with them after surgery, so they can be comfortable.

Write it down and practice.

Starting the conversation can be the scariest part of telling them. Before you bring up the subject, write down what you plan to say. This is a good exercise for you to do anyway since it encourages you to think through all of the doubts around Weight Loss Surgery. Writing it down and practicing can make it easier for the words to come when you decide to bring it up.

Include them in your plans.

Often, your spouse and parents, and others who care about you, just want to help. They may be afraid if they do not how to help. When you talk to them, let them know how important they are to you, both in life in general and in this important period of your life. If you tell them specifically what they can do to support you, they may feel more at ease with your decision and more confident in their roles.

You might ask them to:

  • Pick up your children from school when you are recovering from surgery.
  • Go with you to the store to pick out Protein powders and measuring cups and spoons.
  • Ask you each night how you are doing.
  • Cook healthy meals with you.

Prepare for anything.

The conversation may be as difficult and unfulfilling as you feared. Or, your SO, parents or other loved ones may be surprisingly supportive once they realize that you have done your research and are serious about making the lifestyle changes needed for success. They may even be interested in getting healthy with you and ask for your help and support in exchange for theirs.

Stay strong and independent.

As much as you long for your SO and other loved ones to support you wholeheartedly, it may not happen. Try not to let it get you down, though. If you are sure about what you want, go for it, with or without them. They will come around sooner or later, and if not, you may be better off without their negative influence. Letting them know that you have made up your mind regardless of their support may actually convince them to help you since there is no point in standing in your way.

Stay independent in the sense that you realize that you do not need them. Your success does not depend on their approval, and you are not doomed to fail if they stand in your way. Get the support you need from others as you move forward.

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Thanks, good article lots of posts about this recently.

@Alex Brecher Just so you know third dot point after the first paragraph hasn't been finalised, seems to be missing the end of the sentence.

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I'd like to know how you tell people that aren't related to you that really have no business in your personal life but you don't want to sound snobbish or you want to tell but don't really want to discuss it in detail.

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@renjenn - with all due respect, why say anything to them at all? If they really have no business in your personal life, then why say anything? I’d keep it to those who *need* to know (e.g., work supervisor, person who will be caring for you after surgery etc).

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I feel same way. My daughter is very supportive and helpful while my son could care less what I do. So in that respect, my daughter has been fully informed and is actually picking me up from hospital and letting me stay at her house for a couple days. My son knows nothing. Why mention it when he doesn’t care?9

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I am nervous about telling some of my closer friends....I’m scared they will feel a little jealous about the surgery....we have all talked before about how we would have it done if we could afford it....then my husband got a new job with amazing insurance so I started the journey....one of my friends is dating one of my coworkers and I’m nervous she will tell him then some how the whole office would know....I just don’t want to have to explain myself to anyone

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