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I was so discouraged after a conversation with my surgeon this morning and I need to vent for a minute. I am still pre-op, just waiting on my scope that’s scheduled in August, and then will be proceeding with RNY gastric bypass in early September (fingers crossed). I’ve been meeting with nutrition monthly and have been doing really well and am only 3lbs off from meeting my pre-surgery goal of 215lbs. Today was the first time I actually met with my surgeon and all was well until he asked what my biggest goals were after surgery, to which I replied that I wanted to be healthy and strong! He. Laughed. At. Me. 😡 He informed me that he never recommends for women “bulk” and that the fact that I lift weights now (higher weight, lower reps) was all wrong and that I’m sabotaging my weight loss by building too much muscle. He insisted that I need to just “tone” muscle and really just focus on cardio 🙄 and reiterated that “no woman wants huge, ripped, muscles anyway”. I couldn’t even make this up, I left with such a bad taste in my mouth. Do I just avoid these conversations with him in the future? Or just do what he says? He’s the best surgeon in the area and obviously is much more educated than I am, but it’s really hard to take someone’s advice after they chuckle at your life goals.

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Posted (edited)

I do not care for my surgeon as a person, but as a surgeon I know he's well-qualified. Obviously, it would be great to have a surgeon that didn't talk and behave like an ass, but if you're willing to overlook his bedside shortcomings in exchange for a competent surgeon, then feel confident that you made a good decision.

Do I find your surgeon's comments inappropriate and sexist? Absolutely. Would I have wished that I had the perfect comeback when he made his disparaging remarks about women who want to build healthy muscle? Absolutely. My guess is that you're mainly peeved because he got away with saying what he said, and you weren't able (out of sheer disbelief perhaps) to challenge his asshattery. Instead of being able to express yourself fully with him, your only outlet (and a less satisfying outlet) is to vent here.

I doubt if I'm alone as a woman in feeling hesitant to speak up for myself. As a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, I often "flew away". It took years of therapy before I could rid myself of that shame.

In some ways, I was conditioned, as are many women, to be shrinking violets. There's also the issue of status involved in your case. We've been taught to respect certain professionals, doctors included. So, here you are confronted by a male doctor who completely caught you off-guard by basically equating unattractiveness with muscles. Heck, we're already fat and feeling bad about that, now to be told that to build muscle is unfeminine. Wow. Imagine paying an insurance co-pay to hear all this crap.

It's important for you to be a strong self-advocate. You are taking a life-changing step with weight-loss surgery, so why stop there? For your own self-respect, I'd politely but firmly revisit this conversation by letting him know that you were offended by his views on women who lift weights and press him about whether there is a medical reason for you to not lift weights or if this was just his subjective view.

If you read my profile statement, you'll discover that I had a negative hospital experience with my doctor. Yes, I vented like crazy here and elsewhere, but as soon as I saw my surgeon at my first follow-up appointment walking down the hall (I was actually supposed to see a nurse practitioner for this visit), I approached him with confidence, touched his arm, and said, "Dr. S---, I am not very happy with you. In fact, I'm very disappointed." He was so taken off-guard by my bluntness that he escorted me into the exam room and spent 45 minutes worth of damage control on me. You can imagine the bewilderment of the nurse when she walked in and he was with me. She probably thought she was the one in trouble. The point is, I took back some of the dignity that I felt had been taken from me previously.

Yes, it was "just" a statement about muscles, but where do you draw the line? You wouldn't be here venting if it didn't bother the becheezits out of you.

Believe me, you'll feel better about yourself for at least trying to stand up for yourself. It might not go over well, maybe you feel clumsy getting out your words, but it's better than saying nothing. Practice self-advocacy until it becomes second nature. The older I get, the easier it's becoming. When you don't speak up for yourself, you are essentially giving the other person the power and permission to put you down.

Edited by Missouri-Lee's Summit
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A Blue-Ribbon Response @ Missour- Lee's Summit. If I only could ---I would award you 2 trophies for your answer👍❤😝❤
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@Wishful.shrinking seems like your surgeon is a bit of a sexist a$$. Is he really the best in the area? If so, maybe it's best just to ignore him or placate him until after your surgery. Telling anyone that they shouldn't do something, based on outmoded social "norms" has no place in medicine... sadly these small brained dinosaurs still exist in the wild. By all means bulk up. Larger muscle burns more fat than smaller muscle... *NO ONE* has the right to tell you what to look like. That's 100% your call.

I would be offended if I were in your shoes. But you need to pick and chose the battles, do you fight him on your personal goals... and have to settle for a potentially less skilled doctor? Or do you just brush it off as the ramblings of moron that just happens to be the best body mechanic in your area? That's also your call.

Either way, good luck and happy body building!

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Your surgeon is a tool. Jeez, what a sexist load of crap. I love lifting weights, and I will return to it with my doc's ok (just 6 days out from sleeve). Missouri-Lee's Summit's answer is spot-on. Don't let this fossil of a surgeon get you down!

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Gross gross gross. Yes, you should be offended. But don’t let it derail you. You will be unconscious for the most important part of your relationship with this troll. If you’re getting good service from the rest of his team, stay the course.

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10 hours ago, Wishful.shrinking said:

I was so discouraged after a conversation with my surgeon this morning and I need to vent for a minute. I am still pre-op, just waiting on my scope that’s scheduled in August, and then will be proceeding with RNY gastric bypass in early September (fingers crossed). I’ve been meeting with nutrition monthly and have been doing really well and am only 3lbs off from meeting my pre-surgery goal of 215lbs. Today was the first time I actually met with my surgeon and all was well until he asked what my biggest goals were after surgery, to which I replied that I wanted to be healthy and strong! He. Laughed. At. Me. 😡 He informed me that he never recommends for women “bulk” and that the fact that I lift weights now (higher weight, lower reps) was all wrong and that I’m sabotaging my weight loss by building too much muscle. He insisted that I need to just “tone” muscle and really just focus on cardio 🙄 and reiterated that “no woman wants huge, ripped, muscles anyway”. I couldn’t even make this up, I left with such a bad taste in my mouth. Do I just avoid these conversations with him in the future? Or just do what he says? He’s the best surgeon in the area and obviously is much more educated than I am, but it’s really hard to take someone’s advice after they chuckle at your life goals.

This would have def offended me, but I'm going to take a different approach on it. I would say that his opinion has little to do with your choices or success after surgery. You need him to do the surgery, without complications, period. After that, his job is to monitor your Vitamin levels and record your weight loss. Just because he's a bariatric surgeon, doesn't mean he's a fitness expert. I wouldn't take advice from a surgeon on fitness, just because he's a doctor. So if you want to "bulk" up, then go for it! But I wouldn't let it discourage you from using him. If his known skills are reputable, and you've established with him... I'd say continue forward.

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I was so discouraged after a conversation with my surgeon this morning and I need to vent for a minute. I am still pre-op, just waiting on my scope that’s scheduled in August, and then will be proceeding with RNY gastric bypass in early September (fingers crossed). I’ve been meeting with nutrition monthly and have been doing really well and am only 3lbs off from meeting my pre-surgery goal of 215lbs. Today was the first time I actually met with my surgeon and all was well until he asked what my biggest goals were after surgery, to which I replied that I wanted to be healthy and strong! He. Laughed. At. Me. [emoji35] He informed me that he never recommends for women “bulk” and that the fact that I lift weights now (higher weight, lower reps) was all wrong and that I’m sabotaging my weight loss by building too much muscle. He insisted that I need to just “tone” muscle and really just focus on cardio 🙄 and reiterated that “no woman wants huge, ripped, muscles anyway”. I couldn’t even make this up, I left with such a bad taste in my mouth. Do I just avoid these conversations with him in the future? Or just do what he says? He’s the best surgeon in the area and obviously is much more educated than I am, but it’s really hard to take someone’s advice after they chuckle at your life goals.
The taxonomy of this Man
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: None

talk to him about your surgery, a NUT about your diet, a trainer about the rest of your muscles.

VSG2017 HW 249 SW 238 CW 169

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I think a lot of good things have been said already, but I'll just throw in that even though I liked my surgeon a lot, I saw him one office visit pre op, 10 minutes before surgery, and never again. All my post ops have been his assistant. Maybe that'll be the case with your program? :) *crosses fingers*

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13 hours ago, Wishful.shrinking said:

nformed me that he never recommends for women “bulk” and that the fact that I lift weights now (higher weight, lower reps) was all wrong and that I’m sabotaging my weight loss by building too much muscle. He insisted that I need to just “tone” muscle and really just focus on cardio 🙄 and reiterated that “no woman wants huge, ripped, muscles anyway”

This right here makes me think of the old saying "Opinions are like a$$holes because everyone has one". He is clearly misinformed and his opinion is based on incorrect thinking and understanding of basic physiology. I know you know this...

Surgeons as a group tend to be arrogant and many have minimal interpersonal skills. They know how to cut and sew and that is pretty much it. I have known many great pediatric ones over the years but they are a different breed.

If he is a good surgeon with a good reputation just ignore his fitness advice and carry on. Or, clock him with one of your huge, ripped muscles and teach him a lesson in girl power:D:D

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Don't be offended. It was a stupid comment and is only his opinion. Just that topic if it comes up again. He should know better than to try to force his opinion on anyone but we're human and it's known that us men sometimes say stupid Sh!t without thinking. Go for the results you want and make you feel comfortable.

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On 07/17/2018 at 01:27, Missouri-Lee's Summit said:



I do not care for my surgeon as a person, but as a surgeon I know he's well-qualified. Obviously, it would be great to have a surgeon that didn't talk and behave like an ass, but if you're willing to overlook his bedside shortcomings in exchange for a competent surgeon, then feel confident that you made a good decision.




Do I find your surgeon's comments inappropriate and sexist? Absolutely. Would I have wished that I had the perfect comeback when he made his disparaging remarks about women who want to build healthy muscle? Absolutely. My guess is that you're mainly peeved because he got away with saying what he said, and you weren't able (out of sheer disbelief perhaps) to challenge his asshattery. Instead of being able to express yourself fully with him, your only outlet (and a less satisfying outlet) is to vent here.




I doubt if I'm alone as a woman in feeling hesitant to speak up for myself. As a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, I often "flew away". It took years of therapy before I could rid myself of that shame.




In some ways, I was conditioned, as are many women, to be shrinking violets. There's also the issue of status involved in your case. We've been taught to respect certain professionals, doctors included. So, here you are confronted by a male doctor who completely caught you off-guard by basically equating unattractiveness with muscles. Heck, we're already fat and feeling bad about that, now to be told that to build muscle is unfeminine. Wow. Imagine paying an insurance co-pay to hear all this crap.




It's important for you to be a strong self-advocate. You are taking a life-changing step with weight-loss surgery, so why stop there? For your own self-respect, I'd politely but firmly revisit this conversation by letting him know that you were offended by his views on women who lift weights and press him about whether there is a medical reason for you to not lift weights or if this was just his subjective view.




If you read my profile statement, you'll discover that I had a negative hospital experience with my doctor. Yes, I vented like crazy here and elsewhere, but as soon as I saw my surgeon at my first follow-up appointment walking down the hall (I was actually supposed to see a nurse practitioner for this visit), I approached him with confidence, touched his arm, and said, "Dr. S---, I am not very happy with you. In fact, I'm very disappointed." He was so taken off-guard by my bluntness that he escorted me into the exam room and spent 45 minutes worth of damage control on me. You can imagine the bewilderment of the nurse when she walked in and he was with me. She probably thought she was the one in trouble. The point is, I took back some of the dignity that I felt had been taken from me previously.




Yes, it was "just" a statement about muscles, but where do you draw the line? You wouldn't be here venting if it didn't bother the becheezits out of you.




Believe me, you'll feel better about yourself for at least trying to stand up for yourself. It might not go over well, maybe you feel clumsy getting out your words, but it's better than saying nothing. Practice self-advocacy until it becomes second nature. The older I get, the easier it's becoming. When you don't speak up for yourself, you are essentially giving the other person the power and permission to put you down.


Well I’ll be damned.... you just nailed everything I was feeling in a much more eloquent way than I could’ve summed it up. Yes. Yes to all of it. I’m so mad that I didn’t stick up for myself. I’ve always thought of myself as a “tell it like it is” kind of gal, but for some reason, this whole process so far has had me doubting my ability to advocate for myself. I had a weird exchange with a cardiologist as well and was kicking myself for not saying something then too!! What’s happening to me?! Mind you- I WORK in healthcare! I care for patients and help them advocate for themselves every day! I just tried to tell myself that maybe he was having a shitty day.... but at the same time I don’t know that a bad day equates to being misogynistic and rude 🙄 Ugh. My next appointment is with his PA, so I’m going to just try and forget about it. Maybe this time next year, I’ll challenge him to an arm wrestling competition and see how he feels when a GIRL beats him 🤣
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On 07/17/2018 at 04:49, Frustr8 said:

A Blue-Ribbon Response @ Missour- Lee's Summit. If I only could ---I would award you 2 trophies for your answer👍❤😝❤
I agree!! She nailed it
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On 07/17/2018 at 07:26, Matt Z said:



@Wishful.shrinking seems like your surgeon is a bit of a sexist a$$. Is he really the best in the area? If so, maybe it's best just to ignore him or placate him until after your surgery. Telling anyone that they shouldn't do something, based on outmoded social "norms" has no place in medicine... sadly these small brained dinosaurs still exist in the wild. By all means bulk up. Larger muscle burns more fat than smaller muscle... *NO ONE* has the right to tell you what to look like. That's 100% your call.



I would be offended if I were in your shoes. But you need to pick and chose the battles, do you fight him on your personal goals... and have to settle for a potentially less skilled doctor? Or do you just brush it off as the ramblings of moron that just happens to be the best body mechanic in your area? That's also your call.



Either way, good luck and happy body building!


Ugh!! I wish he wasn’t the best in the area, but he’s honestly probably the best in New York! It’s the only center in the state that has both a Bariatric and metabolic program combined. I’m just trying to brush it off. He’s operating on my stomach, not my muscles, so I’ll give him the pass this time. It was irritating to say the least, especially because he has no idea that I was an elite gymnast for 10 years 😂 like I know what I’m doing, bro. Anyway, I appreciate the support! It makes me feel better that I wasn’t just being a SENSITIVE, EMOTIONAL FEMALE... you know how we are 🤣
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On 07/17/2018 at 07:26, thatch said:



Your surgeon is a tool. Jeez, what a sexist load of crap. I love lifting weights, and I will return to it with my doc's ok (just 6 days out from sleeve). Missouri-Lee's Summit's answer is spot-on. Don't let this fossil of a surgeon get you down!


Thank you!! Since when is wanting to be strong and healthy something to laugh at?! Ugh MEN
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