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Keeping my mouth closed



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I don’t want to tell my parents about my surgery. I have battled with my weight since middle school. My parents had me in weight watchers at the age of 12, had me stand on the scale if they thought I was gaining weight, and do, earnestly, worry about my health. The only time I was successful with weight loss was when I was a bulimic, and that’s just sad for me.

I have finally found a doctor who felt that I would benefit from bariatric surgery and I’ve already decided, pending all approvals, that I will have the gastric sleeve surgery. I’m going to my 2nd nutritionist appointment in a couple of weeks. My fiancé is accepting of my decision and respects that I don’t want my parents to know.

However, with all this said, I feel like I’m hiding or lying to them. I have hypertension and I get very snippy with them when they bring up my health because I KNOW that I’m working towards gaining a strong tool to help me lose weight; but they think I just eat too much or don’t exercise enough. I’m an adult, but I do want my family to know in case something were to happen to me, or if something happens post-op... but I truly, honestly, down to my core don’t feel like they will accept it, try to talk me out of it, harp on it, judge me, be upset with me, feel I didn’t try hard enough (and then point out specifics), and so on. I come from a family of naturally thin people and I’m really the only one with a weight problem... I don’t want to lie to them or avoid them post-op either...

so after all this: has anyone had any experience or luck with this type of thing? Any support that has helped you through a situation like this? Sorry for the long post; I think I just needed to get that all off my chest too :)

Edited by ZGal

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I don’t want to tell my parents about my surgery. I have battled with my weight since middle school. My parents had me in weight watchers at the age of 12, had me stand on the scale if they thought I was gaining weight, and do, earnestly, worry about my health. The only time I was successful with weight loss was when I was a bulimic, and that’s just sad for me.
I have finally found a doctor who felt that I would benefit from bariatric surgery and I’ve already decided, pending all approvals, that I will have the gastric sleeve surgery. I’m going to my 2nd nutritionist appointment in a couple of weeks. My fiancé is accepting of my decision and respects that I don’t want my parents to know.
However, with all this said, I feel like I’m hiding or lying to them. I have hypertension and I get very snippy with them when they bring up my health because I KNOW that I’m working towards gaining a strong tool to help me lose weight; but they think I just eat too much or don’t exercise enough. I’m an adult, but I do want my family to know in case something were to happen to me, or if something happens post-op... but I truly, honestly, down to my core don’t feel like they will accept it, try to talk me out of it, harp on it, judge me, be upset with me, feel I didn’t try hard enough (and then point out specifics), and so on. I come from a family of naturally thin people and I’m really the only one with a weight problem... I don’t want to lie to them or avoid them post-op either...
so after all this: has anyone had any experience or luck with this type of thing? Any support that has helped you through a situation like this? Sorry for the long post; I think I just needed to get that all off my chest too [emoji4]


I didn't tell me mother for a whole year post-op. Do what you need to do for. Your not obligated to tell them.

Interestingly though, when I told my mom, she got a sleeve about 6 months later. [emoji57]

HW: 265 lbs
SW: 255 lbs June 2017
CW: 128 lbs

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I haven't told my family about surgery, instead I told them about the post op lifestyle changes like that I stopped eating bread, Pasta, grains (true) ,I eat keto style to lose weight (true when it was happening), I exercise and joined a gym (true), I walk everywhere I can (true)

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I have a 4 people in my life that know I had surgery. And my BF and I decided not to tell his parents because like yours they are very thin by nature and don't believe in surgery thinking it's the lazy way out. When the holidays roll around and I'm forced to be with them, I'll do exactly as @GreenTealael stated. They already know that my BF and I started our Keto lifestyle at the beginning of the year and my weightloss was much slower than his. So, hopefully it won't stir up any questions.

As Charlie75 stated; you need to do what's right for you. This is your journey, not theirs.

My only words of advise to you are: be prepared, while we all want the surgery to be a miracle thing and pop out of the hospital at / near our goal weight, that's not reality. Follow the forums, research as much as possible because there will be tough times ahead post surgery too with stalls, not feeling 100%, having doubts or regrets, etc. But remember it's all a part of the process and you need to trust it. In the long run, you will be much happier and healthier.

Good luck to you, remember you have an entire web of support at your fingertips.

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Thank you! I appreciate (and need to hear!) the advise! I know how important it is to have a support system ❤️

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Rough early on in your life. Hope things go well for you now! Keep smiling, it always makes you look prettier!

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I understand where you're coming from, all I can tell you is that it's a very personal thing. I haven't told anyone about my surgery, it's just too personal for me, except for my husband. And if there was anyway that I could've done it without telling him, I would've.

For me, it stems from my embarassment with all of my weight troubles. I've had issues since high school and it's the one thing in my life that I'm very ashamed of. No matter what diet I've done, none of them ever worked. Maybe in the short term, but never for the long haul. And through all of these attempts my family and friends were aware. My thought was that it would help to keep me on track, but it never did. And instead, I always ended up looking like a failure (at least in my eyes). So this time.... this time, it's me and my husband only who are aware of it. Down the road, maybe, I'll tell my kids and family, but maybe I won't.

Do what you feel is right, don't add any stress to the situation.

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On ‎9‎/‎25‎/‎2018 at 10:44 PM, ZGal said:

I don’t want to tell my parents about my surgery. I have battled with my weight since middle school. My parents had me in weight watchers at the age of 12, had me stand on the scale if they thought I was gaining weight, and do, earnestly, worry about my health. The only time I was successful with weight loss was when I was a bulimic, and that’s just sad for me.

I have finally found a doctor who felt that I would benefit from bariatric surgery and I’ve already decided, pending all approvals, that I will have the gastric sleeve surgery. I’m going to my 2nd nutritionist appointment in a couple of weeks. My fiancé is accepting of my decision and respects that I don’t want my parents to know.

However, with all this said, I feel like I’m hiding or lying to them. I have hypertension and I get very snippy with them when they bring up my health because I KNOW that I’m working towards gaining a strong tool to help me lose weight; but they think I just eat too much or don’t exercise enough. I’m an adult, but I do want my family to know in case something were to happen to me, or if something happens post-op... but I truly, honestly, down to my core don’t feel like they will accept it, try to talk me out of it, harp on it, judge me, be upset with me, feel I didn’t try hard enough (and then point out specifics), and so on. I come from a family of naturally thin people and I’m really the only one with a weight problem... I don’t want to lie to them or avoid them post-op either...

so after all this: has anyone had any experience or luck with this type of thing? Any support that has helped you through a situation like this? Sorry for the long post; I think I just needed to get that all off my chest too :)

I can relate so much to this! My mom....she had my sister and I on every diet possible growing up. Weight watchers. HerbaLife....so many more and would just be so rude about anything we ate or drank. I struggled with telling my mom due to us not having the best relationship but I ended up telling her because I didn't want to lie, and I didn't want it to be awkward because the holiday season is around the corner... I'm getting sleeved end of October ya know. So I just told myself your an adult, you want to start this new look on life, tell her and if she's negative AT ALL tell her you can't listen to it and go on with your day. And I did. I told her. And she surprisingly was supportive and asks about it all the time now. But it was so nerve racking to build up to tell her.

I wish you the best. Though we are adults we hold our parents on this level that makes us go back to thinking like a child or pre teen (well at least I do anyways lol). If you tell them GO YOU!!!! If you don't....GO YOU!!! Because either way its your life and you know what's best and what you need to do to be successful. You got this!!!! :780_sparkling_heart:

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Don't tell them if you're uncomfortable doing so. Your body, your choice.

I'm handling it differently with different groups of people.

My spouse has known since it first crossed my mind, and he's been a million percent supportive and would have been a million percent supportive if I backed out of doing it, too. "Whatever your play is, I'll back it." He's so good. 😍

My brother knows. His wife had it done a few weeks before I did, after having lap-bad years ago. He's starting the process, soon, too.

I waited until after surgery to tell my mother, and when I told her that I had it done, I said "I didn't tell you beforehand because I didn't want you to worry." She took it pretty well, and she's being pretty supportive. There have been a couple of semi-snide comments ("if my insurance covered it, I'd have done it the fast way, too, but I'm stuck with the slow way" (uh, she doesn't know my insurance didn't cover it)), but those are on the mild side of what I've heard from her in the past, honestly.

I've told four friends, and there are a couple of others I just haven't seen since surgery that I'll probably tell, too. There's no real reason for the others to know, and most aren't rude enough to ask.

People at work know I had a surgery and that I don't want to talk about the details. I'm honestly really just hoping to change jobs before the weight loss is noticeable, but if it doesn't work out that way, I'm maybe going to say "it's a common side effect of the surgery I had done in the fall, but my doctors aren't worried about it, yet." (Which will be really unexpected and uncomfortable if they're congratulating me on weight loss, but I'm always in favor of shutting down people's commentary on other people's bodies, anyway.)

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Months before bariatric surgery, I started making diet & lifestyle changes, such as NO sugar, artificial sweeteners, Desserts, processed food, carbonated/caffeinated/alcoholic beverages, smaller portion sizes, no drinking during meals, and minimal bread or rice. This allowed me to lose 30 lbs pre-op. I did not tell my family, colleagues, or friends (except for 1) about my gastric bypass surgery. No one noticed anything different after surgery as I had already been losing weight and was eating less in their presence. This allowed me to focus on myself and not have to deal with negative comments, energy, or misinformation. It worked well for me. YMMV

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Thank you all for your advice and kind words! It is so comforting to not feel so alone in this ❤️

Edited by ZGal

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I am 52 and I didn’t tell my mother until the morning of my surgery. I almost didn’t tell her at all, but figured just in case “something bad” happened that she should know. She surprised me and was supportive. 👍

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I have a very similar relationship with my parents regarding my weight. There are home videos of me as a smiley 3 year old in which they make that smile disappear real fast by making comments about how big my tummy is and how it's something I have to work on...and it only continued on a similar track from there.

I accidentally told my parents about my surgery a few months before hand because I wrote a text to my husband saying "I kind of want to tell my mom about surgery" and somehow mistakenly sent it to my dad instead. Once they knew/as part of the phone call follow up to the text, I set VERY clear limits on any discussions about the surgery. I told them that I was sharing this information with them now but it was NOT an invitation to discuss it, and that they were under NO CIRCUMSTANCES to initiate any talk about it/reference to it/etc. etc. I'm amazed by how well they actually were able to stick to those parameters. My mom actually ended up coming out to be with me/take care of things after surgery so my husband didn't need to take time off work to be home to help me out.

After surgery I sent them and my sisters guidelines again. I can find the email and share it here if that'd be useful. The gist of it is that no one talks about my appearance/weight loss/surgery/etc. unless I bring it up first. They needed some reminders every once in a while but it's helped me a lot to set those groundrules with them. I needed that because the history with my parents and sisters is SO fraught when it comes to weight.

Don't tell them because you feel guilty, just tell them because you want them to know. If you don't think they can stick to ground rules you set then it might make more sense not to share with them. Best of luck in making your decision about what to share/when/with whom!

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Here's the email I sent with the subject line "Ground Rules (so far)". I sent this email to my sisters and parents about a week and a half after surgery. My family lives far away (I'm in MN, they're in NYC, New Orleans, and Oakland) which is part of why I approached it in email.

So these will, I’m sure, be ever evolving, but just a few quick things that have occurred to me so far:

- NO commenting on my weight loss unless I initiate. I reserve the right to be prickly about it - it’s a complex thing and if you haven’t read the Roxane gay article yet then do and I’ll keep bringing it up over and over. I will at times send you things like “wow look at the difference” or “wow this fits”. You may respond to these in a celebratory whatever way, but under no circumstances are you to initiate such discussions.

- NO “I’m so proud of you” or “you’re a hero” or “you deserve it” or “just think about how amazing it’ll be to be ____”. It annoys me and mildly pisses me off for a variety of reasons ranging from highly legitimate to petty but still there.

- NO “oh I’ll have liquids only in solidarity” or asking for dieting advice. I’d love to talk about cooking and food and nice meals or whatever, but my thing is bound to be enormously different from what you are doing/needing/trying and I don’t want to be treated like guru or whatever, don’t want to have to advise. Again, I may initiate this but you don’t get to. Sorry!

-FEEL FREE to ask me how I’m doing generally and check in and stuff, just keep it general and not too pointedly about weight loss.

That’s what I’ve got for now. THX!

Edited by AEdoesRnY
adding link to Roxane Gay article

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This is all so interesting to me! I literally will tell anyone - strangers at the grocery store, my staff at work, the dogs. I literally could NOT care less about anyone else's opinion of what I'm doing!

My mother and spouse are NOT supportive and I STILL don't give a schitt! I know what I need to do for myself and I'm going for it.

I figure, you can either support me, or not, your choice. But you can also buzz off going forward!! 🙂

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