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Well inside I felt like I was maybe 250 even when I was 365 and shocked when I saw my reflection. in the department store' s front windows. Now that I am actually 220, I have trouble reconciling my actual image with my inner beast. And I look so different I hardly recognize ME. I told in another posting " Who is that in the mirror? it looks like a bunch of dead relatives but I certainly isn't ME! Maybe that person is gone forever, do I have the intestinal strength to complete this or solve this mystery?

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13 hours ago, Frustr8 said:

Well inside I felt like I was maybe 250 even when I was 365 and shocked when I saw my reflection. in the department store' s front windows. Now that I am actually 220, I have trouble reconciling my actual image with my inner beast. And I look so different I hardly recognize ME. I told in another posting " Who is that in the mirror? it looks like a bunch of dead relatives but I certainly isn't ME! Maybe that person is gone forever, do I have the intestinal strength to complete this or solve this mystery?

Its definitely rough. I'm not sure if I'll ever see myself at a lower weight as I lose it, but I'm sure I'll never regret it and that keeps me going

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On 5/7/2019 at 3:03 PM, Lochnessamber said:

Hi, I'm the Loch Ness Amber, and I have trouble perceiving my body as it is. (I have NOT been diagnosed with body dysmorphia.)

Pre-op, at my largest, I felt smaller than I really was. The concept of how big I truly was didnt seem right and needed to be proved with photos I didnt take myself. Post-op, I now feel larger than I really am, and it's what i see in the mirror.

I believe my perception of myself beforehand was contributing to my gain. My perception afterward doesnt seem to affect me other than a vague frustration. I'm wondering how common this is, and if anyone knows why this cognitive dissonance with our bodies even exists.

I'd also like to know if it resolves in time, or if I will forever perceive myself as "3-4x" whenever asked my clothing size.

This is so real. On both ends. When I was big, I really didn't have an understanding of HOW big. 370 at 5 foot 9 is big. Now that I'm down to 185... I don't feel as small as I am. I went from a 52-54 pant to a 34. I went from 5xl shirts to a L. I look at my pants and stuff now and I'm like... PFFT those are too small. Yet, they fit just right. I've been told by a coworker that I give myself more room than I need to, like we were removing a monitor from a wall mount, there is a table in front it it with equipment, I leaned over the table and equipment to get to the mount, I was told that I was standing like 6 inches away from the table. I thought I was right on it.

I had a time where I was in the gym, doing my own thing, headphones in etc. I saw someone walking towards me in the mirrors so I stepped to the side to avoid them.... it was me in the mirror I saw. It took me a few moments to fully realize what just happened. I saw someone that I did not recognize and I moved to allow them to pass... but that person that I didn't know. Was me.

I'm told it gets better with time. My surgery was March 27th of 2018, I've been in the 180's since March 27th of 2019. So, yes it seems it's common. It's quite weird to experience.

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I totally agree, I 'fooled' myself for a long time and then did everything I could to avoid social engagements and now I look in the mirror and don't see what my wife and family are telling me, I still see the same 'big' me. However my wife was nice enough to prove to me what she was saying by wrapping her arms completely around me and touching he own hands together. Then I did an experiment and went into the closet and tried on my clothes that fit 'big' me and had to laugh when the pants fell off, even though they were buttoned. The struggle with how we perceive ourselves is real, but I think I will continue to use NSVs to remind myself that this is working.

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My mom and I were just talking about this, she was sleeved two months before I was. I never felt heavy at my heaviest and I think it was because even at 284lbs I could stand for 8 hours for work and my body wasn't in pain but a friend of mine was around my weight and couldn't stand for more then 30 minutes before she had pains. But now we are both the lightest we've been in years and we don't feel it. I can tell in my chest and face that I've lost the weight but I feel like my stomach is bigger then ever and she feels the same about herself. I've worn leggings for years, I finally wore jean shorts the other day and couldn't figure out what my size was because it had been so long but of course I grabbed the bigger sizes thinking that was what I needed when really I wasn't even close! I very much feel like body dysmorphia is a thing for people who have had the surgery (it might not be something everyone sees but I hear it more often then not) I started trying more with my appearance, I get up early now and do my makeup and wear things other then a pair of leggings and a graphic t-shirt. I also shaved my head recently in a I NEED CHANGE AND I NEED IT NOW moment but everyone around me is LOVING IT which I didn't expect. I feel like the days I really try I don't feel the dysmorphia as much.

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Everyone here has really added to this discussion! I'm happy to read everyone's stories. It shows we're not alone in this, not by far.

I have kept my largest clothes and decided to wear them all weekend. It's been very helpful for my self perception currently. I was able to look in the mirror earlier this afternoon and visually see the change in myself even when I was naked. It's awesome, but it was so weird because to my mind it looks like I dropped the weight overnight.

I'm sure it's a struggle that will ebb and flow over time. I'll probably need to repeat exercises like this every once in a while to refresh my perception. Does anyone else do things like this?

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I also never thought I was as big as the scale said but I was really big. One day I looked in the mirror and got disgusted with myself. I’ve lost 78 lbs since my highest weight, 20
Of which post op. I can see the difference in my body and clothes. I definitely agree with you that my body dysmorphia contributed to me being in denial about how big I actually was.

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Hi! I'm really glad I found this thread. Reading some of what you have to say makes me feel so much better in that I am not alone in what I am feeling. At my highest (probably around 250, although my official start weight was 238), I never felt "big". However, now I feel huge. I currently weight about 127, and although I wear a size 0/2, I still feel like I have another 20/30 lbs to lose, although that is certainly not the case. I'm about 5'3 for reference. I've talked with my surgeon about my case and he referred me to a specialist that I will be meeting with (hopefully) soon. It's a very weird emotion to describe because although I know in my head that I am no longer fat, something in my heart says that I will always be fat. I've tried explaining this emotion to my best friend but it seems as though people outside the bariatric world do not understand.

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11 hours ago, AshleyS said:

Hi! I'm really glad I found this thread. Reading some of what you have to say makes me feel so much better in that I am not alone in what I am feeling. At my highest (probably around 250, although my official start weight was 238), I never felt "big". However, now I feel huge. I currently weight about 127, and although I wear a size 0/2, I still feel like I have another 20/30 lbs to lose, although that is certainly not the case. I'm about 5'3 for reference. I've talked with my surgeon about my case and he referred me to a specialist that I will be meeting with (hopefully) soon. It's a very weird emotion to describe because although I know in my head that I am no longer fat, something in my heart says that I will always be fat. I've tried explaining this emotion to my best friend but it seems as though people outside the bariatric world do not understand.

I didnt even think to bring it up with my therapist, who specializes in trauma and building ADHD skills. I wonder how a specialist would handle it. If it's not any trouble, I'd appreciate knowing how that turns out.

I'm happy for you, btw. :P

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Ashley S, is it that like firmer Drug or Alcohol Addicts, we will always be Recovering Obese people? No matter what the outside people may see, we will always still know, there but for the Grace of God, go I! And there's my free analysis for Monday Morning.😛❤😛

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Loving this thread so far and I’ve enjoyed reading everyone’s answers.

I can completely relate to body dysmorphia. I had always run from cameras and on the rare occasions where I had no option but to be in pictures, I was horrified at how large I looked.
I too would look at people that I just knew were “bigger” than me only to discover I weighed more and wore a bigger clothes size.

Lol, one day I was seeing plus size models in an ad and realized they were wearing clothes THREE SIZES smaller than my current size.

Now that I’m approximately halfway to my goal weight, I’m seeing myself as the size I kinda thought I always was in my brain, so I don’t know what to think about that.
I still feel as if current pictures of me are “larger” than how I feel inside, but I’m still 50-ish pounds away from goal weight so hopefully someday I actually look as small as I feel.

My all-time high weight was 272 a few years ago. When I started pre-surgery stuff I was 259 and I’m currently 195 after being sleeved February 6th this year.
I’m 5’7” and have a goal weight of between 140-145.
Started off as a size 22 and now can fit into size 16s.

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21 minutes ago, Sheribear68 said:

I too would look at people that I just knew were “bigger” than me only to discover I weighed more and wore a bigger clothes size.

Lol, one day I was seeing plus size models in an ad and realized they were wearing clothes THREE SIZES smaller than my current size.

Dude, this one popular plus size model I really loved to bag on. I had so much junk to talk about her size and how delusional she was she could be healthy like that. I did the same thing comparing myself to people on the street! Now its embarrassing. I can totally see that I was about the same size, just a bit bigger, and I wonder where all my compassion went.

On the flip side, I went out to a dinner party and gave myself waaaaay more room than I needed in the booth out of habit/perception. I eventually was like, oh, I'm sorry guys, I can actually scoot over more.

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Same here - bigger problem for me now, though. A couple of weeks ago was getting ready to go to a function with my husband and I saw a dress hanging on my bedroom door through the mirror on my dresser as I was doing my makeup. And my first thought was - gosh, that's a small dress, I wonder whose it is. Then I realized it was mine. I mean I knew it was mine - I had purchased it. But I don't see myself as the size 6-8 that I am now. I still see the size 24 in some ways when I look in the mirror.

It's been almost 3 years since my surgery. Hoping I come to grips with this soon.

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I’m hard on myself for no reason. I’m 4 1/2 months since surgery and have lost 47 lbs. I need/want to lose at least 60 more. I’m discontent with how much weight. So many people have lost so much more by this time. I’m where my dr said I would be, however.
So last night my sweet husband took me outside and gave me a 40 lb bag of salt and told me to pick it up. Well I really couldn’t. Then he reassured me that bag was less weight than I’d lost and to think I was carrying that much around.
Sometimes we need help adjusting our vision!

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3 minutes ago, sisternewt@yahoo.com said:

So last night my sweet husband took me outside and gave me a 40 lb bag of salt and told me to pick it up. Well I really couldn’t. Then he reassured me that bag was less weight than I’d lost and to think I was carrying that much around.
Sometimes we need help adjusting our vision!

That is so touching! I'm glad you have such wonderful support.

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