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Lifelong dieter - I've tried it all, spent all the money... Lost some, gained more - you know the drill.
I'm considering the Gastric Sleeve and currently jumping through the hoops for insurance and all the doctors.

Some topics that keep rolling through my head :
- Is Weight Loss Surgery just a medically approved way into disordered eating?
- How much of this is health based vs. fat phobia?
- I'm really struggling to reconcile what is truth and what is fat-panic. Has anyone else had these thoughts?
- I've only told a few people in my life I'm considering surgery. I want to get really smart about it before I roll out a plan to friends and family. Any hot tips would be great!


Looking to speak with some women who've done WLS who started with 200+ lbs to lose

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I'm still pre-op, but my surgery is Tuesday - so maybe I will magically come up with better answers after. Just based off of what I know and think now though, I can try and answer some of your questions.

1. Weight loss surgery has been described to me as a "tool" - Just as a diet is a tool, it's all about how you use it. Sometimes certain tools are not meant for certain jobs. You can't use a philips on a flat head screw. So think of weight loss surgery as a tool to help you lose weight. You have to still do the work, it just helps you along. Once you have the surgery, it's not over. It's just beginning. You will still have to overcome the food addictions, binging, or "cravings". Many people (myself included) have struggled with the psychology behind it. It's tough, and that's why pretty much everyone has to go through a psych eval to figure out if they are ready for such a huge commitment. Even then, there's no telling. If you are still unsure, I'd recommend a bariatric psychiatrist. I see one.

2. If you are doing this surgery because you are scared or have a "phobia" of weight, then I personally don't think you will succeed. You have to go into a mindset of "I'm doing this to better myself, one way or another". I first told myself, "I can't wait to no longer be fat!" now I try to tell myself, "I can't wait to be healthy". It's crazy how you change verbage and change your thought process.

3. Again, you have to think of this as a journey to wellness and wholeness. Not as a way to escape from being overweight or "fat". You are still a human being right now, with all the worth in the world. Being skinny, doesn't change that. Come to the realization that you are a whole person, right in this given moment.

4. I initially only told close family. Not even friends. I was ashamed because there is still a stigma attached to the surgery. Over time, I finally "came out" to my friends and even strangers! I was proud of the decision to get healthy and I didn't mind sharing it with the world. The only people who would have a problem with it, are probably not the people you want to support you anyways. I don't go to the mountain tops to scream it, but when I tell people that I'm having surgery, I have no problem filling them in when they ask, "Oh what kind?"

If you have any more questions, you are more than welcome to message me directly and I can try and provide some guidance and reassurance! You deserve to feel confident about your decision. Good luck! 👍

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I had surgery 2 weeks ago. Before I even considered the surgery, my PCP mentioned it to me. I then began a 6 month journey preparing for the surgery. I was very lucky, because the hospital I went through (Brigham & Women's in Boston) has an excellent process. I had 2 meetings with the nutritionists in a group, and 3 one on ones. I had an hour long interview with a psychologist who specializes in bariatric surgery. I met with my surgeon 3 times. B & W has a whole lot of on-line resources.

I also did my own research. I read all the medical information on the success rate of sleeve v. bypass, side effects, etc.

I did a lot of research on what my eating would look like after the surgery. I encourage you to, also. While the amount of food and calories you eat during the phase when you are losing the weight very rapidly is an extremely low number, once you transition to maintenance you will eat more calories, which will also take into account your activity level. You will work closely with a nutritionist to find the right way to eat in maintenance. It is not "medically approved disordered eating", in fact it is the way healthy weight people eat naturally.

I did this for my health, but I am not dishonest enough to suggest I don't also look forward to being thinner. I am 61, married for over 35 years in November, and a well established professional woman in my community, so I am pretty comfortable in my own skin, but not feeling uncomfortable sitting in a booth or in an airplane seat, or just being able to shop in non-plus size sections are things I look forward to. I don't think, however, that I came to this decision based upon fat phobia. If you are asking if the medical community offers this surgery as a result of fat phobia the answer is "no". Most people on here have one or more co-morbidities, including diabetes, high blood pressure, etc. I have avoided those, but I have pretty arthritic knees, and the extra weight keeps me from being able to walk any distance or enjoy the things I want to. You are undoubtedly aware of the health risks of morbid obesity, which are absolutely based in science. You don't see a lot of 300 pounds 80 year olds.

I want to echo everything @TheAngryMeow said, above, about this being a tool, on a journey. There are lots of support groups for bariatric surgery patients, and that may be a good place for you to start. This is the opposite of easy, it is quite difficult. I am hoping and I believe it will be worth it in the long run, as I want to enjoy my future grandchildren and get to travel with my husband as we approach and get into our retirement years.

I took a very different approach to telling people about this; I have been transparent and honest with mostly everyone, except for people who I only know professionally, I have merely told them I was taking a short medical leave. If they were rude or bold enough to ask, I told them. But everyone in my office knows, my friends and family, my neighbors, and many people who I consider friendly acquaintances. I decided I am treating a disease, obesity. I felt and feel uncomfortable at times about this, but only one person (my SIL) gave me much pushback. Most people seemed genuinely interested and wished me the best of luck; some people complimented me on taking this step to be healthy. The more often I tell people the less uncomfortable I feel. I did not want to have people think I was dying when they see me after a mysterious "medical leave". And, it has been my experience that lying, even through omission, has never been a healthy decision for me. But everyone should make their own decisions about their medical care, including how much to share with others, and what other should have information shared with them.

Good luck to you!

However, I don't think

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@MarigoldSky

Is Weight Loss Surgery just a medically approved way into disordered eating?

For me, Obesity has been disordered eating. Working with my bariatric team and dietitian has been eye opening. I have a much better relationship with food. A psychological exam is a part of the screening process for bariatirc surgery. Some may be denied surgery until eating disorders are addressed/resolved.

How much of this is health based vs. fat phobia? I'm really struggling to reconcile what is truth and what is fat-panic. Has anyone else had these thoughts?

I guess it depends on your definition of fat phobia and fat panic. Do you base major medical decisions on appearance or what is socially acceptable? Obesity is a treatable disease. The truth is, I care about my health and being around for my family.

I'm five years out from surgery. maintaining weight int he 130's and I'm in the best shape/health of my life. Unfortunately, It took a major health crisis for me to admit my weight was slowly killing me. Weight loss has resolved my health issues. I am off many medications, My A1C is in the non diabetic range, I no longer use a CPAP machine, My mobility and quality of life is improved.

I've only told a few people in my life I'm considering surgery. I want to get really smart about it before I roll out a plan to friends and family. Any hot tips would be great!

Research and decide if this is a good choice for you. Offer friends/family to join you at bariatric appointments/local support group for facts and information. Keep people that are supportive close to you.

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I lost over 200 lbs...

WLS won't cure disordered eating - it resets your metabolism making it less difficult to lose weight, and it limits what you can eat at one sitting. You can get around any surgery and gain the weight back by not following the surgeon's plan and grazing (i.e., snacking mindlessly - outside of planned meals and snacks). For truly disordered eating, you may need to enlist the help of a therapist.

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11 hours ago, MarigoldSky said:

Some topics that keep rolling through my head :
- Is Weight Loss Surgery just a medically approved way into disordered eating?
- How much of this is health based vs. fat phobia?
- I'm really struggling to reconcile what is truth and what is fat-panic. Has anyone else had these thoughts?
- I've only told a few people in my life I'm considering surgery. I want to get really smart about it before I roll out a plan to friends and family. Any hot tips would be great!

First of all use a bigger font us blind old guys can not see it

1. No it is a tool to help you control volume, You have to get your head and mental eating disorder in line, The surgeon gives you the tool and you run the workshop

2. 100 health based, It is only part of the journey and it works look to the bottom left 5m plus lost pounds

3. STOP GOOGLING - i can say this site is 99 percent actual facts - if you follow the guidlines and the journey it works just look at my stats and others

4. This is your decision and screw family and friends - search that topic here - You decide if you want live longer, see your grandkids, be on this earth longer OR die a short life due to obese diseases, be miserable and end up in a URN. If you chose choice two here is a link. You most likely will need to order two

https://www.amazon.com/Cremation-Adults-200lbs-Funeral-Burial/dp/B079121D45/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?crid=2K3RR7PZZWTE5&keywords=urns+for+human+ashes&qid=1582548598&sprefix=urn%2Caps%2C173&sr=8-1-spons&psc=1&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUFLRkkzUDhOTUhEN1YmZW5jcnlwdGVkSWQ9QTA0MTc3ODQyVlBUUjBNSlFRM05EJmVuY3J5cHRlZEFkSWQ9QTA1ODAzNDIzVzJDRFVSNkQ1R1YxJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfYXRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==

Now you do not know me but i am a straight on tell it like it is! Do not take offense to anything above i am trying to make a point. Only you know if you are on the wrong path and only you can do this journey, we all have been in your shoes and we all have hit many speed bumps, But the success rate of WLS is clearly on this site and take advantage of all the experience and information here.

Have a great day

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14 minutes ago, AJ Tylo said:

4. This is your decision and screw family and friends - search that topic here - You decide if you want live longer, see your grandkids, be on this earth longer OR die a short life due to obese diseases, be miserable and end up in a URN. If you chose choice two here is a link. You most likely will need to order two

https://www.amazon.com/Cremation-Adults-200lbs-Funeral-Burial/dp/B079121D45/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?crid=2K3RR7PZZWTE5&keywords=urns+for+human+ashes&qid=1582548598&sprefix=urn%2Caps%2C173&sr=8-1-spons&psc=1&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUFLRkkzUDhOTUhEN1YmZW5jcnlwdGVkSWQ9QTA0MTc3ODQyVlBUUjBNSlFRM05EJmVuY3J5cHRlZEFkSWQ9QTA1ODAzNDIzVzJDRFVSNkQ1R1YxJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfYXRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==

LOL! (not a laughing matter - just laughing because here I thought I was the only person who worried about this when I weighed almost 400 lbs - how they were going to deal with my body when I kicked the bucket. I was afraid they'd have to search for some crematory miles away because mine wouldn't fit into a standard one - and I'd have to have two urns for all those ashes! I have no desire to be buried, but if I did, then there would be the matter of finding a burial plot big enough - or buying two. And then there's be finding a super-sized casket. I'm glad I don't have to worry about any of this anymore!)

Edited by catwoman7

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11 hours ago, MarigoldSky said:

Lifelong dieter - I've tried it all, spent all the money... Lost some, gained more - you know the drill.
I'm considering the Gastric Sleeve and currently jumping through the hoops for insurance and all the doctors.

Some topics that keep rolling through my head :
- Is Weight Loss Surgery just a medically approved way into disordered eating?
- How much of this is health based vs. fat phobia?
- I'm really struggling to reconcile what is truth and what is fat-panic. Has anyone else had these thoughts?
- I've only told a few people in my life I'm considering surgery. I want to get really smart about it before I roll out a plan to friends and family. Any hot tips would be great!


Looking to speak with some women who've done WLS who started with 200+ lbs to lose

My starting weight was 382.

I struggled with the decision to have the surgery because I will tell you that it does not fix the reasons why you eat. That is the hardest part. I went through a period after surgery of grieving for the things that I can no longer eat and not being able to turn to food to fix what I am feeling at any given time. My eating was already disordered and unhealthy, and the surgery only makes it harder to continue those disordered behaviors.

As a 46 year-old female, I convinced myself that I did not care about the fat shaming and what other people thought, but I was lying to myself. WLS surgery is a very personal choice and a journey that even with all the help and support, you will ultimately walk alone. Sure, it helps when my friends and family triumph my successes, but they do not share the daily struggles of the experience. I am only 3 months post-op and the only hot tip I can give you is if/when you make the decision to move forward, you write down the reasons why. You will need to remind yourself why you started and motivate yourself to keep going.

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7 hours ago, catwoman7 said:

LOL! (not a laughing matter - just laughing because here I thought I was the only person who worried about this when I weighed almost 400 lbs - how they were going to deal with my body when I kicked the bucket. I was afraid they'd have to search for some crematory miles away because mine wouldn't fit into a standard one - and I'd have to have two urns for all those ashes! I have no desire to be buried, but if I did, then there would be the matter of finding a burial plot big enough - or buying two. And then there's be finding a super-sized casket. I'm glad I don't have to worry about any of this anymore!)

FOR REAL - I saw What's Eating Gilbert Grape in my youth and I never let that house fire leave my mind. Its one of the reasons I moved out of the rural California.

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@TheAngryMeow @lisafrommassachusetts @Healthy_life2 @catwoman7 @AJ Tylo @epicdreams2020

Thank you all for your thoughtful responses! I appreciate your time and details you've shared. I feel like my post was a bit scatterbrained, but thats kind of where I am in all of this. I'm full of questions and jumped in the deep end.

I've been reading a lot of YrFatFriend and Health at Every Size and Intuitive Eating articles. I feel like there is a lot of sanity there regarding body image, inclusivity, food and eating, etc. And I'm struggling with the permanence of surgery and commitment of "the rest of your life."

Trust, my therapist and I have been working on these questions, so I do have that going for me. Food and eating are so deeply ingrained in family and relationships, its scary and unsettling to uproot and alter these behaviors. Which is part of why I want to get clarity and feel really smart about surgery before I tell them all.

Again, thank you all for your kindness. You guys are great.

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