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I'm in the beginning process of my bariatric journey, had my information session a few weeks ago and my big appointment with the surgeon, nurse, nutritionist, etc. is coming up in 3 weeks. So excited! I've been thinking about this health and wellness renewal with bariatric surgery for several years now. I've also been on a journey with my mental health (anxiety & depression) for about 4 years and have made some wonderful progress. I have a good support system of doctors but lately my therapist is making me scratch my head. For those of you on your journey - or that have experience - tell me about your journey with your mental health along with the bariatric surgery process.

What I mean by my therapist is making me scratch my head.....so, for the past several years, my therapist has helped me get to a place where I can work on myself and my relationship with my parents (suffered mental/emotional as well as some physical abuse from parents). I made so much progress in 2 years with this...true healing, feeling so much more confident and content with myself. This progress finally led me to go forward with realizing that I was ready to commit to wanting to help myself and begin my bariatric weight loss journey. So, when I brought this up to my therapist, her reaction was not exactly what I expected. (I've read about people's different reactions so I'm of course trying not to let this bother me and feel like I probably need to either move on or realize that's her opinion, not mine).

Anyway, when I try to discuss my wants/needs regarding my request for help when it comes to emotional eating/overeating/breaking that psychological connection, she's not really wanting to go there with me. She gives me very little help and keeps saying, "maybe you just won't have this surgery"...and suggests calling local weight loss places that focus on holistic methods of weight loss, etc. that cost $$$. She keeps telling me I need to read all of these books on "miracle weight loss", "medicine is bad", etc. ...ok, so....I know if someone is offering you some "magic unrealistic" guarantee if you "buy their program" they will promise you guaranteed weight loss for life....Ok, that's not for me. I've been there, done that, time and time again. You know the story...the diets we've all tried, the books we've all read, the shakes, you name it. I'm pushing 50 years old...been around the block with weight loss, like all of us here and I'm just not buying it. But, I did try to hear her out. What I'm disappointed in is that I feel that this relationship with this therapist is not helpful. I think I probably need to find another avenue of therapy. I know my hospital offers some group therapy, which I plan on doing. I'm grateful for this website and forum for help and support. If anyone has any advice - therapy suggestions, books/podcasts, etc. to work on my mental health with the emotional eating connection - I would be so grateful. I am working hard already at trying to change these things for myself now so I can be successful. Thank you again for your help!!

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My therapist didn’t agree with the surgery either. He thought it was the easy way out. I just told him we would have to agree to disagree cause I was doing it and I don’t really talk much about my weight loss with him. He did call to check on me after my surgery and he asks how I’m doing but when I was looking to talk to someone about boredom eating I went elsewhere.

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It really depends how much you like what your current therapist is doing outside of the weight topic. If you feel like you want her to be in your life, then just don't talk to her about weight loss and use bariatric support groups for that.

If she's turning into one of these preachy, teetering-on-the-edge-of-anti-science types, maybe now's a good time to thank her for what she's done for you and find someone who aligns better with your goals. It is YOUR life and not open to anyone's—not even your therapist's—judgment.

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2 minutes ago, ShoppGirl said:

My therapist didn’t agree with the surgery either. He thought it was the easy way out. I just told him we would have to agree to disagree cause I was doing it and I don’t really talk much about my weight loss with him. He did call to check on me after my surgery and he asks how I’m doing but when I was looking to talk to someone about boredom eating I went elsewhere.

Thank you for sharing. I'm glad you went elsewhere. I think I should do the same.

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2 minutes ago, vikingbeast said:

It really depends how much you like what your current therapist is doing outside of the weight topic. If you feel like you want her to be in your life, then just don't talk to her about weight loss and use bariatric support groups for that.

If she's turning into one of these preachy, teetering-on-the-edge-of-anti-science types, maybe now's a good time to thank her for what she's done for you and find someone who aligns better with your goals. It is YOUR life and not open to anyone's—not even your therapist's—judgment.

Thank you. Amen. Yes....it is exactly that. Being the wife of a scientist, it is hard for me to listen to her preach about the things she's suggesting. Makes me cringe, truly. Thanks for your advice and support.

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See if your bariatric group has a therapist they recommend who works on food addiction issues with folks who have had weight loss surgery. Get someone on the job who is better aligned and more knowledgable about your needs.

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not everyone is well-versed on food issues or bariatric surgeries. If you want to switch therapists, your bariatric clinic may be able to recommend someone - or they may even have someone on staff.

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I have bipolar disorder and PTSD. I saw an amazing therapist for over a decade, technically, he's still my therapist at nearly 15 years now, but he's mostly retired. Whenever I wanted to work on weight issues (before I looked at bariatric surgery, just when I wanted to lose weight) he always referred me to someone else because he just didn't feel like he knew enough about weight issues. That's what a good therapist does... refer out when it's not within their area of expertise.

When I finally did decide I wanted bariatric surgery, I asked my PCP for a referral. She had previously suggested it (and she told me recently that the first time she suggested it I bit her head off!) and was happy to make a referral.

It's hard to stop seeing a therapist who has helped you in one area, so consider whether you've gotten all you can out of the relationship or whether you want to keep seeing her for the areas you've found her helpful in. In either case, I suggest reaching out to your surgery center to find a bariatric qualified therapist. That's what I plan to do!

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That sounds very upsetting and not very professional on the part of your therapist - she's not listening to or respecting you. And she's definitely not very informed about bariatric surgery. Sounds like it might be time to part ways. I know I had to go through a few therapists before I found one who was right. Hopefully you can get someone sorted out.

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Thank you all for your good advice. Getting help for my mental health is so important for me. I plan on talking to my bariatric surgeon and center for a referral for a mental health professional to help me. Thank you again for sharing your stories and suggestions.

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