This one falls under the “Tales from the Hood” category! The title comes from the fact that while some friends and family understand I had Gastric Bypass Surgery (See – Yes, I Still Eat, for another example), I don’t think they really UNDERSTAND.
Digest that for a minute, and then let me explain:
I have come to realize that so many personal relationships center on eating. All types of celebrations, get together or just hanging out revolve around food. When I made the decision to focus on being healthy and work to change my relationship with food, not everyone was on board with my plans! I have come to realize while they may love you and care for you, not everyone can handle the personal changes you choose to make. Some are subtle with it. These people ask the questions:
“You still eat?”
“Why won’t you just TRY this?”
“It shouldn’t hurt to have a little bit.”
Honestly, I know to expect these because they are the ones that showed up whenever I showed any sign of losing weight in the past. Like it or not, they are saboteurs. I don’t know it their motives are selfish or unintentional; I just know they exist and for the most part, I’m good at ignoring them or deflecting the questions. It is almost an art form.
The people I wasn’t prepared for were, for the lack of a better word, “Haters”. By this, I mean the ones who come with:
“I need you to get fat again.”
“You used to like to eat with me all the time.”
“I can’t believe you are acting funny about food.”
“You aren’t going to let yourself get TOO skinny, are you?”
All of these questions stabbed me in the guts. It never occurred to me that some people had a more vested interest in my remaining fat. My feelings were hurt, not so much by the comments but because they came from people I regarded as friends and my support systems. I felt betrayed and for a while, I had to fight the feeling to bury all the hurt and angst in food.
WLS patients are warned in support group some people will not be happy for you but I thought, like so many others, not my friends, not my family. They all love me, they all will be thrilled for me.
I was wrong.
I’m starting to understand so many things. My position in life is changing along with my weight. I am on my way to no longer being “the fat friend”. My self-esteem is starting to return and I’m getting my girlie back. I feel comfortable with myself for the first time in a long time and now I see that not everyone can handle that change. It breaks my heart. I feel like the desperate girlfriend sometimes and I want to cry out “But I thought you loved me!?” I can’t help but wonder if it deliberate or subconscious. Regardless, it feels like my soul has been ripped apart
As I get closer to becoming one with the skinny girl inside, I also have to understand there will be some people I will lose along the journey. I just want to bundle everyone up and hold on to them but I know everyone is in your life for a reason and sometimes you just have to let them go so they can find their own way. My mom and my hubby say to not let it bother me but the pleaser in me is still hanging on to that little girl that wants everyone to like her. I am on the lookout for a therapist because I know eventually these feelings will come to a head and I don’t want to lash out at someone who doesn’t deserve it.