Body dysmorphia...The struggle is real, y'all!

on 6/10/19 7:58 am - TN
VSG on 09/28/15

When I was 376 lbs I never felt like I was that big until I found that I couldn't fit in certain seats, or I would try on clothes that I thought surely would fit me only to find that they were not even close to fitting. I only ever realized how big I was until I would look at pictures of myself.

As I lost I took monthly pictures in front of the same doorway facing forward and facing to the side so that I had a visual to see that I was changing because I could not see it in the mirror. I am getting close to 4 years out at this point, have lost over 220 pounds, and am below the doctors goal for me and there are still days that I have a hard time seeing any change in me when I look down. I see the extra skin and to me it makes me feel like I did when it was rolls of fat. I still have to look at pictures of me on some days to see any change and to know that I am now an 8/10 and not a 26/28 size anymore. During the losing phase the photos really helped and even though I don't do the monthly pictures since I have been done losing, the current occasional picture helps me to keep things in perspective.

Had VSG on 9/28/15

Lost 161 lbs since surgery, LOST 221 lbs overall so far!!

on 6/10/19 8:59 am
RNY on 06/03/15

I did the exact same thing - every month on the 3rd (my surgery date!****il I hit maintenance. I am SO glad I have them all!!!

on 6/10/19 10:47 am

Wow, you look so amazing! I wish that I had taken monthly photos. I was searching the boards this weekend after posting and I saw something about the door idea, so I had my husband take a photo there. Better late than never!

Highest weight: 350, Surgery weight: 317

VSG: 1/9/19

No longer obese goal: 185, Healthy weight goal: 150

Weight loss per month: 1=22, 2=12, 3=9.5, 4=11.5, 5=8, 6=9

on 6/10/19 9:23 am
VSG on 05/23/18

I feel the same. Prior to surgery I always thought I'm not that big, until I saw photos and trust me, I was not in many photos. The ones I saw I would always say they were taken from the wrong angle. I have lost over 70 lbs and wear smaller clothes but don't feel like I look much different. BUT yesterday I was in a 5 k race, I could not have done that a year ago. Focus on the positives!

on 6/10/19 10:59 am

Thanks so much to you all for posting! It helped tremendously to know that I am not the only one who feels this way. I think I am extremely watchful/paranoid about developing an eating disorder since I had some disordered eating (the other way) when I was young. That is one reason that I was concerned until I saw this is not an uncommon problem.

I cannot say that I had a skewed sense of my body before. If anything, I thought I was even bigger than I was. If I watched "My 600 lb life", I would look at a person after they had lost some and think I was bigger than them. I would then be surprised when they weighed and I weighed less.

I ended up taking a lot of photos this weekend and at first I still did not feel any better, probably because I was wearing a huge shirt in the before and after. However, I ended up finding a photo from around when I started seeing a dietitian over five years ago when I was close to my highest weight. When I did a side by side of that photo and one in similar clothes (tank and jeans), I was so relieved that I could see at least some difference.

Best of all, I got some bloodwork back this weekend and my triglycerides went from over 200 to 120! My A1C went from 5.7 on meds to 5.6 off of meds. I really did the surgery more for health than appearance, so I am super happy about that change, and will try to focus more on that than appearance going forward.

Highest weight: 350, Surgery weight: 317

VSG: 1/9/19

No longer obese goal: 185, Healthy weight goal: 150

Weight loss per month: 1=22, 2=12, 3=9.5, 4=11.5, 5=8, 6=9

Janet P.
on 6/11/19 8:45 am

I went to a wedding with my sister about 8 months after surgery - by that time I had already lost more than 100 pounds. We were relaxing and looking at various pictures on my digital camera (this was 15 years ago). My sister and I were both taking pictures. I came to one picture and didn't recognize the person in the picture. I asked my sister who that was and she thought I was insane. She said "that's you!". I honestly didn't recognize myself. That was the moment I realized I had changed and the fat person in the mirror was suddenly gone.

Before that moment, I still saw the fat person in the mirror.

Janet in Leesburg
DS 2/25/03
Hazem Elariny

on 6/17/19 6:59 pm
RNY on 05/02/17

It's hard. I definitely don't see my body for what it is now. I look down and see a bulge and my thigh spread and think I look horrible. Then every so often I catch a glimpse of myself- usually walking by a reflection- and think "damn! When did I get hot?" That feeling comes and goes so on the days I'm feeling myself I embrace it.

I took monthly progress pics and have my 1 and 2 yr progress pics next to my original to remind me on the days I feel fat. I can spiral quickly when I start to think I'm gaining or still heavy so the pics help a lot.

When i I was close to 300# I did not think I was as large as I saw in pics.

HW: 287 SW: 266 CW: 149.2

Liz J.
on 6/19/19 9:07 am - Saint Louis, MO
DS on 11/29/16

This is a hard topic for me. When I was large I never thought I was as large as I was, now I don't see how small I am. Not that I'm tiny or anything. Currently I'm high 140's trying to get to mid then low 140's maybe even high 130's.

At almost 400 pounds I really thought I wasn't that big and when I got on the scale for the first time in years and it read 398.8 I almost died right there. Now when I look at pictures I can see it.

Now at a size 8/10 I feel larger than when I was even back then. When I'm washing clothes and I pull something of mine out I'll think my daughter-in-laws stuff got into my wash... or when I'm hanging up my husbands shirts, I'll think they are mine. He's a 2XL and I use to be a 4XL, kinda of scary!

I am seeing someone about it on a weekly bases and it's getting better. I sometimes still stop in the plus size department to look at clothes then I remember and move back to Jr. and Misses. Or I'll catch glimpse of myself in a mirror and go WOW that's me. Naked, I haven't made as much progress. My shrink says it will come, that I was over weight for a long time and that's what my mind is used to...

Having people to talk about it with helps a lot. Unfortunately, my WLS support group is full of people who have regained a lot of their weight and they tend to just want to talk about getting back on track not about how they don't feel comfortable in their new bodies.

HW: 398.8 SW:356 GW: 175 CW:147

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