Accepting compliments

dcbrown3
on 8/5/20 5:21 am

I'm 5 weeks post surgery and everything is going great. The hardest part has been accepting compliments. Part of it, I think is, is because even though the scale is moving, inches are going down and I can notice progress in photos. I still see myself as the same person. I'm not used to the compliments for my weight and I'm used to when people talk about my weight it was usually bullying. I know the few people are sincere when they tell me I'm looking good and getting skinnier. It seems harder to take from people I'm not close too.

Dcgirl
on 8/5/20 8:09 am - DC
RNY on 12/16/13

In the nicest way possible, let me tell ya...you are going to have to get used to it :) You are getting compliments at five weeks out - wait until you are 50 weeks out! I was down almost 200 lbs at a year out so trust me, I could not avoid comments :) I think some people are hesitant to offer compliments (because "you look great!" [skinnier] can be seen as "you were ugly when you were fat"). But when people would compliment me I would just say "thanks! I feel great too!".

I was upfront at work and with family and friends about surgery - I could never have lost that much weight and pretended it was diet and exercise. My standard line was "Although I don't have health problems yet, I want to avoid them, so my doctor and I thought a procedure would be best for me, along with eating low carb and exercise". No one ever pried, although for other super morbidly obese people, I would give them more details if they wanted to know.

You will transform a ton over the next year or so, so now is a good time to realize that as the lbs and inches melt away, you will get compliments. Embrace them! And try to take weekly or monthly pictures which is a good way to see progress even if you don't see it in the mirror :)

Good luck and stay the course!

dcbrown3
on 8/5/20 11:16 am

Thank you for the encouragement and advice! I'm ahead of their projections and the doctor's said my recovery has been as smooth as you could ask for. I can't wait till Monday to get back into the gym and back into a normal routine.

I was upfront at work with the people I'm close with or that I've known have had the surgery. Quite a few here have had it and most have had success. But, people here like to pry. And the constant i'm hearing since I've come back is my process is being compared to a coworker. Her recovery was rough and after going through the same program, I see she isn't following what we were taught. Which that's on her and I don't let it get to me. It did cause some tension between us when I first came back to work I was only out just over 2 weeks and she was out over 8. I know she hears what people are saying, because most are from her department. I tell them now that every recovery is different and it isn't fair to her or myself. I do get frustrated that she blames the doctors and procedure's for her lack of success when I see a glimpse at work of how's she's eating.

I've been taking weekly pictures, but for some reason I'm not noticing it too much. I think partly, because I see how far I have to go rather than how far I've come.

White Dove
on 8/5/20 8:10 am

The compliments are part of the process. Just smile and say, "Thank you".

This is a temporary phase. After a while people will be used to the new body and will no longer say anything. When the complements stop you will miss them for a while. One way to stop seeing yourself as the same person is to look at your body without looking at your face. When you brain sees your own face, it fills in the body that it remembers.

So take selfies with your head not in the picture and then you will really be able to see what others are seeing now.

Real life begins where your comfort zone ends

dcbrown3
on 8/5/20 11:17 am

Thank you for the advice!

I will definitely have to take a set of pictures without my head in the picture!

Teenie
on 8/5/20 9:23 am - Pittsburgh , PA
RNY on 12/19/17

It is hard to take at first. Wait till you go somewhere and a stranger holds a door open or just says something nice for no reason. If you been overweight for most of you life like I have I started having anxiety attacks in stores when people would approach me. It is crazy how you are treated so differently when you are not obese. You'll get used to it.

HW 299 SW 290 CW 139 GW 140 2/08/2019 OPERATION: Surgical Hernia with excision of total surface area of 55 x 29 cm of abdominal skin.

dcbrown3
on 8/5/20 11:18 am

Yeah I've been overweight basically my entire life. I'm sure that will be an odd feeling when that occurs with strangers.

Dee_Caprini
on 8/7/20 10:40 am

Yeah, I totally getcha on this. When seeing my therapist i would talk about it and I would feel vain that I was noticing the compliments or I would respond with something to put myself down (like, I haven't lost that much, no I'm not...etc). He asked me, "why do you feel that way? Do you think you don't deserve a compliment? Even if you feel uncomfortable, smile and say thank you, because that individual didn't have to pay the compliment, but they felt the need to do so to show encouragement. You're doing great, people are recognizing it. Respond with Thank you and DO NOT negate their compliment by diminishing how far you have come!"

Yup, he was right. It always feels different when its new. Embrace the change.

Congrats on your journey!

dcbrown3
on 8/10/20 7:47 am

Thank you for that piece of advice. I'll make sure to start working on that!

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