Does losing weight mean losing friends?
I am almost to my two year “Ketoversary” and in the last year, the weight loss became really noticeable and these last 30 pounds I lost have made the most impact, I think.
In the beginning of my fat loss journey, nobody really noticed. For me at least, it took a loss of over 40 pounds before anyone said, “Have you lost weight?”
Then around 80 pounds, people really started to notice.
I’ve lost 105 pounds now, and it’s virtually impossible not to notice.
But there are still people in my life who have NOT ONCE acknowledged it, and they also can’t even look me in the face when they talk to me? It’s a strange thing.
There is a surprising lack of enthusiasm from some people in my life that, honestly, I would expect to be proud of me or, at least, happy for me. I have family members who are just downright rude about how I have gotten the weight off.
They insist that I am doing it all wrong. And obviously, they say, I will gain it back or develop heart disease from all the “unhealthy fat.” That’s really what a couple in particular would love to see just so they can arrogantly say, “I told you so! I told you it was unsustainable.”
Too bad for them that won’t happen. I am a keto lifer.
It’s understandable that a lifestyle change can potentially strain relationships, especially when that relationship centered around unhealthy food indulgences and activities (or lack of activity). When one friend becomes more active and doesn’t want to sit around anymore it is sure to change the dynamic of the friendship.
I have been accused of “being different” now, when really I am not all that different, except for physically. As if a weight loss changes who we are inherently. Am I more confident? Yes. Do I dress differently? Of course.
Is there some reason I shouldn’t be more confident?
I mean, I lost 105 pounds and I exercise my body and am working on getting more and more in shape – and shouldn’t I be able to be proud of that fact? And of course I dress different. I am not shopping at Omar the Tent Makers store anymore. Buying new clothes has been one of the most fun benefits of the weight loss. When I was fat, clothes shopping was not fun; and it often ended in tears and a sugar binge. Does dressing differently mean my personality has changed? Apparently, some friends think so, but in my opinion I am still the same outspoken, opinionated gal I have always been.
I just dress cuter now.
I still read the same books, like the same genre of movies, and listen to the same music. I am not different except for the fact that my looks have changed. Some people perceive this as my having inherently changed, but really what has changed is their opinion of me. Their view is the one that changed and according to one friend of mine that is because I am no longer the fat friend that makes them feel better about themselves. I refuse to feel bad for feeling alive and I won’t apologize for enjoying life more.
Apparently, what I am experiencing is not unique. I have read about it and discussed it online with some others who have lost a good amount of weight. There are several reasons for animosity or resentment.
First and foremost our success can remind others of their own failed attempts, or cause them to have to admit something about themselves they aren’t ready to admit. It isn’t that they are necessarily jealous of our new bodies (although my friend did say “you were the fat friend and now you look better than them”) so there might be some of that. Mostly, though, I think those who stop talking to us or treat us differently can’t handle the constant reminder of what they can’t do or just haven’t done yet.
It makes me sad because I truly want my friends to succeed in their weight loss journey. I love them. They’re my friends. Why wouldn’t I want them healthy? I want them to feel the euphoria, joy, the fog lifting and the health benefits that I am enjoying. I do everything I can to encourage them and inspire them, but everyone has to reach their own tipping point and they just aren’t there yet.
If you are the friend who has lost weight, try not to take it to heart when some friends or family don’t handle it well. If your friend has lost the weight, try not to make them feel bad about their success. Chances are they would love it if you joined them on the journey.
You can make new friends with all kinds of cool kids in the Ketogenic Success Facebook group. It’s full of like-minded folks who are looking to get the most out of life by choosing a healthy keto lifestyle. And, as always, no jerks allowed.