Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Why are we so private about weight?

And I'm asking myself that as much as anyone else. Why do we feel it's a private matter? When it's something anyone can see if we weigh too much or too little?

Even if we don't say a word, people will start noticing changes in eating habits, exercise habits and definitely will start to notice weight loss beyond a certain point. I know I struggled with it myself - do I keep it to myself or do I open up about my struggles with weight? In the end I decided I could be stronger and more accountable if I was open about it (hence the blog). What if I failed? Well, I'm human. I knew it was possible I would fail. I've tried this before and failed, but I figured, I had a much stronger chance of making it work with being open than by being closed. And if I failed, well, people would understand. At least most people would and definitely anyone who has tried to lose weight before would get it.

Maybe we want to keep it private because it's admitting a weakness if we admit we are fat? "Yes, I have a problem with food." or "Yes, everyone I am aware that I am fat and I don't like it." Maybe we all live in a world where we pretend that we are OK with being overweight? Underfit? Though... I have yet to meet anyone who was overweight who liked being overweight. I have yet to meet someone who would choose being overweight over being an ideal or a better weight than they are now. Does admitting that mean that we are weak? Does somehow admitting we know we are overweight also makes us admit we are too lazy or too scared or too overwhelmed to fix the problem? Does ignoring the weight somehow give us permission to ignore it, really? Are we fooling anyone?

Now, I will never, ever be judgmental about someone and their weight. Ever. I don't care if I was able to lose all this weight. It won't matter if I manage to keep it off forever. I will never, ever judge someone and their weight - period. Why? Because it is a personal battle and because it's different for each and every person. Changing an entire lifestyle is not easy. If it were, then we would be recreating ourselves all the time. There are years of unlearning to do and that is different from person to person. Plus, each person's body is different too and each of us will find it harder or easier to maintain different weights with differing ease. Because, it's a mind game too. My husband can go forever without eating a sweet. I can barely go a day. He doesn't have those demons to fight. I do. So how can I compare what I deal with to anyone else? Their demons could be so much bigger than mine.

Though, I also think that keeping things so hush-hush about weight makes those demons stronger. Maybe if we were more open, we would find better support and more help for us all to make better decisions.. but then again, maybe not. I hear over and over again about unsolicited advice and what works for one person might not work for another. I know I had to find what worked for me. Can't say it would work for anyone else but me either.

Stats for 9/28/11:

Beginning weight: 255.6  Now: 183.6
Exercise total hours in 2011: 272
Total miles walked in 2011: 799/1000


  1. One could ask the question about anything related to one's health, lifestyle, appearance, etc. We are private about weight because not every aspect of every person's life is the business of others. The question shouldn't be why are we private about weight, but why do we think so many things are open to public scrutiny. Should we comment on the bald man's pate and offer him advice on hair pieces and hair growth cures? Can you talk about someone's clothing style or shoe choice? Is it proper to discuss someone's sex life? How about discussing your income and debts? What about alcoholism? Is it bad that someone keeps their alcohol consumption issues private and does it make their demons worse if they keep it to themselves? Some things are nobody's business and weight is one of them.

    American culture has been storming ahead trampling all over privacy and having people air dirty laundry so overtly in public forums (reality and talk shows) that people have no sense of boundaries anymore. Weight is private. Health is private. Psychological problems are private. Unless someone chooses to share, then it's simply nobody's business and once people start realizing that, we will live in a kinder, more civilized world.

  2. I'm not saying it should be someone's business, but if you change something about your appearance, people will notice, You can't chop off your hair or iif a man, your beard without people taking notice and commenting and asking about it. We wear our weight. There is no secret there. People can see if we have a problem with our weight or not. So why do people get so uptight for noticing or commenting? I comment on a hair cut. I comment on a nice outfit or necklace. Why would someone not comment about a weight loss or an increase in fitness? I see over and over women on weight loss forums either hating or loving people noticing their weight loss and commenting on it. People are greatly divided. I just personally don't get the feeling of why anyone would be upset for someone noticing weight loss. They'll notice the gain too, but will keep it to themselves, or, talk about it behind the person's back.

    Of course, no one has the right to interfere with someone's life, but noticing a physical change is natural, so our weight isn't as private as we think. The battle with it is private, but not how we are winning or losing that battle. It's for all to see.

  3. For me it's really about the comments from others. It's not so much about the fear of failure but more that I've received a number of comments that were hurtful or that others really wouldn't let go of an idea that they had about weight loss and kept trying to force it on me.

    Another thing too is that I've had to deal with a lot of my own demons throughout my journey. Things from my childhood, understanding why I used to eat the way I did. Because of that I didn't really want questions from those who were not close to me about my weight loss in case it was one of these emotional issues that I was struggling with at the time.

    I think being very open works well for some people and I definitely would never judge someone for what they decide either way. It's such a personal journey that there's just no one-size-fits-all in terms of weight loss.