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Therapist Leslie
Therapist Leslie, Mental Health Professional
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 333
Experience:  Owner and Psychotherapist at Self-Employed, Private Practice
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OKMH617211 I have been consciously trying to lose weight for

Customer Question

OKMH617211 I have been consciously trying to lose weight for the past few years with no success. I am totally disgusted with myself, wonder what can be the matter with me, over my life I have lost 100 pounds at least 99 times it seems with no problem staying on a weight reducing diet. I did lose control in 2001, got up to 303 pounds. I had decided at that time that I was not going to starve and deprive myself any more in life and just eat what I wanted, and gain what ever it got to be. Then when I got all the way up to over 300 pounds, it was terrifying, disgusting, debilitating so I had a successful gastro-by-pass surgery. Weight loss was good, I felt wonderful, an accident put me in a wheel chair for a year and I gained some back to now over 200 pounds. I am terrified of gaining more, miserable with all this fat on me, trying but not succeeding to lose weight again - wondering what in hell is the matter with me now to be unable to do this and get back to a more normal weight. If you have any suggestions, please make them. I have read most diet books in my search for knowledge, also recently Dr Fuhrman and Dr Neal Bernard so now I am 99 % vegan for 99 % of the time. I have begun to lose a little weight but not much and very slowly. I am afraid, really, I am afraid that I will not be able to do what I know how to do. I know how but can't do what I know how to do. What the crap is the matter with me ? with anybody like this ? I wish I could find the magic key to help me know what is wrong with me. Will power ? dedication to health ? motivation ? What am I missing and how do I succeed again ? I constantly ask myself these questions.

Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Therapist Leslie replied 2 months ago.

Good morning, Golden Girl and thank you so much for your message. I realize it's difficult to reach out for help. Please know I honor your courage.

My name is ***** ***** I am a psychotherapist in the Metro Boston area.

I am so sorry....it sounds like you have tried everything and are beyond frustrated. Please know it's not will power, dedication or even motivation that creates the struggle you engaged in. More often then not, there is something else that sits at the pit of it. Have you worked with a therapist who specializes in disordered eating by chance? I realize counseling was probably required for the gastro surgery but did you go deep to really dicover why this issue is what it is? This might be the best bet moving forward. I imagine you have had numerous meetings with your doctors and primary care physician ensuring it isn't a medical issue causing the weight gain?

If you have done the above, my recommendation would be to continue on the vegan diet you are on....focusing exclusively on being as healthy as possible and seeing how the numbers land. Perhaps focusing on simply the health piece (and not the numbers only) will be helpful. If you are truly doing everything and find yourself stalled weight wise perhaps there is a certain acceptance of self that must be made.

I recommend exercise for your mind and thought patterns...maybe yoga or wearing a Fitbit to track steps. I encourage making as many healthy decisions as possible and then surrending the rest to the universe. You are 79 and can only fight your body so many times.

I am so sorry. This truly is hell. I specialize in disordered eating and sit with others every day who are in the same place as you. I understand the pain and my heart aches for you.

Has my explanation helped at all? Is there anything else I can assist you with today? Please know I am here if you need me. I also gently request you provide a star rating for my services so I may be compensated. We can, of course, continue to talk after a rating is provided.

Warm regards,

Therapist Leslie

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Is this helpful ? Not really but at least you didn't try to tell me what I already know by heart. I have been searching emotionally and mentally for that key to why I am not able to get this , to do it, but so far it has remained hidden from me. Physiologically I understand that I am pre-programed this way - fat, My mom and aunts and family female members are also fat, and my daughter and grand daughters. While my youngest adopted son is 6' 1'' and 34 pounds underweight , as are all of his birth family, the same, I recognize that we are not all made up the same way. i.e….. my spouse is always hot, body heat, almost never cold, no covers at night while I a wrapped up in a quilt. Yes, many ,many blood tests, all say 'normal' but there is nothing normal about my condition. Compulsive eating is not the disorder I am cursed with, its how my body functions and stores and uses the intake of foods. I know that , long time now but have not found a remedy. I was prescribed Metformin to see if that would help. It did not. I was on Armour also Synthroid for years - taking those I could stay thin/ normal if I also dieted carefully. Without this medication and without starving ( 600 calories a day is starving ) I gain the pounds. Now its worse because I can't exercise much, can't walk far , don't have a pool and am sick to vomit of trying to deal with this. I did see a psychiatrist at my company for years, very helpful and very successful , I lost over 100 pounds during that time and conquered my fear of flying, also divorced a dreaded husband - The psychiatrist did prescribe some medication, but mostly it was therapy. I never knew back in those primitive days just what my SAD diet was doing to me or that my body was functioning the way it does. We were really ignorant back then of so much. I have not considered ''seeing '' anybody - the thought of some kid just beginning with no realistic idea of the torment that real life is to some one like me, well, I could not keep a straight face and it would of course be futile anyway. Most therapists are not as educated nor experienced nor even intelligent as I am - the psychiatrist at my company was of course also a medical doctor. fyi Its not difficult for me to try to reach out for help as you say, except that I find it a challenge to find anybody who has the ability and experience to even begin to perhaps help me find what the trigger is that keeps me from being unable to again be successful with this huge issue. I can't thing that any food is more important to me than ending the physical discomfort of being fat like this and the risk of not being able to walk if it continues. What is making it more important to me than this ? I struggle daily to try to identify what is going on with me. I know better, but seem unable to be able to do better. Also in my experiences I have run into many very inexperienced and opinionated with the paper work to be called therapists who were really horrible. Worse than worse. We were a shelter home for children for some years and I know what a game of Russian Roulette that therapy is. That does not put confidence in my heart . I read the books, over and over, promise myself each day that I am trying anew to succeed, but no - I fail. I can not drag myself out of this emotional pit that I am in. Of course there are many things that I hate about my life - there always is if we are honest to ourselves - but that never stopped me before to take control of my weight when I needed to. The problem is me not what's going on in life around me. If my own psychiatrist were still practicing, yes, I would go to see him. The thought of someone else, new, too young to know better, - no no no no. I also began a question like this a few times on Just Answer then deleted it, feeling that it is just another exercise in futility. The doctor I see with the Medicare and cheapy HMO is just a p.a. and I have already taught him a few things. He is a kid, a nice and smart kid, but just starting out. He has made a few mistakes so far , but he's learning as he goes. In another 30 years he should be a terrific p.a. maybe even a m.d. if he goes back to school and studies hard. I know that I need to figure out what is preventing me from doing what I so desperately want to do - lose weight. I looked for groups I might join but there really are none that I could fine here in Miami, most are into the God stuff and I am absolutely not. I can't take that ''Higher power'' crap either. I know I am my own higher power that isn't working right now anymore. Yeah, I am angry about this situation. My doctor is just a kid who can read tests , write prescriptions, knows nothing about struggles like mine. The years of wise council with my company psychiatrist were helpful. I could go back for a refresher course if I got too much off track and it always worked . He was never condescending nor under estimate my intelligence.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Just for my information, how many years have you been a therapist ? Do you plan to become a psychiatrist ? Any medical training so far ? I admit that I learned much from Dr Neal Bermard 's book on diabetes and did some additional research from there about the functions of the human body. Fascinating. This information was why my husband and I both became vegan. My husband was diagnosed diabetic but now as a vegan he has reversed that condition totally also lost almost 20 pounds eating all day long. I lost only a few pounds but stopped gaining. I am not diabetic. The worst curse is the loss of cartilage in my knee, I have bone -on -bone in one knee, two titanium screws in that left foot also, making walking and exercise out of the question unless in the water . Things just wear out with time. It interests me that you are in Boston, that's a smart town. I loved Boston when I was living there, right at Coolidge Corners on Sailor St I think it was , one block away. or Skyler Street ? Lovely old house on the route of the ride of Paul Revere.
Expert:  Therapist Leslie replied 2 months ago.

Good afternoon, Goldengirl and thank you so much for your response. I am sorry I was not able to be helpful for you. I believe you may need a MD to answer your question as it does not seem to be psychological. I will contact the moderator and have this changed. I truly wish you the best.

Warm regards,

Therapist Leslie

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Dear Leslie, its not that you were not able to be of help, yes, you were just by responding to me in the professional and kind manner that you did . You could not know that I have been there and back again so many times over my life - and my patience does not allow me to repeat it all , not even once again. I did request a psychiatrist - I do know that my condition is physical as well as now emotional, and that I have not been able to find the answer on my own that will again allow me to do what I know I need to do to help myself . I keep hoping that something will trigger the puzzle in my mind to find a resolve.
Thank you for your kindness also and kind regards. Perhaps in life after all that is what's most important for humans.