I originally blogged this on March 12, 2010. It deserved a reblog! I hadn't found Josh Rubin of East West Healing and Performance yet, so he's not mentioned. If I could recommend one practitioner, it would be him, otherwise...
and so I really paid attention....
To this day I am not pre-diabetic.
If he wants to call me that, it's fine,
but my glucose levels are at a normal range....
...the fact that he had labeled me morbidly obese
really shocked me...
but Dr. Oz was one of the sweetest people I've ever met."
Fire them, Carnie. Fire them all.
Start with that exercise trainer of yours with his drill-sergeant style of yelling, scolding and thundering around like an Neanderthal. You tell him something that needs acknowledgment and attention and he tells you you're making excuses. If this "expert" can't hear you when you say you're too busy to put on leotards and work out (his harsh, sweat-too-much overwork yourself style of exercise) then fire him. A real expert will give you movements that you can do through-out the course of your busy day. If five minute increments of stretching or ballet or whatever is all you can fit in between commitments then find a coach who can give you what you need based on the needs you express! I can't bear to hear these so-called experts brushing off the things you say and labeling them as excuses. He's the worst offender. Fire him.
Next is the "sainted" Dr. Oz. A cardiologist, am I right?
Ok, so you claim he's sweet but what I saw him do to you on last night's finale of Carnie Wilson: Unstapled was sexist and condescending. You suggested that there might be something physical going on with you contributing to your cravings and your body's tendency to hold on to fat.
He (like all the other awful people who failed to hear you) insisted that you have emotional issues with food and that these emotional issues are to be addressed rather than anything physical. In their opinion your body is a result of your emotional flaws.
What are we back at the turn of the century when women were labeled with hysteria for complaining of difficult to diagnose physical symptoms or dissatisfaction with their lives? Hell the male doctors (and some female docs too) are still doing it in 2010. Look at Melting Mama's blog about her visit to the doctor (click here)With seizures and black outs and serious hypoglycemia - most likely from her gastric bypass - she was dismissed, talked down to and made to feel that her complaints are all in her head.
I couldn't stand to watch Oz's triangle jaw with that stern look on his face insisting that you walk 10,000 steps per day. You protested. You claimed you tried. You tried to get a word in edgewise. I never did get to fully hear you explain what challenges and obstacles you had in trying to get in 10,000 steps per day. Had you been able to state your feelings and circumstances clearly you may have actually gotten some sort of help...maybe not from Dr. Oz though. He seemed hell bent on calling you an "excuse-maker" and doing the tough love ultimatum thing. I've been tough loved before. It didn't work. It only made me more rebellious. And how did I rebel? By eating. It was the last bastion of self-hood I had left.
So yeah, all the experts (you do realize that there are many experts and many of them have different methods and approaches...not all experts agree) want you to embrace your food addiction as an emotional issue in your life but without focusing on what that issue is. You're pissed off at the way people treat you. You go to these folks for help and they treat you like you're weak and out of control. They judge you and refuse to hear you. No wonder you're pissed off.
Oz also dismissed your Fresh diet, a plan that delivers food to your door. He insisted you cook your own meals on Saturdays like "everyone else in America does". Oh? Really? What I see on Saturdays are frazzled families on the road doing all kinds of shopping cuz that's when folks are off from work. They grab fast food on in their cars.
Cooking together IS a great idea. But if Oz thinks the majority of "average Americans" are home in the kitchen he needs to be more observant (pull his head out of his ass). It seemed to me that he was just disapproving of every step you made to try to take care of yourself while running a household.
Same way your awful trainer totally failed to acknowledge you for holding your family together and keeping your house through all the financial uncertainty. Same way he wouldn't offer any encouragement for the 7 pound weight loss. Talk about a lack of support!
The next person you should fire is that god-awful Dr. Judi Hollis. She came across like a spokesperson for the cult-of-addiction. She accused your family of being enablers and tried to convince you that the only people you can really rely on for support are folks like her - recovering food addicts. I took one look at her and knew there was something 'off' about her. She had brittle hair and a craggy face. I'm not criticizing her for being older. I don't care how old she is. I'm wondering why she looked so unhealthy. If she had a healthy relationship with food she would glow. She would radiate health. She doesn't. She looks used up like years of poor eating (overeating then starving) have left their glacial marks on her.
Her forced smile and condescending approach made me suspicious of her methods. Both she and Oz talked about a diet-buddy. I could puke. That's how people in cults function. They pull you away from your loved ones and convince you that only those on the inside of the cult-of-recovery can possibly understand you. Only the recovering addict is trustworthy. All the other people are out there to sabotage you and keep you from practicing the enlightened ways of the cult - in this case it's the victim mentality of the food addict cult.
As a person who once suffered a severe binge eating disorder I know what it means to believe you are a food addict. I know how it feels to be accused of being a compulsive eater, a failure, and excuse maker etc. I also know that recovery is not merely emotional but mostly biological. This food thing is a physical issue surrounded by emotions, not the other way around.
My heart broke in a million pieces when I saw all that good, healthy food the Boobies and the gang were eating. They had a fabulous meal and you were sitting on the outskirts of the group convinced that the good food they were eating was bad for you. Are they obese? No. They eat moderate, filling amounts of healthy (fat, carbs and all) homemade food and stay fairly slim. That requires an explanation. The explanation has nothing to do with you being special, an addict or weak. It has to do with your metabolism. Another deprivation diet will only prolong your suffering.
If you stopped depriving yourself with diets you wouldn't be inclined to rebound eat to make up for the nutritional deficit.
Dr. Judi said you kept turning to experts to do the work for you.
I wanted to scream. I don't see you being lazy or passing the buck of responsibility to anyone. I see you attempting to assemble the best experts out there and then I see them being abusive or failing you.
There are better experts. You have other options.
As far as eating disorder recovery check out Drs. Hirschmann and Munter, authors of "Overcoming Overeating" and "When Women Stop Hating Their Bodies". They won't condescend or deprive you. They won't label you as an addict or an addict-in-recovery thereby pigeon-holing you for a life of being an outsider to your own family. They'll talk about healing your relationship with food for good by eating, not dieting. They'll explain why your rebelliousness is really an attempt at self-care.
Get a better trainer. Find someone who will listen to you. Rochelle Rice here in NYC specializes in overshaped women who live busy Manhattan lives. Erin Huggins on the West Coast is a nutritionist and trainer who believes in lovingly moving one's body, eating generous amounts of really nutritious food and would never shout or drill-sergeant you around.
This fat thing is turning into another way to tell women they're weak, hyper emotional and dependent on the patriarchal system of dominance. I couldn't stand watching these supposed helpers talking to you like you were a tantrum-throwing child who just-wants-her-way. I hope you don't get pulled into the addict mentality. I hope you believe that you can be fit and well and most of all heard and respected with a more nourishing approach.
I'm currently studying up on independent nutrition researcher Matt Stone's approach that busts the diet myths that have failed us for so long. Finally someone makes sense and doesn't want to pull my plate away.
I'm not quitting till I can properly expose the diet industry for what it is: a money making mega machine that preys on people's eroded self esteem by giving nutritionally unsound advice to a desperate public who has bought into the myth that obesity is solved through will-power and low calorie starvation tactics.
I hope you find the answers you're looking for.
You deserve to be listened to and cared for.
I kept hearing it in your words and between your words.
When you were telling your husband that they insisted on weighing you before you had your morning bowel movement it turned into a tense exchange between the two of you. He suggested that it shouldn't matter, I kept hearing you wanting to be heard and understood by him and by the experts you thought could help you. You felt you were being pushed around and unfairly judged by the folks you thought had answers for you. You had every right to be pissed off.
Instead you got more finger pointing and blaming from one expert after another.
They kept calling you an excuse maker.
It was painful to watch.
Under those circumstances who could blame you for wanting a nice piece of cheesecake.
I hope you find a way to get healthy and eat your cake, too.
The ways are out there. Keep looking!
You're strong, beautiful and funny. I hope you can find a way to bring your baking business back to your house, too. It made you happy.