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Conflict of Interest

September 23, 2014

Weight LossFat HealthMy Boring-Ass LifeWeight Loss SurgeryDickweedDiet Talk

Trigger warning: Frank discussion of weight loss surgery.

Confession time: a close family member got a gastric sleeve about a year ago. A very close family member, in fact. I see her less often now that we live in different states, but her physical changes are still evident. She has knee problems and her back took a major hit when she was younger. Now, after the surgery, she can do things physically she couldn’t before. She has more energy, she says.

To be honest, it feels like every fat person that I personally know has either seriously considered gastric surgery or has already had it. I know seven people, including my family member, who have had surgery: one was a former professor I spent two semesters with who “doesn’t regret it despite the weight gain”; one WLS Cartoonwas newly cut, learning the ropes of a new life and very much in the throes of the honeymoon stage; one was struggling with a massive amount of excess skin, who was going back under the knife to remove it all; one struggled with herself before confessing to me she had a lapband, then was absolutely relieved to tears when I “didn’t criticize [her] for getting the surgery, like it’s cheating or something”; one I met as a customer who waxed on about his and his son’s weight loss; and finally, one who flat out told me she absolutely regrets getting the surgery and was adamant about steering people away from having it done. Only two had their surgeries more than three years ago, and those are the first and last people.

I hear plenty about these body modifications. I’ve even looked into it for myself. I’ve thought that it won’t solve my most pressing issues, but damn the pressure to “just be smaller” is intense. Not one day has gone by that weight isn’t directly mentioned to me, especially since I’m the dreaded Death Fatz. Every time I put on clothes, I’m reminded that they aren’t as good as the clothes my thinner peers can wear. Every time I listen to the radio or watch a show, invariably there is something about weight loss. There are billboards of weight loss surgery posted near my house, on my way to work at the edge of town, and on my way to school downtown.

Ah, I’m just tired. I’ve been tired for a long time, y’all. Not the kind of tired where I do something permanently, but I want to be through with it all. Can we humans just collectively stop being dicks to each other? That would be great.

Kitsune Yokai

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Twistie permalink
    September 23, 2014 9:44 am

    The world would, indeed, be a better place if we all lived by Wil Wheaton’s rule… though I hear that he recently made some rather dickish remarks about his own weight. Sigh.

    I sometimes think I’m rather rare, because I am a Death Fatz who has never considered WLS. Even before I heard about the potentially deathly side effects, I knew that there was no way in hell I was letting someone split me open and mess with a digestive system that worked so well, even if I could (a) afford the surgery and (b) lose a lot of weight permanently.

    Then again, my mother taught me well at an early age that if something seems too good to be true, chances are there’s a catch you just haven’t heard about yet. She was really good at encouraging me to inspect things from all angles so I would know what I was getting myself into.

    • Dizzyd permalink
      September 24, 2014 7:14 pm

      I agree. I just can’t understand why anyone would want to have their digestive organs mutilated in the pursuit of so-called “health” (AKA: “acceptable thinness”). I don’t blame those who got sucked in, but I am so angry at a society that is more than happy to make us fat people guinea pigs to see which kinds of WLS make more money for its practitioners (and probably which ones kill us off in greater numbers and more painfully). The only way I could see any use for bariatric surgery is if someone’s stomach and/or intestinal tract had parts that were severely gangrened or otherwise compromised somehow that removing parts and then stitching them together is the only way to help save the person’s life and allow them to still be able to eat. Even then, I DON’T see it as a good excuse for using fat people as guinea pigs so they can fix all their “oopsies” when they mess up, and if a few fatties die along the way, oh well! We deserve better than to be nothing more than glorified lab rats for them to test their techniques on.

  2. Isabel permalink
    September 23, 2014 10:07 am

    I admire your strength. I broke down and got GB in 2003. I am eternally grateful that I had a surgeon that said “we’re here to ward off diabetes and alleviate your sleep apnea, which means 10% weight loss” and didn’t buy into the trend at the time which was producing people half the size within a year. I think those people had worse side effects. I have virtually none. But I acknowledge that surgeons like mine may be in the minority.

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