We have seen many patients at our clinic that inform us that they are electing to not tell their friends and family that they are on a weight control journey. Although most of these people do not provide us with specifics as to why they are keeping their plans “secret” here as several potential reasons:
- Fear of failure: The thought process is that if the person tells others he/she is trying to lose weight and success is not achieve, there is fear that others will see the person as a “failure”.
- Concern that the weight control efforts will negatively impact others: Losing weight requires the restriction/avoidance of high carb snacks/foods, desserts, alcohol and other “fun” foods and drinks. The weight-losing person may be concerned that by informing others of the need to restrict these foods/drinks, the “others” may feel obligated to do the same.
- Fear of sabotage: If the weight-losing person has had the experience in the past of friends/spouse intentionally derailing his /her efforts, the weight losing person will avoid telling others.
- Fear of having people know money is being spent on weight loss efforts: This last one often occurs between spouses. Money spending is one of the most contentious issues of any marriage and if the person fears that she/he will be ridiculed for spending $$$ on a program such as ours, that person will not tell others.
I strongly recommend that the weight-losing person tell people of their intentions to shed the weight. Almost as importantly, I also suggest that the weight-losing person ask for the help of his/her friends and relatives. Your friends and relatives love you and want you to live a long, healthy life. They realize, just like you, that the excessive weight places you in jeopardy of developing a whole bunch of very dangerous medical conditions. The Covid experience has hammered home even more the incredible importance of weight control.
Do not keep your weight control efforts a secret…tell others.