Dear Dietsurvivors and Me

I just e-mailed a new dietsurvivor member, who is having a difficult time trying to decide between two diet programs (or no diet program at all), and, as a member wanting to help, I answered her to help her decide the answer for herself.

As I wrote, I realized that I was writing for myself as well as others; so I decided to post my e-mail to her here:

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Hello, ___________,


I'm fairly new, too, to this group. I think that the most important thing in the world is NOT to beat yourself up if you gain a few pounds while you sort things out for yourself. It takes time, and many of us here are still working things out for ourselves. Count the small victories, and rejoice in them.

For two days (Thanksgiving and Friday), I ate more than I usually do (or at least I have been eating in the past four months), and I'm quite okay with it. The important thing (for me, anyway), I didn't stuff myself, but I enjoyed pie, cake, Mike's Hard Lime (a fave), mashed potatoes, among other so-called forbidden food. I did NOT go "out of control," my worst fear, and, today, I feel just fine and have picked up eating normally. I refuse to "cut back" to "make up" for two days of heavier eating, even though I might gain some weight. But I won't know "the numbers" because I have given up the scale. Instead, I go by what my clothes tell me, and they don't lie. Leaving the scale behind has freed me tremendously, and I only know "the number" when I go to the doctor's office.

All I'm trying to say: we all find our way to cope, and, for me, the scale is an impediment to my psychological health because the numbers get in the way, and I obsess over them. Am I tempted to weigh? Of course. Every day.

I'm not a thin person, though I have decided to ACT like one, and the consequence of that role playing? At this point, I'm not sure. In any case, I FEEL better, both physically and psychologically. Will I ever slip? Probably. But I'm not going to allow my slips to turn into year-long downward spirals into overeating and bingeing.

You WILL find what works for you--just listen to what your body really needs and, yes, wants. Most diets are so grim, focusing on the shall-nots instead of the shalls, and if you feel you must embrace WW and/or OA, then take what YOU need and want from them, and leave the rest behind--it's your body. And if you "slip" off your own plan and violate your own intentions, try not be so hard on yourself. It's not a moral failing.

You (and anyone else) are welcome to visit my blog.

I'm not selling anything, just keeping a log of my journey. I plan to post this note on my blog, just to remind myself of my own words when I'm feeling down and out.



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And that's it for now.
Jennifer Semple Siegel