Do Your Friends Keep Tabs On Your Weight?

149 comments

Happy Olympics!  yawhooo!

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Sketchie had a long, hard week! ;)

Amazing response to the Glo Bar coupons yesterday- I added more and those went too. I know many of you missed out on the coupon, so I added a few more this morning if you want another shot! Coupon code is VDAYGLOBAR and the cart is here.

Now onto breakfast…which was delicious oatmeal!

Quick and Easy Chia Banana Kiwi Oatmeal

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup regular oats
  • 1 T chia seeds
  • 1/2 T cashew butter
  • 1 t pure vanilla extract
  • pinch sea salt
  • 1 ripe banana cut into chunks

Directions: Throw all ingredients into a pot and stir on high until it boils. Reduce to low temp and whip like crazy. Pour into a dish and add your desired toppings.

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I enjoyed every bite!

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Do Your Friends Keep Tabs On Your Weight?

The other day I was talking to a girlfriend of mine. Kara (not her real name) is upset because one of her friends makes constant comments about her weight.

I’m going to talk a bit about Kara’s situation (she gave me permission to talk about it on the blog):

Kara’s friend always asks her questions about her weight such as how much she weighs. Her friend also makes comments when they go out to eat such as ‘You are getting dessert? I thought you were a healthy eater?’ or even criticizing her for ordering a salad and soup telling her she needs to ‘stop eating like a bird’.

Kara feels very self-conscious about these comments and she isn’t quite sure what to do about it. She said that she feels like her friend is keeping tabs on her weight and is always watching and monitoring whether she is working out, eating healthy or unhealthy, or losing or gaining weight.

Kara said, ‘I am starting to feel obsessed with my weight because I have these hawk eyes on me all the time.’ 

In a way, I almost feel like I am being scrutinized like a celebrity, even though I know that what I am going through is nothing like a celebrity! I just feel like I am always being watched…and if I slip up or gain a few pounds this person is secretly happy or is going to make a comment about it. I feel like she is always waiting for me to do something wrong so she feels better about herself .’

Have you ever been in a similar situation as Kara?

Do you have friends who keep tabs on your weight or make comments about what you eat/how much you workout and turn it into a competition?

What do you do about it?

There will likely be a Part 2 of this topic as I want to add my own thoughts but this post is already a bit lengthy. :)

~~

Coming up on OSG a dramatic before and after of a room in our house!!!!

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{ 149 comments… read them below or add one }

RhodeyGirl February 12, 2010

That girl is not her friend, or she has major self esteem issues… connect to her own weight. Poor Kara!

I have friends and relatives that comment on my weight here and there, but nothing out of the ordinary. It is not uncommon overseas to be completely blunt to someone about their weight, and I noticed my cousins abroad comment more than the ones here. I think nothing of it because I know that my weight fluctuates a bit, and whether they say I look thin or a little full, I take it with a grain of salt.

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Allie (Live Laugh Eat) February 12, 2010

NO! Thankfully my friends do not make open comments about my weight, my diet, or my workouts. That would screw with my mind big time!! If anything, they encourage eating more freely and being a little less regimented about working out and eating healthy.

hope her friends are reading your blog and all the comments so they realize the impact of their words.

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Jessica @ How Sweet It Is February 12, 2010

I was just wondering if you had still been eating oatmeal! :)

I have had some friends keep tabs on my weight. Unfortunately, I think it stems from doing fitness competitions, because after the show when a few pounds are put back on, they don’t understand, you know?? They thing I ‘look so good,’ but it isn’t a healthy weight to maintain. There is also some added pressure on me from being a trainer, and I have never been thin in my life. I think ‘new’ friends are surprised to learn that I am a trainer because I don’t always look as lean as certain trainers do.

I grew up my entire life hearing snide remarks about my weight, even if they weren’t meant to be hurtful. I went to a very small school, and distinctly remember a boy I liked telling my friend that I ‘didn’t have the best figure.’

I think as we grow and learn who true friends are and what it all means, that this changes. I feel more comfortable in my own skin and have true friends that don’t judge me. If they do, they aren’t really friends.

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Meg February 12, 2010

Wow, I read this and thought “thank GOODNESS I have never had a friend like that.” I think Kara should consider spending a little less time with this so-called friend. In fact I wondered, as I read it, why she did spend her time and energy on someone who clearly is not looking out for her best interests?

My friends have always been supportive to one another about their weight. I work as a weight loss coach, and I’ve occassionally had friends ask for me for help, but I’ve purposefully tried to never make them feel uncomfortable about their food choices, exercise prefereneces or bodies. Girlfriends needs to uplift and encourage one another! That’s what we’re here for.

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Alex@happygolucky February 12, 2010

Oh my goodness, yes I have friends like that!!! Where I feel like it is a contest to eat the healthiest, which can lead to depriving myself of what I really want and making me uncomfortable to go out to eat with people!
I try really hard to not let it get to me and try surround myself with loving people who don’t care what I put in my body, but how I feel. I just want friends that make me happy, not ones that cause me to doubt myself.

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Diana February 12, 2010

Great idea for a post. I don’t feel like any of my friends or family keep tabs on my weight. I’m sure they would notice if I gained or lost a lot but day to day they don’t seem concerned or interested. If anything I am the one who talks the most about healthy eating and working out. I can see how “Kara” would feel an enormous amount of stress and pressure from her friend. I hope she has a great body image and just lets it roll off her back!

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Dotsie February 12, 2010

Oddly enough, when I went through what Kara’s going through, I was still in elementary school-so, very young. As an adult, my friends look to me for motivation and inspiration. Back to elementary school–my good friend Rachel and I were always arguing over something. We shared the same bus stop, and I would get dropped off at her house and she would get picked up in front of my house. Anyway–we were close in height and size, but had different shapes. We would pick on each other, especially as we got closer to ages 11 and 12-you’re fatter than me, you can’t fit into these shorts, that shirt is too small, you don’t have any boobs. Fast forward through high school and college–and now we’re 27–and yeah, she admits to blowing up the size of King Kong–it’s very, very sad. I do NOT pick on her today; I don’t bring up anything about food or exercise–she often does, and I just listen. We like to meet up and get Greek food and I ALWAYS overeat–I catch her staring or looking at my plate, but I know I’ve counted it into my intake, OR, decided I don’t care that day ;-) LOL

I say ignore the friend or ditch her completely. That kind of friend wouldn’t work for me today–too busy, with too much on my plate. I’m sorry people go through this, though! I say be strong, stand tall, and do your thing.

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Laura Georgina February 12, 2010

My real friends are really great–no comments about my eating and only positive things to say when they do comment! However, I’ve been on the receiving end of family grief based on weight issues before. Prime example: for years, the first thing my grandfather would ask when I’d call him was “Have you lost that weight yet?”, and the first topic of conversation with a few family members is always who’s gotten bigger/what a shame that is/etc. You just have to change the subject (with family), but if I had friends that did that sort of thing, I’d honestly have to change friends!

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AGS February 12, 2010

Wow! I couldn’t imagine having a friend constantly make comments like that. Generally, in my friendships if something is a sticking point, we are open enough to talk about it with the other person.

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Angie February 12, 2010

Yes! I had a friend just like this throughout college and shortly after. I must say I was a bit obsessed with my weight then and still a little bit now. After college I realized this friend was not good for my self-esteem or my well being. We slowly lost touch because I didn’t like how she made me feel. Honestly, I fear running into her today because I’m not the size 0 I was in college. Friends like this are not true friends.

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megan February 12, 2010

Thankfully I’ve never had friends like that. the most I get is if I’m trying to limit myself to 2 cookies instead of 12, they say “oh but you don’t need to worry about that.” haha they don’t seem to understand that nobody needs to eat 12 cookies, regardless of whether you are thin or not. (although I’ve been known to go overboard on many an occasion).

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Madeline - Greens and Jeans February 12, 2010

I had friends like that in high school. My sophomore year I decided to clean up my eating and boost my exercise and as a result I dropped some weight and was looking pretty good. Of course, my friends noticed and a couple of them began makin comments, started exercising, and were basically daring me to keep up with them. Luckily, I stayed out of it, but I did lose those girls as friends. I still have friends who ask about my habits, but now they ask more as a way to get ideas for their own food and exercise plans.

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Sarah @ The Foodie Diaries February 12, 2010

I think this is really common with women. Though I’ve never experienced it, I know friends who’ve tried to make lifestyle changes and catch a lot of flack from friends. It so obviously stems from insecurity with one’s own lifestyle–and I feel so bad for Kara!

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Jocelyn February 12, 2010

wow … no way.. my friends would NEVER make comments like that. Unless I’ve lost a ton of weight and they say good job or congratz or something…as long as i’m happy with myself they are happy!

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Cassie February 12, 2010

I see that aalll the time…and i’ll confess…sometimes I do it too. NOT THAT BADLY, but sometimes I find myself watching what my friends or eating or nothing their lack of exercise/healthy eating choices. I never say things, but perhaps it’s the stupid “competitive nature” we women are basically forced to have with regards to health/weight. Argh, I feel so bad now! I never even really noticed I was doing it until I read this article !

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Kate February 12, 2010

Angela, you read my heart! I have been struggling with this with a “new” friend for the past year. We worked together and I met my boyfriend through her and her husband. She is overweight and very unhealthy. Constantly doing the “wrong” things to lose weight and not understanding why she doesn’t lose it. I never criticize her about her weight (I wouldn’t do that to anyone who is overweight) and knowing she has low confidence, I try to compliment her as much as possible.

Unfortunately, women’s jealous sides come into play, and when we are out with other friends, she’ll make negative comments on how skinny I am and how she hates me for it. She makes it seem like she’s kidding, but it really hurts my feelings and makes me sad for her at the same time. I eat like a pig and she’ll comment on how she hates me and I can eat whatever I want and not get fat. Why the negativity? “Skinny” to me means unhealthy and I don’t want to be compared to unhealthy.

I also have other friends who I don’t see often, that the first thing they do is say how skinny I look. Why do we have to compliment each other on what shapes our bodies are? Why can’t women compliment each other on other things? Like “heard you kicked ass in that project at work, great job!”. Anyway, it’s so wonderful to know that others feel the same way!

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Kristen February 12, 2010

I COMPLETELY sympathize with her! Unfortunately, when I started working out regularly and having a more healthy and balanced diet (and losing a few pounds), a lot of friends and family did the exact same thing to me. Also unfortunately, I gave in to the combined weight of their judgments and a lot of my healthy habits went out the window and the weight I was able to lose came right back. It was very frustrating but it taught me a lesson and now I’m back on track to lose the weight again…without falling prey to their comments.

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Laura [realmealsteal] February 12, 2010

Great post, Angela! First of all, I feel sorry for Kara– I can’t imagine having a friend make so many comments on what I eat. Just typing that sounds weird.

I think Kara’s friend has some real issues with herself, not Kara. She must be pretty self-conscious about her weight or eating habits. That said, she shouldn’t push it off on Kara. Perhaps Kara can find a polite, respectful, but assertive way to tell her to back off! It must be really difficult to have a friendship like that. Sending Kara my best!

Luckily, I don’t have any friends or family who comment on what I eat in a negative way. If I ever say, “I should probably skip dessert because I had those fries yesterday,” my friends or hubby will say, “What are talking about? You look great! Now live a little.”

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Sophie @ yumventures February 12, 2010

I agree that this girl probably isn’t the greatest friend, and definitely has her own body image issues. She is taking them out on Kara to make herself feel better. Poor Kara!

I have never had a friend that actually comments on my weight or asks how much I weigh. But I HAVE had friends who have body image issues (and I have suffered from them myself) and there have always been events that are much less “obvious”; much more passive. They were never about someone being overweight, but rather if someone was acting disordered. Sometimes just talking about a workout would make someone jealous or want to go and beat how far she ran. Eating out with a group of women can be tough…if one person orders a salad, everyone immediately feels guilty for wanting the plate of pasta, or a dessert. I feel that friends don’t put pressure on you to exercise or eat like a bird, but when you see other people do it you put pressure on yourself.

My best friends in the world are the ones I can eat anything with, or can miss a day at the gym, and they don’t comment; it just DOESN’T MATTER to them. If we are going to beat disordered eating or body image issues for our future daughters, we just have to STOP talking about it. If someone loses 100 lbs, obviously that is a huge accomplishment to celebrate, but I don’t think its worth celebrating picking a salad over a delicious creamy shrimp alfredo if it is the alfred you reeeeeally wanted. For me it is more important to be happy than to care about what everyone else thinks.

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Jenna February 12, 2010

You didn’t ask if we are the ones watching our friends weight?

I think it is very much the girls low self-esteem issues coming out and constantly asking kara about her food intake. she is comparing herself to her. which is really said she should just go about life and enjoy their time together. My advice to kara step away from this person for awhile and maybe get back together after a few weeks and see if anything has changed…if not confront her about it.

On the other hand though…when you have a group of close girlfriends I think at some point it weight comparison is an issue, even if there is nothing said out loud.

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Katy February 12, 2010

I hear her! A college friend I hadn’t seen in more than a year came to visit me and, before she left, had been saying, “You look so SKINNY!” based on photos. When she got here, she didn’t think twice and said, “You still look good, but you don’t look nearly as tiny in person.”

I’m prepping for a trip to visit her in a month, and now I’m self-conscious about my weight and whether or not I’m going to look the same as the photos she’s seen.

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Molly @thevegandorm February 12, 2010

Omg – I totally had a friend like that.
She started by questioning me loudly in front of a whole group of friends about how I got my legs to be so thin. Then, we were sitting at a big table passing around brownies (pre-vegan). THey were small, so the whole group was just munching away. When I reached for my third, she said, “Oh my god, is that your second or third?!”
I immediately freaked out and threw it away, which I shouldn’t have done.
Fortunately, we now go to different colleges and it’s not an issue.
The thing is, it stems from THEIR low self confidence. I just wouldn’t answer her questions – just say “None of your business!” Eventually she’ll stop asking.

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Brittany February 12, 2010

Angela, your oatmeals always look soooo good! Since I eat breakfast at my desk at work (I know, awful habit) I have started to experiment a little with instant oats, and I think I have found the perfect blend that works for me: instant oats, hot water, ground flax seeds, bananas, and a sprinkle of brown sugar. Mmmm breakfast heaven!

Do you have any quick and easy recipes that use instant oats that I could throw together at work?? In fact any work recipe ideas would be good!

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Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine February 12, 2010

Ugh, I definitely deal with this frequently, unfortunately. This post is actually making me question some of my newer friendships, because I feel like friends I’ve made since moving to New York are way more weight-conscious than any I’ve had in the past. I’m thin because I workout and eat healthfully, but I get tons of bull for it. One friend in particular told me she doesn’t think I should be a vegetarian because “that’s how you get an eating disorder” (she doesn’t know I’ve had one, and I don’t feel the need to add fuel to the fire by confiding in her). We’ll go out to dinner, and when I order a vegetarian dish, she rolls her eyes and tells me to order a steak already. The other day, she asked me how my half marathon training was going, and when I told her it was great but my legs were tired from my workout that morning, she said “I don’t think running thirteen miles is healthy for you, then.” Um, excuse me? I am following a training plan and will do what I want. The ironic thing is that she constantly complains about her weight, even though she’s thin, and always asks me how many calories I think are in the dish she just ate.

Sadly, I think it’s a prevalent theme in a lot of womens’ friendships. We’re constantly comparing ourselves to one another, and it’s often poisonous to the relationship. I guess a “real friend” wouldn’t judge you based on your weight, but I think in certain situations it’s difficult to find people who honestly don’t care at all what you look like.

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Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat) February 12, 2010

I definitely understand what your friend is dealing with. It’s like you can’t win no matter what you eat. Just eating salad? “Are you anorexic or something?” Order dessert or eat some bread? “Gosh, I thought you were healthy.”

My dad always makes these comments. When I order salad, he pushes dessert on me. When I decide to get dessert, he makes a crack about “Well, save a bite for the rest of us!”

Frustrating.

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Claudia @ ...and so I ran February 12, 2010

I so can relate to Kara. Ever since I decided to start Running and eating healthier one of my friends has been very critical of the whole process.
Constantly making comments on my food choices and making fun of the natural remedies I take to keep healthy during the winter months (oil of Oregano etc)
I almost find like I have hide what I eat from her so I don’t have to hear another remark or I have to justify everything I do.
I too feel like she would be happy if I gained all the weight I lost… because while I was heavier she never once commented on my eating or the lack of working out.
Just this morning she bought a Chocolate bar for us to share, not sure why she would do that if she knows I’m trying to loose weight and try to stay away from things like that.
Now that I’ve taken on Running it’s almost like she wants me to fail… I don’t understand why friends can’t be happy to see their friends succeed in whatever they decided to take on.

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Allison February 12, 2010

I don’t have any friends that make comments like that to me about my weight, but some of my friends will make comments to me about other mutual friends about how they’ve gained or lost weight in college. I think they are self conscious about their own habits and are concerned about gaining weight. It just makes me wonder if they ever talk about me like that!

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Betsy February 12, 2010

That is really awful of her friends to say! Poor girl. I’m very lucky that my friends support my healthy eating habits. They even ask me for tips sometimes and it makes me happy that I can help! I hope she sticks up for herself or removes those negative people from her life. No one needs that!

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Helen February 12, 2010

My mother actually used to always do that to me in high school! she’s constantly ask me how much I weighed, criticize me whenever I had something indulgent, etc. She still does it when I visit home, but to a lesser extent… but I’ve realized that what I put into MY body isn’t anyone else’s business.

I’ve also been in Kara’s friend’s shoes. When I was a disordered eater, I used to always watch my friends eat things that I wouldn’t allow myself to have, and think to myself, “She’s going to eat THAT?! No wonder she’s not thin!” It’s obvious that her friend is having some insecurities about food/body image herself and is projecting them onto Kara. If I were her, I’d confront her once about it, directly and politely, but if she continues, just to learn to let the comments bounce right off.

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Shannon (The Daily Balance) February 12, 2010

that is rediculous – i would NOT put up with that and not spend my time with that friend. We need to surround ourselved with people who contribute postive energy and nor weigh us down with negativity!

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Christie @ Honoring Health February 12, 2010

This is a major loaded topic for me. My family has always been critical of my weight and what I eat and I have had the same with friends in the past. I even have co-workers make comments about my food choices. Thankfully, I have let go of the friendships that felt the need to constantly be talking about my weight and/or exercise habits. I think these types of things come from one of two things; either insecurity or stereotyping.

I think that everyone has the right to eat and exercise in whatever way feels best to them and not interfere with others in this manner. I think the same is true for the folks that leave nasty comments on blogs about what people are eating or how they are exercising. It is disgusting and really only shows you what kind of person they really are.

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KathyR February 12, 2010

Yikes! So many tales of nosy mean people! These people need a good talking to. Or a smack in the head.

But Kara needs a little talking to, as well. Why does she care so much about what this one bitter person says? Why is she even thinking about changing her behavior in reaction to this person? Kara! Stiffen your spine and give this “friend” the thousand-yard stare the next time she has the nerve to make a comment on YOUR body!

Women everywhere: Stop being so nice. You don’t have to be pleasant and accommodating to people who just want to run you down!

Sorry. Got a little carried away there.

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Jessica @ The Process of Healing February 12, 2010

LOVE that picture of Sketchi! He’s adorable :)

As for your question, I have experienced that in the past but not currently. When it did happen, it made me SO self-conscious about my weight and about what I was eating and how much I was working out. It shouldn’t be like that. Friends are supposed to support you.. and I don’t think your friends mean anything bad by it most of the time.

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Lizzie February 12, 2010

All throughout high school I got the anorexia comments (even though I ate heaps of healthy stuff and played sports etc). My mum was the same way at my age. It didn’t bother me so much then, but it bothers me a lot now. It’s no longer the anorexia comments, but more just about how lucky I am to be skinny, I have a great body etc. The thing is, people really have no idea what is truly going on in someone’s life. One problem I am too embarrassed to mention here, but if people knew about it they wouldn’t be so envious. Because people always comment on my weight, I have now become very conscious of it – and truly believe that if I don’t have that, then I won’t receive any attention from friends at all. Why can’t we just focus and appreciate the fact that we’re so blessed to have bodies that can take us places and that we should treat them as such, feeding them nutritious food, treating ourselves and others with respect, regardless of our/their food choices?

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Tyler February 12, 2010

real friends do not say things like that!! that’s ridiculous! its sounds like those girls have declared some kind of weight competition in their heads. they feel self conscious when she eats healthier than them, and they feel the need to put her down when she indulges. but they might not even realize they are doing it, so she should let them know how their comments are affecting her.

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chandra February 12, 2010

When I went back home to Illinois the first time after losing some weight it was SO much similar to this. People were constantly watching what I ate, questioning every bite I took (or didn’t take). At my bbf’s engagement bbq I decided to skip the bun on my burger and enjoy a pile of chips instead (who wants a dry, plain bun when there’s yummy chips?!). This was a HUGE issue. I immediately had people asking me, “Why aren’t you using a bun? Do you not eat carbs now? Is that how you’re losing weight?” I about flipped. Hello?! There is a pile of chips on my plate, do you really think I stopped eating carbs?!

It was constantly like this when I’d go home and it got to the point where I almost felt like I needed to eat MORE around these people so they’d get off my back.. especially once I found out a rumor started there that I lost weight because I had an ED. Whoa. Not cool. But then I realized what these people said and thought didn’t matter. I knew I was treating my body right and their opinions shouldn’t have any effect on my decisions.

It sucks to be watched like this, but your friend just needs to remember she knows she is making the right choices for her, and what her other friend thinks/says should just go in one ear and out the other!

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Ameena February 12, 2010

I feel sorry for your poor friend! I don’t think anyone really keeps tabs on my weight except for me and maybe my mom. My mom often thinks I am getting too thin so she does it because mom’s worry about everything! It doesn’t upset me though.

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Jacquie February 12, 2010

I feel so badly for her because I have had this happen to me and it brought out all of my insecurities and made me question myself. Not good. However, what she should know is that Kara’s friend is more insecure with herself since she’s constantly looking for validation about her own eating habits.
What I’d honestly suggest is for Kara to stop going out to eat with this girl. If she wants to still be friends, that’s her decision, but at least break off any food related activities. Not only will that help her, but maybe her friend will get the picture.

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Amy @ Everything is Homemade February 12, 2010

I feel blessed that I don’t have this problem with close family and friends, but I have had this issue with coworkers. If I’m eating something healthy in the cafeteria or if I’m seen walking downstairs with my gym bag (we have a gym at my office), I hear comments like “you don’t need to work out, you’re already so skinny!” or “why are you eating healthy if you are already so skinny?”. At first it hurts my feelings to hear comments about my weight, but then I just try to tell my self that it’s their problem, not mine. I’m treating my body well by eating healthy and exercising and they are just self-conscious about their own habits!

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Lauren February 12, 2010

Only my mom does that to me :)

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