Your Life Will Change After Bariatric Surgery

If you have reached the point of considering bariatric surgery, you realize you need a significant change. While bariatric surgery will certainly help you develop a healthier lifestyle that results in a lower weight, better physical appearance, and fewer medical issues, it is important that we stress a simple fact: Your life will most certainly change after surgery. Objectively, all of these changes will be positive, however as you experience them, you may perceive some as being very challenging.

One of the most significant changes and challenges after bariatric surgery involves the relationships you have with friends, loved ones and even your spouse. Remember that they are used to the old version of you. The old you will invariably change, as you feel more confident, feel better mentally and physically and change your social life to reflect that. Unfortunately, many times, friends and loved ones feel left out from this transformation and their reactions can vary. Some will come along for the ride, loving every minute of it and maybe even implementing some positive changes themselves. Some may feel left out or alone as you seemingly progress to a happier, better life without them. Some may feel threatened and jealous and lash out with open hostilities.

Why Do We Bring This up Before Surgery?

It’s really important to know that the support system you develop after surgery will be critical to your long-term success. Weight loss surgery is not a magic bullet and you will not lose weight by yourself, in a bubble. Rather, you must lean on the people around you, whether friends or family, to build you up and cheer you on. Of course, we as your bariatric practice help along the way, but there’s no substitute for supportive loved ones.

Therefore, if you have friends or loved ones that are not on board with your new life and lifestyle, you will undoubtedly experience disappointment and stress. Both of which are diet killers and could derail your amazing progress.

The answer is not to simply proceed at full steam and leave them behind. Rather, the solution begins now, before surgery. Some tips that may help include:

  • Bring them along to your consultations and appointments so they understand why you are having surgery and understand what to expect after the procedure. Removing major elements of surprise will make them feel safer in your relationship.
  • Bring them to a counselor that can proactively prepare both of you for what is to come.
  • Recruit them to be a part of your new lifestyle by including them in your diet plan and advocating for their health too.
  • Make them feel a part of your new life by encouraging them to come along to social events, be a part of support groups and join you in other lifestyle changes you choose.
  • Be honest. Keeping your feeling in will not help the situation and only allow bad feelings, if any, to breed and grow.

Some friends and family may not accept your decision, and this may require a tough conversation about how you need to advocate for yourself and your own health. They may come around eventually as they see your life flourish and your confidence blossom. In the meantime, make sure you develop a comprehensive support system well before having surgery, so your recovery and long-term weight loss is as smooth and effective as possible.

Please contact our office or check out our support group page to learn more.

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