Body Image and Dating After Weight Loss Surgery
While losing weight can have immediate and significant impacts on many aspects of your life (like your health and the way your clothes fit), there are some things that take a bit longer to come around: namely, your body image and the emotional adjustment to having a new figure. When you use a gastric band to lose weight, you may be able to achieve the weight and body you’ve been dreaming of and with that, you might hope to accomplish things that were harder for you when you were overweight, things such as dating, going out, and flirting with people you find attractive.
If you’ve connected your self-worth to the way you look (and this goes for everyone from size 2 to 22), there’s going to be a shift in the way you think about yourself and the way you perceive how others think of you.
Bariatric surgery support groups, like the social support we provide at Slimband, can be a great resource for you after choosing the gastric band to lose weight. Some aspects we deal with as you experience successful weight loss include:
- Learning to appreciate what your body can do without the added weight, rather than how it looks. Post-surgery exercise tips and groups can help you get into better shape and health.
- Exploring feelings and old wounds from having been rejected or overlooked in the past because of your size.
- Finding ways to deal with the new attention you might receive.
- Building self-esteem while keeping your ego in check.
- Helping you through relationships where you suspect someone might only like you for your new appearance, instead of for the “real” you.
Besides gaining the tools to foster a positive body image (which is key to any successful relationship!), bariatric support groups can also be useful if you want to hear from others when it comes to “revealing” that you’ve had weight loss surgery to the person you’re dating. For some people, it’s a non-issue and not something they decide to share. Others, however, may feel a need to explain their eating habits or prepare their partner for some of the physical aspects that come with using a gastric band to lose weight, such as being able to feel the Slimband’s access port or some loose skin. At our national weight loss surgery clinics, you’ll be able to talk about these issues openly and without judgment.