People Who Decided Not To Have Children Divulge Their Reasoning
Having kids is expensive, a ton of responsibility, and something that not everyone is cut out for - but it seems to be something we're all just socially expected to do.
In recent years, there has been a growing trend of people who are consciously choosing to forego children. One Reddit user asked why, and launched a thread full of all sorts of humorous, heartbreaking, and honest responses.
Not Passing This Onjoan crawford mom GIF by IFCGiphy
I have bipolar, bipolar is a c*nt to deal with. I don't want to pass it onto anyone. My bipolar has caused a lot of heart ache and made issues 10x worse. And I've hurt a lot of people because of my episodes.
Also OCD; and OCD is a c*nt as well.
Peoples perception of it is just being anal about cleaning. But they don't know the dark side of OCD where you think hurting people because something little interrupted the habit.
I wish more people understood how debilitating OCD is. My uncle would wash his hands until they bled and he struggled to leave his home most days because the outside chaos distressed him so deeply. If you personally have it then I'm very sorry and I hope you're getting support for it, I'm not sure what aid is actually out there
I'm in my mid-40s, and have known I didn't want children since I was a child myself. I have many reasons why not:
- Too much responsibility. We have a dog and that's already pushing it for us, to be honest. I can barely summon enough desire and energy to walk the dog daily, can't even imagine what it must be like with kids.
- Pregnancy and labor seems utterly horrific to me. No thanks.
- I like money and having the free time to enjoy it, especially in regards to travel.
- Both my husband and I have mental and physical health issues we wouldn't want to pass on.
- Personally, I think bringing a kid into this sh*tty world right now is a pretty horrible thing to do. Climate change (and a whole lot of other issues) are about to f*ck our shit up HARD - why would you bring a kid into that??
- If I'm really honest, I just really don't like kids. Especially under the age of 10 or so. Why the f*ck would I sign up for that kind of burden? I have many, many nieces/nephews who I can enjoy in small doses, and then send back to their parents.
I've been told over the years that I would change my mind. Nope. I get all the usual crap like, "Who will take care of you when you're old??" (Answer - my money that I've saved by not having kids will) or "Not having kids is so selfish!" (Riiight...and having them isn't??)
Anyway, to anyone reading this - make the right decision for you. Don't feel you have to follow life script of marriage -> house -> kids. I'm extremely happy and have zero regrets.
The Risks And Sacrifies
I like having free time and space to myself, but the primary reason is that pregnancy and birth is awful (and I have a pain phobia). Also I have serious concerns about the impact on my mental health
Yep, I was on the fence until I learned about post-partum psychosis. It bothers me how much people, especially mothers, downplay the physical risks and sacrifices. It's not for everyone.
As a mother of two, I too am bothered by that. I made it my mission to always be brutally honest about what it's like because it's not easy. Not even a little.
Pregnancy is hard, child birth is hard. Sleep deprivation is hard. Having your hormones swing like a metronome on speed... is the hardest thing I've ever gone through.
Your body is literally convincing you of things that aren't real or true, and then making you feel crazy for basically just existing. We need to stop going on and on about how magical it all is like we're trying to sell it to people. Trust me, those that decide to have kids will get it.
It is true that the magical moments make everything feel worth it, but they don't erase the hard moments. You don't forget. Pregnancy and birth trauma are real. Postpartum depression is real and neither should be taken lightly simply because having babies is so "magical".
If you don't want them, don't have them. There's enough of us that do want them. You're not selfish, you're making a decision for YOUR life.
I Don't Like Sharing
I don't have the maternal qualities to be a good mother. I'm impatient, hotheaded, selfish, and my mental health isn't in the best shape. I don't want to unknowingly treat my child the way my mother treated me.
I also prefer to save my money, build my wealth, go on trips, sleep in in the mornings, and party. I don't like sharing, not even my money, which is why my partner and I have separate bank accounts and it will stay that way if we ever get married.
I also would just like being able to go to the bathroom without a kid trying to break in.
Cause I'd Have To Be Pregnant FirstBaby Belly GIFGiphy
I don't necessarily have a phobia of being pregnant, but people I know and love being pregnant makes me weirdly uncomfortable? Like I'm totally fine with meeting a random pregnant woman, but when my friend was pregnant it just felt really off. My mum once made a joke about being pregnant (I'm the youngest so I've never known her pregnant) after eating too much, and I felt kind of sick. It's odd...
The idea of pregnancy also weirds me out. For me a lot of it is the idea of losing my autonomy and that as a woman I'm expected to love babies. I just don't. I also find it uncomfortable to discuss pregnancy - some people treat it like it's an elitist group and give waaaaay too much detail about bodily functions.
I so agree about the losing your autonomy part, that prevents me from ever wanting to get pregnant more than the physical aspects of pregnancy themselves. You suddenly can't do activities you love, you can't eat certain things, you can't drink certain things, you can't take medicine of you have a headache, apparently you can't even take hot baths. To me it sounds like stripping away everything that makes life fun, and any decisions away from me about my own body. To stop existing as a person and functioning as an incubator instead.
Plus every time someone I know announces they're pregnant, that's all anyone ever asks them about. They walk into a room and the first thing asked is "how's BABY?" Any time one of my friends is pregnant I try to ask them only about how their life is and don't bring up the pregnancy unless they do. They (usually) still have a personality outside of just being pregnant.
A pregnant friend told me it felt like her baby was CLAWING at her rib cage and I've never been able to get that image out of my head
Because They Were Wanted
Complete lack of interest. I feel the same way about children that I do about most dogs. Yeah, dogs are great. But if you tried to offer me a dog, even if it was free, I would probably say thanks, but no thanks.
That would be a very bad attitude for a parent to have towards their child. Children should be had because they were wanted.
Also, raging alcoholism.
This is mine. I could go on about my temperament or my lifestyle or my medical history, but at the end of the day, those factors wouldn't stop me if I really wanted a kid. But I don't. I fundamentally believe that kids deserve to be wanted and welcomed, and if they aren't, don't have them.
I Cannot Put A Child Through That
I grew up with severe depression, an anxiety disorder, and ADHD. The majority of my parents and grandparents are alcoholics and/or addicts. One of my parents was so mentally ill they lost custody. It was rough.
My SO also has severe ADHD and obsessive compulsive anxiety. Me and my SO both struggled with substance abuse as teenagers. I spent a long time in mental hospitals.
I hated being alive and felt completely helpless. No therapist or doctor or pill ever helped. The only reason I pulled through is because I met my SO.
If I had a child who felt the same way I did, and I knew I couldn't help them and they would just ignore me the way I ignored my mother as a kid, it would break my heart.
I cannot put a child through that.
You Should Be Asking The Other Side
Because I have no desire to have a child. Why do something I have no desire to do?
If more people thought about why they actually want to have a child there would be fewer cases of child abuse and neglect.
You should be asking why people who have children decided to. Too many times the answer is, "it just happened"
Which no, it didn't. When you have sexual intercourse and the sperm meets the ovum you get pregnant. You aren't the next Mary. It didn't "just happen."
Or you hear "it's what you do" / "it's the next step". Why? This is literally another life you're being so flippant about.
Not Testing This Out
I truly think I'm no fit for a parent, I can barely even take care of myself.
Also every time I have had dreams about being pregnant or having a baby, in my dreams it always resulted into me trying to kill either myself and/or the baby, because I was terrified, I didn't want it, I knew I wouldn't be able to take care of it etc.
There's no way I'm going to test it out and see what would happen in real life if I actually were to have children.
Because it's not at all easy and affordable.
I have seen my father working so hard and extra hours, taking uncountable loans to pay for my college fees just for their child to turn out incredibly stupid. I have seen my mother work countless hours in the kitchen and spend all day making meals for us, doing household chores with literally zero rest and sleep.
I hope one day I will be able to repay them.
Honestly, there are so many more cons than pros that I think the question should be reversed.
I see parents saying "if I knew better..." all the time!!! And I got the impression that a lot more don't say it just because it's wrong to think about it.
You should be 110% sure that you want kids and KNOW that you will have to compromise large aspects of your life and be ok with it. Or be filthy rich and have other people take care of your kid for you.
There are so many reasons, but the top contenders are as follows:
- My husband and I both enjoy free time and disposable income and aren't willing to compromise either
- I've never felt maternal towards children or babies (I didn't even like playing with baby dolls as a little girl) and don't enjoy spending time with them
- I'm immunocompromised and having a kid go to school, pick up whatever illness is going around, and bring it home just sounds miserable
- I have several chronic illnesses and health issues that I don't want to pass on
- Life is full of pain and suffering, and ethically I can't imagine dooming another human being to this existence
My husband was kind enough to get a vasectomy so our childfree future is secured :)
When it's your own
Grew up with my mother saying "I never liked children but it's different when it's your own" but I never felt loved... Yeah, it's not really different when it's your own. Parents really should at least like children. And I never liked children, even when I was a child, much-preferred adults generally. Still do.
Carrying abusive baggage would have made me a not very good parent, and I did not want to pass that on to a child. There is no excuse for being unkind to a child.
I've said this since I was probably 16: "I love my future kids too much to actually have them."
I just really have no interest in having kids and definitely don't have the resources, including money, physical stamina, and emotional fortitude.
I think way too many people have kids because it's just what they think the next step in life is supposed to be without actually thinking about what life will be like for the kid they're creating. You always hear about people making sure they have the money to take care of a kid, but it's really rare to hear somebody ask themselves if they have the emotional maturity to create another human. It's kind of a big deal.
I enjoy my free life. I am a woman and feel whole and happy without the need of making human beings. I never wanted to have kids. I remember as a teenager, people (adults women) would tell me the classic "you'll see, it will come on you like you can't control it, you will have children, so you can feel like a real woman" 😂. Even 7 years ago, I kept hearing this.
I'm 40 years old in few days, I live a happy life, still without kids, and I meet more and more women who have made this conscious choice, and are also enjoying their lives.
I have a good job, building businesses, have money, travel, I'm physically fit and loving my body, hangout with friends, have weekends out, all my time for myself and my relationship. My man is same as me, we only want a puppy. We don't think having kids should be a purpose in life, a compulsory thing, or even something that makes you feel "complete".
For me, my purpose is to be happy, healthy, make other happy too (I do a lot of charity and work for a NGO too, some even involve kids).
I'm not having my own children but I'd like to foster some kids. There are so many kids with no home. It would be selfish to have my own child just because foster kids have so much baggage. I want to give those teens a chance to have a better life.
Let me preface this with: I acknowledge that I am a selfish person.
I value my hobbies, free time, money, sleep, and quiet entirely too much. I hear kids screaming/crying in public and I just absolutely cringe and become riddled with second-hand embarrassment.
It's just not for me.
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Reddit user Isitjustmedownhere asked: 'Give an example; how weird are you really?'
Let's get one thing straight: no one is normal. We're all weird in our own ways, and that is actually normal.
Of course, that doesn't mean we don't all have that one strange trait or quirk that outweighs all the other weirdness we possess.
For me, it's the fact that I'm almost 30 years old, and I still have an imaginary friend. Her name is Sarah, she has red hair and green eyes, and I strongly believe that, since I lived in India when I created her and there were no actual people with red hair around, she was based on Daphne Blake from Scooby-Doo.
I also didn't know the name Sarah when I created her, so that came later. I know she's not really there, hence the term 'imaginary friend,' but she's kind of always been around. We all have conversations in our heads; mine are with Sarah. She keeps me on task and efficient.
My mom thinks I'm crazy that I still have an imaginary friend, and writing about her like this makes me think I may actually be crazy, but I don't mind. As I said, we're all weird, and we all have that one trait that outweighs all the other weirdness.
Redditors know this all too well and are eager to share their weird traits.
It all started when Redditor Isitjustmedownhere asked:
"Give an example; how weird are you really?"
Monsters Under My Bed
"My bed doesn't touch any wall."
"Edit: I guess i should clarify im not rich."
"Gosh the monsters can get you from any angle then."
"At first I thought this was a flex on how big your bedroom is, but then I realized you're just a psycho 😁"
Can You See Why?
"I bought one of those super-powerful fans to dry a basement carpet. Afterwards, I realized that it can point straight up and that it would be amazing to use on myself post-shower. Now I squeegee my body with my hands, step out of the shower and get blasted by a wide jet of room-temp air. I barely use my towel at all. Wife thinks I'm weird."
"In 1990 when I was 8 years old and bored on a field trip, I saw a black Oldsmobile Cutlass driving down the street on a hot day to where you could see that mirage like distortion from the heat on the road. I took a “snapshot” by blinking my eyes and told myself “I wonder how long I can remember this image” ….well."
"Even before smartphones, I always take "snapshots" by blinking my eyes hoping I'll remember every detail so I can draw it when I get home. Unfortunately, I may have taken so much snapshots that I can no longer remember every detail I want to draw."
"Makes me think my "memory is full.""
"I have eaten the same lunch every day for the past 4 years and I'm not bored yet."
"How f**king big was this lunch when you started?"
Not Sure Who Was Weirder
"Had a line cook that worked for us for 6 months never said much. My sous chef once told him with no context, "Baw wit da baw daw bang daw bang diggy diggy." The guy smiled, left, and never came back."
"I pace around my house for hours listening to music imagining that I have done all the things I simply lack the brain capacity to do, or in some really bizarre scenarios, I can really get immersed in these imaginations sometimes I don't know if this is some form of schizophrenia or what."
"I do the same exact thing, sometimes for hours. When I was young it would be a ridiculous amount of time and many years later it’s sort of trickled off into almost nothing (almost). It’s weird but I just thought it’s how my brain processes sh*t."
"Even as an adult I still think that if you are in a car that goes over a cliff; and right as you are about to hit the ground if you jump up you can avoid the damage and will land safely. I know I'm wrong. You shut up. I'm not crying."
"As a kid I would snack on my dog's Milkbones."
"Haha, I have a clear memory of myself doing this as well. I was around 3 y/o. Needless to say no one was supervising me."
"When I was younger, one of my responsibilities was to feed the pet fish every day. Instead, I would hide under the futon in the spare bedroom and eat the fish food."
My Favorite Subject
"I'm autistic and have always had a thing for insects. My neurotypical best friend and I used to hang out at this local bar to talk to girls, back in the late 90s. One time he claimed that my tendency to circle conversations back to insects was hurting my game. The next time we went to that bar (with a few other friends), he turned and said sternly "No talking about bugs. Or space, or statistics or other bullsh*t but mainly no bugs." I felt like he was losing his mind over nothing."
"It was summer, the bar had its windows open. Our group hit it off with a group of young ladies, We were all chatting and having a good time. I was talking to one of these girls, my buddy was behind her facing away from me talking to a few other people."
"A cloudless sulphur flies in and lands on little thing that holds coasters."
"Cue Jordan Peele sweating gif."
"The girl notices my tension, and asks if I am looking at the leaf. "Actually, that's a lepidoptera called..." I looked at the back of my friend's head, he wasn't looking, "I mean a butterfly..." I poked it and it spread its wings the girl says "oh that's a BUG?!" and I still remember my friend turning around slowly to look at me with chastisement. The ONE thing he told me not to do."
"I was 21, and was completely not aware that I already had a rep for being an oddball. It got worse from there."
"I bite ice cream sometimes."
"That's how I am with popsicles. My wife shudders every single time."
Never Speak Of This
"I put ice in my milk."
"You should keep that kind of thing to yourself. Even when asked."
"There's some disturbing sh*t in this thread, but this one takes the cake."
More Than Super Hearing
"I can hear the television while it's on mute."
"What does it say to you, child?"
"I put mustard on my omelettes."
– Deleted User
"Whenever I say a word and feel like I used a half of my mouth more than the other half, I have to even it out by saying the word again using the other half of my mouth more. If I don't do it correctly, that can go on forever until I feel it's ok."
"I do it silently so I don't creep people out."
"That sounds like a symptom of OCD (I have it myself). Some people with OCD feel like certain actions have to be balanced (like counting or making sure physical movements are even). You should find a therapist who specializes in OCD, because they can help you."
I totally have the same need for things to be balanced! Guess I'm weird and a little OCD!
Experiencing death is a fascinating and frightening idea.
Who doesn't want to know what is waiting for us on the other side?
But so many of us want to know and then come back and live a little longer.
It would be so great to be sure there is something else.
But the whole dying part is not that great, so we'll have to rely on other people's accounts.
Redditor AlaskaStiletto wanted to hear from everyone who has returned to life, so they asked:
"Redditors who have 'died' and come back to life, what did you see?"
SensationsHappy Good Vibes GIF by Major League SoccerGiphy
"My dad's heart stopped when he had a heart attack and he had to be brought back to life. He kept the paper copy of the heart monitor which shows he flatlined. He said he felt an overwhelming sensation of peace, like nothing he had felt before."
"I had surgical complications in 2010 that caused a great deal of blood loss. As a result, I had extremely low blood pressure and could barely stay awake. I remember feeling like I was surrounded by loved ones who had passed. They were in a circle around me and I knew they were there to guide me onwards. I told them I was not ready to go because my kids needed me and I came back."
"My nurse later said she was afraid she’d find me dead every time she came into the room."
"It took months, and blood transfusions, but I recovered."
Take Me Back
"Overwhelming peace and happiness. A bright airy and floating feeling. I live a very stressful life. Imagine finding out the person you have had a crush on reveals they have the same feelings for you and then you win the lotto later that day - that was the feeling I had."
"I never feared death afterward and am relieved when I hear of people dying after suffering from an illness."
FreeThe Light Minnie GIF by (G)I-DLEGiphy
"I had a heart surgery with near-death experience, for me at least (well the possibility that those effects are caused by morphine is also there) I just saw black and nothing else but it was warm and I had such inner peace, its weird as I sometimes still think about it and wish this feeling of being so light and free again."
This is why I hate surgery.
You just never know.
"More of a near-death experience. I was electrocuted. I felt like I was in a deep hole looking straight up in the sky. My life flashed before me. Felt sad for my family, but I had a deep sense of peace."
"Nursing in the ICU, we’ve had people try to die on us many times during the years, some successfully. One guy stood out to me. His heart stopped. We called a code, are working on him, and suddenly he comes to. We hadn’t vented him yet, so he was able to talk, and he started screaming, 'Don’t let them take me, don’t let them take me, they are coming,' he was scared and yelling."
"Then he yelled a little more, as we tried to calm him down, he screamed, 'No, No,' and gestured towards the end of the bed, and died again. We didn’t get him back. It was seriously creepy. We called his son to tell him the news, and the son said basically, 'Good, he was an SOB.'”
"My sister died and said it was extremely peaceful. She said it was very loud like a train station and lots of talking and she was stuck in this area that was like a curtain with lots of beautiful colors (colors that you don’t see in real life according to her) a man told her 'He was sorry, but she had to go back as it wasn’t her time.'"
"I had a really similar experience except I was in an endless garden with flowers that were colors I had never seen before. It was quiet and peaceful and a woman in a dress looked at me, shook her head, and just said 'Not yet.' As I was coming back, it was extremely loud, like everyone in the world was trying to talk all at once. It was all very disorienting but it changed my perspective on life!"
"I was in a gray fog with a girl who looked a lot like a young version of my grandmother (who was still alive) but dressed like a pioneer in the 1800s she didn't say anything but kept pulling me towards an opening in the wall. I kept refusing to go because I was so tired."
"I finally got tired of her nagging and went and that's when I came to. I had bled out during a c-section and my heart could not beat without blood. They had to deliver the baby and sew up the bleeders. refill me with blood before they could restart my heart so, like, at least 12 minutes gone."
Through the Walls
"My spouse was dead for a couple of minutes one miserable night. She maintains that she saw nothing, but only heard people talking about her like through a wall. The only thing she remembers for absolute certain was begging an ER nurse that she didn't want to die."
"She's quite alive and well today."
Well let's all be happy to be alive.
It seems to be all we have.
We all have our favorite foods, food preferences, and even foods that we don't like.
But there are some popular foods out there that just don't make sense. Nonetheless, we keep seeing them advertised, included in movies and TV shows, and of course, our loved ones ordering them while we look on in confusion.
Curious about others' food preferences, Redditor YarnSpectre asked:
"What's one food everyone seems to go crazy for, but you just don't understand the hype?"
So Much Sugar
"Nutella. It’s just okay."
"Way too sweet for me, I’d probably love it with one-fifth of the sugar."
"Unfortunately that's true of a lot of desserts, though. Most would benefit from a cut of at least 25 percent of the sugar."
"Red velvet cake. I've had ones that were supposed to be excellent but it's just red cake."
"Most red velvet cakes are just s**tty vanilla cake with red food coloring. Get one (or make one) the correct way with non-Dutch-processed cocoa powder, buttermilk, and vinegar. It's an incredibly smooth, very different type of chocolate cake."
Mastery Makes a Difference
"Those multicolored cookie things that everyone was making into cakes or something for a while? Macaroons? Macarons? I don't think I've ever had one that tasted good. They're pretty, but that's it."
"Macarons. I never cared for them either."
"I had one yesterday at a potluck, homemade ones. They were seriously something else, with some sort of butter cream and jelly inside. Never had anything quite like it. Now I wish I had grabbed a few to take home."
"I still won't eat store-bought ones, though."
The Wrong Kind of Spice
"Hot Cheetos or Takis. Anything with the artificially colored spicy powder."
"Takis texture is my issue. They’re like semi-stale rolled-up Doritos."
The Sugar Cookies of the Midwest
"Those dry-a** Walmart sugar cookies."
"They taste like play-dough cookies came to life."
"I mean, people go crazy in both directions, but cilantro. There’s the whole 'does it taste like soap or not' thing, but it’s usually presented as 'people either think it tastes like soap or they find it amazing.'"
"I am neither. It doesn’t taste like soap to me, but I also don’t love it. Meh."
"I don't think it tastes like soap, but I do think it tastes weirdly metallic. I don't go out of my way to avoid it in pre-prepared food, but I usually leave it out of things I'm preparing myself."
Fancy Decor Only
"People like how fondant LOOKS. I refuse to believe a single soul wants to EAT it."
"It's like eating a candied raincoat."
Back for a Limited Time
"Every time it comes back, I’m SUPER excited for the McRib at McDonald's. I bite into one and then… the spongey texture hits me and makes me remember why I don’t need to buy it ever again."
"Then, somehow, McRib season rolls around again two years later, and there I am in line…"
"I'm convinced this is why they only bring it out every once in a while. Nobody actually likes it, but they wait just long enough for you to forget that it's no good and then hit you with a combo of nostalgia and 'limited time only' FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)."
A Seasonal Tradition
"Pumpkin spice. It’s fine, but absolutely not anything to make a fuss about."
"There is a car parts place in a small town I drive through to visit family, and last year on their reader board, they had: 'THEYRE BACK! PUMPKIN SPICE BRAKE PADS.'"
"And now I can never see anything pumpkin spice and not think about it, might have been my favorite reader board sign ever."
Pure Caffeine Addiction
"Energy drinks like Red Bull or Monster."
"I'm an avid Monster drinker, but I totally get it. I'm always trying new and interesting energy drinks I see, but so much of it is just garbage."
"The white Monster tastes like 90s Fresca to me and is the only energy drink I love."
"Can it be a beverage? Because I kind of hate IPAs but everyone else seems to love them. And I like beer, just not IPAs."
"I have nothing against people who want complex beers. It's just not for me. I want an easy as f**k to drink fizzy yellow beer for when it's hot out. And a nice smooth stout for all other times. When I want more complex flavors, I'll go for wine or scotch."
Just Too Expensive
"What about lobster? I can dig it with drawn butter and I ain’t mad at it. But f**k me if I’m gonna pay $29.99 for a lobster. I’d rather eat shrimp."
"Truffles. I paid $60 this weekend at an Italian restaurant for eight slivers on my pasta shaved in front of me. I barely tasted anything. I don't get the hype."
Improved Gut Health?
"Ah, yes, dirty pond water."
"Everyone goes crazy for caviar? Most people seem to dislike it."
"Though admittedly, people who do like it tend to like it a lot."
"That all being said, I really don't like it, either."
When it comes to food, to each their own, but it was interesting to see some undeniable fan favorites like pumpkin spice hit this list.
It just serves as a great reminder for a larger picture idea: Don't be unkind about the things that might bring someone else joy.
Trying to lose weight is a struggle understood by many people regardless of size.
The goal of reaching a healthy weight may seem unattainable, but with diet and exercise, it can pay off through persistence and discipline.
Seeing the pounds gradually drop off can also be a great motivator and incentivize people to stay the course.
Those who've achieved their respective weight goals shared their experiences when Redditor apprenti8455 asked:
"People who lost a lot of weight, what surprises you the most now?"
Redditors didn't see these coming.
Shiver Me Timbers
"I’m always cold now!"
"I had a coworker lose over 130 pounds five or six years ago. I’ve never seen him without a jacket on since."
"140 lbs lost here starting just before COVID, I feel like that little old lady that's always cold, damn this top comment was on point lmao."
"I lost 100 pounds over a year and a half but since I’m old(70’s) it seems few people comment on it because (I think) they think I’m wasting away from some terminal illness."
"Congrats on the weight loss! It’s honestly a real accomplishment 🙂"
"Working in oncology, I can never comment on someone’s weight loss unless I specifically know it was on purpose, regardless of their age. I think it kind of ruffles feathers at times, but like I don’t want to congratulate someone for having cancer or something. It’s a weird place to be in."
"I remember when I lost the first big chunk of weight (around 50 lbs) it was like it gave some people license to talk sh*t about the 'old' me. Old coworkers, friends, made a lot of not just negative, but harsh comments about what I used to look like. One person I met after the big loss saw a picture of me prior and said, 'Wow, we wouldn’t even be friends!'”
"It wasn’t extremely common, but I was a little alarmed by some of the attention. My weight has been up and down since then, but every time I gain a little it gets me a little down thinking about those things people said."
Not Everything Goes After Losing Weight
"The loose skin is a bit unexpected."
"I haven’t experienced it myself, but surgery to remove skin takes a long time to recover. Longer than bariatric surgery and usually isn’t covered by insurance unless you have both."
"It definitely does take a long time to recover. My Dad dropped a little over 200 pounds a few years back and decided to go through with skin removal surgery to deal with the excess. His procedure was extensive, as in he had skin taken from just about every part of his body excluding his head, and he went through hell for weeks in recovery, and he was bedridden for a lot of it."
These Redditors shared their pleasantly surprising experiences.
"I can buy clothes in any store I want."
"When I lost weight I was dying to go find cute, smaller clothes and I really struggled. As someone who had always been restricted to one or two stores that catered to plus-sized clothing, a full mall of shops with items in my size was daunting. Too many options and not enough knowledge of brands that were good vs cheap. I usually went home pretty frustrated."
No More Symptoms
"Lost about 80 pounds in the past year and a half, biggest thing that I’ve noticed that I haven’t seen mentioned on here yet is my acid reflux and heartburn are basically gone. I used to be popping tums every couple hours and now they just sit in the medicine cabinet collecting dust."
"I'm all for not judging people by their appearance and I recognise that there are unhealthy, unachievable beauty standards, but one thing that is undeniable is that I can just do stuff now. Just stamina and flexibility alone are worth it, appearance is tertiary at best."
People Change Their Tune
"How much nicer people are to you."
"My feet weren't 'wide' they were 'fat.'"
"Have to agree. Lost 220 lbs, people make eye contact and hold open doors and stuff"
"And on the foot thing, I also lost a full shoe size numerically and also wear regular width now 😅"
It's gonna take some getting used to.
"Having bones. Collarbones, wrist bones, knee bones, hip bones, ribs. I have so many bones sticking out everywhere and it’s weird as hell."
"I noticed the shadow of my ribs the other day and it threw me, there’s a whole skeleton in here."
"Right?! And they’re so … pointy! Now I get why people sleep with pillows between their legs - the knee bones laying on top of each other (side sleeper here) is weird and jarring."
"I lost only 40 pounds within the last year or so. I’m struggling to relate to most of these comments as I feel like I just 'slimmed down' rather than dropped a ton. But wow, the pillow between the knees at night. YES! I can relate to this. I think a lot of my weight was in my thighs. I never needed to do this up until recently."
"I’ve lost 100 lbs since 2020. It’s a collection of little things that surprise me. For at least 10 years I couldn’t put on socks, or tie my shoes. I couldn’t bend over and pick something up. I couldn’t climb a ladder to fix something. Simple things like that I can do now that fascinate me."
"Edit: Some additional little things are sitting in a chair with arms, sitting in a booth in a restaurant, being able to shop in a normal store AND not needing to buy the biggest size there, being able to easily wipe my butt, and looking down and being able to see my penis."
People making significant changes, whether for mental or physical health, can surely find a newfound perspective on life.
But they can also discover different issues they never saw coming.
That being said, overcoming any challenge in life is laudable, especially if it leads to gaining confidence and ditching insecurities.