I've been so cross about something since Wednesday night, I've done my usual evasion technique and tried not to think about it till today when I was much more sanguine.
This is quite funny because I've always been so emotive, I'll just fly off the handle if you let me...but over the years I've started to develop my avoidance tactics! init funny how we can turn things around just using our minds if we want to?
I'm a regular on a uk gastric band forum group and funnily enough one of the principals of my surgery provider has become a member of this group occassionally posting self promoting posts under the name of 'Juicy Janet'...watdaya reckon...juicy janet??? It's cute isn't it? Anyways, this week he...yes he...posted about the SILS (single incision lapband surgery) procedure they do asking people to comment on their experience with this procedure...which I did as I have had it. I posted a couple of lines on the fact that even my kids didn't know I'd had the op and they wouldn't notice anything if I got changed in front of them as I had no obvious scars.
Following my post a long term bypasser posted saying she 'didn't wish to offend anyone' (I have my doubts), but that she really resented the 'cosmetic surgery' angle of wls and felt that SILS really played to this angle. She then was very scathing about the fact that she was honest with her family concerning her surgery and was proud of her bust to belly open surgery scar. I have to say I did feel judged, which annoyed me as my post was so short how could anyone get a real understanding of my reasons for my decisions. I read the post just before going to bed too so i did spend a sleepless night about it. I then avoided thinking about it for a few days and just now responded. I was glad to see someone else had also responded first in defence of my position which was nice.
I did put forward a really good considered post I think in the end which I hope will make NHS (National Health Service) patients understand their private counterparts a little better. It's probably really hard to understand this for the US patients, but the system here is that you only receive funding if you have a BMI over 40 or 50. Depending where you live the criteria can vary enormously to get funding for your surgery. A large number of people have to pay for their surgery privately and virtually no private medical insurance will pay for wls.
At least now that I've said my piece I do feel a lot better than I did. Don't you find it amazing how much weight someone's opinion whom you've never met can have on your life? If you want to see the posts, I've copied them below and you can let me know what you think. Don't hesitate to let me know if you think I'm being neurotic!
I had SILS in Manch thru HW 4 months ago and I'm really pleased with the result. I could wear a bikini (if I had the figure for it yet) or get changed in front of my kids who don't know about my surgery and no-one would notice a thing. An excellent result.
by phejolou » Wed Jun 02, 2010 8:54 pm------------------------------------------------------------------
I just wanted to put another side across and sorry if i upset anyone here.
People often talk about people having wls for vanity reasons and i feel that this SILS plays to that audience. For me personnally i had my bypass for health reasons, i wanted to be fitter and have a better quality of life for me and my family.... cosmetics did not come into the equasion at all. I knew from the onset that my surgeon only performs bypasses via open surgery....did i sit back and think.... oh my god a scar? a huge scar from bra line to just above the belly button? nope not for one second.
After all i am a mum of 3, have a bikini line scar from an ectopic pregnancy, i am never gonna have firm enough skin for a bikini. I look at my scar which has faded quite significantly and it reminds me what i have been through to get where i am today... how lucky i was to have had the oppurtunity of loosing the weight that i detested so much...you know what? it keeps me on track. I call it my zip cos you can see faint puncture scars from the staples. I had a dream when i was a kid, that at 18 my real parents (not that i was adopted or ought) would come and find me unzip me and out would come this gorgeous size 10 perfectly modelled person. It sorta come true cept i kept my lovely parents, became a size 10-12 but with a lumpy bumpy body that i love... my hubby still finds attractive and that my kids do not even batter an eyelid if i walk around starkers. To me that is far more important than worrying about whether i have a few tiny lap scars, one huge line scar or just a mere tummy bitton piercing. If we all have sufficient weight to loose to warrent something as drastic as wls then saggy skin is gonna happen.... and where does surgery stop?
I haven't hid my surgery from anyone, especially not my immediate family, we believe in being open and honest, they know that i have problems with weight and food as i believe it is vital for them to have an understanding for when they get older, they also know that their dad doesn't, but hopefully i have sorted this early enough in their lives so that food is not an issue for them... there is no right or wrong way to go about it but secrets grow and grow and get messy.
very interesting thread.
Again sorry if anyone is offended, but i get very defensive when vanity is bought into wls.
I'll shut up now Juliexxx (site moderator)
Bypassed 15/07/09 @ 21st 7lbs
weight today 28/04/10 11st 11lbs
This is an interesting thread and whilst i agree that health is paramount i dont think its 'vanity' to want a healthier fitter body WITHOUT the scars if the procedure is just as safe and effective as open surgery. I love my body for all its flaws but i'm 22 havent had kids yet and would be unhappy with big scars over my stomach area, i love wearing bikinis and scars would have been one more thing to worry about. The procedure is just as safe so why not?http://www.TickerFactory.com/weight-loss/wY26SN3/
Banded at Dolan Park 10/04/10 by Dr Siggurdsson
Open surgery is far more dangerous than laprascopic procedures in actual fact and has a much higher incidence of death, infection, clots and other problems, so it really is a very serious consideration for more reasons than any scar issues.
I agree with phejolou in as much as if your weight is causing you a major risk to your health and lifespan then that risk becomes worth while and I can understand that she has very passionate feelings about what her surgery means to her and dislikes it being referred to as 'cosmetic'.
I think all of us who have been down this road understand that this is no easy option (bandits in terms of the slog to get the weight off even with the band and bypassers/sleevers for the extra risk associated with a more major procedure) and many many people on this site do feel extremely vexed by the misconceptions of the general public that this is the 'easy way out' or a cop-out to losing weight 'the right way' which it isn't. This is one of the reasons why i chose to keep my surgery private, because I realised that the band is not a cast-iron guarantee of success or speedy weight loss and I can personally do without the pressure put on me by ignorant (understandably so perhaps) people wanting to know how much I've lost so far and why i haven't lost more. The months when I lose only 2lbs I am relieved that I don't have to explain this to anyone else and have finally after all these years of obsessive dieting learned be kind to myself and take a long term view of this process.
I personally believe that there is too much focus on whether this is a 'cosmetic' procedure or not. In some cases it's life saving; in others it's just sanity saving...who is anyone to say that my sanity is not worthy of surgery to save it? In my case i don't qualify for NHS funding and some on this site will sneer at me and say I'm not worthy of having the procedure and I've done it out of vanity. I'm not going to spell out my life experiences to those people, but to give a short version, my weight had affected my confidence in my self worth to a degree where I was fearful of going out, was avoiding being intimate with my husband and felt worthless as a person. This may seem ridiculous to many at less than 16 stone, but it's how I felt. To me £8,000 was worth it to get the chance to change my life. It was coincidental that I happen to live in Manchester, and had already chosen HW to have my surgery with and they happen to only perform the SILS procedure in Manchester. I was more than happy with this coincidence, but would have still gone through with the procedure regardless. Also, I have battled and battled to lose weight for years and was only increasing in size year on year. My father has had the same problems and now at 69 looks 89! I could see the writing on the wall and had given up all hope of succeeding on my own and was slipping into depression. I knew what was in store for me and felt that by acting now I could try and salvage some of my youth and give myself a much shorter battle than waiting 10 years till I did qualify for NHS funding!
I'm 40 years old and I haven't worn a bikini since I was 21! But I hope I can post a two line post about being happy with the outcome of my surgery without fear of being judged and sneered at by people who know nothing about me!
I chose not to tell my children I was having surgery because 1) I thought they'd be scared and 2) because it's not fair to expect primary aged children to keep my private details to themselves...just as we don't share our salary details with our kids because we don't want it broadcast across the flippin' playground...not because we are dishonest!
I will happily share this information with my children when they are old enough to respect my decision to keep this private and not before.
I hope this might help people who see a flock of private patients coming through with comparatively low BMI's to understand that we are not taking this lightly and we can have serious issues with our weight other than medical ones.
I wish all of us success and joy in our journey's and ultimately a happy, contented life.
I just wanted to clarify that I'm not upset or angry with Julie's comments...I did initially feel that she was judging me especially in relation to my not telling my children about my surgery, but on re-reading I felt that her comments where not as harsh as I'd originally felt they were.
It did however highlight for me a chasm that seems to exist in some cases between NHS patients who sometimes have life-threatening comorbidities and private patients who often don't and who often have less weight to lose (althought not always thanks to the post code lottery which is the NHS).
Sometimes I think we private patients are viewed as being the 'cosmetic' element...although I'm yet to meet a recipient of a nose job who had to relearn lifestlye behaviours. I mean I've joined a gym and am actually doing regular exercise...ME!!! and I'm enjoying it for the first time since I was 21.
I would just like to point out that we all want the same thing out of this process, which is to be healthy and happy in our own skin and it would be so nice if we can all be supportive of each other in our differing journeys as I know we all try to be.
I'm starting to sound like a bad version of Julie Andrews...as if she weren't bad enough!!!
Who'd have thought we could raise this much hubbub about a different way of performing wls???? No hard feelings.
Anywho, I'm feeling much more positive about everything, I was mentally kicking up a storm Wednesday night and Thursday,,,much more so than necessary once I re-read the offending post...it was much less offending! Maybe I just over-reacted from start to finish!<3