Social Networking

Diary of a WLS Junkie!

The daily thoughts, ramblings, trials and tribulations of the journey to weight loss surgery.

Sex Love and Obesity Part 1

I believe that there is a part of the weight loss journey that we don’t talk about nearly enough. The way obesity affects the decisions we make regarding sex, love and relationships.

I wasn’t always an Obesity Rebel. There have been times in my life that Obesity kicked my ass and suffering from this disease lead me to make some bad decisions in when it came to these things. There were times when I was 100% convinced that losing weight would fix all my relationship-oriented problems. Times I believed I would miraculously find Mr. Right if my waist size wasn’t in the high double digits or if the number on my scale didn’t start with a 2, 3 or 4.

In this next blog series, “Sex, Love and Obesity” I’m going to share some of my thoughts and experiences on this topic with you. 

Sex Love and Obesity Part 1: I thought losing weight was going to fix my love life.

When I first started my weight loss journey I was in the middle of a failing marriage. The marriage was already over honestly and there wasn’t really anything left to fix ; we’d already grown apart. I couldn’t tell you what was going through his mind at the time, but I had decided that after losing all that weight I was finally in a position where men might actually *WANT* to date me, and I was curious if something more fulfilling was out there.

I’d never really done that. The dating thing. As someone who suffered from obesity since childhood, my dating background was sort of slim. I had a high school sweetheart that was also a bit overweight. So, he was very accepting of me.

We broke up not long after graduation. I was 18 then and the internet had just become a thing. I met a 24-year-old guy in an AOL chat room. He was a computer geek, gamer, and wasn’t exactly the epitome of slender himself. I moved in with him within a month of dating him and together our poor lifestyle habits lead to an even more overweight me. Our relationship sexually was rather boring, so I started looking for more excitement in online sex chat rooms.

Cyber sex filled a void in my life.

It provided a venue for me to experience the sort of passionate romantic and exciting sexual escapades I was looking for without my weight being a hard limitation. However, as soon as anyone got close enough to me that they asked for a photo and realized how overweight I was, I’d feel the sting of their rejection.

As the number on the scale climbed, I probably weighed somewhere between 200-250 pounds. In the world of the internet chat room and internet chat lingo, I was what was referred to as a BBW, (Big Beautiful Woman) only nobody really thought big was beautiful and most the times the posts I would see from men advertising that they were looking for someone would exclude me. “No BBWs please,” was a common line in the online profiles I read.

In my search for men that were accepting of my size, I would often start-up chat conversations with just about anyone that didn’t post a weight restriction in their profile. I’d feel them out, avoid the part of the conversations where they would ask for photos, and try to build a relationship based on my personality first. I figured eventually I’d find someone who would like me for who I was and then what I looked like wouldn’t be so important.

I did meet someone like that. Someone that didn’t really care much about what I weighed or what I looked like. He was more focused on how I behaved. Particularly how submissive I was. He introduced me to the BDSM, (Bondage, Discipline, Sadism, Masochism) community. I was about 19 years old then. If you read erotica I’d say my life varied somewhere between The Story of O and the John Normal Gor Novels.

Pandora Williams Before Photo

Before Photo – Taken approx. 2001 – 400 lb.

I was owned, I was considered property, and I was used sexually.

Strangely, my lack-of-self-confidence made this all justifiable in my mind. I was proud to be such a good submissive, slave, or whatever label you wanted to put on it, that men wanted to own me. Being owned was a privilege. Being hand selected by a man to be his property made me special. That’s what I was taught, and that was the way I lived my life for the next thirteen years.

I entered into relationships as if they were contracts. I had rules that I had to follow. Rules that determined things like how I could speak, what I could wear, what changes I could make to my hair or my body, what music I could listen to, what television shows I could watch. If I broke the rules, I was punished. Sometimes the punishments were physical, sometimes they were emotional. But I spent my life striving to be so obedient that I was rarely punished.

In the beginning I had several owners. The alternative lifestyle community kind of promotes open relationships. Many of the men involved in these types of relationships have no problem sharing the women they own with others. This is often acceptable because they either wish to participate in sexual experiences with other women themselves or because they own more than one woman at a time. Swinging, poly amorous relationships and “sharing” were a common occurrence in these relationships.

I didn’t really want to share someone’s love and attention.

This presented a problem for me. I never really wanted that sort of relationship. I found myself constantly seeking a man who wanted only one slave. I envisioned the romanticized version of these relationships where in exchange for my undying love and devout submission, I was provided for, emotionally, mentally, physically and financially.

After the better part of 6 years, I found the type of Master I believed I wanted. But by that point my relationship with food and my habit of feeding my feelings had caused me to gain a tremendous amount of weight. I weighed nearly 420 lb. and even though I had found my equivalent of Prince Charming in my BDSM fairy-tale.  My happy ending came with a caveat, I had to lose weight if I wanted to be owned by him.

When he presented my weight as an obstacle to a relationship he was kind about it. He let me know that it wasn’t just about what I looked like and his level of physical attraction to me, it was also about not wanting to be with someone who was unhealthy. He had concerns about the physical ailments and medical ramifications associated with obesity. He wanted me to be healthy if he was going to make a lifelong commitment to owning me.

When he presented this issue to me, in my mind, any loyal submissive that truly wanted the commitment of ownership from a man on the level that I did, would do anything asked of them to earn it. So, I decided, for the first time in my entire life of struggling with obesity to make a commitment to losing the weight. I started dieting and exercising and the weight started melting off.

In just a little over a year, I had shed 195 pounds and moved to another state to be closer to him. I achieved that coveted title of being his slave. About 9 months later he decided we should get married. It made sense at the time. It sealed our commitment to each other in a way the world recognized. It would allow him to make medical decisions for me as my “Husband” that he wouldn’t be able to make as my “Master.” – I was elated. I thought I had found my 50 Shades of Gray version of happily ever after and my fairy-tale ending.

I also thought I was correct in my interpretation that losing weight would miraculously solve all my love life problems.

But my romantic problems were just beginning.

My struggle with obesity was nowhere near over and every decision I had made in my love life thus far was more an act of desperation than an act of love.

I had no idea how much suffering from obesity had damaged my self-worth. I was unaware how much it had caused me to devalue myself. I was oblivious to how it was affecting my decisions when it came to sex, love and relationships. But, I was about to find out.

Stay tuned next week the next part of this blog series.

Sex Love and Obesity Part 2 – How Gaining & Losing Weight Ruined My Marriage

DSSPostSig

Pandora Williams author of Desperately Seeking Slender is an ISSA Certified Personal Trainer and Cooper Institute Approved Wellness Coach Trained in Weight Management Strategies. Her training and coaching services are offered exclusively through GoGirl Fitness Studio.

If You Are Reading This – I Owe You An Apology

Almost four years ago, I started doing something that I never should have done.

I stopped being a blogger. You see a blogger, is someone that regularly writes material for a blog.

I was a blogger, a very passionate weight loss blogger for the better part of five years from 2010-2015. Many of you followed me along my journey from desperately seeking slender at 420lb. and my challenge to get my BMI to where I needed it to be to have weight loss surgery. Many more of you joined me through my weight loss journey, through the death of my father and through my reconstructive surgery journey. Together we ran half marathons and traveled all the way to Wilmington, NC, where I began pursuing my dream to become a personal trainer and help those affected by obesity.

Then it all started to change…

Though I still passionately pursued my dreams, and in fact, made them a reality, I stopped sharing that journey with you.

Looking back at it now it’s easy for me to see what transpired. It’s a little harder for me to admit it, own it, and write about it. When you write something down in words and publish it for the world to see, you can’t take it back. You are now vulnerable and exposed. I used to be good at being vulnerable and exposed. That is what many of you admired about me.

But once we got to that part of the journey together, when I had torn down all the walls that I had built up behind my weight, given up my relationship with food and realized much to my surprise that losing weight didn’t instantly fix everything that was wrong in my life, all that was left was the woman that had started building all those walls to begin with.

I convinced myself that I didn’t have anything relevant to write about.

I wasn’t “desperately seeking slender” anymore. I had achieved slender. I had accomplished the healthy lifestyle that my father and wished for me. I told myself that if I kept writing about all the stuff that was going on in my life I would just be the “skinny bitch” that everyone wanted to shut up and stop rambling on about how great their life was while everyone else was still in that desperately seeking slender phase.

But that was far from the truth. I had plenty to write about. I just didn’t want to write about it. I didn’t want anyone to know how much I was struggling. I didn’t want to be honest, exposed and vulnerable. I didn’t want to be judged or gossiped about. I was scared. So, I started building walls again.

This time I build them with silence, exercise, a busy career, and “love” instead of food.

Losing all the weight had made me a healthier version of myself. I was fitter and in much better physical health. I had a much better chance at the “happy and healthy life” my father had wanted for me so badly. But I was nowhere near happy. I wanted to be happy. I was chasing happy like a coyote chases a road runner. But if you’ve ever seen Wile E. Coyote chase Road Runner in a Looney Tunes cartoon, you can only guess how that was working out for me.

This presented a whole different issue. Here I was, trying to make a name for myself in the fitness industry as a weight loss and wellness coach and while I had won my battle with obesity and emotional eating, I was in a whole new battle with emotions, my past, my mental health and myself.

It’s time to own the truth, be honest and vulnerable again…

Some people might call me an addict. In truth, once upon a time I was an addict. A food addict. Now, I’m a recovering food addict. As a recovering food addict the one thing I know beyond any shadow of a doubt is that I can’t ever go back to that addiction. I can’t let myself slip back into that dark place. I’ve been there before. I’ve fallen off the wagon. It ended up with me weighing 420 lbs. for a second time in my life and having to find the strength courage and perseverance to start all over.

I’ve been emotionally and verbally barraged by someone I dated for the unhealthy behaviors I used as my coping mechanisms enough times to have almost been convinced that addiction was my problem. But I know, at the core of who I am, that is not what my problem is.

No matter what my vice is at any given time. I can trade it for something else. If I want to. I stress the I in there. Because it must be something I want. Not something someone else wants for me.

If you try to bully me, pressure me into doing it, beat me up for it emotionally, nag me about it all the time, argue with me about it in a fashion that board lines emotional abuse, what you end up with is Pandora in survival mode and victim mode.

I’ll fight back just like I did when I was a little girl being emotionally, mentally, physically, sexually or verbally abused. Whatever fashion you come at me in, I will come out swinging in the same manner. And when the fight is over, I will do what I do best, find some sort of escape from it.

Because that is what my issue is… I am an escapist.

There is always something that I am using to distract myself from whatever reality, issue or emotion I don’t want to face. Something that makes me “feel better,” whether that’s emotionally, mentally or physically. Sometimes I make some good choices regarding what I use as my escape, other times, I make some horrible ones.

We can talk all about addiction vs. escapism in blogs to come. Because I promise you, there are more blogs to come. We can talk more about food addictions, healthy emotional outlets, unhealthy emotional outlets. We can talk about how losing weight doesn’t fix everything. We can talk about battling re-gain, about weight maintenance. We can talk about exercise, fitness, and nutrition. We can talk about how desperately some of us that have been affected by obesity seek love, to the point that causes us even more emotional and mental trauma.

We can even talk about that 10 lbs. of yo-yo weight gain/weight loss that if we tallied up would probably be another 100 lbs. of weight loss and in the end, constantly leaves us in that “Desperately Seeking Slender” struggle with obesity.

You see we have a whole lot to talk about. I was lying to myself when I convinced myself differently.

I used silence as my escape from the dark realities of life after bariatric surgery and weight loss.

I am not going to do that anymore. I owe you all a big apology for doing it to begin with. Because you see my friends, the truth is, if I had stayed open, honest and vulnerable with you through my journey, some of you who were experiencing the same sort of things might have had an easier time with it. You might have known you were not alone.

Some of you might have appreciated knowing there was someone else struggling with the same things. Some of you might have been more prepared for some of the issues, challenges and obstacles you might face.

I got called out on my silence.

Here I was trying to convince this woman I hold in such high regard, that the entire reason I wasn’t a blogger anymore was because I had decided that what I had to say was irrelevant to people, and that they didn’t want me going on and on. I was trying to convince her, and in truth myself, that I had gone silent because it was what I would have wanted. I explained how I thought I needed to get someone else, that was more in that phase of “Desperately Seeking Slender” to write for this blog and its previous reader base. I justified it all by telling her how I always tried to treat people the way I would want to be treated.

This is what she said…

 “You deciding what other people didn’t want to hear about was selfish Pandora. Maybe some people thought that you had found your “slender” and you left them behind, abandoned them, and that you didn’t need them anymore. The golden rule is to treat people the way you want to be treated. But the Platinum rule is to treat people the way they want to be treated.”

That hit home hard. First because she was exactly right. What I did was selfish. But even more so, because what she proposed some people MIGHT have felt. Was exactly how I would have felt. So not only am I guilty of not treating my readers how they might have wanted to be treated, I’m guilty of not treating my readers how I would have wanted to be treated.

I vanished. No explanation, no discussion. I used silence as an escape and the facade of a far to busy life and good intentions to justify it.

To each one of you who have read even one of my blogs throughout the years…

To those of you who might have read all the blogs I haven’t posted in this period of silent escapism and couldn’t because I didn’t write them…

To anyone that felt like I moved on and abandoned them, or worried about the reasons behind my textual Houdini act…

I apologize.  

It was one of those “really horrible” choices of escapism methods I mentioned I sometimes make.

Now that I’ve come to terms with the reality that I have done it, I am choosing not to escape in this fashion anymore. I am back. I am willing to be open, honest and vulnerable again. Today that vulnerability starts with …

I am sorry.

DSSPostSig

Pandora Williams author of Desperately Seeking Slender is an ISSA Certified Personal Trainer and Cooper Institute Approved Wellness Coach Trained in Weight Management Strategies. Her training and coaching services are offered exclusively through GoGirl Fitness Studio.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Author: Pandora Williams

Author of Desperately Seeking Slender

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 4,669 other subscribers

DSS on Twitter

Follow Seeking Slender


Proud Member of the OAC

Grab My Button