By debcox Latest Reply 2015-01-24 08:59:06 -0600
Started 2015-01-16 00:45:37 -0600

Has anyone else noticed that as you change that some friends might have issues with you?

What is interesting is that some of my friends seem to think that I will be able to cut back on exercise once I'm off medication. I've tried to explain that this is a lifestyle change and not a diet but they do not understand. I've actually come to enjoy exercising (something I never thought I would say) and don't see myself stopping anytime soon. My friends think that I spend too much time exercising.

A few of my friends seem to have issues with with my weight loss and/or changes in my life. Usually, I wouldn't care what people think but these are/were good friends. I've noticed quite a few snippy remarks and I've been trying to give people a break but now it is starting to hurt my feelings a bit. I know sometimes when changes are made that friendships are affected but I really don't want to find new friends.

I don't think that I as a person have changed but my priorities have definitely changed as I want to be around for my family. I am eating better and taking care of myself. One of my friends told me that because of my eating habits no one in the group is going up for seconds anymore when we have our monthly get togethers. I don't talk about food or say anything about peoples eating habits and I explained that I have had seconds.

Also, I was told I talk about exercising too much. They ask what I do in between our meetings and I talk about hiking with a friend, biking with someone else and entering a bike race with my sister because that is what I am into. Laughingly they tell me that I suck because I have time to exercise and they wish they did. Although, they make these little comments, they laugh and say they are kidding. It does not feel like they are kidding.

In my defense (okay, I guess I am a bit defensive), I do talk about other things such as crafting, quilting, cooking, my grandsons, travel and I listen as my friends talk and ask pertinent questions. My husband has also noticed that my friends are being a bit standoffish and that it may be time to detach myself from this group. The problem is that I started the group and I still like a few of the people but I am starting to feel a bit alienated.

Any ideas???

37 replies

debcox 2015-01-24 08:59:06 -0600 Report

Thank you all for your suggestions. I spoke to two of my friends and cleared the air. The others will become monthly friends.

andy1979 2015-01-24 06:11:25 -0600 Report

maybe arrange to meet with the friends you do have good relationships with and only exchange pleasantries with the others when you have to see them . or it could be a casae of jealousy on their part at fact you are trying to achieve a level of good in your life . keep up the good work and dont let the b********ds grind you down.

andy1979 2015-01-24 06:11:24 -0600 Report

maybe arrange to meet with the friends you do have good relationships with and only exchange pleasantries with the others when you have to see them . or it could be a casae of jealousy on their part at fact you are trying to achieve a level of good in your life . keep up the good work and dont let the b********ds grind you down.

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2015-01-18 21:48:05 -0600 Report

Hey Debbie,

I think that, unfortunately, some of the people in our lives need to see us in a certain way. They want us to play a certain role in their life. And when we don't play that role in the same way, it is disruptive to them.

It sounds like part of the dynamic of your relationship with this group is that you support them in not so healthy eating. So changing that behavior forces them to look at themselves. The same thing with exercising. Your attention to exercise may cause them to feel guilty about their own lack of activity.

Here's another way to say it. Misery loves company.

Hopefully, they will recognize that you are an inspiration and not a reason for them to feel guilty. It sounds like you are already supportive and encouraging. They may come around over time, and even ask you for some advice. Who knows!

Stay on the path. Keep taking such good care of yourself. And spend more time with people who can be happy for you.

Type1Lou 2015-01-18 17:31:56 -0600 Report

Congratulations for making the lifestyle changes you needed in order to better manage your diabetes. You may now be in a different phase of life than your friends and they may feel threatened by the newer "in-control" you. Shame on them for trying to make you responsible for their decisions to not have seconds!…no true friend or "responsible" adult should do that. You may have to re-evaluate the "friendship" of certain individuals. Above all, keep on being true to yourself! You rock girl!

Mallacai 2015-01-17 12:52:47 -0600 Report

I strongly believe that if they were true friends they would be supportive so i suppose you do have to look for friends. If your new found passion is being physically active then you are on the right track given your situation. Remember you come first and no one will be ultimately responsible for your well being but yourself. You go Girl.

lilleyheidi 2015-01-17 00:39:31 -0600 Report

reading this, and all the comments here, well, it just makes me hurt terribly. Just before Christmas my best friend of over 29 years and i had a fight. Some very sore words were said. Mostly about changes we have each made in the past year or so, that have caused us to exclude each other from our lives. Just after Christmas she emailed me and said she could no longer be my friend, that she felt she could not meet my needs as a friend. I'm still reeling from the pain of losing a long term best friend. One of the "changes" she had lost over 100 lbs and I have been extremely supportive of her weight loss, but when I began losing weight she became extremely jealous and non supportive and almost to the point of trying to sabotage my efforts. It's been pretty hurtful. I'm so sorry your going through this. It just should not be this way for anyone. Tight hugs. heidi

debcox 2015-01-17 02:12:02 -0600 Report

Thanks for the note, Heidi. It is difficult when someone has been friends for a long time and then is no longer there for you. I don't know how things will turn out with the rest of my friends but my best friend told me at lunch that she was sorry that she had said some of the things that she had said and she will work on her attitude and I will do the same. Hugs to you also.

sweetslover 2015-01-16 12:53:09 -0600 Report

I am fortunate that my really close friends have been supportive, and make me feel good about me getting my diabetes under control. I do worry sometimes that I might become boring if I talk about it much, so if I am asked a question about my diabetes I answer and then move on to another topic. It helps to keep my from dwelling on the condition, which in the end makes me happier. I keep telling myself that yes, diabetes is a big part of my life, but not the only part.

RebDee 2015-01-16 10:52:11 -0600 Report

I understand how you feel. Since losing 45 lbs after bariatric surgery, I think I look much better, but several of my friends now say things like: so now you should cut/dye your hair, now you should get new clothes, now you should , now you should, now you should. I don't want to!!! I will continue eating healthy and exercising and seeing friends even though I try not to eat out as much as I used to, not because of the calories (I only eat half), but because of the expense. There always seems to be a comment that I feel is unnecessary as it hurts my feelings. Don't leave the group you started. Ask them why they are acting so standoffish with you. Tell them why you are now doing what you do is for your health so that you can be alive and well and happy and so that you can be their friend. Tell them to come with you for exercise as it is fun and a barrel of laughs. And most of all, don't let them get you down.

GabbyPA 2015-01-16 10:17:41 -0600 Report

I shared this at the bottom of the discussion, but thought I would add it here. It is a link to a story that was shared with me when I was loosing my good friends. It helped me immensely understand that it was okay.

debcox 2015-01-16 10:37:20 -0600 Report

Thanks Gabby, I really appreciated that story and it does help a lot. Even things that help us grow will often hurt in the process. It just saddens me as I go through it. One of the friends is going through a lot with her hubby that has dementia and I don't think that he will be with her for long so I've been trying to give her a break as she has a lot on her plate.

GabbyPA 2015-01-17 08:17:27 -0600 Report

That is what we all have to do. People struggle in different ways and what she is going though may seem huge compared to what she understands about what you are going though. I am sure to her, there is no comparison.

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-01-16 09:28:55 -0600 Report

Repeat after me…" I don't give a F@%K!!!!…Seriosuly I don't…I have had friends that turned into enemies because they couldn't deal with the fact that I had lost so much weight (when I was in my 30's)…I dropped over 100 pounds and was getting all kinds of attention from men…it made then jealous…I cut them loose…and now that I am back on that road again I am finding it happening again..and I am I don't go after attention…oh but when I was heavy everybody had to comment about THAT too…it is like certain people can never be happy with you..I tend to cut those people out of my life really quickly. I asked a "friend" the other day if she wanted to use a guest pass at my gym and go for my morning swim with me…her answer…"why do you like going to the gym so much, do you like showing off"…SERIOULSY..she will never be invited anywhere with me again…I learned a long time ago that the only opinion that REALLY matters is mine..I don't let people bother me much and I keep my friends few in number..It makes for a much happier life..

debcox 2015-01-16 10:41:20 -0600 Report

Thanks, Jibber Jabber. I appreciate what you're saying and I feel the same way but it is difficult as you go through it. I'm a pretty social person so finding friends is not an issue but finding friends of substance is difficult. I thought I had found some and we've been together for awhile but I guess they are mostly people I see on a weekly/monthly basis and not as deep as I thought.

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-01-16 10:57:55 -0600 Report

My mother told me…a loooong time ago..when I started high school as I was packing my books in the stage coach…"if you have more than 3 or 4 real friends in your life at any one time…chances are you counted wrong"…she wanted me to pick my REAL Friends carefully and wanted me to understand that sometimes the people you think are friends are NOT…and is hard when you are going through it..but at the end of the day you are better off knowing who your real friends are…then being fooled..

BreC 2015-01-16 09:13:20 -0600 Report

Growing up and into my 30's my weight was 110-115. I wore a size 4 pants. It seemed that every day someone would say "I hate you, you are so little". I would also get "just kidding" but when you hear those words so much they start to hurt. Then I got sick and gained up to 165. Then I was hearing "Bre, you've gained so much weight…" Now I'm back down to 115-120 but and all of those "friends" have been left behind. Words can hurt and can destroy a relationship. I am at the point now that if someone can't take me as I am then I don't need them in my life.

debcox 2015-01-16 10:46:21 -0600 Report

I guess, I expect them to cheer for me when I am doing well and they were for the first 10-15 lbs. Now, that it is 50 lbs and still going, they are not as happy with the changes. I realize by their comments that some are jealous but don't want to change and my changing seems to be in their face but that is their issue. I remember friends that lost lots of weight and I was a little jealous at first but cheered them on because I realized it was their priority and I was not ready. Now, it is my turn and I've made it a priority to lose. I just did not realize that I would be losing friends as well as weight.

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-01-16 09:35:12 -0600 Report

REAL friends…the ones that are keepers…love you and accept you for who you are..when you are doing well they are your cheerleaders…and when you are doing poorly at something your support system…if people CAN not see that that is the role of a friend…they should just exit stage left..

Pegsy 2015-01-16 08:49:15 -0600 Report

I agree with Gabby that guilt is their issue, not you and what you are doing. They see the positive impact that the changes have made in your life and they feel bad about not doing the same for themselves. I find that my circle of friends has been affected as well. The group of friends that my husband and I used to hang with on the weekend is no more. I have lost a total of 92 lbs so far and the ladies have very directly tried to sabotage that. They actually scolded me for being so persistent with the changes I have made. I refuse to be shamed into submission to someone else's unhealthy habits any longer. I am finding myself searching for a new circle of friends and it isn't easy. Everyone knows the Pegsy that used to weigh 215 lbs and they STILL comment on my 122 lb body now. I wish I could move someplace where no one knows the old me and just start all over.

debcox 2015-01-16 12:08:44 -0600 Report

I think that is it in a nutshell. I've tried talking to them but they don't understand so it is probably time for me to move on.

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-01-16 09:39:58 -0600 Report

Can you tell I am very passionate on this subject..with all my post…sabotage…how about moving the office coffee pot to right in front of my desk (after it was on the other side of the room for years)…and dropping donuts, cookies and Danish in front of me everyday..with a chorus of Catherine one wont hurt…this actually happened to me years ago…I kindly said no thank you, I don't want one…I was called a health freak…and this by so called MENTAL HEALTH Professionals at the MICA facility I worked at..

BB42 2015-01-16 08:44:11 -0600 Report

They, not you, have a problem. You have done wonderfully well and inspire so many of of us. I have had similar experiences but not to that level. I am often told that I no longer have diabetes and that I should relax concerning what I eat. My response is that my diabetes is under control, not eliminated, and that it would not take much to have it come back. I admit to being tired of saying this over and over. My real friends understand and continue to provide valuable support.

debcox 2015-01-16 12:15:28 -0600 Report

I know what you mean because I don't want my diabetes to go in the other direction either. I've worked to hard and don't want to deal with medications any more. One of my goals regarding weight loss is to get off my c-pap so I don't have to use the stupid machine and I can lay by my hubby without it.

BB42 2015-01-16 13:14:00 -0600 Report

Getting off my CPAP machine was one of the best benefits of life style change. To stay off it is the best motivator to sty on course.

BB42 2015-01-16 13:13:50 -0600 Report

Getting off my CPAP machine was one of the best benefits of life style change. To stay off it is the best motivator to sty on course.

GabbyPA 2015-01-16 06:24:10 -0600 Report

That is horribly sad. I think that guilt is their issue, not you.

Life is change. If things stay the same we have to be dead. Some people embrace the change and get excited for us, others resent that we are able to move into new adventures. We want them to come with us, but they are too comfortable where they are, and make excuses not to come. It doesn't make them bad people, but it's hard when you want to keep a friendship that is that out of balance.

I lost my best friend when I started dating steady and got engaged. She was still around, but it was not the same. We were travel buddies and our biggest trip together to Australia and Fiji was tainted with the fact that about 6 months later I was going to be married. She didn't even come to the wedding and after that we pretty much were done. It broke my heart that she didn't want to be part of something so big in my life, but I couldn't make her do it.

Sometimes we tend to go overboard on our new lifestyle changes in conversation because we are working so hard on it. We may not think we do, but they might. You may want to have that conversation with them and see what they are feeling too. However, friends don't spend all their time making you feel bad. If that is how you feel then let them know. Your heart will tell you what to do after that.

debcox 2015-01-16 16:52:36 -0600 Report

Thanks Gabby and Jibber Jabber, You really got me to thinking about things before I left today. I had lunch today with my best friend and told her how I felt and that I was thinking of dropping out of our arts/crafts group because of the snippy remarks from everyone. She felt really bad and asked if she was doing it also to which I said, yes. She apologized and said that some of it was because she was jealous that I got to spend time on myself and that she did not feel that she made herself a priority.

That being said, I apologized and said I was sorry if I was obsessing about my health but that getting diabetes not only made me mad but made me realize that life is short and I don't want to waste any more time. I told her that I needed to take care of myself so that I will be around a bit longer and that meant that I needed to cut back on a few other things. She said that she noticed that I hadn't called her as much and wondered what she had done to make me mad. I'm going to work hard to not obsess about my health while still taking care of myself.

I forget that I am really an all or nothing kind of person which I am working on. I'm also very forgiving but that doesn't mean that I'm going to let people walk all over me.

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-01-16 09:45:28 -0600 Report

I don't even know what to say about losing your BEST friend…heart breaking…and yes maybe we do tend to get a little fixated on our goals…be they weight loss or diabtese management or just general health..or in your case starting a new life with your hubby…BUT friends are suppose to be happy about our exuberance…our successes..and they are certainly NOT suppose to walk away from us because our lives are changing…who's life hasn't changed??????

GabbyPA 2015-01-16 10:11:38 -0600 Report

Yep it sucked. But a friend of mine shared a parable of a tree and relationships and I use it all the time. It really helped. I think I even posted it here a few times. it is:

RebDee 2015-01-16 11:03:00 -0600 Report

Thanks Gabby. I love your tree parable. It is like saying that there are those in your life that are there for a reason (then leave when that reason has passed), a season (could be years or days) or a lifetime (your best friends, the ones you can count on forever). I always try to be a lifetime friend but it doesn't always work out that way. I have had two best friends and when their lifetimes was over and I tried to find another lifetime friend, it was quite difficult. I am now looking for a new lifetime friend (I hope it is a man this time).

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-01-16 10:15:56 -0600 Report

wow…that is powerful…I never really thought about it that way…but I have a very strong suspicion that I will from now one…

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