“If you want to lose weight, you just have to stop eating as much.”
Wow. How simple. Wish I’d thought of that. So it’s a bit like saying if I don’t want to burn my flesh I shouldn’t stick my hand in the fire?
But what if I have to keep sticking my hand in the fire?
What if I feel compelled to stick my hand in the fire, again and again, over and over?
“Why on earth would you do that?”
Suppose it was habit, or suppose I enjoyed it, or suppose every time I did it, it released endorphins that made me feel good, or suppose it was addictive, or suppose I hated myself so much I felt I deserved to be disfigured, or suppose by looking disfigured people would have less expectations of me, or suppose by looking disfigured people would leave me alone. Suppose at different times I stuck my hand in the fire for each of these different reasons, or any combination and it changed every time.
Do you think just saying “well don’t do it then” is going to make the slightest bit of difference?
“Er, probably not.”
Do you think that telling me I’m stupid for doing it is going to make me stop?
“Well, it might… tough love and all that…”
If my response to feeling bad is to stick my hand in the fire, what do you think calling me stupid is likely to make me do?
“Er… stick your hand in the fire again?”
And calling me lazy, useless, ugly and a drain on the health services?
“…stick your hand in the fire again.”
You know, I do believe we’re starting to get somewhere.
“But you don’t stick your hand in the fire.”
No, I overeat instead.
“Well, if you want to lose weight, you just have to stop eating as much.”
Slap, slap, slap, slap, slap, slap, slap, slap...