Part of the qualification process for bariatric surgery involves a psychiatric evaluation to identify potential barriers to post-surgery behavioral success. As I’ve read through many other blogs addressing this specific part of the process, many folks fear disqualification from the surgery based on the outcome of this.
In reality, the goal is to identify anything that could sabotage your success later on and address it now. For me it was a long-term habit of eating very little throughout the day and then eating a large dinner, followed by un-checked snacking for several hours until bedtime.
My Mercy behavioral therapist advised that my post-bariatric surgery stomach wouldn’t be able to handle such extremes in eating (well not without consequences), so it was advisable to develop better habits now. Additionally, he helped me recognize an embarrassing pattern of stress eating, involving nachos from Taco Bell.
While I didn’t personally recognize this as a pattern, the fact that my husband instinctively asks if I want to go to Taco Bell when I’ve had a bad day, speaks volumes. During this process I learned a few things about myself that, while easy for an outsider to see, were virtually impossible for me to identify myself.
Knowing that I can make bad choices when stressed out (like a pile of unhealthy nachos), gives me the power to choose better alternatives, or at least pray for the strength to say “no” or get a soft taco instead.” Baby steps…