Presenting problem: Help for Weight Loss and Self Esteem
Treatment modality: BWRT
Number of sessions: 5
C contacts me for help with weight loss and self-esteem. She lives at home with her parents and has been overweight since the age of 10.
During our initial consultation she explains how, whenever she feels upset, she will eat whatever she can to feel better. Typically, this means bingeing on what she describes as ‘bad’ food – take-away, fast-food – hiding herself away to gorge in private. As she talks she is tearful and says she feels out of control.
C tells me that, as far back as she can remember, she was never allowed treats. She recalls how much she enjoyed spending time with her best friend’s family at the weekend, when they would order a Chinese take-away meal to share.
Those weekends would also provide an escape from her controlling father, who weighed her every Saturday morning. One day, when the scales showed that she’d put on weight, her father scolded her. This is the first time C says she felt really bad about herself, running off in floods of tears.
Later that day she grabbed as much food as she could find to binge on back in her room and had ‘really, really gone for it’.
Now, after nearly two decades, C recognises that this was the start of her secret bingeing, leaving her considerably over-weight and with very low self-esteem. She desperately wants to become slimmer and feel better.
Fast forward a week and C arrives to begin a specially-tailored programme to realise her goals.
Our first task it to tackle the emotional response she has whenever her father criticises her. During the session she decides to replace the upsetting feelings with one of indifference to his words, and to simply walk away as soon as he begins to be unkind.
Over the next few weeks C steadily drops several pounds in weight. However, as we approach the end of the programme, she confesses to feeling anxious about whether she can sustain the positive changes she is making.
Investigating her fears she tells me the story of a big family barbecue, in her early teens. She was making her way to the food table to refill her plate when her father shouted at her to sit back down, humiliating her in front of everyone. C says she was so upset that she found a place to hide under the food table, sneaking bits to binge on for the rest of the party. She is tearful as she talks, saying how upsetting it is to think about, even now.
We work to resolve the impact of this experience on her self-limiting beliefs and continue on our way.
At our final session I am delighted to hear that C is now a stone lighter and is maintaining some great day-to-day changes; she is taking healthy homemade lunches into work and walking the family dog when she finishes. What’s more, she hasn’t had any upsets with her father and – perhaps, best of all – her self-esteem has increased from 3 out of 10 to 8.
She still has some way to go to reach her goal weight but C leaves my consulting room feeling so much better about herself, knowing that she’s in control and has the right mindset to succeed.
Discover how Claire can help you with weight loss and self-esteem when you book your free consultation in complete confidence, today.