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I don't know what I look like

I constantly find myself looking at other women, and comparing myself to them. The sizes of the women are entirely different; from super large to athletic. When I had gained this weight, I felt like I had reverse anorexia or something; I knew I was fat, but didn't really see it when I looked into the mirror. Now I've lost some weight, and I just can't see myself at all. Any ideas? I'm 5'3 and 200 lbs.

Wed. Feb 6, 2:58pm

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Try taking photos of yourself in a very fitted outfit each month - so you can compare your body changes from photos - like pregnant women do. If you have a friend who is at your goal weight, like 5'3 and 120-130 pounds - see if she would be willing to do a side-by-side photo with you for a baseline.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008, 3:08 PM

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try using the virtual model program online, and enter your measurements. Might give you an idea.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008, 3:10 PM

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try to take some photos. much more objective than the mirror. I used to be anorectic/bulimic so I know what I'm talking about.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008, 3:13 PM

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i was 5 feet tall and over 200 pounds too and i know what you mean. i finally realized the Lane Bryant sizes were all wrong. They label their clothes generously. So, a 16 at LB would fit, but a 16 at a normal store wouldn't. The best advice i have is to hang an article of clothing up around you that you want to get back into. Then, when you reach that goal, you will have more of an idea of your size and you will own it.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008, 3:29 PM

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The reason Lane Bryant size 16 and a normal store 16 is different is because LB is actually a plus size store. So they cut the clothes bigger then a regular misses dept. size 16. You can go into like Macy's and have the misses dept, usually up to a size 16, sometimes 18, but they will also have the women's dept where the size are 14 and up. The 14's will be different then the misses 14. In the women's dept they are cut fuller in the waist, hips and legs, as are shirts. So even though they are the same # size it is totally different dept. I wear a size 16 but I am narrow through my butt and hips so there is no way I'd be able to wear any LB pants.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008, 7:24 PM

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isn't this called denial?

Wednesday, February 06, 2008, 10:03 PM

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No, not denial; more like distorted reality or something. I've lost about 50 lbs., but sometimes I think I look fatter than I did when I was heavier.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008, 10:17 PM

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This is pretty common.

I caught an episode of a cable reality show called something like "How to look good naked", and the woman being helped by the program at some point is given a line-up of about 6 women in their underwear in order of the size of whatever body part it is that the featured woman has an issue with. She is then instructed to insert herself in the line-up where she thinks her body part belongs. Their perception is usually pretty whacked.

I think it's a kind of body dysmorphia...not sure what it takes to qualify as Body Dysmorphic Disorder, but you might want to google the term.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008, 10:19 PM

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do you have a web site for the online virtual model?

Wednesday, February 06, 2008, 11:35 PM

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Loving all the advice! OP, I am sooo with you! I have lost 75 pounds and swear that when I look in the mirror I look the same. Is it that I didn't realize I was so big before? Can I not accept the change? It is very odd...I will try some of the suggestions listed above. OP, good luck to you!!!

(btw, I am 5'7...was 240, now 165)

Thursday, February 07, 2008, 9:40 AM

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