Why does my Mom, who had gastric-bypass surgery, take so long to order food in a restaurant? She’s driving me crazy with her indecisiveness.
Thanks for the great question, Rose. For our readers, Rose is a frequent visitor at Living After WLS. She has not had surgery but is trying to better help and understand her mom who had surgery about 8 months ago.
Rose, there are a number of reasons your Mom could be indecisive when ordering a meal at a restaurant. Perhaps she’s worried about getting sick – dumping or vomiting. All WLS patients worry about getting sick in public.
Perhaps she has some unresolved emotional issues about leaving too much food on her plate. (Remember the “clean up your plate” threat of childhood and habit of adulthood.)
She may fear she won’t like what she orders: to a bariatric patient taste takes priority over quantity.
Maybe nothing sounds good to her, in the early stage after WLS food can seem unappealing and even nauseating.
She may not be hungry, but doesn’t want to offend you by rejecting your invitation to dine out.
Some patients in this stage of the bariatric journey feel grief or loss for the foods we once loved gluttonously. She may be feeling loss seeing a menu of many things that she can no longer enjoy.
These things considered, is it possible to ask your mom if there is a specific reason she’s struggling to order her meal? That may be touchy and her feelings are probably raw in this early phase of weight-loss, so be cautious.
Some bariatric patients I know look at on-line menus before dining out. They make a plan ahead of time of what they will order and enjoy based on the very specific needs of the low-volume, high-protein WLS diet.
Rose, I believe you mom’s confidence in eating out and ordering skillfully for her needs will improve with time. Be patient with her, she is busting a lifetime of bad habits and finding her way to health and living after WLS.
Best wishes, please let us know how your mom is doing.