We love it when we read a story about people who turn horrible situations into positive ones, change their lives, and inspire others around them to do the same. This is why we can’t help but share Lisseth Exposito’s incredible weight loss transformation which started- and ended- because of the severe verbal and emotional abuse she suffered from her ex-husband. (1, 2)
Lisseth Exposito’s Weight Loss Journey
When Lisseth first met her now ex-husband Jose, their relationship was wonderful. He constantly told her how beautiful he thought she was and how much he loved her. All of this began to change after the birth of their daughter. (1, 2)
Before becoming pregnant, both Jose’s and Lisseth’s diets consisted largely of junk and fast food. During her pregnancy, she began eating even larger portions than before. While Jose didn’t gain a pound, Lisseth’s weight ballooned. (1, 2)
‘I told myself it was just baby weight, but deep down it felt like I was carrying triplets. Jose constantly called me huge and I promised him I’d lose the weight.’ (2)
Jose continued to tell her she was fat, calling her an elephant and even telling her that she was “too fat” to have sex with. As the verbal and emotional abuse continued, Lisseth turned to food as her only friend and source of joy, eventually consuming up to 4,000 calories each day. (1, 2)
Lisseth eventually found incriminating texts on Jose’s phone proving he was cheating on her. When confronted, he readily admitted it, sighting he did it because she was “fat and ugly”. She broke up with him right then and there and filed for divorce shortly after, vowing to herself that she would turn her life around and never let him, or any other man, hurt her like that again. (1, 2)
She chose natural weight loss methods of Gastric Bypass Surgery
Lisseth went to her doctor to talk about her options, who suggested that she have gastric bypass surgery, but she didn’t like the sound of that option. (1, 2)
The Problem with Gastric Bypass Surgery
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Gastric bypass surgery is a procedure that involves making your stomach smaller and changing the way your stomach and intestines process food. Not only will you feel full on less food, but you will also absorb less calories from that food. (3)
The downside? This is a major surgery with a relatively long recovery time, and it will have permanent effects on your health and life:
- Gastric bypass can cause gastritis, heart burn, and ulcers. (3, 4)
- Can cause poor nutrient status due to a decreased area and ability of the intestines to absorb the nutrients your body needs. (3, 4)
- The first two weeks post-op require a liquid and pureed diet: No caffeine, no soda, no soups with solid pieces of food. (3, 4)
- For the next two months, only soft foods may be eaten. (3, 4)
- You still have to change your diet drastically after surgery for the rest of your life, and often there are foods that you will not ever be able to eat (many people struggle with breads, carbonated drinks, and spicy food). (3, 4, 5)
Diet Changes and Exercise Helped Lisseth Lose the Weight
By swapping out junk and fast food for chicken and vegetables, along with hitting the gym, Lisseth lost 126 pounds in just ten months. (1, 2)
“I started to feel great for a change. I joined the gym and at first people would stare, but eventually I got my confidence back.” Lisseth recalls. “The weight started to drop off me. I felt great, my clothes were so baggy I had to buy smaller sizes.” (2)
So what exactly did Lisseth’s dietary changes look like? Let’s compare:
- Breakfast: Full English breakfast and a sandwich
- Lunch: Big plate of pasta
- Dinner: McDonald’s or Chinese food
- Snacks: Chips, chocolate, and cakes (2)
Lisseth has now regained her lost confidence and wants to be an inspiration to other women who may also be in similar situations, and most importantly be a good role model for her daughter.
“Every weekend, Jose would pick up Lissmar and do a double take as he looked at me. Then one Friday he told me I was looking hot,” she remembers. “I closed the door on him. I would never let him back in my life. I am a role model to my daughter and I proved him wrong.” (2)
Recognizing the Signs of Emotional Abuse
Lisseth was able to break out of her abusive situation and turn it into something positive before it destroyed her, however things could have easily gone in a different direction. Knowing the signs of emotional abuse will help to protect you or a loved one from a bad situation: (6)
- Criticizing, degrading, judging, and humiliation: Whether in front of others or not, this also involves complaining that you are “too sensitive” and telling you your feelings and opinions are wrong. (6)
- Blaming and accusations: You are “always in the wrong”, they call you names, have trouble apologizing or admitting they were wrong, and disrespect your valid requests. (6)
- Controlling and shame: They treat you like a child, belittle your accomplishments, and require you to ask for permission before going anywhere, participating in activities, or spending money. (6)
- Emotional distancing and neglect: This can be in the form of “the silent treatment”, withhold or withdraw affection, and blaming you for them needing to take those measures. (6)
- Extreme co-dependence: They treat you as an extension of themselves and not an individual person, require constant contact, and don’t respect your boundaries and requests, even going as far as to share personal information about you to others. (6)
It is crucial for anyone who has been a victim of emotional abuse, be it from a partner, friend, family member, or any other person, that this is not a reflection of you or is your fault. Most often emotional abusers do so as a way of coping with their own wounds or feelings of inadequacy. (6)
If you are experiencing emotional abuse, it is important that you stand up for yourself and always react in a calm, rational, yet firm and assertive manner. Just as Lisseth did, you have the power to take control of the situation and make it better for yourself. In many cases, this may mean removing the abuser from your life. For more help on dealing with, stopping, and preventing emotional abuse, visit this website, and please share this article to protect and inspire other women to retake control over their lives!
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