By HamSandwich12 - 08/05/2013 14:17 - United States - Cleveland

Today, I was leaving my doctor's appointment when a nurse stopped me. She exclaimed, "Wow you are so skinny! What's your secret?" My secret? Having an autoimmune disease. FML
I agree, your life sucks 54 807
You deserved it 3 377

HamSandwich12 tells us more.

I think I need to gain about 5 more pounds to look "healthy". I'm not even 100 pounds. It's impossible for me to gain weight with this disease!

Top comments

twilightriforce 10

Well at least she was throwing you a compliment. Her Not knowing your situation is unfortunate but don't let it get you down. Live life to its fullest OP. :)

I'm sorry OP, that must've hurt to be reminded of it even though the woman meant well. I know how it is to be told that you're too skinny, it's just as damaging as being called fat. You must look pretty good to be called out for it though! :)


Hey, well at least you look good, right?

Not really. Couldn't that lead to an eating disorder?

what exactly could lead to an eating disorder? being skinny, autoimmune disease, or compliments?

SexySlayer1248 18

Ha ha like everyone wants to get Lupus so they can fit into a dress

I have Lupus. I am not skinny. They put you on steroids and steroids make you hella fat.

I second that. They put me on meds that have blown me up like a balloon. Lupus sucks.

I think I need to gain about 5 more pounds to look "healthy". I'm not even 100 pounds. It's impossible for me to gain weight with this disease!

What if you ate hella calories everyday?

Toasty283 8

You should just go on a junk-food spree.

When I was in grade school we all got weighed like once a year by the school nurse. If you were underweight she pretty much said 'drink a milkshake every day'.

hooligyn123 18

Except since OP has an autoimmune disease a junk food diet could be very detrimental as often eating healthy foods is very important to keep your immune system from getting even worse.

Xatraris 38

I've been drinking Ensure plus eating as much as my body allows me to gain a couple pounds. Autoimmune disorders suck because most of the time nutrients pass through without getting absorbed, at least for me. Hope you find what works for you, good luck!

BellaBelle_fml 23

I feel you OP. I have Crohn's disease which is an autoimmune disorder that can affect the entire gastrointestinal system. But mine focused on my colon at first, about 5 years ago, and now my small intestine is eroding as well. It also comes along with osteoarthritis in almost every joint in my body as well as fibromyalgia. I was on steroids for a long time that caused me to swell up pretty badly. I've stopped taking meds and have started to control my symptoms with supplements and strict diet that cuts out gluten, sugars, nuts, seeds, green leafy veggies, etc. It has helped me feel so much better, but it's still a constant struggle to not lose any more weight. Since I started this diet plan I have gone down from 187lbs to 112lbs and I'm 5'9 so I look very thin and my pale complexion just makes me look even more frail. I have had several hurtful comments made about my weight, some have even called me 'disgusting'. I've pretty much given up on trying to explain to people why I am so thin since it doesn't seem to stop the remarks. People can be so insensitive and just plain rude sometimes. Yes, it is very hurtful to hear those remarks, but I try not to let it drag me down because I know that if I even veer off my diet for just one meal my Crohn's will flair up causing excruciating pain that feels like someone is wearing gloves made of hot iron spikes and is grabbing my intestines and squeezing them as hard as they can. So I have to try to adhere to my diet as much as I can while trying to be creative with my meal choices to avoid getting bored with it and to not lose any more weight. I really hope that you and I both can eventually achieve a healthier weight and life. Keep your chin up and know that you are not alone in this fight for health.

mansen 15

have you tried seeing a nutritionist that may help you with ways to gain weight with foods etc that are healthy and won't trigger or exacerbate your condition?

This issue is, even if they eat a ton of calories, they need to figure out exactly what works, rather than on a binge. I only process half my food in the time a normal person was. I started off just eating thing to find out what to eat. ***** annoying too. Sorry OP, I hope you find your "magic food" that agrees with you.

Roskosity 22

You can have five of mine. Or ten...

I have fibromyalgia so I know the weight thing is annoying. My cousin has lupus tho. She took some meds and blew up too. I'm on lyrica and Celebrex but thankfully I haven't gained. I've actually lost

I know how you feel on that, I also can't gain weight for the life of me

I have fibro as well. So annoying because I'm always exhausted and in pain

doraaa01 7

Inspirational :) If only I could remember this every time I'm down when I have to eat my diet and look at myself..

Sober1128 9

Hey, I also have an autoimmune disease that keeps me thin. Speak to a gastroenterologist. Many autoimmune come with IBS. They might can help you get back to a healthy weight.

kaimariebee 15

I have Celiac Disease, totally feel your pain.

countryrose92 23

My auto-immune disease does the opposite. :( it's attacking my thyroid causing my hormones to not work which makes my metabolism crash so no matter how healthy I eat or how much I work out I gain weight. It sucks. :( good luck gaining weight. All I have to do is eat a salad and run 2 miles and I'll gain a couple pounds.

iammeorami 25

I guess I'm not the only one with crohns on fml

Not trying to be nosy but do you Crohns because I have it and its near impossible for me to keep on weight

124, 137, 139: Also another sufferer of fibro. All my problems started when I got glandular fever/mono a few years ago. The thing that sucks most for me is that people don't understand that I can't just do everything all the time. Some days getting out of bed or just walking to the bus to get to school feels impossible. And people think because you don't necessarily 'look' sick that you're fine and just making it up. Sorry to hear you are all suffering from this and other conditions also, nothing we can really do apart from keep a chin up

I try to eat 2000 calories a day haha.

I was tested for Crohn's when I originally started losing weight, but it was negative. Turns out I have Graves' Disease. I'm not really sure which is worse haha. Best of luck to you!

BellaBelle_fml 23

158 - Ugh, I despise people who say, "Well you're young and look healthy, so you must be making this up." Or, "You're too young to be in pain." I've had several doctors say these things to me before. I got so fed up with hearing that, that I told the last doctor who said that to me, "Ok, so by your logic if you rip the arm off a new born infant they will not scream because they are 'too young' for pain?! Your logic is flawed!" And then I demanded a refund and walked out. It's also frustrating when you are having a massive flair up and people just don't understand why you can't go out and have fun or are off your A-game at work and think you are just lazy. But, I can't blame everyone for being that way since unless I explain to them about my disease they have no way of knowing. It's the ones that still treat you like you are a drag even after you explain your condition to them that really piss me off. I became a nurse mainly because I can empathize with my patients. I know how painful, scary, confusing, and frustrating it can be. I know and have experienced similar problems as they have. I want to help them get through their struggle with as much ease as possible and help them navigate through their symptoms and dealing with doctors or anyone else who won't listen to them. I had so many doctors ignore all of the signs of Crohn's disease that I was displaying and it almost killed me. I had several CT scans taken and the same radiologist read them every time and every time he told the doctors that I had Crohn's but they did not believe him because Crohn's is mostly genetic and no one else in my family has it. Due to their negligence my intestines were given the time to burst open, hemorrhage, get tangled up with the surrounding organs, and begin to rot. Don't give up fighting! Force your doctors to listen to you! Do not leave that office until they actually do something for you! I was pushed around so much, and if only one person takes something away from my story then I am satisfied that I have at least helped one person!

twilightriforce 10

Well at least she was throwing you a compliment. Her Not knowing your situation is unfortunate but don't let it get you down. Live life to its fullest OP. :)

Why at a doctors office she would be saying anything to a patient is beyond me, I mean how many people are there because they have something more than just the flu and I'd say most aren't ready to start sharing it to the world but what do I know? I'm just a shark.

I agree with 14, HOW DARE that nurse attempt to be friendly toward a patient, HOW DARE SHE!

No #20. Part of working in healthcare is knowing that people have things wrong with them and assuming that they may be self conscious about their situation. In fact if she makes a habit out of that she could be written up or loose her license. I was in a pre-med class and commenting to anyone about their physical appearance or otherwise is highly unprofessional.

#66 is absolutely right. A nurse of all people should know better than to comment on somebody's appearance, especially something that could indicate serious illness.

Thank you! I seriously do try to live life to its fullest. Despite having this disease, I have a full-time job, I'm a PhD student, and I work out everyday!

I'm sorry OP, that must've hurt to be reminded of it even though the woman meant well. I know how it is to be told that you're too skinny, it's just as damaging as being called fat. You must look pretty good to be called out for it though! :)

I'm sorry, but no, being too skinny is NEVER as bad as being too fat, because losing weight and getting fit is SO much harder than simply eating more and getting a bit more fit than you already are. Seriously, being skinny is NOT a bad thing!

RedPillSucks 31

We're not talking about being skinny. We're talking about being TOO skinny. That CAN and DOES cause health complications. Just because people are skinny doesn't mean they're healthy.

I'd much rather be skinny and a bit sick than fat and a bit sick. While I'm not sick, I hate being fat. *Cue "Well then, get your ass off the computer and start working out and eat healthier" replies*

You have no idea what you are talking about! I have been underweight my whole life and it has caused health problems and has restricted me from doing certain activities because I was just too frail. And people always just assume that I'm a bitch or have an eating disorder because I'm skinny. Next time get you facts straight before you start talking shit.

Again, in my opinion, being called fat is just as bad as being called skinny. I too struggled with being too underweight when I was diagnosed with M.E. After this happened, I was constantly criticised about it and seen as the skinny cow for idiotic reasons. If you haven't been severely underweight, you'll never understand just how mentally and physically destroying it is. If you're overweight because you're too lazy to do something about it (unless it's a health condition), that's another story but being helplessly underweight is not something to be wished for.

I'm so happy to see all the support from everyone here for everyone struggling with any kind of weight problem. I had a problem where almost no matter how much I ate I could not gain weight. I was the target of a lot of bullying and called anorexic a lot. I felt so terrible and unattractive for not having "curves" Some people can be so cruel

Before my treatments, I was underweight. Nothing I did helped. It was very frustrating and caused me to be self conscious. To make things worse, I get poofy and have water weight from my treatments. While not fat, I am slightly over weight. But from having the too skinny issue, I often feel huge. Nothing I do takes off the weight either. Both have been down right miserable and frustrating experiences. I think feel for anyone who struggles with weight, no matter which way the struggle is.

MarisaCB 16

This is literally my favorite thread ever. Everyone assumes calling someone "skinny" isn't insulting. But it is. These comments made me feel a billion times better.

Skinny people need to stop calling fat people lazy and say they just need to eat less, & fat people need to stop calling skinny people anorexic and say they just need to eat more. It's not that easy for either party and I'm sure it hurts on both sides, but people who say being overweight is a side effect of laziness are just insensitive, rude, & need to get over themselves because just like how skinniness is caused naturally/by disease, overweight-ness is as well.

#97 is right, my thyroid made me slightly overweight by about 28-30lbs, not a huge problem but ******* annoying. My slow metabolism made it hard to lose but thankfully I don't look "fat", it's just a few extra pounds so I still look normal. Until I got ill (undiagnosed), now I'm 14lbs lighter.

Thank you. I know she meant it as a compliment! A lot of people comment on "what a great figure" I have. But I don't *feel* healthy, so it's hard to enjoy the compliment.

57, you're beautiful just the way you are.

Take it from someone who had both been too skinny and kinda fat-- although you'll get a few mean words tossed your way if you're underweight, it is nowhere near the same as the shit you get when you're fat. When you're underweight, you can still find clothes that fit, and a few people actually compliment you on it even if you feel ugly. The people close to you that know you eat normally don't bug you about your food intake. There's a reason the joke is "Americans are fat" and not "Europeans are skinny", and that's because being fat is a joke to most people. So while I wouldn't deny that underweight people do get harassed badly, and yes, it is a problem, one does have to realize that it really isn't the same as being harassed when you're fat. At all.

Amen to that. I'm a 24-year-old woman... and I have the body of a prepubescent boy!

That is not even the case. For 10 years I've battled with gaining weight. I was underweight and bullied for it. I'd be called anorexic and told to go eat fatty foods. Well guess what? I ate like a horse. My metabolism was just really fast. I could barely ever weigh more than 100lbs. Five years ago I got so severely sick that I could not eat for two weeks. I lost 20 lbs. I was already underweight. At that point I was unhealthily under weight. I are lots of food, carbs, anything. Could think Of to gain weight. It took me almost a year to gain back those 20lbs. Now that may not seem like much to gain, but when your body won't gain weight that is impossible. I was constantly bullied after that and was told I needed to eat more and called anorexic and stuff. Well today I weight 130lbs but you wouldn't be able to tell. The only reason I gained any weight was because I went on birth control. Anyone who thinks that gaining weight is easier than losing it has never been under weight before.

MzZombicidal 36

#193, that's pretty routine gab for women. She was giving her a compliment and didn't mean anything by it. Also, "eat more?" As if that hasn't crossed OP's mind…

She never was called too skinny just "so skinny" there is a major difference. Being called too skinny is a criticism, but so skinny is a compliment.

You can GAIN fat cells, but you can -NEVER- lose them. You have them for life. They only shrink. THAT is why it's harder to lose weight (and keep it off) - fat cells you have from previous weight changes can simply inflate.... I'm not invalidating your struggles, I know hyperthyroidism can be a huge issue, but this is fact.

I used to be unhealthily underweight. These days I'm inching my way into overweight territory. Of the two, I prefer underweight. Of course, healthy is the ideal weight.

TwoOneFive 11

Wow, someone shouldn't ask that to a stranger

A nurse shouldn't ask that to a patient!! It's highly unprofessional.

It sounded like a compliment. The nurse didn't know OP's condition. Unless she was being sarcastic, which in that case is unprofessional.

Knightchaser27 25

Especially in a hospital or doctor's office.

RandomHavoc1 13

196: ever heard of just being genuinely nice and complimenting someone?

Tell her to contract AIDS- works like a charm

MindFreakazoid 10

And you would know this because?

Works like a charm for what exactly? Seeing how the nurse was trying to compliment instead of insult, I don't see how telling her to contract AIDS would "work."

This is obviously sarcasm, why did this get buried?

Sarcasm, ************, do you speak it?

At least someone on here isn't an idiot.

Well at least it was a complement and not an insult? :)

rudegirlmania 10

I'm sorry, but this is ignorant. "Wow you're so fat! What's your secret?" Even if I added an endearing term like, "You're so lucky," at the end, there's no way saying this to a stranger is okay.

Zambowi 15

But.... who would want to know someone's "secret" for being fat..

darkangel21492 10

I do believe #74 was being sarcastic...

Yes, I know it was meant to be a compliment. I wasn't upset at the nurse at all. It just reminded of me of my struggle to gain weight. I dread stepping on the scale just as much as people struggling to lose weight.

Comment moderated for rule-breaking.

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Thats not so bad, I know some girls that are just dying to lose some weitght.

RedPillSucks 31

Even some that died while losing weight.

a_lenzmeier 11

My condolences OP. As for the nurse, that was unethical. You could report her.

That wasn't unethical, but is was highly unprofessional. You have the expectation that your medical information is private; unless that nurse is involved in your care, she's just plain nosey, and you don't owe her any explanation. I'm sure that was very uncomfortable for you.

seniorchang 16

Why so angry at a nurse for attempting a compliment? It was neither unethical nor unprofessional. That's why you are getting more thumbs down than a Bruce Willis movie at Cannes.

Quiet_one 22

Telling someone they're skinny is not necessarily a compliment. A lot of people are self-conscious about it, because they can't gain weight for whatever reason and it's constantly being pointed out to them. I think it's kind of weird to comment on a total stranger's body anyway, but maybe that's just me.

But asking "whats your secret?" is like asking "how did you accomplish this?" I'm sure the nurse didn't have a disgusted tone when she commented on OP's figure, thus shouldn't be offended.

I wasn't angry at all at the nurse. I know she meant well. I'm just really tired of people always telling me how skinny I am. Btw, your nickname is great, seniorchang!!

I think that nurse has some issues. I bet she asks overweight women if they are pregnant too!