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S05.E05: Doug's Story

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After overcoming a dependence on drugs and alcohol, sneaking food is Doug's last remaining vice; this husband and father must overcome his addictive personality to save his life and marriage.

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I'm thinking she is on maternity leave. And he gets SSI. The house was probably hers when they got together since he can't work. 

It's shocking that she doesn't give him hell   about what he eats considering she has been there.

Edited by poeticlicensed
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That poor wife, I can understand how hard it is to eat healthy when your spouse doesn't.      Doug seems like a really good guy so I hope he can deal with his past and change his eating habits and thus hers because she doesn't seem happy with him or her own weight gain.     Those kids are adorable, his wife is lovely but man his dad seems like a hard ass.          

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8 minutes ago, EE2000 said:

but man his dad seems like a hard ass.

No kidding! "Hi, Dad, come on in!" "When are you going to lose weight??"

Edited by Azubah
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Have I missed the part where he attempts any type of physical activity? Even a walk around the neighborhood? Maybe he'll eventually get around to it. 

Edited by Katydid
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I wonder if any of the ones we see go to therapy actually do more than one appointment because it usually takes more than one session.    I just hope they do and we only see part of one.    

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She had weight loss surgery herself, but I do think she seems heavier than she is due to the way her body is built.       

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I think Ashley is gaining weight, too. Ugh. How is that happening?

Also, this episode is really boring. I can get behind a two-hour episode for someone interesting or aggravating, but Doug? Is neither. 

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Those were the cutest children I've ever seen!  

Why didn't they weigh Ashley too?  It was the elephant in the room. Unlike some other episodes where they don't acknowledge that a family member needs to lose weight, they established it from the beginning of that she also had a problem. So why not answer the questions going on in our minds. 

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Yes, Ashley was getting fatter and that's the part I don't get. You'd think she would've been carrying more weight at the beginning of the show due to the fact she'd just had twins. Plus wasn't she monitoring Doug's food intake (amount, calories, etc) at the beginning of his weight loss even before he went in for surgery. You'd think she would be on the same 1200 calorie diet to support Doug, plus for her own health as well. It's so much easier if all the adults in a household are eating the same way.

I don't mean to rag on her though. Girl has her hands full with three kids, (two being twin infants) most all the household chores plus holding down a job outside the home, so her Calgon moments are few and far between. Kudos to her. Lesser women would've run out the door screaming.

The best part about this show was the fact it was relatively drama free. Doug wasn't a stubborn piece of work that wanted to do things his way or a whiny crybaby who rode roughshod over everyone. He seemed like a nice enough guy that kept on going slowly but surely and actually listened to Dr. Now. I wish him a lot of luck and hope we'll see a future update on him.

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Ashley wasn't losing weight, but this show wasn't about her.  She seemed to be breastfeeding (although obviously sometimes expressing and/or supplementing with formula), based on a scene in the kitchen with the strategically placed baby blanket.  If this is the case, it might be hard to lose weight.  I know most of my breastfeeding friends had a hard time losing weight until after the children were weaned.  

I like the two hour format, even when the participants are nice and don't bring the drama.  Most fat people I know are nice, normal, kind, compassionate humans that eat a lot or have a medical condition.  It bothers me to only see fat people on TV as delusional lunatics.  I'm in this to see a glimpse of what real life is for someone this obese, before and after surgery.  I think 2 hours with Doug is a much more realistic portrayal of that than a hour of Penny.  (Although, goodness knows her episode *was* good entertainment.) 

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The two hours of this show format now is really killing me. I lost interest with still about 35 minutes to go and I'll have to finish it tomorrow. There was too much shown of what was leading him up to seeing Dr. Now, at least 10 minutes could have been edited out. And I have noticed that it seems quite a lot of these folks have more trouble losing after the surgery than they did before they had it- wonder what's going on with that?

His wife seemed like a nice lady but I can't imagine why, as a single mother, she agreed to not only marry him but to also have children with him when he is disabled. It's like she was walking the plank from the pirate ship into the ocean, taking on Doug. I do wish him the best but it's going to be an uphill road for him, like all of the others.

And, is it just me, or did it seem that he wasn't quite as huge as some of the other men we've seen who weigh nearly 700 lbs? He seemed to be getting around ok with a cane and I know he's tall but I think a few guys from previous seasons looked worse overall. I do wonder what his job used to be, unless I didn't catch it, not having finished the episode.

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I always fast forward through the therapy sessions.  It feels like such a breach of privacy, almost voyeuristic, to watch those scenes.  IMO, it's worse than watching the bathing/showering scenes.

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This is one of those shows I dvr and then start watching 45 minutes in. I ff through the boring stuff and commercials and finish on time.  Doug looked super, I wish him well. He is so tall and has such a large frame that at 300 pounds, he will look svelte. Wonder too how Ashley gained so much weight. She was in constant motion and cooking healthy for the family. She has to be a closet eater.  Anyway, they seem like nice people, wishing them continued success.

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I missed the last 5 minutes so if anyone can tell me what the last update was, that would be great. Agreed, Ashley was amazing--however, on e thing really really bugged me--she said "I was over 300 lbs and couldnt stand it, so I had weight loss surgery"..I really expected her to say "I tried diets, I went to the gym,etc but it does seem like some people just think "oh ill have surgery". Also, she married him when he was already very heavy and had twins with him (so cute) so i dont see her leaving him and they do seem to really love each other.

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1 hour ago, nlkm9 said:

she said "I was over 300 lbs and couldnt stand it, so I had weight loss surgery"

Yeah, but she also said, "Losing weight is hard -- believe me, I know" or something along those lines. I thought she had tried other options before the surgery.

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How fun was it to watch those little girls grow from floppy little babies to them toddling around? 

I enjoyed this episode, Doug seemed like a good guy, once he got going, and a loving father. I hope he continues to make progress and do well. I'm glad too that the kids will hopefully grow up with healthier eating habits - I was horrified to see two large pieces of pizza on that little boy's plate, not to mention the bread stick (sticks?) he was working on as well.

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Doug may have had one of the worst cases of food addiction that we've seen.  Sexual abuse in his past also, but his main trauma seems to have been the abandonment by his mother. Speaking of whom, I was shocked that she agreed to appear on camera and discuss their past. He seemed like mostly a good guy and I hope he gets it together. I think his post-surgery progress was some of the slowest among those who have been on this show. 

I think they were renting both houses we saw them live in, just by the way they discussed "moving to a new house" rather than "we sold this house and bought a new one."

Ashley - good God, what were you thinking, marrying this man and immediately becoming pregnant?  He had to have been disabled at the time of their marriage/the babies' conception. Granted she didn't know it would be twins, I assume, but even one baby would have been too much.  She had a hard life, but some of it was self-created. She did seem to be gaining as the year progressed. I also winced when Doug (I almost just typed Dough..I'm a baker..haha) fed the little boy a big bowl of what looked like Froot Loops. Zero nutrition, sugar high. And also, just keeping that stuff in the house when both adults are food addicts is bad news. The kid will like what you teach him to like, and he doesn't do the grocery shopping.  It reminds me of one time at a school open house, the teacher asked the parents to please feed their children (1st graders) breakfast (which I thought was so sad - who has to be told that?). One mother chirped up, "I try, but all he will eat is pop tarts!"  Umm what is wrong with this picture? Stop buying the pop tarts and he won't be eating them any more. He's 6. 

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I don't mean to be indelicate, but I was having a hard time figuring out how Ashley and Doug managed to get pregnant have babies. I'm talking logistics here. Those babies were tiny and I know he didn't pack on the last 300 pounds in the last year. 

Loved the babies. Normally you only know how many months have passed because they tell you, but with little babies, you know it's been a year!

Edited by poeticlicensed
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4 hours ago, jacksgirl said:

This is one of those shows I dvr and then start watching 45 minutes in. I ff through the boring stuff and commercials and finish on time.  Doug looked super, I wish him well. He is so tall and has such a large frame that at 300 pounds, he will look svelte. Wonder too how Ashley gained so much weight. She was in constant motion and cooking healthy for the family. She has to be a closet eater.  Anyway, they seem like nice people, wishing them continued success.

I find myself FF'ing through a lot of this.  I want to see their progress.  I agree with the poster above re Ashley - was very surprised also that after initially complaining that Doug's need to eat was causing HER weight to increase, did not avail herself of the plus side of monitoring Doug on a 1200 calorie/day diet.  And I noted she included a lot of foods with a high fat content - sausage.  (Unless is was turkey sausage, in which case I apologize). But I applaud Doug in that while he was reluctant to write the letter to his mother, he realized its importance in his recovery and progress and indeed looked to have had a significant effect on him.  He's well on his way, no excuses, and he and Ashley seem happier. 

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Ashley is a better woman than I am.  I could not imagine wanting to have sex with someone Doug's size.  And just trying to figure out the logistics of it!  His stomach protruded out quite a bit.  And you know she was having to do everything around that house up until she actually gave birth - it wasn't like Doug was cleaning house and cooking meals and bathing Cooper. 

That said, at least Doug wasn't a whiner.  I hope he keeps going to therapy, as one session is clearly not going to solve all his problems.  And I hope Ashley pulls herself together and starts losing the weight she had gained (and was keeping on gaining).  I have a feeling those two will need couples therapy if they're going to stay together.

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I thought Ashley and Doug seemed really sweet.  I want them to succeed. 

And, poeticlicensed, you're not the only one wondering how she managed to get pregnant...

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Uh, Doug is not dealing with the sexual abuse he suffered.  I also don't think he is dealing with his true feelings about his mother. Neither is the mother.

I think in this case, maybe all potential patients for surgery, long term therapy before is a must.    I know at least a few posters have said this actually happens.

I would not of approved him for surgery until he had at least a year of mental help.    Also, if he honestly dealt with his feelings, he may have not even had to have surgery.   

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I couldn't believe his mom said, "you're going to blame me," or something to that affect when they were having coffee together.  Who else is to blame for her abandoning her children?!  It sounds like she had other stuff going on, but her is her child and was an actual child when this happened - I think it's a bit much for her to expect him to understand what her issues were. 

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so what happened the last 5 minutes? His weight loss after surgery seemed to be really slow. 

I think chips are way to much of a temptation for both of them to have in the house-I felt bad when he told the camera he was "sneaking food" and let them film him eating the chips.

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52 minutes ago, Cherrio said:

Uh, Doug is not dealing with the sexual abuse he suffered.  I also don't think he is dealing with his true feelings about his mother. Neither is the mother.

I think in this case, maybe all potential patients for surgery, long term therapy before is a must.    I know at least a few posters have said this actually happens.

I would not of approved him for surgery until he had at least a year of mental help.    Also, if he honestly dealt with his feelings, he may have not even had to have surgery.   

This is a problem with the show's formula.  They should start therapy much earlier.  All these people have major issues. They always start the therapy after the person continues to fail in some way.   

This was sad here.  Doug had so blocked his feelings from his mother's leaving that he didn't know he had them.  The therapist had to explain that to him.  They didn't deal with the sexual abuse. Doug really has potential to succeed.  He was not whiny, like other people we've seen, and he was motivated.  His wife really loves him.  I hope they can also work on weight loss together and keep a healthy menu going for themselves and the kids.  

I think someone posted something earlier about their money and suggested he was on SSI.  If they are married, he could not collect SSI if she is working.  Their family income would be too high.  SSI is a mean-tested benefit.   I do wonder how many of these families support themselves. 

Edited by GussieK
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I have the same questions every time I watch this show. How do these people support themselves?

Some haven't been out of bed in years. Yet they have brand new cars, eat out constantly, have laptops, big screen TVs, and new apartments! I assume there is some type of disability involved, but does that cover all of it?

Doug seemed nice, but I don't get how he can't work when he has a HOME PRINTING BUSINESS!!

If he can sit on the couch all day, then he can sit in a chair in front of the computer. If someone is too disabled to work, then how can they justify having more children? Who pays for that? Doug said that Ashley was supporting the family. But when she left for work, she was wearing what looked like jeans, so I guess she's not a CEO.

At the end of the episode, they had a new, bigger house, and Doug was driving a huge, brand new Chevy. I just don't get it.

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I was perplexed as to why he couldn't work (mind you, I work in work comp where I'm constantly yelling at my computer screen, "get back to work!"), the girl from a couple shows back was a customer service rep and could sit all day. Next, I agree with those who said the wife's complaints were confusing, she married a 600 lb man who did not work, then had babies right away. Talk about know what you're getting into.

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2 hours ago, poeticlicensed said:

I don't mean to be indelicate, but I was having a hard time figuring out how Ashley and Doug managed to get pregnant have babies. I'm talking logistics here. Those babies were tiny and I know he didn't pack on the last 300 pounds in the last year. 

Loved the babies. Normally you only know how many months have passed because they tell you, but with little babies, you know it's been a year!

I'm glad somebody else asked this.  I'm baffled, but didn't know if this type of question was allowed.  

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3 hours ago, poeticlicensed said:

I don't mean to be indelicate, but I was having a hard time figuring out how Ashley and Doug managed to get pregnant have babies. I'm talking logistics here.

I wonder how he could have sex and not have a stroke or heart attack. I honestly thought he was going to die just walking around the grocery store! 

1 hour ago, Hockeymom said:

Doug seemed nice, but I don't get how he can't work when he has a HOME PRINTING BUSINESS!!

 

Considering it took him like forever to print that one t-shirt, I don't think that when he was inclined to work he was all that successful at his job. 

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12 hours ago, CarolMK said:

The two hours of this show format now is really killing me. I lost interest with still about 35 minutes to go and I'll have to finish it tomorrow. There was too much shown of what was leading him up to seeing Dr. Now, at least 10 minutes could have been edited out. And I have noticed that it seems quite a lot of these folks have more trouble losing after the surgery than they did before they had it- wonder what's going on with that?

His wife seemed like a nice lady but I can't imagine why, as a single mother, she agreed to not only marry him but to also have children with him when he is disabled. It's like she was walking the plank from the pirate ship into the ocean, taking on Doug. I do wish him the best but it's going to be an uphill road for him, like all of the others.

And, is it just me, or did it seem that he wasn't quite as huge as some of the other men we've seen who weigh nearly 700 lbs? He seemed to be getting around ok with a cane and I know he's tall but I think a few guys from previous seasons looked worse overall. I do wonder what his job used to be, unless I didn't catch it, not having finished the episode.

I don't know why TLC does this. They do this with other shows and obviously don't realize that many viewers don't have 2 hours in them for one episode.

3 minutes ago, Pepper Mostly said:

I always figured that the "therapy sessions" are re-enactments, only touching on issues in a general way, for the audience's information. I never put too much credence in them. I do hope that the people on this show get real therapy!

Show formula:

I am fat.

Really, really fat.

I was always a big kid/I was normal until a traumatic event

Got super fat.

I am in pain every minute of the day.

My life is a hell on earth.

My family enables me/has to care for me because I can't get out of bed.

I am desperate for weight loss surgery.

I just love food.

Dieting is so, so hard.

I'm going to work hard to lose the weight so I will be approved for weight loss surgery.

I had weight loss surgery and hate the jello and bullion I am allowed to eat.

The cravings are coming back.

This is so hard.

I'll just have a donut today. I know my body and what I need.

Dr. Now is mad at me because I didn't lose enough weight/gained weight.

I am determined to prove him wrong.

I am going to the gym.

I am going to a therapist.

I have a sudden realization that its up to me.

I have lost a lot of weight and want to continue to lose weight/Dr. Now doesn't know what he is talking about and I will do it MY WAY.

the end.

THIS!

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I thought Doug's wife looked just like Carrie Brownstein's lesbian feminist bookstore owner character in Portlandia. That's all I could think of when she was onscreen!

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1 hour ago, Hockeymom said:

Doug said that Ashley was supporting the family. But when she left for work, she was wearing what looked like jeans, so I guess she's not a CEO.

At the end of the episode, they had a new, bigger house, and Doug was driving a huge, brand new Chevy. I just don't get it.

Simply put, it very much depends on the industry.

I wear shorts, a t-shirt, and flip flops everyday to work. And while I am not a CEO, I make a substantial living. Well enough to support two people and enough animals that I've started to lose count.

Fortunately, the edict that you must wear a business suit every day to be a professional has started to drop off, as more companies realize that what a person is wearing does not equal their ability.

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It was confusing to see Ashley gaining weight as the episode progressed.  Doug even said at one point "Ashley is losing weight too!", and I'm thinking "wait, what?!?"  Someone mentioned that she may not be losing because she is nursing.  Actually, breastfeeding burns a lot of calories and is traditionally Mother Nature's way of helping the mom to lose the pregnancy weight.    If they're going to do 2 hr. shows I wish they would cover a longer period of time and perhaps include the skin removal surgery. 

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Breastfeeding increases metabolism but it also makes some women ravenous. I've known women who gained a ton of weight breastfeeding their first kid, then lost a ton of weight breastfeeding the second one. They said "yeah, the first kid I ate WAY more, the second kid I actually watched what I ate and lost a ton." So I think it varies hugely :)

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48 minutes ago, kaossy said:

Simply put, it very much depends on the industry.

I wear shorts, a t-shirt, and flip flops everyday to work. And while I am not a CEO, I make a substantial living. Well enough to support two people and enough animals that I've started to lose count.

Fortunately, the edict that you must wear a business suit every day to be a professional has started to drop off, as more companies realize that what a person is wearing does not equal their ability.

Yes, I realize you don't need to wear a suit. I don't. However, she was leaving home and heading to a place of employment. Ashley just looked casual to me. To cover a mortgage, two big car payments, car insurance, medical insurance, childcare, utilities, taxes, a large food budget, vacations to the beach, and spending money for Doug to hit the fast food circuit, it must be a pretty substantial position.

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