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S07.E07: Brandon's Story

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Brandon, a musician, has a runaway weight problem. Besides losing weight, he wants a career and to take the next step with his girlfriend, Taylor, Whom he risks losing if he cant make the change.

Original air date 2019.02.13

This is the regular episode thread.  It will  open after the US East Coast showing. 

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I missed the Live Chat because I was 40 minutes late getting to the episode and it took me until the last 2 minutes to catch up. 

The way they showed him in the previews, I thought he would be whining and snarkable, but he is another decent guy who did well, even if he did have some emotional issues and setbacks.   He seems determined to succeed, and I hope he does.  

I am glad his girlfriend stuck it out with him.  And started on the diet too - she was starting to waddle too...  maybe they can both get in shape together?  

I kept hoping he would get back in touch with his father.  It doesn't sound like HIS relationship with his father was toxic, Brandon and his Mom have been two separate persons for over three decades and neither seems to have fully grasped the fact.  

The food Mom cooked looked good... and they actually ate at a table together off nice plates.  I am impressed!  Both homes looked really nice and neat too...

PS   I haven't seen that many episodes, but I am seeing a trend where husbands/boyfriends of obese female poundticipants tend to be normal weight, plus or minus, while wives/girlfriends of obese male poundticipants tend to be also at least overweight but more often obese.  Makes me wonder... 

Edited by Hellga
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2 hours ago, Kenzie said:

We all know Dr. Now's  nurse isn't known for her warm and fuzzy personality but I laughed out loud when she took her die-and-see-if-I-care apathy to world-class heights when she lumbered in to take his blood.

She reminded me of that scene in Absolutely Fabulous when a Jamaican nurse says to Edina "Who cares if you're fat or thin? Who cares if you live or die!?" I kept saying it, with my pitiful version of a Jamaican accent throughout the episode.

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He did end up losing a ton of weight. Not sure if he can keep it up though. 

He really is afraid of needles. I used to be a phlebotomist. I knew she would have to draw from the hand and that can be really hard. If he weren't so big he would probably have a really easy vein to get to and it would go super fast. 

Edited by libgirl2
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Has Dr Now always had the bling near the ear pieces of his stethoscope?  I knew the end was gold, but ......

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32 minutes ago, edie3 said:

Has Dr Now always had the bling near the ear pieces of his stethoscope?  I knew the end was gold, but ......

I think the blinged out stethoscope is new this season, but I could be wrong.  I loved that Brandon called it out.

I almost had an anxiety attack just watching Brandon have his.  The struggle with anxiety is so real and I could really feel his.  I would love to see him get his legs taken care of, but it looks like Dr. Now plans to do that last, after his arms and midsection.  I hope we see another positive update! 

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I get the needle thing, I am his twin.  I passed out in Dec. because of the asshole taking my blood.  Thankfully someone else did it and I was fine.

I didn't do the live chat and this has probably been covered, but LOLA ??  What kind of professional wears a push up bra with bulging cleavage showing?

Maybe she is a "showgirl" on the side.

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9 minutes ago, Cherrio said:

I get the needle thing, I am his twin.  I passed out in Dec. because of the asshole taking my blood.  Thankfully someone else did it and I was fine.

I would have patients tell me they didn't feel it when I drew their blood. 

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So sorry to have missed this last night and the live chat - so much to catch up on. So many great comments and snark. 

I think I pulled muscles in my eyes, I rolled them so hard when Brandon was having that panic attack over a blood draw. We were all Kassandra. 

These college-knowledged participants make for some boring episodes...

I guess everyone with a shitty childhood should be super obese, because that's an excuse to eat yourself into oblivion. Sure, I had a 'I'm an adult and have the freedom to eat whatever when I want' period, but, I got my shit together, for a few years now. 

His mom really didn't notice her son had a problem until he was 250lbs at 12, I think? Really? 

Brandon was already 500lbs by the time his dad copped to the affair and left. I don't understand why Brandon's mom couldn't support his siblings, and he couldn't finish college; such a waste to spend all that time and money, be so close to graduating, and drop out. 

Brandon's mom was a bitch. Just because you can't stand your ex, that doesn't give you permission to interfere with your son maybe reconnecting with his dad. Being a bad husband doesn't mean he's a bad father. Incredibly shitty and selfish of her. Be a better person, a parent, and help your son. 

I did not like Tayler at all. She just bugged me. "I think I enable him a little bit" "I want him to be happy, so, I bring him food" "One of the only things we can do together is eat" 

And surprise, surprise - she's fat, too, because she's eating the same garbage he is. You say you love your SO and you want them to be happy, but, you're helping them die...

I felt for her when she felt like she had no choice in moving to Houston. Her family was too attached, acting like she was going off to war. I get that leaving your family for a year is hard. She's an adult, she'll be okay. There's FaceTime and Skype. 

Brandon's song that he wrote for Tayler was just cringe. Keep that between you two, please. 

I am happy that he got himself together and lost all of that weight.

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This morning I was listening to an interview with a bariatric surgeon in Florida on dealing with food addiction (while I walked).  What he said about dealing with the emotions that made you turn to food in the first place made me think Lola is right that Brandon really needs to recognize and explore the problems with his father.  Brandon could possibly learn to deal with those feelings without ever having to meet or speak to his father again.  But I think his mother is due her share of the blame, he really needs to explore both of those relationships and how they affected him and his running to food if he’s going to be successful in the long run.

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I do like this guy's name. Brandon Scott.  It has a nice ring to it, imo.  

This guy is a grown asp man and at age 32 doesn't see how dysfunctional and WRONG his mother is to put her adult child against her ex due to her own revenge about the adultery.  Mom may be great, but, she needs a big old dose of reality.  It would take a lot of therapy for Brandon to be able to be straight with her. Say, "Mom, I love you, but, I'm mending the relationship with my father, if I can and I won't hear anything further about him from you.  If you have a problem with it, that's too bad.  Maybe, you could use some therapy too."  I don't think this is likely.   It doesn't take a professional to see that he sides against dad to stay in mom's good favor.  Maybe, when he's able to live independently on a permanent basis, he'll be free to make those calls.

I want to see Brandon after he gets all of his skin surgery.    

Edited by SunnyBeBe
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3 minutes ago, SunnyBeBe said:

I do like this guy's name. Brandon Scott.  It has a nice ring to it, imo.  

This guy is a grown asp man and at age 32 doesn't see how dysfunctional and WRONG his mother is to put her adult child against her ex due to her own revenge about the adultery.  Mom may be great, but, she needs a big old dose of reality.  It would take a lot of therapy for Brandon to be able to be straight with her. Say, "Mom, I love you, but, I'm mending the relationship with my father, if I can and I won't hear anything further about him from you.  If you have a problem with it, that's too bad.  Maybe, you could use some therapy too."  I don't think this is likely.   It doesn't take a professional to see that he sides against dad to stay in mom's good favor.  Maybe, when he's able to live independently on a permanent basis, he'll be free to make those calls.

I want to see Brandon after he gets all of his skin surgery.    

He has a really cute face. 

Edited by libgirl2
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1 hour ago, libgirl2 said:

I would have patients tell me they didn't feel it when I drew their blood.  

I need you to draw my blood then.   I have been thin or normal weight almost all of my life, and no one enjoys finding my bashful disappearing veins.  And the worse experience was having someone try to  do an arterial gas test on me.  They tried and tried; finally they gave up.  This was done at a nationally recognized hospital so it wasn't like I had an inexperienced person doing it.

When I read the description of the show, I thought it was a re-run because a while back there was a show with another poundcipiant who wanted to sing again.  They showed him trying to get his singing voice back, and it was hard work.  Brandon won't be singing opera again until he spends some time working with a vocal coach. 

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2 minutes ago, Twopper said:

I need you to draw my blood then.   I have been thin or normal weight almost all of my life, and no one enjoys finding my bashful disappearing veins.  And the worse experience was having someone try to  do an arterial gas test on me.  They tried and tried; finally they gave up.  This was done at a nationally recognized hospital so it wasn't like I had an inexperienced person doing it.

When I read the description of the show, I thought it was a re-run because a while back there was a show with another poundcipiant who wanted to sing again.  They showed him trying to get his singing voice back, and it was hard work.  Brandon won't be singing opera again until he spends some time working with a vocal coach. 

ITs been about 30 years since I did it, but I can still find a vein by touch! Arterial gases are the worst though. I never had to draw for that. 

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1 minute ago, Twopper said:

I need you to draw my blood then.   I have been thin or normal weight almost all of my life, and no one enjoys finding my bashful disappearing veins.  And the worse experience was having someone try to  do an arterial gas test on me.  They tried and tried; finally they gave up.  This was done at a nationally recognized hospital so it wasn't like I had an inexperienced person doing it.

When I read the description of the show, I thought it was a re-run because a while back there was a show with another poundcipiant who wanted to sing again.  They showed him trying to get his singing voice back, and it was hard work.  Brandon won't be singing opera again until he spends some time working with a vocal coach. 

I've had the arterial blood draw. They warned me that it was quite uncomfortable....but, I didn't feel it. lol Good for me, because I'm a Type I diabetic.  MANY blood draws, injections and finger sticks over the years. 

Yes, Brandon needs a vocal coach, imo.  I couldn't tell how he was financially, but, hopefully, it'll be in his budget once, he's back to living a normal life. 

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5 minutes ago, SunnyBeBe said:

I've had the arterial blood draw. They warned me that it was quite uncomfortable....but, I didn't feel it. lol Good for me, because I'm a Type I diabetic.  MANY blood draws, injections and finger sticks over the years. 

Yes, Brandon needs a vocal coach, imo.  I couldn't tell how he was financially, but, hopefully, it'll be in his budget once, he's back to living a normal life. 

When they said he was a singer, I expected a bit more from him. I also thought he might be the young man who lost a bunch of weight and sings opera... can't remember his name. 

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My guess is that when Brandon and his father had that last fight, whatever both of them said was unforgiveable by both sides.    I hate that two grown people who lived together, raised kids together, can get so bitter and bent of winning that they want the kids to take sides.   Refusing to admit the divorce is what the parents do, and the kids should be left alone.    

I'm guessing that Mom will never want Brandon communicating with his Dad.    I'm wondering if the big move from NYC to Columbus after law school was her idea, because they wanted a fresh start.          I can see taking time to get used to the idea of the cheating Dad, and the divorce, but it's not like his parents are the only people that have divorced in this world.    I wonder if the Dad was still in the other relationship?   It's sad to see a family destroyed like this.   

Edited by CrazyInAlabama
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Well, I watched most of this expecting to see a dramatically thinner Brandon, but he ended up still basically deformed. He's not very tall, has narrow shoulders (for a man) and those boobs, combined with the sagging, distorted lower body! I hope we get to see the skin surgery results, other wise this was kind of a non-event. 

Then I expected to have him sing, and be wonderful- and again, disappointed.

23 minutes ago, SunnyBeBe said:

because I'm a Type I diabetic.  MANY blood draws, injections and finger sticks over the years. 

Yeah, I used to pass out at simple blood draws, but when I ended up in the hospital for a week after being diagnosed with Type 1 (at age 67!), I got to be pretty blasé about the process.

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1 hour ago, Cherrio said:

Maybe she is a "showgirl" on the side.

Love the "Copacabana" shoutout!!!

43 minutes ago, ThereButFor said:

But I think his mother is due her share of the blame, he really needs to explore both of those relationships and how they affected him and his running to food if he’s going to be successful in the long run.

38 minutes ago, SunnyBeBe said:

It would take a lot of therapy for Brandon to be able to be straight with her. Say, "Mom, I love you, but, I'm mending the relationship with my father, if I can and I won't hear anything further about him from you.  If you have a problem with it, that's too bad.  Maybe, you could use some therapy too."  I don't think this is likely.   It doesn't take a professional to see that he sides against dad to stay in mom's good favor.  Maybe, when he's able to live independently on a permanent basis, he'll be free to make those calls.

I don't think it's a matter of him needing therapy in order to be straight with his mom or make the calls...I think it's that he has no idea of the underlying dynamic involving his mom.  It will take a lot of therapy to just get him to see it, let alone confront it.

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13 hours ago, Hellga said:

PS   I haven't seen that many episodes, but I am seeing a trend where husbands/boyfriends of obese female poundticipants tend to be normal weight, plus or minus, while wives/girlfriends of obese male poundticipants tend to be also at least overweight but more often obese.  Makes me wonder... 

Wow, you're right, never thought about that before, and it does make me wonder...

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4 hours ago, ShortyMac said:

I did not like Tayler at all. She just bugged me. "I think I enable him a little bit" "I want him to be happy, so, I bring him food" "One of the only things we can do together is eat" 

And surprise, surprise - she's fat, too, because she's eating the same garbage he is. You say you love your SO and you want them to be happy, but, you're helping them die...

Once again, I say to the enabling partner who says "eating is the only thing we can do together"-Girl, have you never heard of Scrabble? Seriously, there are MILLIONS of things you can do together. Play a board game. Play cards. Learn a hobby like crocheting or painting. Collect stamps, or coins, or vintage postcard. Get houseplants and take care of them. Read aloud to each other. Go for a damn walk. Tropical fish are endlessly amusing and there's the fun of learning all about them and taking care of your aquarium. Volunteer at your church. This isn't rocket surgery.

Edited by Pepper Mostly
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I just rolled my eyes when they mom was crying when gf was going away for a year. Isn't she a 30 year old? I guess she didnt go away to college? Very stunted, it is not like she was going off to war or to a foriegn country forever. FFS, unreal.

He says he sang opera, I wish we could have heard him sing opera. My fantasy is I come back in another life as an opera singer. They have a great life, going around and performing. I don't know it seems like it would be amazing to be able to sing opera well. 

I really love how when they actually STiCK to the diet they lose more than they were asked, That is why you know when they lose half the amount there have been MANY cheats.  

I thouht that was the most food and the most disgusting food I have yet to have seen inhaled on this show. When he brought the eggs to the table, I thought oh he is helping make deviled eggs for a pot luck at church? But no, he ate 50 devliled eggs. And thet cheese dog or whatever he was eating with that- the sides looked really nasty like the most fattening thing you can find. And girlfriend did not look like she lost one pound.  She was enormous and probably felt like the "skinny" one when they were binging. 

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4 minutes ago, LuvMyShows said:

Wow, you're right, never thought about that before, and it does make me wonder...

I think for the most part yes. 

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4 minutes ago, calpurnia99 said:

I thouht that was the most food and the most disgusting food I have yet to have seen inhaled on this show. When he brought the eggs to the table, I thought oh he is helping make deviled eggs for a pot luck at church? But no, he ate 50 devliled eggs. And thet cheese dog or whatever he was eating with that- the sides looked really nasty like the most fattening thing you can find. And girlfriend did not look like she lost one pound.  She was enormous and probably felt like the "skinny" one when they were binging. 

I thought that dinner they had looked gross. Mac and cheese, biscuits, fried pork chops (?) and what looked like mashed sweet potato and of course gravy. Yuck. My stomach rebelled.

It also made me realize I don't like mac and cheese! Maybe watching this show took my appetite for it away. 

And if the girl friend really was sticking to the diet, she would be a heck of a lot smaller. I think she lost some... like 5 lbs. 

Edited by libgirl2
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yeah because in the 2 months he lost 140 pounds she could have lost 30 which would have showed, if she was following the 1200 calorie a day, yeah that must have been fried pork chops - I'll have to check the live chat and see what those sage ones had to say about it, and the eggs. Jeez Louise I mean I like a deviled egg myself but no I can't eat 30 at once.

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Are we to believe that none of these contestants, I mean, patients, have seen the show before they sign up?  Have they not considered what their time at the airport will be like?  Is it in their contract that this must be done in the most agonizing way possible?  I'm curious as to whether Brandon did need that third seat.  And, what about his girlfriend? I'd think she needed two as well. 

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Gawd, his sniveling at the airport damn near finished me. If he was such a nervous wreck why didn't he contact the airline and nail down his boarding details? Knowledge is power. When I'm going in to an unfamiliar situation I try to prepare as much as I can ahead of time so I can at least try to know what to expect. Staggering dolefully into the airport and looking helpless is not really helpful.

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15 hours ago, Hellga said:

PS   I haven't seen that many episodes, but I am seeing a trend where husbands/boyfriends of obese female poundticipants tend to be normal weight, plus or minus, while wives/girlfriends of obese male poundticipants tend to be also at least overweight but more often obese.  Makes me wonder... 

This was my immediate thought upon seeing the girlfriend. The male partners of the 600 pounders are all Jack Sprats. But the reverse seems to be pudgy, at the very least, to legit obese. 

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I would love for Lola to have her own series!  She is quite entertaining, I'm always excited to see her.  I would also love to know how Dr. Now came to know her well enough to refer patients to her.  Talk about an unlikely couple, LOL!!!

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44 minutes ago, Pepper Mostly said:

If he was such a nervous wreck why didn't he contact the airline and nail down his boarding details?

Because his parents got divorced when he was 21! How is he supposed to go on?!

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I just wonder if they are not allowed to get a scooter or wheechair at the airport.  IT's as if the camera wants them to do the walk of shame to the gate.  And, they have to be humiliated over the seat size, people staring, lags give out, anxiety attack, etc.  It's always the same.  It's unnecessary suffering, imo. 

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Regardless of size, anyone hiking through the airport with a camera crew following them, and running scenes over and over will attract attention.   

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3 hours ago, calpurnia99 said:

yeah because in the 2 months he lost 140 pounds she could have lost 30 which would have showed, if she was following the 1200 calorie a day, yeah that must have been fried pork chops - I'll have to check the live chat and see what those sage ones had to say about it, and the eggs. Jeez Louise I mean I like a deviled egg myself but no I can't eat 30 at once.

I was actually surprised that about half the eggs were left on the tray when the table was cleared.  I thought they would eat all of them... and I don't think it was *that* many.   maybe 20 halves though let's take 30.   I can eat 3 eggs - so that would make it 6 pieces of deviled egg - but then it IS my entire dinner, other than a slice or two of toast and some fruit...  but 15 pieces eaten by 3 people is not that outlandish (though it's way too much for an appetizer). An egg is only about 100 calories, if I remember correctly, though they probably add a ton of mayo...

I thought it was chicken they were frying, but when it was was actually served, it did not look like chicken.  Maybe it was indeed pork chops - but until I had read your post, it has not occurred to me that bone-in (I am pretty sure I saw bones in them!) pork chops could be deep-fried.   I have only ever eaten fried boneless pork chops that have been pounded out to at most a quarter inch thickness.

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6 hours ago, ShortyMac said:

I felt for her when she felt like she had no choice in moving to Houston. Her family was too attached, acting like she was going off to war.

I watched them say goodbye to her and thought come ON....she's staying a year in Houston to help Brandon get healthy - she's not leaving for the Bataan Death March.  What is it with parents not giving their children freedom to leave home?  I wanted to move from California to New York when I was 21.  My folks drove me to the airport, kissed me goodbye and told me not to forget to write! (Coast-to-coast phone calls were still expensive back in the Jurrasic Period)

Still, kadooz to Brandon for his incredible progress.  I hope we get a follow up.  Actually, I'm hoping for a follow up from pretty much ALL of the subjects this season!

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One thing I do enjoy about the success stories is seeing Dr. Now smile. He and Brandon seemed to have a genuinely good rapport that was nice to see.

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14 hours ago, Kenzie said:

We all know Dr. Now's  nurse isn't known for her warm and fuzzy personality but I laughed out loud when she took her die-and-see-if-I-care apathy to world-class heights when she lumbered in to take his blood.

Her lack of bedside manner is pathetic!! She doesn't seem to care millions of people are watching!😯

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I liked this one. When Brandon smiled he kind of reminded me of James Earl Jones. 

The daddy drama does need to be dealt with. It also shouldn’t be hard to find daddy if he’s an attorney. His contact info will be public record. On top of that, maybe the two siblings have a relationship with dad. I enjoyed seeing Lola again. I think she does help, if the people are willing to do some work. 

Tayler seemed very....young. Sheltered. Naive. 

It’s probably good for both she and Brandon to become adults and make a life away from parents. 

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2 hours ago, Pepper Mostly said:

I enjoy Lola too. For all her crazy outfits and wig collection, she comes across as genuinely warm and engaged.

Not to me...she seems very disingenuous, her measured/no-inflection way of speaking is almost catatonic, and she often seems to just be on the verge of being sleepy/exhausted.

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I am catching up with the live chat thread now, and I wanted to chime in on the non-fasting blood draw issue.   I think Dr. Now really  wanted to get the blood draw on him there and now because he knew that once Brandon left the facility, he absolutely would not come back for a blood draw.  When someone is over 600 lbs and haven't had bloodwork done for many years, you catch them when you can.  Besides, IIRC the only thing you cannot get a good reading on when doing non-fasting draw is triglycerides, but some of the newest guidelines actually recommend non-fasting triglycerides, that is a better predictor of heart disease risk (a shoutout for Heart Disease Awareness Month!  If you aren't familiar with all the different possible symptoms of heart attack, please go check that out, it may save a life). 

I did not like how the phlebotomist (don't know whether she is actually a nurse) handled the draw.  OK, it's silly for a 33 year old man to be afraid of needles, but it is equally silly for a healthcare professional to ignore that fear and end up with a potential issue on your hands.   

I agree with those who said TLC tried to amp the drama for this episode... First they show it as if Tayler just doesn't want to move period, then in the next month they show she didn't want to move without having an apartment and a job lined up.  Heck, I won't move somewhere unless I know where I will live and how I am going to get money there!  That's actually a much more adult behavior than whining "but I want to go noooow".  I think originally they had two months to make a move - that may not be enough time in post-hurricane Houston to find an apartment and a job takes time.  I don't think they said what Tayler does, but I don't think there are many jobs in this day and age where you can just walk in an be hired right away.  And any positions that are that easy to get are probably horrible work environments or they would not go unfilled... 


It was a little weird to see Tayler's family react so strongly to the move.  If her Mom and Grandma are that worried about her possibly wasting her time with a man not worthy of her - why were they OK with her living with him in Ohio?  If they are just sad she won't be nearby - this is not 14th century, there is Skype, and FaceTime and everything else to stay in touch every day or even multiple times a day.  She probably cried because now she became the "Responsible adult" by default and that responsibility can be scary when you first have to deal with it, but she handled it pretty well in the end. 

Edited by Hellga
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9 hours ago, SunnyBeBe said:

I just wonder if they are not allowed to get a scooter or wheechair at the airport.  IT's as if the camera wants them to do the walk of shame to the gate.  And, they have to be humiliated over the seat size, people staring, lags give out, anxiety attack, etc.  It's always the same.  It's unnecessary suffering, imo. 

I think they may not have one big enough, or a scooter that would take his weight.  The alternative is a luggage cart.

And he should call his did, and his mother shouldn't interfere.

Edited by auntjess
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I started watching this, and I honestly find Brandon so boring, I had to turn it off before he even got to Houston. I just could not keep listening to his flat delivery or anything else about his story. 

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I fell asleep during the show but Lola’s baby girl voice woke me up. She had a decent wig on and it appears she got her boobs done. The TLC gig is really paying off. 😂

As for gf Taylor, she was as exciting as a wet paper bag. She seemed catatonic most of the time. She needs to find something that gives her joy.

Brandon did well, and  it was apparent that Dr. now really liked him. 

Not a bad episode but a tad boring. 

Edited by Barbara Please
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15 hours ago, dreadfulLeigh said:

This was my immediate thought upon seeing the girlfriend. The male partners of the 600 pounders are all Jack Sprats. But the reverse seems to be pudgy, at the very least, to legit obese. 

Statistically- (reminding ourselves that all these couples are heterosexuals) I think there are more obese women than obese men in the USA across the board. Also I think a lot of the boyfriends/husbands of participants are feeders and went for the women specifically because of their size. The men are sexually attracted to women of a certain size. I think many of the women were initially attracted to their partner but may have wanted a bigger guy in order to feel smaller/ more “normal” and it evolved into a caregiving relationship.

Women are socialized to take on more of a caregiving role, and are more likely to be a caregiver outside of the idea of being attracted to a supersize person. 

Im only a population of 1, but as a fat woman (5’7 16w/18w) fat guys don’t approach me. (For the most part) Skinny dudes seem to love me, it might be a mental conquest thing?

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I wonder if the mother realizes that her son having a relationship with his father doesn't mean the son will desert her?     So many parents don't realize in a divorce that the parents divorce each other, but shouldn't divorce their kids, or force them to take sides.     Seeing how scarred Brandon was by his parents divorce, and the estrangement is so sad.   I wonder if the younger kids picked dad's side?   Because they certainly weren't mentioned very much.    I guess Brandon was all the mother had left.   

I wonder if the move to Columbus was for a fresh start, and it simply didn't work out that way.  

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