Tonight’s new episode of My 600-LB Life is full of even more angst and heartbreak than usual.
Joe, from Johnson City, Tennessee, has been suffering from suicidal thoughts due to the pain and difficulties he faces because of his extreme size, so he visits a therapist in a desperate bid to save his life—Popdust has exclusive sneak peek video.
The 30-year-old is trapped in an 800-LB body, and not surprisingly, his obesity has taken away any quality of life—nowadays, he lost his job and is mostly housebound.
Joe’s anguish and fear is palpable, as he explains his weight issues, and subsequent emotional problems, to his therapist.
“I have always been large and its ballooned into a very serious problem, I feel suicidal at some points,” Joe admits. “I never want to feel that way again.”
As is often the case, the root cause of Joe’s weight problems stems from his childhood, and he tells his therapist about his unhappy upbringing and emotionally distant father.
“My father, he would ignore me completely,” a visibly upset Joe shares. “I asked myself, why doesn’t this man want to pay attention to me.”
“When you’re a kid, you don’t know how to make sense of that,’ Joe’s therapist explains. “Like sometimes, our relationship with food can be about a lot of things, like psychological and not physical, you know, like the comfort, the friend.”
“The food was an escape for me,” Joe admits. “And if I am to be completely better, I have to deal with this.”
Joe was born a “chunky” baby and was a picky eater as a child, eschewing all vegetables. Teased and bullied through school, Joe developed a hard shell to survive his youth, but the damage to his self-esteem is immeasurable.
Joe always felt neglected by his father growing up, so his mother tried to compensate by over-indulging her son and enabling his food obsession. Joe had managed to work an I.T. job from home, but recently his company demanded that he return to the office or lose his job.
Now unemployed and unable to walk without falling, he now sleeps, lives and eats in the same living room chair 24 hours a day. On the precipice of being completely immobile and unable to bathe himself, Joe desperately wants to have this life-saving surgery and live a normal life.
Despite his desperate state of mind and dire circumstances though, Joe’s therapist believes there is light at the end of the tunnel.
“You’ve gone through a lot to get where you are, you have the kind of optimism and the strength you need i think, to get through this,” she reassures her patient.
“It feels really good to talk and let some of my emotion out too,” Joe admits. “I’ve never really done that. I’ve always just eaten my feelings, this pain and this depression are not going to go away over night..I don’t know how much longer…. there’s a lot I have to go through to get through this depression and get to surgery.”