• bbtherapist

Eric O'Grey: Shame, Shame Go Away

I had mentioned I would dissect Eric O'Grey's story about weight loss, and how he did most everything right. The following is the video of his story below, again for your reference. Note the following:

- The first 10 seconds where Eric's doctor says he will need to buy a funeral plot in five


- At 1:00 minute to 1:30 minutes, listen to how he is insulted by a fellow airline passenger about being too big for his airplane seat. You can stop watching the video

after that

What I am interested in knowing from readers is about the clear shame and discrimination Eric received from his doctor and his fellow airplane passenger. It is easy to throw insults around at anyone we don't like, or make doom and gloom predictions, as opposed to helping.

However, notice what happened with Eric. He had the opposite reaction. At the moments in which he received shame, he said he had enough. It was those moments he described as his "Rock Bottom" that forced him to change.

I too, had my rock bottom while at DisneyWorld, vacationing with my family. I had a minor medical emergency, and got so worried and ashamed that I may have to deal with it surrounded by my entire extended family of about 30 people. At that moment, I said I had enough of worrying and enough of hiding my distress around everyone, and I vowed to change.

On the positive side, what we see is that rock-bottom points have the potential to lead to significant change. However, on the negative side, they often involve a huge amount of shame - and every time shame does not lead to change, it often sends us further down in a shame spiral, causing much more harm than good.

If you read some of the comments people wrote below in the YouTube video, their opinions are decidedly mixed. They, feel terrible that Eric was insulted, but at the same point some say that without the comment, change may not have happened - and they also give a lot of credit to Eric for using the comment positively, instead of internalizing even more shame.

I am curious to hear your views - how do you see the role of shame in Eric's story? Feel free to comment below.

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