Hello to everyone!!! As stated in my title, I am a complete newbie and would just like to talk to ANYONE who is on a weight loss journey at the moment... So a bit of background information on myself... I'm 23 years old and currently weigh just below 18 stone... 17.12 to be exact. I've always struggled with my weight but have had periods of being alot slimmer but unfortunately they are always short lived. Now that I have started to experience problems with my health... missing menstrual cycles, achy joints, panic attacks, anxiety and depression I've decided that enough is enough and I need to take control of my life. I started on the lighterlife diet (this is day 4) but am having 5/6 foodpacks a day instead of the recommended 4. I just don't think I could cope with eating less than 600kcals a day and would like to eat a minimum of 800 because I want to excersise to try and avoid having loose skin. I chose to do lighterlife because quite simply I have no control over food and have a all or nothing mentality. I'm the sort of person that will eat healthily for 2 weeks and will then think to myself well I added too much mayonnaise to that chicken and lettuce brown breaded sandwich therefore I've failed so I should just go and eat 2 more sandwiches. It's ridiculous I know but it's just the way I think. My plan is to stay on my edited version of the lighterlife diet for 12 weeks, by which time I hope to have overcome my addiction to food.... and then will start introducing healthy foods back into my diet. Apart from the fact that I am unhappy and have been experiencing health problems, I also have one big motivator that is keeping me going... Last Christmas, I was getting ready to visit my parents house (just as I always did on Xmas day)... I tried on multiple outfits and could not find a single one that I felt comfortable in. I should point out here that my family are anti-fat people (especially my mother) so I always feel uncomfortable around them... I ate my portion controlled xmas dinner with a smile on my face and simply turned my head when the tin of quality streets were passed to everyone bar me... for evening tea the chocolate log was bought out for dessert and when my mother decided to announce to the entire room "I think you've had enough don't you" I agreed quietly and excused myself from the table. I spent the rest of Xmas tea in the bathroom thinking to myself remember this, remember how you feel this Christmas and make sure the next one is different. So that's why I'm here I guess... I feel to ashamed to tell anyone I know how much I weigh or the real reasons I have decided to finally change my life around.... I am DETERMINED to have a guilt-free Xmas and to just in general look forward to it!!! I love xmas.... but I dread xmas day for the fact all my family get to see how much further my waistband has expanded. I refuse to have my food intake monitored on the one day of the year when nobody should be made to feel that they can't have a good old feast!! Anyway sorry for the extremely long post!!! I never talk to ANYONE about the insecurities I have regarding my weight and I hope that you guys will keep me going now u no what I'm aiming for!! Best of luck to everyone with losing weight.... my 4 months of hell have begun.... but atleast I won't be spending this xmas locked in the bathroom!!!