Oregon native (by way of a short stint in San Diego, CA) Annjeanette Whaley was heading down the very same path as last week’s tragic My 600-lb Life star Kelly Mason, and it was brutal to watch how she lived.
It was an endurance test of how she got up and survived daily with routines that required her girlfriend Erica to serve as her carer, even for the most intimate tasks of keeping clean and fresh.
Watching the latest My 600-lb Life was a white knuckler for all of those reasons and more.
The urge to vilify and judge Annjeanette’s father Jack — who we learned during the course of the show was a drug dealer (he never used — just her mother) – was overwhelming.
His lack of providing and constant upheaval of his family was a huge part of why Annjeanette was where she was in the scheme of things. Her mother dying when Annjeanette was so young to a heroin overdose was icing on one too many cakes that she ate for comfort.
But to his credit, Jack hung in there and was there for his daughter when the chips were down and all the way through her weight loss surgery.
Thanks to the thoughtful psychotherapy from Lola Clay, Annjeanette was able to talk plainly with him and share her feelings, and he listened.
It was Erica — her girlfriend — who was the toxic enabler who she shed, along with over 400 pounds.
Erica loved to be the carer and the one who made excuses for Annjeanette. Her own insecurity and projection were made painfully clear as each pound was lost in the hard journey that was solely Annjeanette’s.
It was like Erica became resentful as Annjeanette took control of her life again as Erica turned her successes into a slight against her own worth. Erica had to go.
Hopefully, she has gotten therapy too.
The path to Houston was hard, as Annjeanette clearly loved her Oregon based family, and her sister Vanessa was a loving albeit conspiratorial over-eater herself. She used food and bingeing on fast food as a social bonding and loving moment with her little sister Annjeanette.
The handwriting is on the wall for anyone who is five feet tall (Annjeanette’s official height was 5’1″) with a BMI over 120 and topping the scales at 679. She was shocked at the scales when she weighed in at Dr. Now’s offices.
Her heart and her other vital organs only had so much they could handle and after the fiasco of Kelly Mason last week, Dr. Now appears to be especially terse now with his patients.
He calls BS faster than ever on excuses and half-truths.
In the end, Annjeanette moved to Houston, eventually broke up with Erica and rebuilt a relationship with her father Jack who was clearly remorseful for the poor choices he made and the lack of any stable foundation he lay as a parental unit.
But her outlook appears to be positive and she is last seen in the episode applying makeup and taking great pleasure in showing her nieces and nephews her newer smaller body as sister Vanessa says she is “looking good.”
Time will tell if Annjeanette Whaley will be a success story but the early photos are in, and she sure looks better than when we began at the top of the show.
Her Facebook page is loaded with “after” pictures.
But marvel at where she took herself in one year:
This is before:
And this is today:
We hope Annjeanette’s where are they now is astounding and she is on the path to better health and furthering her education.
My 600-lb Life airs Wednesdays on TLC.