Amber Portwood: Struggling with Weight Gain and Mental Illness?
Sometimes it seems like Amber Portwood just can’t catch a break.
Between her issues with addiction, the hard reality that comes with being a teen mom (and a Teen Mom), and, you know, Matt Baier, things have always looked kind of rough for her.
To add onto her pile of hardships, she’s also got a number of mental illnesses: she’s been open about her anxiety and her bipolar disorder, and more recently she’s been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder.
It’s a lot to deal with, and as Amber reveals in a new interview with Women’s Health, she doesn’t deal with it all that well at times.
She says that she spent a good part of 2015 losing weight that she’d steadily gained after getting sober, and she got down to 130 pounds, which was a good weight for her.
But then, in 2016, she found herself profoundly depressed, so much that Matt had to drag her out of bed. She went to see a psychiatrist, which is when she received the borderline personality diagnosis.
“When I got the diagnosis,” she says, “I wanted to keep it a secret. While everyone knew about my other diagnoses — I’ve had anxiety since I was a kid, for as long as I can remember — I guess it was tragic to think I had another mental disorder.”
For a while, Matt was the only person who knew, and he actually accompanied her to one of her appointments so her doctor could talk to him.
When Amber was told that she’d most likely be on medications to deal with her mental disorders for the rest of her life, she broke down, but she says Matt was there to hold her hand.
Matt Baier, doing something sweet and not completely creepy? The mind boggles.
Amber was put on some new medications, including a mood stabilizer. She says she’s happy with what she’s on because she feels “amazing and normal” now, and her meds aren’t ones she can get addicted to.
But when she started the meds, she got “cravings like crazy,” and she also got “very tired.”
And neither of those things are good for weight loss.
In that time, she gained back all the weight she’d worked so hard to lose months before. She tried a no-carb, no-sugar diet — the diet that helped her lose the weight in the first place — but it didn’t work for her.
As of now, she’s lost 10 pounds, and though there’s “extra pressure” to lose more weight for her wedding in October (gag), “I’m using that as motivation.”
The whole point of sharing her story, she says, is because so many medications for mental illnesses cause weight gain.
“For women who are suffering from mental health issues, I want them to know that other people are going through the same thing,” she explains, “and you don’t have to do this alone.”
You’re a gem, Amber. You really are.
Now drop Matt Baier and own it.