'I hated going out in public all the time because I couldn't stand peoples reactions. I felt judged, that people were saying: “Look at that fat girl”.'
'But I knew it was something I'd done to myself through what I ate. I was raised with country home cooking and I loved fried, mash potatoes, crisps I just love food.'
But husband Josh now admits he did not help Bettie Jo's weight loss. 'I thought if she lost weight she wouldn't need me anymore.I didn't want her dropping weight and leaving me.'
But Bettie Jo was determined to make a change.
'I didn’t want to waste my life just sitting in a chair. I wanted to have a career, have a baby. I wanted to grow old.
'I had to break a lot of old habits,' she said. 'I ate smaller potions – a lot smaller than before. They didn't fill me up but I hoped once I had surgery I wouldn't have the hunger pains.
'Josh was a big help – he was careful about the food he bought.
'I also tried to exercise. The first time I managed to ab crunches I was pretty excited,' she says, even though she still had to them from a sitting position on the couch. Now ten months after the surgery Bettie Jo weighs 35st 8lbs (500lbs), and is proud of the progress she's made.