Fair play for the honesty @PickleRick, a lot of what you said struck a chord with me!! First off you haven’t given up on yourself, you are here trying to self-improve which means you can see a future where you are thinner, happier and have a better self image, that is a great starting point.
You need to ‘try’ to forget some of your hang-ups and take some risks that challenge your pre-conceptions about yourself, that way you can start to feel you have achieved things and start to value yourself, it isn’t instantaneous, but the more you achieve the better you feel. The fact you ‘don’t have many friends’ and ‘haven’t had a proper relationship’ most likely stem from how you view yourself.
I would always view myself as how I ‘thought’ others would view me, fearing snide comments, ever-ready for the “Who ate all the pies?” comments, which I can’t say I have ever received since leaving school (I am 40 now), they are just figments of my imagination.
My way of building some self-worth was taking up road cycling, wearing stupidly tight, love handle clinging lycra and heading out in public where people could judge me, this was pretty terrifying initially (I still can’t say I ‘like’ wearing it, but the bib-shorts stop you constantly showing your arse crack to anyone following you so they are pretty vital). As I started to enjoy the exercise more I rode with a ‘Fat Lad at the Back’ cycling shirt on, you stop fearing having the mickey taken out of you for your size if you are already wearing the joke on your back as there isn’t much anyone can say to insult you. And not once did anyone actually take the mick out of my size, a couple of times people would cheer me on as I crept ever so slowly up hills. I got quite a few thumbs-up from drivers passing me, but never did I get any nasty comments, the negativity that I thought everyone else had towards me was largely in my own head.
Then I started doing Sportive rides, these are like ‘fun-runs’ for cyclists, you get a goody bag, a medal and a tshirt at the end (I do love my free stuff), the feeling of getting a medal, although a seemingly worthless bit of metal, was amazing and addictive, I have lasting souvenirs of when I got off my arse and did some exercise! The other riders are all friendly, although you are timed it is not a race, you get outside in the fresh air and it becomes quite addictive. Cycling is a good way to meet people, you get to meet plenty of lycra clad people and it is a great way of losing weight without high-impact on the knees! Everyone appreciates how hard it is to cycle up the hills and the fact you are doing it carrying the extra weight commands you nothing but respect from other cyclists, and the more you do, the less you weigh, the faster you go.
I am not saying start cycling, but find and do something that takes you our of your ‘comfort zone’ a little bit, you will quickly find you can do things that you didn’t think you could do and start feeling better about yourself. A friend of mine who is also a big lad recently started Cross-Fit, I thought that was like aerobics, but it turns out it is proper hardcore circuit training with weights, he can’t do 50% of the exercises (like headstand pressups for instance, I mean who can!?!) but is loving the challenge. I almost fell off my chair when I saw him demonstrating ‘touch press-ups’ the other day, (you do a press-up and then touch your shoulder holding yourself on one arm, then do another press-up and touch the other shoulder with the other arm). The guy is 26 stone, I was hugely impressed and he is finding that hugely motivational exercise.