Fattening her up
FOR two years, 31-year-old Kimberly C dated a boyfriend who made no bones about the way he felt about her. He would give her anything she wanted... and then some.
In fact, after every argument, he would go out of his way to bring her exquisite foods in an effort to make things up to her. At first, it all seemed quite sweet and considerate, until reality set in.
Kimberly explained that he would argue if her phone rang and a male was on the other end that he was not familiar with, or if she dressed too provocatively when she went out. There would be hell to pay if she smiled with a man while he was around, or didn't return his call soon enough if she missed it.
"The simplest thing had him arguing," Kimberly told All Woman. "He was very jealous, to the point where he wanted to control me."
She said one such control method was with food. This meant large servings of things she would find hard to resist after their many arguments. If he didn't purchase food, he would stop by her house and prepare the most delicious dishes late at night, and ensured that she ate it all.
"I was putting on the weight real fast and still he would tell me that I am too thin and that he did not mind me putting on some weight," she said. "I never heard of anyone using food to control a person before, money yes, but food was new to me. It wasn't until one day in the midst of an argument when he blurted out that [person he was accusing me of being involved with] does not want me because mi nyam too much, that I was too fat and unattractive, that it dawned on me that this was what he was doing. I had literally put on 57 pounds since I started dating him. But I would tell myself every day that I would start going to the gym to lose it. But I was not in any rush because he always told me how good I looked. And it never even crossed my mind that that was what he was doing," Kimberly said.
When things calmed down between them, Kimberly said she asked him what he had meant and he admitted that he felt things between them would be better if she was not so attractive, and that not a lot of men were attracted to fat girls.
This was when Kimberly decided to end the relationship.
"He was really using food to control me and it was working," she said. "I was beginning to have low self-esteem because my legs were huge, my arms were huge, not to mention my stomach. I actually felt unattractive, but the funny thing is that he always made me feel like the sexiest woman in the world."
As strange as it may sound, Kimberly's case is not that unique. Two years ago, a jealous and controlling husband admitted to secretly feeding his wife dangerous steroids so she would get fat and stay at home to cook for him.
Dalwara Singh, 41, would ground up high-strength anabolic steroid tablets before slipping them into meals and wine for his wife Jaspreet Singh Gill, a US court heard.
Not only did Singh Gill get fat, but the drugs caused the 37-year-old mom of two to break out in spots and grow hair on her face and back.
After being caught, Singh admitted to the act.
The court heard that it all started after Singh Gill found work and started getting out of her house more after 17 years of marriage. Her husband, however, wanted to stop her from going out and instead stay at home to cook for him and look after the children.
Singh would personally prepare his wife's meals, and when she complained that her meals tasted bitter, he pretended to be upset and got her to finish them. Over a matter of weeks he fed his wife the steroids designed for athletes to gain muscles.
The court found that he did it to make her give up her job, gain weight and stay at home and rely on him.
Counsellor David Anderson said the situation, though bizarre, is a form of control.
He explained that jealousy takes many forms, and sparks from insecurity.
"When one partner feels that the relationship is at risk, they will sometimes do whatever it takes to hold on," he said.
He warned those in relationships to look for the signs that one partner is insecure, or may resort to underhand methods to secure their status in the relationship.