Too big to love
I want to tell my wife that I fear that she could soon be a contestant on My 600 Pound Life, but I’m afraid that she may take it wrong, or think that I’m judging her. But the truth is that she used pregnancy to eat and eat and eat, then she used the breastfeeding excuse to say she needed to “eat well” to keep her milk supply up, but now our son is four, and she’s still “eating well”. I love her and appreciate her, but I don’t like big women. I bought her a few pieces of exercise equipment and some cool exercise gear for Christmas, but she just put everything in the closet, and then took out the gallon bucket of ice cream and finished it. How can I handle this? Everything about a big woman, who got big through lack of self-control, turns me off.
This is an issue I deal with in my book So you wanna be a wife – Husband lives matter. I wrote the book to alert prospective wives, and existing wives, to issues like these. Situations like these have the potential to ruin an otherwise good marriage. You have a legitimate concern, and I’m assuming your wife has put on dramatic weight and not just say, 10-20 lbs.
A Daily Mail article quotes a study by Flinders University in Australia, which confirmed that post-wedding weight gain is common for women. Four to 20 lbs is the norm. But yes, outside of health issues or weight gain due to pregnancy, radical weight gain can seem an “unfair” situation to a spouse. If it is as you have said, caused by overindulgence and indiscipline, then your disappointment is understandable.
A word to all: When you marry someone you are marrying them “as is”. You’re signing up for what you’re seeing. You judge that this person will generally be as they are, size and all. To abandon self-care and transform in weight and size is a recipe for disaster, and is rather disrespectful to your spouse. Dramatic transformation, including weight-loss, can certainly be a tremendous turn-off for your spouse.
Talk to your wife: Be respectful. She still deserves your respect and love. Tell her you love her and you care about her general fitness and health. Tell her that you value her and the intimate moments with her. Let her know that fitness makes intimacy better. You could discuss starting a fitness programme together.
Alter the shopping: You can consider joining her for grocery shopping or taking responsibility for it yourself. This way you get to help manage what comes into the house as food and drink. You’ll certainly want to slowly remove the sodas and ice cream.
Seize the opportunity: This situation presents an opportunity for a remarkable journey toward greater fitness, but also greater romance and intimacy. If you both can pursue fitness together through walks, jogging, sport and games like tennis, swimming, etc, then your relationship can deepen tremendously. Let #involvement trump #isolation. Try to make the steps toward fitness be steps toward wonderful activities together.
Schedule a counselling session: When someone puts on (or loses) weight in a dramatic way it can be as a result of emotional distress. Depression, frustration, low self-esteem, etc, can cause overindulgences and other unusual behaviour. It will be important to find out about any existing emotional struggle she may be having.
I pray that you’ll be resolute in how you handle the situation and that a remarkable relationship will be the outcome for you both. You can contact me at Counsellors Couch – Counselling Service for further assistance.
Get on The Counsellor’s Couch with Rev Christopher Brodber, who is a counsellor and minister of religion. E-mail questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.