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AIBU over DHs increasingly unhealthy lifestyle

(136 Posts)
Namey32 Tue 24-Sep-19 07:29:37

I am prepared to be told that IABU but would like some opinions as ultimately I'd like DH to live a long and healthy life with me, the DC and hopefully the DGC in time. However I accept that ultimately it's not up to me to 1. Parent my husband 2. Pester him to be more healthily, also he is not an unhealthy weight/shape and I may also be being swayed by MIL and SILs extremely healthy lifestyle - think clean eating, running etc.

DH has been smoking since we met, although has been 'giving up' at various points. He had some success for 2 weeks over Christmas once. He's tried all sorts of vapes etc but doesn't have much self control. He was asked by the midwife to give up when I was pregnant with DC1 but nothing happened there. I don't have high hopes for this time either (I'm pregnant with DC2).
To be fair to him, he doesn't smoke in the house or around me or DC and will go in the garden or along the road or smokes outside work. I can smell on him though, but I suppose that's neither here nor there.

His eating habits are getting worse. He's not a fan of 'healthy' food and left to his own devices would always opt for the junk food. He doesn't eat fruit and only eats veg in/with whatever I serve for dinner. He doesn't eat breakfast but for example will have a packet of biscuits mid morning. If I don't make him a packed lunch for work, he will go to the shop and buy a packet of sausage rolls (and something else - chocolate/sweets/biscuits etc) which is then lunch. He works shifts so often isn't home for tea. Sometimes I do cook properly and leave his in the fridge and he may well eat it, but then other times (at least once a week) will have a takeaway with the people at work.

My other concern is his energy drink intake - I'm very sure there are several being consumed per day. He tells me he only has one, but his car is full of empty cans - definitely more than 7 per day. Ultimately they're just caffeine and sweetener surely? His nod to 'healthy' is the 0 sugar ones.

He also does no exercise. All he does really is whatever walking we do at the weekend - that sometime is a long country walk but can just be pushing the pram to the park and around town.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not expecting him to live on greenery and water. We do enjoy a chippy tea together at the weekend and we'll have a drink and some cake or chocolate or something in front of the TV at the weekend when DC is in bed but for DH it seems beyond a 'treat'.

I do try to keep him on the better choices e.g. at the weekend when we're both around I'll ask him what cereal he wants while I'm doing mine and DCs so all he needs to do is eat it, but AIBU in if I don't want to cook that night and me and DC have beans on toast for example, expecting him to have something other than a pack of doughnuts for tea? (He does not consider something on toast to be adequate dinner for him - but a pack of cookies or similar is fine).
AIBU in wanting DH to be a bit healthier without me having to patent him In the way I do with our toddler? Should I just leave him to it and accept that he's not going to be in a physical condition to travel the world in retirement as we had planned?? (We're early 30s now).

Namey32 Tue 24-Sep-19 07:30:20

*parent not patent

Marzipane Tue 24-Sep-19 07:47:59

Did he smoke and have the same eating habits when you met, OP?

StoatofDisarray Tue 24-Sep-19 07:49:59

I bet he did.

NoSquirrels Tue 24-Sep-19 07:51:12

Well, YANBU to wish he would be better - but I’m not sure how that helps, as you can’t force him. He has to want to change himself.

Babooshkar Tue 24-Sep-19 07:52:04

Yanbu, sounds like he eats like a teenager.

Namey32 Tue 24-Sep-19 07:56:00

* Did he smoke and have the same eating habits when you met, OP? *
We lived in separate cities for a year so I have no idea.

ChickenyChick Tue 24-Sep-19 07:58:13

Oh, he’ll grow out if it!

By age 40/45 he’ll be a mamil or triathlete grin seriously, once men (lots of women too) hit 40 they often have a health and ageing panic

He will then be one if these MN husbands with a hobby wink

DH and I did not get into healthy eating and fitness until we hit our 40s ...

Marzipane Tue 24-Sep-19 07:59:14

Right, ok. At what point in the relationship did you realise he smoked and had unhealthy eating habits?

00100001 Tue 24-Sep-19 08:03:49

Leave him to it. Sounds like you mother him a bit.

If you do the shopping, don't buy crap good for the house... Let him buy it. Refuse to buy his cigarettes etc.

Other than that, concentrate on you and your kids. If you finally eh cooking only provide healthy food.

He can feed himself what he wants.

If you can smell smoke on him, that means your kids are breathing in his second hand smoke.

The fact he couldn't be arsed giving up smoking for his kids tells you a lot...

Namey32 Tue 24-Sep-19 08:05:38

Right, ok. At what point in the relationship did you realise he smoked and had unhealthy eating habits?
At some point in our 20s after he'd moved in. Clearly from the gist of your posts you consider this is all my fault for not dumping him at this point 🙄🙄🙄

ReggaetonLente Tue 24-Sep-19 08:08:07

I would share your concerns - my dad died young from a preventable cancer caused by his lifestyle and it was awful for our family - but agree with PP that it has to come from him.

He may well wake up one day and take up long distance cycling. Most seem to.

Biwurlu Tue 24-Sep-19 08:10:26

He sounds pretty unhealthy to me. Just because he isn't obese it doesn't mean he isn't at a risk of dropping dead in his 40s fr om an unhealthy lifestyle

user1493413286 Tue 24-Sep-19 08:11:13

You shouldn’t have to parent his eating but equally if he doesn’t want to change it then it’s hard to see what will make a difference. My DH had a health scare which made him take on a more healthy lifestyle but his diet was ok already so it wasn’t a drastic change.
What does he say about it?

Namey32 Tue 24-Sep-19 08:11:24

@00100001 I do the shopping, I don't buy rubbish - he goes out specifically for it. I also don't buy his cigarettes - I wouldn't go near them with someone else's bargepole.
I probably do end up mothering him, mostly from the fact I don't particularly want him to keel over in 10 years with clogged arteries.

Marzipane Tue 24-Sep-19 08:12:02

Clearly from the gist of your posts you consider this is all my fault for not dumping him at this point

Not at all. I voted YANBU and was just wondering when his habits started or if he's always been like it, as I went through a similar thing with my DH so was going to offer advice and sympathy.

JinglingHellsBells Tue 24-Sep-19 08:26:56

YANBU

Have you actually had a really serious, sitting down chat with him?
He's clearly on course for cancer and or heart disease in the next 10-20 years. That would terrify me.
He's also setting a really bad example to your child(ren) by smoking and living an unhealthy lifestyle.

I think you need to decide where your red lines are. I would never have had a relationship with a smoker or married one, or been interested in someone who didn't have the same lifestyle as me (ie healthy eating and exercising.) Yes, I know we all slip up now and then, but in general.

If you feel really strongly, you might want to give him an ultimatum.
IMO he's being incredibly selfish. He is putting you and his DCs at risk of early widowhood and no dad around. How does that show love for you all?

I'd start by offering to help him- maybe go to GP with him or an NHS stop smoking clinic- and tackle that, then the eating and exercise.

If he refuses to even try any of it, I personally would walk away rather than live with someone on a self destruct journey.

Sandsnake Tue 24-Sep-19 08:27:04

Grim. There’s no way excuse for a lifestyle like that, even with shift work. I would be beyond frustrated in your shoes. I would also keep trying to change him as you love him and want him to be around for his family. His diet / lifestyle when you met him are irrelevant. He now has a family and therefore responsibilities - one of which is looking after himself, ideally for him, but if not then for you and your child. Good luck.

blackcat86 Tue 24-Sep-19 08:27:14

My DH and yours would get on so well. He would live on chicken nuggets if he could. He did manage to move from smoking to vaping when I was pregnant but then I told him that if he still smoked he wouldn't be living here anymore given that I couldn't even eat brie. Like you, I do the food shop and fill the house with healthy options. I also try to get healthier versions of things he likes so slightly better crisps and cereal bars. Could you see if he'll take up a physical activity with you? In fairness it sounds like you could all do with healthier meals so maybe start with that. Once people start being healthier they tend to like the effects.

Namey32 Tue 24-Sep-19 08:28:05

* Not at all. I voted YANBU and was just wondering when his habits started or if he's always been like it, as I went through a similar thing with my DH so was going to offer advice and sympathy. *
I apologise for jumping to conclusions.

Derbee Tue 24-Sep-19 08:29:45

He’s setting a shitty example for your children. So YANBU.

gingersausage Tue 24-Sep-19 08:34:09

The thing is, you’re not exactly in a position to moan at him. You say you can’t be bothered to cook sometimes, you drink and eat cake and chocolate in front of the telly and you get food from the chippy and feed the kids beans on toast. If he told you that you couldn’t do any of that, or he expected you to make him a proper dinner every night, you’d (rightly) tell him to do one. In which case it’s impossible to tell him what and how to eat.

NoSquirrels Tue 24-Sep-19 08:36:27

This ...
Oh, he’ll grow out if it! By age 40/45 he’ll be a mamil or triathlete

and ...
He may well wake up one day and take up long distance cycling. Most seem to.

grin

SimonJT Tue 24-Sep-19 08:38:00

If he has always been like this then it would be very hard to complain/force a change in his ways. If he had those habits when you met and you chose to overlook them you’re in a tricky situation now you have changed your mind.

If he is receptive to making changes remember it has to be small achievable steps, not lots in one go.

Beechview Tue 24-Sep-19 08:39:19

I would be worried too. Unfortunately, he can only do it when he wants to.
You can keep talking to him. Maybe tell him to get his cholesterol levels and blood checked at the gps but he’s got to drive it.
NHS Live Well site has a lot about healthy living. Maybe you could direct him to that? Education is key.

www.nhs.uk/live-well/

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