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Hurtful comment, how to deal with it?

(46 Posts)
robotsatemywashing Sun 14-Oct-12 09:05:27

Regular poster. NCd.

My DP was staying here this weekend (Friday to Sunday). Been together 6 months. I am a few stone overweight, he is skinny.

On Friday he noticed an old weight loss certificate on my fridge and we had a chat about it and I said that it was old and that I'd fallen off the wagon and was planning on going back to the class when I got more time in a couple of weeks. Last night, after my DCs were in bed, we were having a conversation about running/jogging as both of us have lapsed and want to re-motivate ourselves. He asked me if my medication (ADs for previous anxiety and asthma meds) had made me put weight on, I said I wasn't sure. Then he said "What happened? Did you have one cream cake too many one day and just keep going?"

Ouch. sad

He hit a raw nerve. I got upset. I told him that I thought it was a really shitty thing to say to anyone, never mind someone you're in a relationship with and that I was very hurt. He said he was very sorry, acknowledged that he couldn't take it back and said that he was going to pack his stuff and go home.

Before he left, I asked him what he was thinking/feeling and he said "bad".

Last night I was so upset I felt like this was the end of us. His comment suggested that I am not perfect for him the way I am now and that's not good enough. However he has never said anything to suggest this before, never mentioned my weight before etc.

My STBXH has ASD and often said hurtful comments so I am finding it hard to see this situation objectively. How bad was his comment?

pinkyp Sun 14-Oct-12 09:10:06

Me & my partner will often joke about out weight (he is overweight I am possibly). I don't find it hurtful at all BUT I know it is ment (and said) as a joke.
In your situation it wouldn't be a deal breaker for me asI think he knows what he said was insensitive. I think you may be being slightly ott

BigBroomstickBIWI Sun 14-Oct-12 09:10:33

Oh dear! Could it have been just a clumsy attempt to ask you why your weight has increased, given that you had obviously lost weight previously?

It's very, very hard to ask someone about their weight without offending, simply because when you are overweight it's something you're very sensitive about. Anyone who is overweight knows that they are, and doesn't need it to be pointed out!

I think if I had seen your weight loss certificate, and then saw that you were overweight, I would certainly wonder why/what happened, but unless you volunteered the information I don't think I'd ask! But then, having been overweight, I'm perhaps a bit more sensitive to how you might respond. If he's skinny/has never been overweight, he probably has no idea how you might feel or how you might react.

Without knowing your DP it's impossible to say how bad it was, but going by his reaction, I suspect he was just interested and didn't think through the likely impact of phrasing his question in the way he did.

RobynRidingHood Sun 14-Oct-12 09:10:41

how bad? depends on your relationship and banter. What would hurt you might make someone else laugh. Whats has hit a nerve with you might spur someone else on to deal with their life.

You say he has never commented before, nor made you feel in any way bad or self concious; if this was a frank and open exchange of opinions, then he was perhaps fuckwitted in his choice of phrase, but if he was showing concern and ultimately supportive of you, then perhaps you have both learned something about each other.

MarchelineWhatNot Sun 14-Oct-12 09:11:40

I can see why you would be a bit touchy about your weight (I am, too), but I think you massively overreacted.

JennaLemon Sun 14-Oct-12 09:12:15

The 'one cream cake and just keep going' comment is very hurtful because it implies not only that you have not been watching your food intake but that you have been eating with wreckless abandon, ykwim?

FirstTimeForEverything Sun 14-Oct-12 09:12:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

londonone Sun 14-Oct-12 09:14:05

It sounds like there was no intention to upset you. You told him yourself you had fallen off the wagon and it sounds like he was simply enquiring why. I think you are over thinking things. Fwiw I don't think his comment was even bad just Ill judged

azazello Sun 14-Oct-12 09:14:53

It sounds from the rest of the conversation that he wasn't judging you about the principle of putting weight on, and was trying to support you losing it with the jogging etc. It might be a clumsy attempt to work out why/when you put on weight so you can identify it for the future. I think he could have been more sensitive but you did overreact.

JennaLemon Sun 14-Oct-12 09:15:13

ps, I think sometimes comments can hurt because you imagine your friends /family are bliind to ......... your lack of qualifications, the fact that you haven't a pot to piss in, and it's all glossed over and it's not important amongst friends and then one day a friend will make a 'joke' that makes it clear that although they 'forgive' you your flaws they DO notice them. I'm personalising this here, as I'm not overweight. But I have had that; where a comment deflated me. And the friend might have thought............ 'what? you've admitted you took the driving test 67 times'. (or whatever). I hope I'm making sense.

JennaLemon Sun 14-Oct-12 09:16:37

What I mean is, one rogue comment gets through the defences you've built up to take your mind off the fact that you're overweight/unemployed etc..... [insert as applicable}

SoggySummer Sun 14-Oct-12 09:17:33

He probably has no idea how much he has hurt you.

I struggle enormously with my weight and if I take my eye of the ball for a little time I can put on a stupid amount of weight quickly. Take my weeks holiday earlier this year 3 or 4 icecreams on days out over a week, 1 take-away and a cream tea during the whole week and I can easily put on half a stone that can take me 3 or 4 weeks (of very stricy dieting) to shift.

I think some skinny people who have never had a weight issue just cannot comprehend how easy weight goes on nor how hard it is to shift. They ahve no idea that 2 weeks into your diet to get invited out to a function with a meal or wine can completely ruin 2 weeks of previous hard dieting (just 1 night). They also just have no iidea just HOW hurtful negative remarks about weight can be. Its not an issue they have any experience of so they just see it as a simple black and white eat less and move more thing - which we all know are the principles of staying slim/losing weight but many of us know its not quite as straightforward as that in real life.

This does not have to be the end. It sounds like he realises he has said something shitty.

Communication is the key in any relationship. He needs to know why you find this so hurtful and see if you can make it work from there.

pictish Sun 14-Oct-12 09:17:52

Mmm...think you're overreacting myself - he was only asking!

If he had said 'I find your extra weight offputting and unattractive' then you'd have a point, but he didn't - nowhere close.

It's obviously something that as a natural thinny he doesn't understand. He was only enquiring. You are very touchy to react in this way.

JennaLemon Sun 14-Oct-12 09:19:20

Yeah don't end it with him because noticed that you are overweight. I guess you thought he was so in love he didn't notice.

SeveredEdMcDunnough Sun 14-Oct-12 09:20:17

Well, I'd have been upset. I don't think I could envision a relationship with someone who totally didn't get something about me.

He sounds like he has no idea about food issues and needs a bit of education...it's up to you if you think it is worth it but my gut reaction is to sigh and roll my eyes, and that means I'd not want to bother with such an insensitive git person.

It depends what he's like the rest of the time. Sorry you had to cope with that x

robotsatemywashing Sun 14-Oct-12 09:21:41

Thanks everyone. I was very tired and emotional yesterday. The thing is, my STBXH ground me down with his upsetting comments for 16 yrs so I am very wary of getting into that sort of situation again. Plus, I am being very vigilant for red flags, probably over thinking and overreacting.

I bloody love MN.

TobyLerone Sun 14-Oct-12 09:21:48

I don't think you overreacted. We expect our partners to love us unconditionally and it's shocking and upsetting when it appears that they don't. We feel imperfect, especially when it's about something we're already sensitive about.

I actually think he was wrong for leaving. He felt like a dick and instead of staying and trying to make it right, he left to save his own feelings.

It definitely doesn't need to be the end for you, though. I think you should talk to him and explain that he'd hit a nerve and it's something you're sensitive about and so it gets a strong reaction from you.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Sun 14-Oct-12 09:22:40

You say that he's 'skinny', OP. For somebody who has never struggled with a weight problem (and many people don't), they will never understand what it's like. That's how 'a cream cake too many' can present itself as a viable reason for weight gain.

He actually sounds nice, OP, and so do you. I think you have nothing to lose by having a frank chat with him about your weight struggles/hopes and everything to gain.

Do you think you're being triggered by your ex's comments? Perhaps you will feel better about those when you are truly free of him and he is officially your 'ex'.

As far as your boyfriend is concerned, give him a ring and suggest a nice pub lunch and walk. He obviously feels very bad for upsetting you, that's a good sign, but he may feel a bit reluctant to make the first move.

deliasmithy Sun 14-Oct-12 09:25:29

Robots:
It was clearly an unnecessary comment on his part, tactless at best and mean at worst.
I have a tendency to pile on the pounds and have found that healthy weight people don't understand it at all. They don't get as hungry, dont get cravings, and therefore struggle to understand that we all haven't, as he says, ate cakes all day.

Your six months into the relationship. A typical time when the 'sheen' rubs off, couples relax around each other, and we see the good and the less good. You have said he's acted nicely towards you until this point. Evidence points to the fact that he perhaps is a thoughtless speaker. If he apologised and felt bad then he has understood your hurt feelings and recognised he over stepped the mark. It was perhaps a strong reaction to send him packing, if every couple sent the other outside when they put a foot in it there'd be a lot of cold people on the streets!

It sounds like you'd benefit from clearing the air. It's at this stage with someone we start to learn boundaries. I would be tempted to admit I over reacted, but then make it clear that weight is not up for discussion and is a sensitive topic. Explain your anxieties about it, so that he can understand.

pictish Sun 14-Oct-12 09:25:57

I don't expect my partner to love me unconditionally, just as I don't love anyone unconditionally, asides from the kids.
Unconditional romantic love is a childish notion.

It shouldn't come as a shock to any adult that their partner is aware of their flaws.

robotsatemywashing Sun 14-Oct-12 09:26:36

The thing is, he is bloody lovely the rest of the time. He went out and bought me a pink fluffy hot water bottle last weekend because I had a sore neck. He washed up and hoovered etc while I was bathing my dc's last night, then he sat on my bed with me and my 2dc's and 'endured' a children's dvd with us until bedtime.

He is kind, generous, funny and NOT charming in any way (thank god!).

MrsDeVere Sun 14-Oct-12 09:27:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TobyLerone Sun 14-Oct-12 09:27:37

So call him!

pictish Sun 14-Oct-12 09:28:18

Glad to know he's not a charmer OP. I'm not attracted to charming men either. They are usually bullshit peddlars.

pictish Sun 14-Oct-12 09:29:21

Oh and yes, I totally understand your sensitivity because of your ex's poor treatment of you. x

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