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Is it ever OK to tell DH I would fancy him more if he lost weight?

(97 Posts)
sleepychunky Sat 14-Sep-13 20:57:57

I don't know. I've read so many threads on here where the OP's partner has made a comment about her weight and I know that if DH told me he'd fancy me more if I was thinner then I'd be really upset.
But, DH has put on over 6 stone in the 16 years we've been together. He does no exercise at all (drives DS to school when it's an 8-minute walk), smokes 15-20 a day and mainly eats junk food. He does shift work which has an irregular pattern (he's on nights this weekend) so I do see the difficulty in eating properly.
But the bare truth is that I don't fancy him as much as I used to. We don't have sex very often - partly because of his shift work so there often aren't many times when we're actually at home together, partly because once I am in bed I want to sleep and I always go to bed before him if we're both at home, but also because I don't get hugely turned on by him like I used to.
I've lost a fair bit of weight in the last 18 months (about 3 stone) but I did it for me and because I wanted to - he never made any comments at all other than I was looking great. I guess I was hoping that seeing me change my eating habits, do more exercise etc. might spur him on to do the same, but it hasn't.
Aside from the physical attraction I'm also really worried about his health. He is quite often (a couple of times a week at least) sick for no reason I can tell (ie. not food poisoning or too much to drink) and I'm sure it's got something to do with his weight and eating habits, but every time I mention it he tells me not to worry.
Do I need to just come out with it and tell him that I would fancy him more if he lost weight (and so we'd probably have more sex, which is an issue for us), or do I put a health spin on it (but I've tried that before) or do I just do nothing because I don't want to upset him? I really don't know what's best.

ImperialBlether Sat 14-Sep-13 23:22:25

I agree that you should not mention that you don't fancy him. You should focus entirely on his health.

Shellywelly1973 Sun 15-Sep-13 00:00:44

Op, Im in a very similar situation. Dp has put about5 or 6 stones on in about 11 years. Hes doesn't smoke or drink much. Eats crap & never exercises.

Im still a size 8 after 5 dc & currently expecting 6th dc.
I told Dp very clearly Im concerned about his health. I take of the food, he needs to walk every day for 30 mins.

My Dp also works shifts so this is easier said then done. I would never be horrible to Dp but i am worried about him& tell him so!

katykuns Sun 15-Sep-13 03:44:46

I highly doubt your DP hasn't noticed the weight gain and already feels somewhat insecure about it. So I wouldn't say anything at all. Get the kids pulling him out to be active and doing more, and stop buying snacky junk food/make healthier meals and snacks/reduce his portion sizes.
Gentle encouragement is key. Definitely do not say anything about attractiveness... if my DP said this to me I would be DEVASTATED.

Then, if nothing has changed, recommend him seeing a doctor because you are worried about his weight.

dolcelatte Sun 15-Sep-13 05:30:03

Being sic twice a week is definitely not normal. If I were you/your DH I would see the GP asap to see if there are any underlying causes of the problem.

Vivacia Sun 15-Sep-13 06:45:29

Ok, as others have pointed out, he will have noticed that he's put on weight. He does not need you to tell him. Secondly your motive should be concern for his health, not for him to look attractive for you,

I would not mention his weight. I would talk about healthy living for the family and ask for his support. No crap food in the cupboards, getting out to exercise as a family (biking, cycling, playing at park, whatever).

Lizzabadger Sun 15-Sep-13 07:21:07

Healthy living for the family sounds like the way to go. You all need to be setting a good example for the children.

He's only 34/5. If he carries on like this it sounds like he's heading for very serious health problems in his 40s or 50s.

Lizzabadger Sun 15-Sep-13 07:22:47

P.s. How about, if he agrees, introducing one small change each week?

The first change could be walking to school with your DS.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 15-Sep-13 07:23:38

I think the attractiveness part is a valid concern and, before anyone gets on my back, I'd say the same if the genders were reversed. However, yes, you have to start with the health angle, concern for his well-being, reduced life-expectancy etc. Doctors, offers of support, suggestions of joining weight-loss clubs etc.... all good. If that doesn't work you have to be kind but honest with him about the extra flesh being a turn-off. I'd approach it 'more in sorrow than in anger'... you love him as a person but the enormous body-weight is starting to get in the way of loving him physically.

jojoanna Sun 15-Sep-13 07:50:10

It's tricky i would mention very gently the weight makes you feel less attracted to him if this is causing problems with your sex life it might be the jolt he needs along with how worried you are about health issues but ultimately it's up to him to change.

QueOnda Sun 15-Sep-13 07:59:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Flicktheswitch Sun 15-Sep-13 08:12:08

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Trigglesx Sun 15-Sep-13 08:48:28

You say he works shift work and eats junk food - how many meals does he eat with the family? Can you make sure those meals are healthier for him? Are there healthy interesting food options for him at home to snack on? Are there ways to help out in that regard - if he brings meal to work, perhaps have things available that he can put a few more healthy options in it? Obviously depends on who is doing the grocery shopping,

H packed his own lunches and used to have loads of junk in them, but I encouraged him to change one or two options to healthier choices and there was improvement in that regard.

I think riding bikes with the DCs is a good way to introduce some exercise.

something2say Sun 15-Sep-13 09:07:33

I think far too many people ignore the fact that fat beings are not attractive. Fat animals included. As a nation of obese people, when are we going to face up to this? Yes it is dangerous but it is also unattractive. I think it's alright to say it.

Sparkles23 Sun 15-Sep-13 09:14:45

I wouldn't say to him that you would fancy him more if he lost weight as I think that would be a bit mean (and how would you feel if he said it to you)

However 6 stone and a bmi of 39 is dangerously high so I would push the health side of it, really push it. It sounds like he needs a wake up call and a trip to the doctors about the vomiting (sounds like an ulcer) and to get his blood pressure checked for a start. Perhaps you could do cycling or some fun sort of exercise as a family and maybe alter his diet, small changes will make a big difference. He is at risk of a heart attack in his 40s/50s. I unfortunately know only too well about this my FIL dropped dead at 50 5 years ago from major heart attack, he had spent his 30s and 40s overweight, finally in his late 40s with high blood pressure he lost weight, got superfit but sadly the damage to his arteries was obviously already done and he had a major heart attack. I think in his case he may have had a predisposition to it but completely avoidable. My step FIL has high blood pressure and also visceral fat and i really worry about him too hmm. Please get your husband to address his weight while he's still young enough to avoid permanent damage.

TwoStepsBeyond Sun 15-Sep-13 09:20:58

I can't believe people are so shocked at the DCs mentioning his fat tummy, the man is clearly large, the DCs can see that. Mine regularly make comments about "mummy's squishy tummy" but I don't take offence, they're only little. Yes, I point out that its not very nice to make fun of people, but I certainly wouldn't be offended, they're right, I DO have a fat tummy!

I think it's sad that we're not allowed to even mention that extra weight is not attractive. Both my DP and I have put on a stone or so over the past year and we acknowledge that and half heartedly regularly try to do something about it. We both fancy each other as much as ever, but if it were 6 stone, I would understand if he lost a load of weight and then encouraged me to do the same for my health and/or looks.

Could you dig out some old photos and maybe point out how gorgeous he looked in a particular outfit or something, hinting that he was more attractive then without actually saying it. I know when I look back at pics from last year I am shocked at how much thinner I looked then because its such a gradual process you don't notice it going on.

Bumpstarter Sun 15-Sep-13 09:22:41

While I agree with something 2 say, I also think it is unwise to say 'I would fancy you more' because you don't know if you will. And saying I fancy you less is negative to his self esteem.

Are there any underlying issues which have made him let go? Is it just bad habits or is he feeling unfulfilled? is he comfort eating when things go wrong?

I agree that what gets eaten at work is very important. My ex insists on having packed lunches at work, and is shock with what the others eat (burger van, Greggs or pizza). Is he in manual work? In which case he needs calories, but from healthier sources.

Get him to the gp.

deliasniff Sun 15-Sep-13 09:24:11

I think the OP has two options here

1) Make it about the children and how the two of you have to set a good example to them and the need to do it as a family. Healthy food from now on and more exercise but this is to teach the children a healthy way of life rather than make it about him. Hopefully he will get the hint or just want to be a good role model for the children without having to make it personal to him.


2) Be honest with him but kind, tell him you love him to bits and you can't bear the thought of him having a heart attack or stroke and you and the children having to face life without him. Don't mention the unattractiveness because this will just hurt him and he needs to be upbeat and in the right frame of mind for a new healthy start. I'm sure he must know it's not a good look without having it actually said. The only person who can actually make this happen is him and if he feels positive about himself it might be the kick start he needs.

I think a visit to the Dr would be a good start though as he is being sick. I hope something works for you.

Bumpstarter Sun 15-Sep-13 09:25:50

Re the kids... Talk to them about making personal comments. But their dad needs to hear it.... Out of the mouths of babes....

Vivacia Sun 15-Sep-13 09:26:12

I think far too many people ignore the fact that fat beings are not attractive.

Well, fatness is attractive in some cultures, including in europe historically.

ithaka Sun 15-Sep-13 09:28:02

I wouldn't talk about not fancying him, I would push the health thing.

My DH put on some weight over the course of our marriage - about 2.5 stone over the years. He is a big man, so could carry it, but obviously did not look as good & it chipped away at his self esteem.

I really pushed the health angle & to be honest that was my primary concern. I never suggested I didn't find him as attractive, but I really pushed him to go to his GP & have a health check.

My DH recently lost all the weight & he looks & feels fantastic. I asked him for his advice for you. He said that it needs to come from your DH, he has to decide for himself he wants to change. He says that then it is easy, he completely changed the way he eats & it was easy to lose weight.

Good luck, I know what a worry it can be.

BardOfBarking Sun 15-Sep-13 09:45:50

The thing that shocks me most on this thread is how many people are casting the OP in the role of food police. This for example from KatyKuns
"and stop buying snacky junk food/make healthier meals and snacks/reduce his portion sizes."
The OP is a full time working Mum, why do we assume that she should also be doing the shopping and cooking. She is not HIS mother FFS.

Rant Over.
I would have a full and frank discussion with lots of offers of support and advice for small changes that would benefit the whole family.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 15-Sep-13 09:51:32

Agree with you BardofBarking.... The OP is no more responsible for what this man chooses to eat or drink than he is for her choices. Anyone who has been or is overweight (and I include myself) knows that it takes some commitment to change and - very important - the motivation varies as much as the individual. For all we know, having the OP say 'we'd shag more if you lost the gut'... might be the kick in the generous rear-end he needs

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Sun 15-Sep-13 10:05:10

This might be unacceptable to some (and not weight related) but I told my DH that our marriage would come to an end if he carried on drinking heavily and smoking. He stopped smoking immediately and cut down on his alcohol intake. He now does exercise every day and looks and feels much better. Sometimes you need an intervention. The 'gently gently' approach is worth a go but if it's not getting you anywhere some tough love is needed.

I know this makes me sound like a cow. But I don't want my DC growing up with unhealthy behaviour modelled to them and Daddy stinking of fags / booze as well as the higher risk of him dying prematurely or getting very ill.

And I agree with others, you shouldn't make it about YOU (fancying him) but about HIM (his very serious health concerns). He needs to see a GP immediately and get treatment for his vomiting, support for smoking cessation and weight loss. But he needs to make the appointment - not you.

Also, could it be possible that he has mild depression?

trice Sun 15-Sep-13 10:17:37

It obviously depends on your relationship and the characters involved. I am happy to tell my Dh if he is getting tubby and vice versa. When I was really big Dh told me that although he still loved me he just didn't fancy me as much when I was fat. It was a shock but I lost the excess three stone in the next six months.

Sometimes you need plain talking and a kick up the butt. But he will also need some support, don't keep snacks and treats in the house, cook healthy food in reasonable portions etc.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Sun 15-Sep-13 10:26:40

Exactly Bard and Cogito - the OP can discuss the issue with her DH and put the case for his seeking medical support / weight loss but it is not her job to do it for him.

The only thing she can actively do is decide, that if the situation is ongoing even after she has explained her concerns and suggested solutions, whether she and their DC continue living with it.

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