DH has gotten fat

(180 Posts)
fancyaflatwhite Wed 21-Jul-21 21:09:24

I feel terrible but it's now really making it hard for me to be attracted to him and have the respect I want to have for him.

I've tried gently encouraging exercise and suggesting walks together for many, many years now. But he doesn't stick with it and is a comfort eater. This isn't just about remaining attracted to each other, it's about health too. His father died young from a heart attack

What would you do?

OP’s posts: |
Hanger0n Wed 21-Jul-21 21:24:01

I noticed there were no replies. Now you see if you were a man saying your wife and gotten fat this thread would be full of people saying LTB!

crosshatching Wed 21-Jul-21 21:27:31

Does he want to lose weight OP? Does he mind it?

Nurseynoodles Wed 21-Jul-21 21:28:56

I dunno but I’m in the same predicament! My DH actually does quite a lot of exercise but has started eating crap all day long now WFH (which is now permanent).

I feel so shallow but it’s really important to me to feel attracted to him but it’s hard to. It’s not just how he looks (6 months pregnant - all his weight is round his belly, the unhealthy place to have fat) but he’s out of breath all the time which is gross.

I haven’t said anything as it’s a taboo subject in my house, I used to be anorexic and diets are not to be discussed. He’s always so positive about my appearance no matter how I look. I feel like a prize bitch.

Dollpiglet Wed 21-Jul-21 21:30:51

Im in the same boat, it's got worse in the last year. If you have any suggestions let me know! The only thing i've tried is to lead by example - I've stopped buying anything remotely unhealthy in the weekly shop. I get the kids out in the garden playing football and sports with me and get them to go and get dh to join in. A lot of it seems to be linked to a bloody online game he plays which is constant, he can't seem to put it down. Something needs to change and I'm trying to be very patient and supportive but he's getting more and more unhealthy.

TheFoundations Wed 21-Jul-21 21:31:45

I'd respect his own wishes for his own body, and I'd communicate my own feelings.

Trying to get him to go for walks is an underhanded way of getting him to lose weight. It's not your job to slim him down.

Pepsi9090 Wed 21-Jul-21 21:35:04

YANBU OP. It is perfectly legitimate to not be attracted to your partner if they have put on a significant amount of weight. You are fully right to be concerned about their health too, being obese is dangerous.

I'd try to make sure the grocery shop is as healthy as possible, no crap in the house.

Does he want to lose weight and just finds it hard? I think it will be hard to make him change if there is no initial will power.

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Growtheroses Wed 21-Jul-21 21:38:57

Speaking as someone who is overweight myself, I would say there is absolutely nothing you can do except remain supportive. He knows that he is overweight. He knows he should do something about it. But he also needs to be in the right place mentally to start. Being blunt, it will not be helpful if he is aware his wife no longer respects him or finds him attractive.

Imcatmum Wed 21-Jul-21 21:41:25

I think you'll get flamed but I understand. When my DH was a bit heavier for a while, it felt strange, like it wasn't him. I have no issue with people carrying weight, it's none of my business how anyone looks. But I didn't like how he suddenly looked so not like himself. It also coincided with huge stress and unhappy time with him (too busy to exercise) so basically I suddenly had a DH who felt different to hug, much heavier during sex which didn't seem familiar, and with a low mood. Right now I've a few kg on more than usual, nothing major, but I don't like that either. It's not the body I'm used to or know.

A very altered appearance, especially if it goes hand in hand with depression and/or new, not so pleasant habits like eating massive bags of crisps and chocolate wrappers everywhere when you've previously as a couple valued healthy eating and sensible snacking....well, I am not surprised you don't feel totally positive about it.

Stickytreacle Wed 21-Jul-21 21:43:41

It is ultimately his responsibility, but could you as a couple have a healthier lifestyle, so no junk food when you go shopping or in the house, do healthy meal plans etc; maybe trying something like intermittent fasting together? Sometimes you have to say it as it is, and if you are worried about health concerns, then I'd tell him that and support any changes.

Bookaholic73 Wed 21-Jul-21 21:46:24

I totally understand what you mean, my DH has gained about 2st in the past year.

samwitwicky Wed 21-Jul-21 21:51:16

fancyaflatwhite

I feel terrible but it's now really making it hard for me to be attracted to him and have the respect I want to have for him.

I've tried gently encouraging exercise and suggesting walks together for many, many years now. But he doesn't stick with it and is a comfort eater. This isn't just about remaining attracted to each other, it's about health too. His father died young from a heart attack

What would you do?


How does his weight affect the respect you have for him?

AnneLovesGilbert Wed 21-Jul-21 21:51:33

You say you’ve been suggesting walks for years, how long? Was he slim when you got together? What’s he ever said about his current weight?

You don’t need to feel terrible for your feelings changing. He doesn’t look the same as he used to, he’s not the person you were attracted to, you’re worried his excess weight will impact his health. Those are all reasonable. You haven’t said you don’t love him - though that happens to people all the time - and you’re allowed to feel less attracted to him.

Gentle suggestions aren’t going to make a difference. It might be the case that nothing you say will do that. So it depends on how much this is bothering you and what you’re willing to risk. If you tell him it’s a big deal to you and you’re no longer attractive to him he might be angry, be upset, eat more, eat less but not stick to it, eat less and stick to it.

beastlyslumber Wed 21-Jul-21 22:03:07

A lot of overeating is driven by emotional problems and addiction. Sugar addiction is real. As is insulin resistance. As is the dopamine hit you get from eating something nice. If he's low in dopamine, as in ADHD for example, he might be driven to eat compulsively. All these things and more can be fixed or helped substantially with different eating approaches. Why don't you suggest counselling - maybe it's something you could do together to start with, to give you space to discuss some of these things and give him the confidence to explore solutions of his own.

Myotherusernamewastakenagain Wed 21-Jul-21 22:18:31

You can't walk him slim, walking won't burn off enough calories to outdo a bad diet. The only way he'll lose weight is a calorie deficit so he has to commit to that, unless you're feeding him everything he eats, it won't work.

2389Champ Wed 21-Jul-21 22:19:59

Oh goodness, this has struck a chord with me too. DH is older than me and has always enjoyed eating well and can’t resist ‘crap’ I try and ensure we only buy healthy stuff and agree with the occasional treat but at every opportunity, if he goes out for petrol for example, he’ll come back with crisps, peanuts, cream cakes etc. I’ve tried the trick of putting crisps in a small bowl but he accuses me of being controlling. If we have friends around or go out for a meal, he eats even more like he’s trying to make the most of being off the leash. It’s like he has no self control, if there’s food there, he has to eat it.

He had successful treatment for prostate cancer 5 years ago, which I hoped might be a good motive for losing weight as it can be related to obesity, but it hasn’t. He’s kept steadily piling it on.

I’ve chatted generally about us both getting fit and exercising a bit more together but he’s not that interested. I was a bit snappy the other day, as since the menopause, I’ve actually lost some weight - plus I’ve given up alcohol which has helped too - and he remarked I was getting ‘too skinny and needed to put weight on’!I could have made a very pointed remark back but bit my tongue as I do love him and don’t want to be hurtful - I just find it so sad that he’s not bothered at all about his appearance and consequently, I don’t find him attractive like I used to.

Ironically I’m a slow eater and he’s always wolfed his food down - and then will sometimes start on mine too! I’ve tried to say that I don’t like it, but he still can’t resist doing it.

JustAnotherOldMan Wed 21-Jul-21 22:42:56

* he looks (6 months pregnant - all his weight is round his belly,*

OMG this is me ! I’m full time WFH now and noticed I’m scoffing the biscuits, need to get out on my bike more

TheSkatesOfCoachBombay Wed 21-Jul-21 22:48:21

You say he's a comfort eater, what is he worrying/stressing/upset about?

Overeating and underating are equally bad for you and signs of a mental health issue sometimes.

Do you love him? All our bodies change over time, and a global pandemic hasn't helped anyone's waist lines, mine included 😳 I'm single though so don't have to worry about upsetting someone else.

I'd try and get to the route of the problem, which is the comfort eating. Elevate that and you could we'll see a change in his health.

HelenHywater Thu 22-Jul-21 06:04:39

The root of the problem is just that he's eating too much. But HE has to decide to eat less - all of these posts putting the onus on the woman to buy healthy food. He needs to decide.

I do get it - I don't see why you have to continue to find people attractive just because you're married to them. It's the person inside blah blah blah. My exH used to put on weight round his belly and it's really unattractive.

Anyway OP, I think you can't sneak around, you have to find a way to have a kind, sensitively worded conversation with him, if that's possible. And for those posters that would come on and say LTB to a man who says the same about his wife, I kind of agree with their view too. You don't have to stay attracted to someone no matter what they look like.

Shellady Thu 22-Jul-21 06:30:30

HelenHywater

The root of the problem is just that he's eating too much. But HE has to decide to eat less - all of these posts putting the onus on the woman to buy healthy food. He needs to decide.

I do get it - I don't see why you have to continue to find people attractive just because you're married to them. It's the person inside blah blah blah. My exH used to put on weight round his belly and it's really unattractive.

Anyway OP, I think you can't sneak around, you have to find a way to have a kind, sensitively worded conversation with him, if that's possible. And for those posters that would come on and say LTB to a man who says the same about his wife, I kind of agree with their view too. You don't have to stay attracted to someone no matter what they look like.

Whilst I agree if someone is not taking care of themselves and doesn’t want to make any effort it can point to big problems and the husband or wife is not obligated to be attracted . This is not always the case though
I think the major issue with many men online complaining about their wives changing bodies is that they compare them to completely unrealistic. Ideal . For example , it’s normal for many women to carry a few extra pounds after having children . I’m not talking about obesity but look at any midwifery book or medical journal and you’ll see a Permanent small gain is normal for many women .
And yea many men complain . Not just about this but about this other changes that come with pregnancy such as breast or skin elasticity changes so no I don’t think it’s just a matter of ‘ not needing to stay attracted to someone ‘ and I do feel often people unfairly give men more permission to behave in extremely shallow ways . Many men are like this I suspect because they watch way too much porn and expect their wives to remain forever young and unaffected by pregnancies , children etc
Perhaps if a person has an expectation that their partner never change physically they need to say so before marriage and considering this will be almost always harder for a woman to do , most omen may reconsider marrying a man like that
However , the op is not talking about the types of minor or unavoidable changes many men complain about . She is talking about something that the husband can have much more control over and he should be open to considering her needs
Also I think what some people have said here may be true , is there an element of comfort eating or depression at play

redtshirt50 Thu 22-Jul-21 06:30:49

This is my DP as well

Gently does it hasn't worked with him so I've started taking a more hardline approach.

His weight is causing issues with his sex drive so I've told him how unhappy I am with our sex life at the moment and that something needs to change. This has helped a bit, he's said he wants to be more healthy but he finds it hard to stay motivated.

He said it would help him if I start going to the gym with him so he has more of a reason to go. Plus we play squash together which he enjoys.

But his diet is still really bad.

It plays on my mind too that he could die young, we are yet to have kids but I would like to at some point in the near future. If things don't improve soon I think I'm going to tell him straight that I don't want to have children with someone who doesn't take their health seriously.

It seems quite drastic but it's true, and maybe hearing that will help give him some motivation.

Cloudninenine Thu 22-Jul-21 06:32:09

Why does him being fat mean you don’t respect him? I would work on confronting that particular prejudice in yourself.

OneMamaAndHerGirl Thu 22-Jul-21 06:49:06

What does the size of a person have to do with respect? Are you perfect in every way, shape and form OP? What a horrible thing to say.

PiccalilliChilli Thu 22-Jul-21 06:49:19

As someone who has struggled with her weight since puberty let me say tbis: nothing, NOTHING you say or do will change things.

My parents didn't have a lot of money when I was growing up and Dad used to get angry if I didn't clear my plate. Then, there was constant criticism of my size. (Most of my female family are size 14+) After I got married my mum started to accuse my husband of over-feeding me! Then because I was getting bigger and bigger I got more self-concious about exercising. People have been unkind. I still clear my plate, however big the portions are. My husband has been concerned about my weight but he knows that it's down to me to make the change.

It's like an addiction. Only the person being affected can decide to change.

Recently I broke my ankle and it has been bloody difficult to get around on crutches. I have no core strength and have suffered a shoulder injury from using crutches. My hip on my good side is way overburdened with all of my weight being on one foot. It's been a wake-up call. I have to lose some weight. So once I'm better, I'm going to do more exercise and go on a strict diet. I'm a size 22-24, way too big for someone who is 5 foot 5.

So for your husband, don't nag. Don't go out for walks or suggest a new activity. He'll just switch off and go into denial. He has to come to his own conclusions.

PartridgeFeather Thu 22-Jul-21 06:50:48

You could point out the change in him, and say you're worried because of what happened to his dad. Then say you'd really like to do X thing you both used to do before all this. Or in fact just go do the thing yourself, and see if that gets a response.

It's up to him to drag himself out of it, you cannot do it for him.

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