My Husband Has Gained Weight and I'm Less Attracted | Scarlett Letters | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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My Husband Has Gained Weight and I'm Less Attracted

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Dear Scarlett,

My husband has gained quite a bit of weight over the last few years, and I find myself less attracted to him. I've tried to be supportive and help him lose weight, but it's always the same. He diets for a week or so, then goes back to eating like crap. I stay fit, and people say I look half my age; why can't he do the same? I love him, but I find myself looking at other men and wishing my husband would try harder.

Signed,

Jenny Craig(female, 38)

Dear Jenny,

All marriages go through changes and challenges. And among people entering midlife, this one is pretty common.

Trying to lose weight to please someone else is a recipe for failure. Your support should be aimed at helping him find motivation from within. That means not issuing ultimatums or making him feel that his attractiveness to you depends on his weight. You may feel less attracted, but expressing that to him is likely to have a shaming effect and may intensify his insecurity.

When possible, try to include him in your healthy lifestyle in ways that are not intimidating. Buy healthy foods at the grocery store and invite him along to walks and workout sessions. When you do things together, make them about movement and activity, not eating and drinking.

Also, keep in mind that your husband's weight gain and inability to lose it may be linked to an underlying condition, physical or mental. Dieting will not get to the root cause of his behavior, for example, if he is depressed or has low testosterone. Encourage your spouse to rule out illness with his doctor and develop a wellness plan.

Finally, try not to compare yourself to him or him to other men. His struggles and body chemistry are unique, and as far as other men go, the grass is always greener.

Love,

Scarlett

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