My Wife Wants Me to Lose Weight. Do I Owe It to Her to Try?
"My wife wants me to lose weight and says that she is gradually losing attraction to me. I was about 25 pounds lighter than we met and was really physically active. But since my job has become more demanding, I am definitely settled down and gained weight, which never really bothered me ... until I realized that it bothered her! So, do I owe her to lose the weight? Or can I explain that my body is just like that ? "
Physical attraction is an important part of any romantic relationship. I know we would like to believe that everyone falls in love with their partner in order to maintain a radiant personality, but the perceived sharpness usually precedes the decision to engage intensively. That said, you should never feel questioned about any weight you lose or gain. Bodies change. The attraction shifts. Life happens.
So, on this front, do you owe your wife to lose weight and keep her attracted to you?
In a word, no
You can define your weight, your diet, your physical activity and your general appearance - nobody else. I often see situations where a spouse's appearance becomes a means of control and the time he spends maintaining or changing that appearance is the product of an abusive dynamic. It's not okay for someone you love to comment on how often you order pasta, whether you really "need" the chocolate cake, or where your bicep muscles went. It is not a way of life. It is not a way to be happy. And that is definitely not love.
While physical attraction is important as a first spark in a relationship as love develops, awe of other things grows - how kind she is, how supportive she is, how good she is as a mother. These intangible assets are the glue that holds you together and enables you to solve exactly these problems. If physical attraction is the only thing your wife held in this marriage, then your relationship isn't built on a solid foundation. But if that's just something she wants to work on together, well ...
It is important to address the issue of lost attraction as a couple
Would you like to lose weight to feel sexier? If you do, you can treat this as a joint venture, especially if your wife is excited to help you with your efforts. You may find activities that you enjoy doing together. Maybe something you enjoyed earlier when you were more active? There doesn't have to be time in the gym. Exercise is healthy ... and, according to research, a natural aphrodisiac.
Or maybe you could make meal preparation and healthy cooking your "date for a date" instead of eating and eating. What ever. There are a thousand ways to connect in a healthy and cool way to become a stronger couple.
It is also worth noting that this is a one way street. Do you feel that the relationship has lost its spark? Do you have any ideas on how to improve your bond with your wife, have more sex and feel these butterflies again? You can also make some suggestions.
But the bottom line, if you feel good about how you look, you stand up for yourself
Sit down with your wife and tell her that you feel happy and healthy at your current height. You will make decisions about your own weight and develop further. Set this limit, which you must fully respect. Then open the conversation to other ways that you can light the fire again, whether it's a weekend or you're learning a new activity together (abs not visible for health reasons). I suspect there is a mutually agreed action plan somewhere.
Jenna Birch is a dating coach, journalist and author of The Love Gap: A radical plan to win in Life & Love.
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