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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I initially came here to observe only. I was searching for advice through other peoples posts for something I’m struggling with. Then I figured, what the heck, so here it goes.

my concern is my husbands health- physically and mentally and the affects it’s having on our relationship. I’ve read a few posts about some people’s concerned with their spouse gaining some weight. Well, my husband has gained nearly 100 lbs in about two and a half years. I feel guilt even writing that because I feel like I’m betraying him or his trust somehow.


My husband is 30 years old. he has a successful career. He’s an amazing man. We met playing sports and bonded over physical activities we could do together.

Fast forward two years or so, and we’ve married and had two beautiful children. I want to enjoy an active and happy life with my family. I’m afraid my husband isn’t going to live long at the rate he is going and I don’t know how to talk to him without hurting him. If he continues to gain weight as this rate, it’s going to debilitate him. On top of health risks (he already has a preexisting heart condition) I don’t find myself feeling attracted to him. I take pride in my health and in fitness. I don’t expect perfection by any means, but I find myself thinking about how lazy he has become and I feel resentment. He does the minimum when it comes to the children. He’s often angry and impatient. He comes home and plops on the couch and won’t put his cell phone down. He doesn’t brush his teeth. He’s let his appearance go. I KNOW he is struggling, but so am I. I love my husband as much as I always have, but this is killing me. How can I help him?
 

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Been there several times myself. Usually from trying to drink myself to death. I somehow thought I would turn off like a light switch.

What helped me? Ending up in urgent care with health issues. Ending up at the Dentist with tooth issues, etc... Realizing that maybe you don’t turn off like a light switch but instead just live in misery and pain.

I still struggle with weight despite working out 7d a week and playing sports however I am now in good fitness and health. I know this because I just got my blood panel back a couple days ago. I go to the doctor for a physical once a year but I also go every 3-6 months for a follow up. I go to the dentist every 4 months. I get my hair cut every 4 weeks.

Since your husband sounds like he still does work well (I did) make these things into something he needs to do. His list of stuff includes:

Dentist
Doctor
Gym
Salon

With COVID it is tough, but get him to find a gym that is small and ideally with a sport he likes. My gym is boxing, but we also have a bunch of guys who play basketball. For him it could be tennis, it doesn’t matter the point is to get people who do these activities to become friends with because they won’t let you flip flop back into becoming obese.

It is possible for him to change everything but it needs to come from within. I pray he won’t be like me and have to become actually sick to make the changes he needs to. My doctor said, “If you do not make these changes the next time I see you it will be in the emergency room.”
 

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Well, my husband has gained nearly 100 lbs in about two and a half years. I feel guilt even writing that because I feel like I’m betraying him or his trust somehow.
You made a good choice to come here. You should have no guilt for caring about and trying to help your husband, but he might feel betrayed if you sought the help within your circle of acquaintances.

Your husband has a very serious need to change his eating and exercise habits. I can understand you not feeling attracted to him...... however, I want to encourage you to do your best to not withhold sex from him, you may not "feel" it, but not having you will add to his already-low self-opinion.

It is possible for him to change everything but it needs to come from within.
As much as you can, assure him that you love him, respect him, and want him sexually (even if you don't - fake it to make it)......let go, and let God.....
 

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100lbs in two years is pretty extreme, and not just the ordinary changes that lots of men go through in that stage of building a career, focusing on work and family and inadvertently neglecting their health a little bit. One would have to be pretty actively porking to gain that much weight in that period of time. How will you feel if he packs on another 100lbs by 33, then an additional 100 by 36? What's to stop him from 400lbs by age 40? Probably won't be going out in public much with him at that point, and not exactly the best parenting model for the kids, either.

Not to be harsh here, but significant weight gain is one of those issues that's a little bit ambiguous for a lot of spouses. If he were drinking excessively, or screwing around with other women or gambling... those things are easy to make decisions about for most people. Watching your spouse turn into Jabba the hutt is a little bit harder to respond too because it doesn't trigger immediate painful emotions and repercussions, but in my opinion its just as destructive and just as self centered. I bet when you bring up his weight he gets really defensive, and tells you its his choice to make, and not your concern; that it doesn't affect you... he just really loves food, he's a "foodie" and you should feel lucky for that...

Outside of family and work, physical activities are one of the most important things to me. I feel so lucky that I can bicycle, rock climb, hike, snowshoe, can play sports with my son... My spouse does some of that with me, but not all, and that's just fine with me. However watching an intimate partner become obese would be an absolute deal killer, and I wouldn't give that a second thought or shed a guilty tear for the decision to end that relationship.

You need to figure out what your limit is here and do it soon. Then be very clear with your husband about it. The 100lbs that he gained in 2.5 years is going to take him 5 to 10 years to be rid of, and if you wait for the next 100lbs your likely going to find yourself living with a person on disability, with chronic health issues that you'll have to attend to for the rest of your relationship. Think he's unattractive now?

You sound like a pretty cool person and I hate harshing on your spouse, but you gotta go hard line on this one, and soon.
 

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One angle to maybe take with your talk is that taking care of himself and knowing he’ll be there for you and your family is important.

I really think that since he has been active in the past he needs a male peer group that is going to hold him to task. If I put on 10 pounds my friend will say, “You look fat. What are you doing Thursday because you’re skipping it and we’re playing basketball.” Basically you want it to be not allowed to get too out of shape.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Been there several times myself. Usually from trying to drink myself to death. I somehow thought I would turn off like a light switch.

What helped me? Ending up in urgent care with health issues. Ending up at the Dentist with tooth issues, etc... Realizing that maybe you don’t turn off like a light switch but instead just live in misery and pain.

I still struggle with weight despite working out 7d a week and playing sports however I am now in good fitness and health. I know this because I just got my blood panel back a couple days ago. I go to the doctor for a physical once a year but I also go every 3-6 months for a follow up. I go to the dentist every 4 months. I get my hair cut every 4 weeks.

Since your husband sounds like he still does work well (I did) make these things into something he needs to do. His list of stuff includes:

Dentist
Doctor
Gym
Salon

With COVID it is tough, but get him to find a gym that is small and ideally with a sport he likes. My gym is boxing, but we also have a bunch of guys who play basketball. For him it could be tennis, it doesn’t matter the point is to get people who do these activities to become friends with because they won’t let you flip flop back into becoming obese.

It is possible for him to change everything but it needs to come from within. I pray he won’t be like me and have to become actually sick to make the changes he needs to. My doctor said, “If you do not make these changes the next time I see you it will be in the emergency room.”
Thank you for your response. I really appreciate hearing your perspective. I think that I needed to hear from someone who has been in his shoes because as much as I try to understand what my husband is dealing with, I have never dealt with it myself and I think that’s why I feel how I do. Him getting to the point where he becomes sick or something irreversible happens is my worst fear. I am going to talk to him and work on this list you suggested.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
You made a good choice to come here. You should have no guilt for caring about and trying to help your husband, but he might feel betrayed if you sought the help within your circle of acquaintances.

Your husband has a very serious need to change his eating and exercise habits. I can understand you not feeling attracted to him...... however, I want to encourage you to do your best to not withhold sex from him, you may not "feel" it, but not having you will add to his already-low self-opinion.



As much as you can, assure him that you love him, respect him, and want him sexually (even if you don't - fake it to make it)......let go, and let God.....
Thank you. I will make sure that I continue to let him know how much I love him and be there for him. I will remember not to withhold from him physically or emotionally.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
100lbs in two years is pretty extreme, and not just the ordinary changes that lots of men go through in that stage of building a career, focusing on work and family and inadvertently neglecting their health a little bit. One would have to be pretty actively porking to gain that much weight in that period of time. How will you feel if he packs on another 100lbs by 33, then an additional 100 by 36? What's to stop him from 400lbs by age 40? Probably won't be going out in public much with him at that point, and not exactly the best parenting model for the kids, either.

Not to be harsh here, but significant weight gain is one of those issues that's a little bit ambiguous for a lot of spouses. If he were drinking excessively, or screwing around with other women or gambling... those things are easy to make decisions about for most people. Watching your spouse turn into Jabba the hutt is a little bit harder to respond too because it doesn't trigger immediate painful emotions and repercussions, but in my opinion its just as destructive and just as self centered. I bet when you bring up his weight he gets really defensive, and tells you its his choice to make, and not your concern; that it doesn't affect you... he just really loves food, he's a "foodie" and you should feel lucky for that...

Outside of family and work, physical activities are one of the most important things to me. I feel so lucky that I can bicycle, rock climb, hike, snowshoe, can play sports with my son... My spouse does some of that with me, but not all, and that's just fine with me. However watching an intimate partner become obese would be an absolute deal killer, and I wouldn't give that a second thought or shed a guilty tear for the decision to end that relationship.

You need to figure out what your limit is here and do it soon. Then be very clear with your husband about it. The 100lbs that he gained in 2.5 years is going to take him 5 to 10 years to be rid of, and if you wait for the next 100lbs your likely going to find yourself living with a person on disability, with chronic health issues that you'll have to attend to for the rest of your relationship. Think he's unattractive now?

You sound like a pretty cool person and I hate harshing on your spouse, but you gotta go hard line on this one, and soon.
I appreciate your honesty. While harsh, it is also true. You said something that is exactly what crosses my mind often lately. Will he gain another 100lbs in another 2-3 years and become disabled? Will I raise my children and have to care for him alone ? I cannot wait until my kids are old enough to play sports and hike etc. and I don’t want to do it without him. That is my worse fear. If it means I have to bring this up and have an honest conversation and say some things he may not necessarily want to hear, I’m willing to do it if it will save him from going down this road further. Thank you for telling me how it is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
One angle to maybe take with your talk is that taking care of himself and knowing he’ll be there for you and your family is important.

I really think that since he has been active in the past he needs a male peer group that is going to hold him to task. If I put on 10 pounds my friend will say, “You look fat. What are you doing Thursday because you’re skipping it and we’re playing basketball.” Basically you want it to be not allowed to get too out of shape.
He was an athlete through his youth and was generally an active person. Before coronavirus, we both went to a CrossFit gym and played softball together. He’s never been a small person but he’s been healthy. We do live in California and we’ve been under some more strict lockdowns (gym closure etc.) but I’ve found ways to stay active while he has not. I think having a friend to hold him accountable would help. I know that does the trick for me . It’s something I can suggest.
 

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The mood, behavior and hygiene stuff is concerning by itself. So is the weight gain. As others have suggested, they are likely related. Tell him you think he is amazing(like you told us) and that you're worried about him. Worried about what is making angry and impatient, worried the weight and pre-existing condition will cut your time short. Tell him you're on his side and want to help w/ both.

Of course you don't look forward to this, but you're doing it b/c he needs help and you're on his team. That's nothing to feel bad about.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The mood, behavior and hygiene stuff is concerning by itself. So is the weight gain. As others have suggested, they are likely related. Tell him you think he is amazing(like you told us) and that you're worried about him. Worried about what is making angry and impatient, worried the weight and pre-existing condition will cut your time short. Tell him you're on his side and want to help w/ both.

Of course you don't look forward to this, but you're doing it b/c he needs help and you're on his team. That's nothing to feel bad about.
Those things alone make me concerned that he's dealing with something like depression. I appreciate your kind words and suggestions. Im trying to stay as positive as I can.
 

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I am also in CA so I know your pain there. My county isn’t totally locked down but even when we were we got together for sports and to work out.

Crossfit is a tough one but it depends on the gym. You can’t do WOTD obviously without a LOT of modification and a competitive gym maybe isn’t the best environment.

When I was at my largest maybe 15 years ago I had come up maybe 150 pounds at 6’5 from where I was doing 5000’ of climbing 50 mile road biking rides. When you know how bad you are relative to stuff you have done in the past it is really hard to go from that low point and get back.

When I started I just wanted to be able to get into some base level fitness before even going to the gym. So I started with 30 minutes a day of trying to jog. I couldn’t do it without walking. I think it took maybe two months before I could even do it and we’re talking slow like a 12 minute pace. Then I kept building up from there doing only cardio and diet until I dropped half. It probably took me a year. At that point I went to the gym because I wasn’t embarrassed. After another year back to 10 mile hill runs.

It’s entirely possible to fix.
 

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Those things alone make me concerned that he's dealing with something like depression.
Quite possibly. If so, his prospects are all about getting in front of it.
I appreciate your kind words and suggestions. Im trying to stay as positive as I can.
Sometimes, the kindest thing you can do for someone is to make them talk about the last thing they want to talk about. I am sorry you are in that position, but you sound like the kind of person who will step up.
 

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I initially came here to observe only. I was searching for advice through other peoples posts for something I’m struggling with. Then I figured, what the heck, so here it goes.

my concern is my husbands health- physically and mentally and the affects it’s having on our relationship. I’ve read a few posts about some people’s concerned with their spouse gaining some weight. Well, my husband has gained nearly 100 lbs in about two and a half years. I feel guilt even writing that because I feel like I’m betraying him or his trust somehow.


My husband is 30 years old. he has a successful career. He’s an amazing man. We met playing sports and bonded over physical activities we could do together.

Fast forward two years or so, and we’ve married and had two beautiful children. I want to enjoy an active and happy life with my family. I’m afraid my husband isn’t going to live long at the rate he is going and I don’t know how to talk to him without hurting him. If he continues to gain weight as this rate, it’s going to debilitate him. On top of health risks (he already has a preexisting heart condition) I don’t find myself feeling attracted to him. I take pride in my health and in fitness. I don’t expect perfection by any means, but I find myself thinking about how lazy he has become and I feel resentment. He does the minimum when it comes to the children. He’s often angry and impatient. He comes home and plops on the couch and won’t put his cell phone down. He doesn’t brush his teeth. He’s let his appearance go. I KNOW he is struggling, but so am I. I love my husband as much as I always have, but this is killing me. How can I help him?
-My advice is under the grounds that this is not a medical condition like depression, that has been covered by other here above. I think you should start with that but if it's not that then...

There is nothing unreasonable in what you have said and you are not betraying his trust by asking for help. He is your husband and he is a father, he has a responsibly to all of you to be mindful of his health. He understands this when it comes to your financial security but he is failing to understand that when it comes to physical and emotional security and your future potential quality of life. What will happen to his family if he dies 10 years from now. I think this is a good place to start, most men operate with responsibility as their primary mission (normally financially) but security non the less. This is built into us so appealing to that might help. Just try not to say he is failing in that so he won't get defensive, and make sure you don't guilt him in the sense of - your kids are going to miss you. More - "I love you, I need you, your kids need you, but I am terrified we are going to lose you. You do such a good job of taking care of us in all these things, but I am afraid for all of us if you were not here in 10 years. What would I do, what would we do?"

This is s delicate subject and you need to treat it delicately. It's clear that you really do love him and you don't want to hurt him, but sometimes there may be some short term pain for long term gain. Ironically just like exercise right? You may hurt for a day or to but the benifits outweigh the pain. The other thing is you really are not being a good spouse if you can't be honest (in a respectful manner) with your partner. How many spouse who have their partner leave them say - I wish they had told me they were unhappy. Productive adult relationships, particularly good marriages involve sometimes asking for things, or saying I am not happy, this is not good enough. Again do it delicately, start with the love and respect but say how you feel authentically. Good people who operate under good faith hear you and do their best to change.

Finally one of the things we do when we are in a monogamous relationship is we ask people to abstain from pursuing other potential mates that they may be attracted to. Think of it like food, if you made a deal with your husband where you were the only one who could ever prepare him meals and all you served him was dog food, would that be fair? When he isn't even bothering to brush his teeth it's like he is serving you dog food.

You are not wrong to expect him to make his appearance an appropriate reasonable priority around the context of his health and age. He is a young potentially healthy man he is responsible to make you a priority in this way. He should also try to age well. I am lucky in that my wife has always done this, honestly I have not always be as responsible to her. I have since apologized to my wife for my 50 pound weight gain. She didn't say anything but I wish she would have. I deserved it. I am embarrassed to say that don't think I understood female attraction like I do now (from reading on here and other sites), and how visual it is really. I think so much energy is spent talking about romance, and connection and all that. We do a bad job of explaining to men - um no women really do like muscles. She really does care what you wear, and no your personally isn't going to overcome you frumpy appearance. No she isn't going to love you just for you dumb ass, do you love her for her or do you want her to be hot? How is this even fair. More guys need to hear this message.

Though it has never happened in my relationship I think the way I would broach this with a potential mate if they let themselves go, would be to say - "how come you don't care about my attraction to you?" (Not "I am not attracted to you".) But "why isn't this important to you , when you should know it is to me?" See what I did there? Now he may ask "are you no longer attracted to me?" You should be prepared to say, "I am sorry, but I am losing attraction, but part of that is knowing you don't care about my attraction and by inference me, and why do you even ask me that when your actions show that until this moment you haven't seem to care about it."

Anyway you have reasonable expectations, don't feel guilty about that, that's your right. When we ask people to love us that is part of the deal right?
 

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He was an athlete through his youth and was generally an active person. Before coronavirus, we both went to a CrossFit gym and played softball together. He’s never been a small person but he’s been healthy. We do live in California and we’ve been under some more strict lockdowns (gym closure etc.) but I’ve found ways to stay active while he has not. I think having a friend to hold him accountable would help. I know that does the trick for me . It’s something I can suggest.
He may be depressed and not dealing with covid and uncertainy very well.
 

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When you both look at your marriage what you see are very still waters, there is no open conflict taking place. Look below the surface and there is massive turbulence, you're concerned about him and how he behaves and how his behavior affects you and the state of the marriage. Don't for a moment believe that he's not aware of his own behavior. He is avoiding what he's doing as a coping mechanism. When he doesn't brush his teeth, he knows what is going on, same with his weight gain, same with his lifestyle lethargy. He knows he's depressed and doesn't want to openly admit it. He knows that his body girth is turning you off sexually and doesn't want to face this.

It's this avoidance issue which is the linchpin to turning him around. Fixing that gets him moving on his depression issue, gets him moving on exercising and dieting, etc.

Avoidance is usually favored as a behavioral response when the alternative is to face something one fears or one is uncomfortable with. If I had to guess I would guess that he fears the loss of your love, so he is finding solace in a covert contract - no one brings it up and you all just go on living pretending that nothing is happening. This is where you step up and reassure him of your love and how you will be his strongest ally, be beside him as he faces up to his challenges.
 

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What Lance said rings true to me. I knew what I was doing and I didn’t care or rather I thought I didn’t. Turns out once I started feeling the consequences I cared pretty quickly. I think by talking with him maybe you’ll accelerate the process of feeling the consequences but there is no guarantee he’ll handle it. For me it snapped me out of it.
 

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I always get a bit of a chuckle when I read these types of threads.....

No woman i know of ever commented on concern over a man's health if he has a good appearance and is generally fit, but works as many do, in a highly dangerous job, or is a power CEO type that is burning the candle at both ends, is stressed out to the max, and working his ass off.. Either of those types of scenarios is likely far more detrimental to one's health than just some 30 year old dough boy who can't put down the donuts or pizza....The difference is the dough boy here has a slovenly appearance which obviously has affected the op's desire for this guy.....sexual or otherwise....and he's made himself into an embarrassment for her to be around and she probably dreads the times when he's wanting sex...(I dunno if mentioned, but I am imagining this scenario)

I get it....It seems less shallow and self centered to couch it in such a way as to be honestly concerned about the other person's health...And for all I know that may in fact be the case...But I just don't think so(or at least its not the main concern), because as I mentioned in the last paragraph...she likely would never have started the thread, if he was equally living an unhealthy life(maybe more unhealthy) but "looked good"...

I am on the side of the OP....I don't think it's shallow...In fact, while many would disagree, I am in favor of letting him know how you truly feel about it, even if it's painful as hell and hard to do...You can bring up the health aspects as well if you want to but let him know clearly how you feel about the other aspects as it pertains to attraction(both physical and sexual) and your feeling about being repulsed by his appearance...

Here is the thing, though....No amount of prodding on your part will do much good in most cases...It takes the person to understand what he's doing has a consequence...If he wasn't like this when you met, its a complete bait and switch...He knows what he looks like...he's not blind...why he's chosen to do nothing about it is where the rubber hits the road...It's gotta be something he recognizes and decides to make a change...

Now, having said all of this, maybe this guy is really depressed as others have stated...It's possible that once the cloud lifts, he'll come around. and some patience and understanding is necessary and required to preserve what is otherwise, by the OP's words, is a good marriage...

All I am saying is don't be shy or feel bad about bringing up what some would feel are the "shallow" aspects of losing attraction due to physical appearance...Its not something to be ashamed of in the least bit...

Good luck...
 

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I always get a bit of a chuckle when I read these types of threads.....

No woman i know of ever commented on concern over a man's health if he has a good appearance and is generally fit, but works as many do, in a highly dangerous job, or is a power CEO type that is burning the candle at both ends, is stressed out to the max, and working his ass off.. Either of those types of scenarios is likely far more detrimental to one's health than just some 30 year old dough boy who can't put down the donuts or pizza....The difference is the dough boy here has a slovenly appearance which obviously has affected the op's desire for this guy.....sexual or otherwise....and he's made himself into an embarrassment for her to be around and she probably dreads the times when he's wanting sex...(I dunno if mentioned, but I am imagining this scenario)

I get it....It seems less shallow and self centered to couch it in such a way as to be honestly concerned about the other person's health...And for all I know that may in fact be the case...But I just don't think so(or at least its not the main concern), because as I mentioned in the last paragraph...she likely would never have started the thread, if he was equally living an unhealthy life(maybe more unhealthy) but "looked good"...

I am on the side of the OP....I don't think it's shallow...In fact, while many would disagree, I am in favor of letting him know how you truly feel about it, even if it's painful as hell and hard to do...You can bring up the health aspects as well if you want to but let him know clearly how you feel about the other aspects as it pertains to attraction(both physical and sexual) and your feeling about being repulsed by his appearance...

Here is the thing, though....No amount of prodding on your part will do much good in most cases...It takes the person to understand what he's doing has a consequence...If he wasn't like this when you met, its a complete bait and switch...He knows what he looks like...he's not blind...why he's chosen to do nothing about it is where the rubber hits the road...It's gotta be something he recognizes and decides to make a change...

Now, having said all of this, maybe this guy is really depressed as others have stated...It's possible that once the cloud lifts, he'll come around. and some patience and understanding is necessary and required to preserve what is otherwise, by the OP's words, is a good marriage...

All I am saying is don't be shy or feel bad about bringing up what some would feel are the "shallow" aspects of losing attraction due to physical appearance...Its not something to be ashamed of in the least bit...

Good luck...
He has prior health conditions and has packed on a dangerous amount of weight. I think a sensible person would be concerned about his health. There is a sharp change in his moods and hygiene. A sensible person would be concerned about depression.

If it was only about appearance, I agree it is fair to bring up, but TS's motives don't seem indirect to me at all.
 
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