One of the trickiest things about losing weight when you are in a relationship is telling your partner it’s time to lose weight. Men are incredibly familiar with the age-old question, “Do I look fat?”, but for women, telling your significant other that its time to lose a few pounds can be incredibly intimidating. Even though they don’t like to admit it, men can be just as sensitive about weight and appearance as women. And, what’s worse is they can be equally oblivious to their growing bellies, leaving you to worry about their long term health. So, what’s a girl to do? I’ve gathered a few tips on broaching the subject gently with your boyfriend or husband.
1. Figure out what’s causing the problem. For some men, drinking several nightly beers can really beginning to pack on the pounds. For others, you may notice that all he wants to do in his free time is sit on the couch, or perhaps his appetite for potato chips and chocolate cake seems to have grown exponentially. If you can zero in on the behavior that’s causing the problem, you can have a more targeted approach.
2. Check yourself! Is there any possibility that you are making it hard for him to lose weight? When Kevin, my husband, and I first got married, we only saw each other on the weekends, and I always viewed it as a vacation. Kevin bought us pizza, beer, chips, and all kinds of treats and I did absolutely nothing to curb this behavior. In fact, I encouraged it. I could eat healthy all week, and then indulge with Kevin. It took me quite a while to realize that I was really hurting Kevin’s health by not making healthy choices for us. It was up to me to say, “You know what, we probably should just make some chicken for dinner tonight.” Believe me, it was hard to give up those foods, but I knew it was the best thing for both of us!
3. Lead by example. Nothing will make the conversation more tense than if you suggest a new change for your husband that you are unwilling to make in your own life. He won’t listen to a thing you have to say when you tell him to exercise every day, but you won’t get off the couch. If you want him to start eating healthier, you need to give up those brownies too! Plus, if you can change first, you can show him that it can be done and all he has to do is follow your lead.
4. Bring him along. Once you’ve started going to the gym, or buying healthier foods, you can bring up the topic just by inviting him along. If you say, “Honey, I’m going to the gym again today. Want to come with?” he is much more likely to respond more positively than if you said, “I think you need to lose some weight.” If you can find time to exercise together, make dinners together and be partners in your healthy choices, it will not only improve your health, but your relationship as well!
If you get to try any of these tips out, we would love to hear about it. Have you already tried to bring up this sticky topic? How did it go?