‘My marriage may end because of my weight’ – Dubai Psychologist, Kim Henderson, explains how weight changes can impact relationships – Gulf News Article

A reader who wishes to stay anonymous asks

Dear Doctor, my weight has become an issue in my relationship. When we were younger, my then boyfriend used to love to watch me eat, especially since I did not gain weight. We got married and as I aged, I became more and more sluggish. And so I put on a lot of weight. Now my once-boyfriend, now husband refuses to be intimate with me, calling me fat. It hurts. When I try to diet, I quickly fall off the path – I love my food – and the cycle continues. I feel like this may end my marriage, what should I do?

Answered by from Kim Henderson, Clinical Psychologist at German Neuroscience Center

Dear Reader, first of all this must be a horrible position for you to be in. My question is Are YOU unhappy with your current weight? are you motivated and driven to lose weight for yourself and your own health?

OR because your husband has brought it up as an issue for him? Have you taken on his issue as your own?

Depending on the above the change may be needed and welcome, but if you’re are making the changes for him instead of you and your own health then maybe these are the wrong reasons and this could be why you are losing motivation and momentum with your dieting.

My advice to you would have an explicit conversation with your husband about how he communicates with you about your weight. You should share with him how it makes you feel to be called ‘fat’ and how demotivational and upsetting it can be.

Secondly, perhaps if this is a shared goal for your relationship – dieting and exercise can be a shared activity. Motivating and encouraging each other. With the emphasis on making healthy lifestyle choices. You need him in your corner and to be part of this and not discouraging you.

The full and original article was published in Gulf News