The Negative Effects of Weight Loss in a Relationship
Weight loss can be stressful.
However, the dieter isn’t the only person undergoing this harrowing journey. You probably never thought of this, but your significant other is affected by your weight loss efforts too.
- Have you traded your Wednesday TV night and cuddling on the couch for a kickboxing class at the gym?
- Do you demand your honey play Wii Fit with you instead of Super Mario Brothers?
- Do you boycott your significant other’s favorite restaurant and opt for a healthier option instead?
Losing weight and adapting to a healthier lifestyle requires a lot of change. Your partner might not be ready for it. As a result, he or she could react badly. Check out these stats from a recent SparkPeople study:
- 34% of respondents said their significant other sabotages their weight loss efforts more than anyone else in their lives.
- 43% of respondents said their significant other negatively influences their eating habits.
Unfortunately, weight loss is a catch–22. Read what else respondents had to say:
- 24% said they would be bothered if their significant other gained weight.
- 55% said they might be bothered depending on the amount of weight gained.
If significant others are reacting badly to their loved ones’ weight loss efforts, the negative feelings are usually rooted in a deeper issue. Here are some negative ways a loved one could react to weight loss, what could be causing the behavior, and how to address it.
1. Your Significant Other Makes Negative Comments About Your New Body
One SparkPeople respondent said her husband and his family commented that she was too skinny.
She looked unhealthy and less curvy than she should.
In reality, those negative comments weren’t so much about the woman’s actually appearance, but more about the unwanted change. There was also probably some fear – fear that he would lose her. The husband probably felt insecure and worried that her new looks would bring in admiring males.
To make the situation less stressful for your significant other, try to keep rituals the same. Reduce the possibility of more change. If you always go to the movies together on Friday night, opt for a small, butter-free popcorn and a diet soda.
2. Your Significant Other Makes You Feel Guilty
Does he make comments to friends that you like your treadmill more than him? Does she make you feel guilty about taking time for yourself?
Your significant other is probably feeling lonely and nostalgic. Your loved one wants to spend time with you!
You have a right to be healthy and happy.
However, see if you can find ways to make your significant other happy too.
Instead of spending twenty minutes driving across town to get to the gym, do exercise videos at home. You’ll have more time together. Or see if you can get your significant other to join you in an after dinner stroll around the neighborhood.
You’ll still be spending time together – but you’ll both be getting a workout too.
3. Your Significant Other Tries to Sabotage You
Does your husband “surprise” you by bringing home your favorite fast food burger?
Does your wife beg you to sleep in on Saturday morning instead of going to the 6am spin class?
Your loved one is probably jealous. He or she just wants you to stay the way you are. Or, your significant others might be frustrated you’ve found weight loss success and he hasn’t.
When possible, indulge your partner. If he brings home junk food, have a bite (if your willpower will keep you from splurging). Be on the alert for possible sabotage efforts and try to prevent them.
If you think your wife will suggest stopping at the donut shop on the way to church, grab a healthy snack on the way out the door. Then you can claim a full belly. Encourage your partner to join your weight loss effort.
Together, you could be more successful.
4. You Begin to Judge Your Significant Other
Do you wonder why your significant other wouldn’t want to lose weight and get healthy like you have? Are you looking down on your significant other because he or she hasn’t joined you in your efforts? If so, he or she probably knows it.
Are you being prideful?
You aren’t respecting the fact that everyone chooses a different path in life. And, it wasn’t too long ago that you were in the same position.
Try to remember how hard it was for you in the beginning. Be understanding and sympathetic of your significant other’s situation. Don’t encourage unhealthy habits but don’t be judgmental either.
No matter what the situation you and your significant other are facing, there is one sure-fire way to fix the problem. Talk about it! Communicate with your partner; let him or her know how you are feeling. Good luck maintaining both your healthy eating habits and your healthy relationship.
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