Overweight Spouse - would like input from overweight people - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 05-12-2006, 10:47 AM - Thread Starter
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My DH is a 'big' guy.
His dad has been on insulin shots for diabetes since 1990. His mom has diabetes as well. DH is bordeline but luckily so far only has problems with blood pressure and cholesterol. My parents are older than his but in much better shape.
Apart from the health concerns DH's weight also affects what kind of activities we can enjoy. He holds a professional job in the city but works very hard on our (hobby) farm when he gets home, so he is active. But we love to ride horses and he is really exceeding the weight his horse can comfortably carry. Selling the horse is not an option. We love our horses.
He is very sensitive about his weight. It seems like it is something he has struggled with all his life. Comments from co-workers or his boss really get him down.
Late last year he lost 20 pounds on the South Beach Diet and we were actually eating really well. (We like to cook together so I eat what he eats).
He's pretty much regained it though.
The weight bothers him but he stopped working on losing it and I don't know how to help him without upsetting him even more.
He is several years older than I am and I don't want anything to happen to him healthwise. I also want to be able to enjoy activities with him without being limited by his weight. And I don't want him to get upset about other people's comments.
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#2 of 6 Old 05-12-2006, 10:51 AM
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Does he exercise regularly?

Most people gain back the weight after dieting. BTDT.

I weigh much more than when I did when I started dieting during college. I think I would have been better off if I'd never started.

I would be worried about his health too. There are things he can do to keep his blood sugar under control.
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#3 of 6 Old 05-12-2006, 11:18 AM
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I wrote a post like this myself a few years ago. Over the last year my dh has lost 60 pounds. The only thing I can really say, is that he will do it when he is ready. I'm sure you know this but you can't nag, bully or convince someone to take charge of their health until they are ready to do it.

For my dh he was well over 370 pounds and the thought of taking on such a huge obstacle was so overwhelming. He just didn't know where to start. He finally realized that he didn't need a "diet" he needed a lifestyle change. He stopped eating all fast food, except Subway. No pop, no candy, basically no garbage. Fruits and veggies. There were many times where he cheated, but once he got used to it he stopped wanting it. He's also learned that you can have one piece of candy instead of 20. Portion control. His next goal is to start looking at making sure he's balancing his diet.

It's amazing what losing 60 pounds has done for him. He bought a bike(a big big thing for a guy who really just likes to watch tv) and wants to play baseball next summer. He has more energy, he sleeps so much better, he doesn't snore and is willing to do things like go to the zoo again. He used to get tired and his back would hurt from walking, it still does occasionally, but it's so much better. I can't tell you what it's done for our sex life either

There's a Dr. Phil weightloss book out there that has a alot of really interesting stuff in it. Though I despise Dr. Phil, the book gives a lot of different ways to figure what your food triggers are and gives a lot of great ideas on how to change your food habits.

If your dh is interested I know my dh would happily offer advice. Sometimes talking to someone who has been there (or is there in my dh's case) can really help with perspective.
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#4 of 6 Old 05-12-2006, 11:29 AM
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I'm overweight, and DH has gained 60 pounds in the last couple of years (50 of that within months of a med change), and I share your worries. My DH also smokes, so even more worries for me.

I think that you have to approach this as you would an addiction. The only person that can stop/make changes is that person themselves.

I've recently started exercising and eating healthier, it takes ALOT of commitment, but noone could do that FOR me, just as I can't force my DH to exercise with me or quit smoking.

Does that make sense?
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#5 of 6 Old 05-12-2006, 11:36 AM
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does he come to you expressing a desire to change?
i have been a smoker, a drinker and still AM a "fatty," so I can understand that idea that you don't change unless and until YOU want to, no matter how much a loved one wants you to. and that you need to love yourself and feel loved by others to change. it's a bad psychological cycle where you don't take care of yourself, in fact you keep abusing yourself, because you don't feel you are worthy of being treated well. i am not "diagnosing" your DP, that's how it is for me and some others i have talked to before and you asked for personal experience.
the worst part for you is that there is really nothing you can do to change things. you can be supportive and loving, but until he has decided he is worthy of loving himself and translates that into doing the "dirty work" of exercise (we overweighters are usually NOT fans of working out!) and eating in a way that nourishes him while ridding the body of the excess weight, you will be frustrated. you have to try and take care of you while still loving him and that's the best you can do.
i think it's important to regularly evaluate the love you give to make sure it isn't "unsupportive" even when that isn't your intention. in other words, trying to avoid sounding discouraging about a new diet he is enthusiastic about because others haven't worked out or not wanting to "waste" money on a new piece of exercise equipment because he hasn't stuck with things in the past. my dad bought a rowing machine and stationary bike and looking back on it i think, "who would ever want to do that stuff?" but he lost 145 pounds by doing that every morning and by changing his diet.
hang in there and love him in all the ways you can. focus on all the things that you adore about him. and thank your lucky stars that you aren't in the same boat cuz it's a pain in the big ol' rearend!!
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#6 of 6 Old 05-12-2006, 11:39 AM
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Please post in Fitness and Weight Management.
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