Partner with an unhealthy lifestyle

SaucyxGirl SaucyxGirl
I have a little dilemma of sorts, Since my boyfriend and I have gotten together(over ten years ago) he has let himself go. He constantly snacks on junk food, eats a lot of fast food , stopped exorcising , has gained over 50+ lbs and generally let his health go. My main concern is that there is a family history of high blood pressure, diabetes and heart disease in his family and he seems to ignore or not care when this is pointed out to him. His life style is already effecting his health and day to day health. He is constantly tired, has difficulty keeping up with our son, snores to the point that we can not share a room. While I am not a shallow person, I also can't help but find the attraction on my end slipping. I don't expect perfection, but its hard to be attracted to someone who seems to be indifferent to their health and how it affects their life. It also effecting our sex life as we are unable to do certain position due his weight gain or lack of physical stamina.

I would like to approach him with this, but since I have a tendency to be rather blunt and tactless when it comes down to it I figured I would ask for advice. I want to stress to him that my main concern is that given his family history that he should take care of himself a little better. Some of the things that I have tried already is keeping only healthy foods in the house, he just went out and bought junk food or eats fast food when I am not around. I have pressed him on taking our son outside to run around, only to hear him complain about being tired and not having the energy. I tried pointing out his family history and he just shrugged. A few times I came close to bluntly giving him the choice, loose weight and start taking care of yourself or we are breaking up but chickened out because I figured that I would just come across as a bitch. So if anyone has any ideas on how I can approach this delicate topic I would really appreciate it.


*When I say he eats a lot of fast food, he seriously eats like three cheeseburgers, a chicken sandwich, two chicken wraps and a large fries a few times a week. Also he is fully capable of eating a whole container of cookies and large bag of chips with half a container of dip in a single day. Try as I might to keep the junk food out of the house he just buys it himself while I am at work.
04/01/2013
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Edeneve Edeneve
wow, that is a lot of junk food. I'm not so sure that there is a careful way of bringing up this subject. you obviously care about this guy. I say journal your thoughts & feelings for awhile. and then narrow down to the specific words you want to say. journaling may help you find other ways of telling him what you think & feel. when you talk to him, focus more on your feelings rather than pointing a finger at him. and don't think about coming off as a bitch. what's in your heart is more important. these are my ways of handling things & by no means is this me telling you what the "right" thing to do is. you have to figure that out on your own.
04/01/2013
Wicked Wahine Wicked Wahine
"Look, I love you & I don't want you to die, but with your family history, I'm afraid that's going to happen. I want you to be healthy enough to be there for our son & to see him grow up."

If he won't stop the junk food, will he at least start exercising? Maybe cutting out some things, like sweetened drinks such as cola or juice? But I don't think it's your job to come up with the solutions for him, nor do I think he would want to be told what to do.

I really think if the "gentle" attempts to discuss this don't get through, or he doesn't care, that you need to up your game. But first, I would not threaten to leave unless you are prepared to walk away. Assuming you get to that point, then at least give him the opportunity to realize you're serious about leaving over this issue. Then let him try to help himself.

Only you know what is a deal breaker in your relationship & how much you can put up with of certain behaviors. If you want, (& can afford it), maybe a visit to a therapist is in order for you &/or him? Or, better yet, couple's therapy which might at least signal to him, in a very concrete way, that this is a huge problem for you & is threatening the foundation of your relationship.

I would be interested in finding out what you do & how it works. If you feel like it, please, let us know, maybe your experience can benefit someone else in the same situation. I wish you the best in this & hope it works out for everyone!
04/01/2013
charmedtomeetyou charmedtomeetyou
What about doing more active things together as a family? If it persists I would say that you'd like him to be around for a long time, for you and for your son...and you're worried about this health. Try to phrase it as positively as you can, but express that you love him and want him around. See how he takes it that way.
04/01/2013
MrWill MrWill
I'm going to come off as crass and rude, but so be it. Look, the real deal here: I weigh 350 pounds RIGHT NOW. He doesn't need you to be friendly about things, he doesn't need a hug and an it's okay you can try to eat less tomorrow. He needs a swift kick to the ass, an ultimatum, and for you to show that you care more than just letting him kill himself one gram of fat at a time.

Would you rather be friendly and sweet and let him kill himself and have that on your conscience for the rest of your life, or would you like to be blunt about things and explain that you love him and are tired of watching himself kill himself a bite at a time?

Don't worry about coming across as a bitch. If he loves you, and you love him... then something needs to change. I'd love to have a woman in my life that cared enough to tell me to stop before I hit the wall myself and decided to make changes.


It's tough, and if you do present an ultimatum and he chooses to get healthier I really hope you intend to stay by his side as things change. I don't know how much weight he has put on since you started dating but one thing you should remember is that his body will probably never look the same.
04/01/2013
Hummingbird Hummingbird
Having suffered with weight problems myself I know I hate when someone constantly reminds me about it. Worse is when they tell me what I should and should be eating it only turns me off and encourages me to do the opposite just to spite them. I know it sounds petty and childish but that's the way it is. It even runs in the family, the same attitude.

I finally lost weight and have kept it off for 3 years now not because of a special diet, weighing and measuring foods but because I wanted to. The weight is still coming off and I'm down now from 220 lbs to 173 lbs.

So back to you and your SO, each person is different in how they handle pressure and stress. He will have to see the plus in how it will benefit him to even begin to change, plus he has to want to change. The only times in the past I was able to loose weight even on a formal diet was because I wanted to, it was so strong that I wanted nothing else as much as I wanted to lose the weight.

He will need to see small achievements at first something that will encourage him a little bit at a time. One thing that helped me was by purchasing the Jawbone UP bracelet that synchs in with my iPhone app and tracks my sleep and steps I take per day. It also allows me to track my food intake with many everyday foods already pre-loaded. I've even taken pictures of food I've eaten, combined the ingredients and saved it as a favorite like english muffin, butter and marmalade, a favorite staple of mine.

The app also track nutritional info and trends your health habits by graph. For me this made sticking with a weight loss program and not a formal one, fun! The thing to do is whatever he tries it needs to be easy, simple and he needs to see small bits of progress at a time that will encourage him in the long term to stick with it.

My last word on this, when he does begin to lose the weight, don't chastise him when he slips back into snacking mode. It's better he still continues some snacking otherwise he will go into junk food withdrawal and put on even more weight.

Hope this helps, the Jawbone UP bracelet may not be the thing for him but I'm sure you can find something that interests him enough to make losing weight fun, something that is very hard to do.
04/01/2013
P'Gell P'Gell
This is a difficult situation.

I have been with the same man for well over 20 years. He eats fairly well, but sometimes drinks too much and does eat a lot of red meat and fat. He is thin and lanky, but has high BP and high cholesterol. His solution is to simply not see doctors. *sigh*

Being in a long term relationship I know one or two things for sure: You CANNOT change him. He has to want to change and that need has to come from within.

What would be worse for your son; having an overweight father or having a father he only sees every other weekend? Is it worth ending a marriage over?

I'm only asking because he probably won't change unless he gets a health scare or unless HE sees it as a problem and makes and effort to change.

Yeah, you can "use I messages" and put healthy food on the table. But, until he sees a problem and comes to that conclusion himself, he most likely won't change.

And I have to advise, never EVER set someone up to be untruthful. At this point, before he has had a breakthrough, telling him he "has to" exercise or has to eat better will only result in his either ignoring you or lying that he is complying. Nagging and complaining will only push him away further.

He will only change if he comes to the realization that he needs to on his own. You may want to gently GENTLY bring it up. ONCE. Then leave it alone. It probably will do no good (years in a relationship, one worth saving, has proven this to me) because people do what they do because that is what they want to do and it is what they are capable of at the moment.

Good luck.
04/01/2013
El-Jaro El-Jaro
Quote:
Originally posted by MrWill
I'm going to come off as crass and rude, but so be it. Look, the real deal here: I weigh 350 pounds RIGHT NOW. He doesn't need you to be friendly about things, he doesn't need a hug and an it's okay you can try to eat less tomorrow. ... More
I'd disagree. Ultimatums are disrespectful and selfish.

Try to set up a serious discussion with him, BUT do it after he's done something that winds him and he makes a comment about being out of shape. Maybe something like "Man, you don't sound like you're doing great. Are you feeling ok?" Bring the conversation around to positive encouragement and let him come up with ideas.

Keep in mind that men are mostly cerebral and logical; the range of emotions women experience confuses men (at best). Be sensitive, but direct. Be logical, but optimistic. Don't put him down, but don't add to negative thoughts.

If anything try this one: Every 30 to 50 pounds a guy loses, it adds about 1/2" to the penis length as the fat pad reduces around the pelvis.
04/02/2013
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Unique posters: 8