One Mom’s Journey from Fat to Skinny to Confident

ASK RONI Q&A

Ask Roni – Family Support

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Hey Roni!

A quick question…I know your husband isn’t always on board with some of the food you cook, but have you ever had any issues with him supporting you on your weight loss?  Both my husband and I are doing WW, him a little more successfully than myself, but lately, when I’ve needed him to drag me off the couch, he’s content to just go to the gym alone, or cook his own meal.  I know I’m the type of person who really needs support to be successful, and that’s why I love reading your site, and other ww blogs/messageboards.  Just wondering if you ever had any resistance at home too, and if so, how did you get through the tough times?

Coral

Hi Coral!

This is a GREAT question and actually one the husband and I **cough** discuss all the time.  See, he’s never had a weight problem. Actually he had the opposite problem in the past, not being able to gain weight in his younger years. I actually wrote about his skinniness in an older post about naturally thin people. Being someone whose weight hasn’t been a problem he never really understood my issue with it. He seemed confused that the concept of “just eat less” didn’t work for me.

However, that being said, he’s been supportive in his own way. First, he’s never made my weight an issue. We’ve been together through thick and thin, literally, having met at an average size 12, gaining up to a 16, losing down to a 10, gaining back up to a 16 then down to a 6 and every other stop along the way. He has almost seemed oblivious of my weight even looking back at old pictures in disbelief that I was that size. Now I know that may not be the support you are asking about, but for me it was important to know the person I love loved me regardless of my size. 

The reason why I think your question is so important is because it extends way beyond just weight loss. Motivation to live a happy, healthy, active life is hard. How do you wake up every day with the drive to make the right choices when it comes to good nutritious food? To get your butt to the gym? To shut the TV off and take the family out for an after dinner walk? For some of us these choices do NOT come naturally and they take hard work, drive and support to make them every day.

Now, I (if you haven’t noticed) have a wee bit of motivation and determination. Ever since the birth of my son, I feel as if I have more confidence and purpose to live a healthy life as an example to him. This keeps me going most of the time but I’m human and sometimes I want someone to give me a kick in the ass to get moving too! This is what the husband and I discuss. I need him to take the lead in the right direction some of the time, to pick up the slack, if you will.

I’m going to be honest (as I always am), he doesn’t always give me the kick when I need it. That’s why I seek support through other channels and you are already doing that! Finding support and motivation online through weight loss blogs, message boards, and reading of others success are all great outlets. I’ve also recently found a work out buddy at the gym which has done wonders for my workout motivation. 

My suggestion is to talk to him if you haven’t already. Many people think everyone is like them. Since he doesn’t need the support he may assume you don’t either. If you talk to him and he still doesn’t give you the support you need don’t get discouraged.  Not everyone is a ‘coach type’ personality. Look to him as an example instead and try to follow his lead.

I hope that helps!
-Roni




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Discussion

There are 10 comments so far.

    Red

    March 30, 2008

    From the male side of this equation, I certainly wouldn’t “encourage” my girlfriend to go to the gym when she has voiced she doesn’t want to, for two reasons:

    1) Trying to get a girlfriend to work out w/me can sound overly critical very easily, and it’s a line I don’t even want to get near, much less cross.

    2) It’s not something *I* would expect out of a relationship. Friends are for overly-honest encouragement, significant others are for unconditional support.

    Anonymous

    March 30, 2008

    my sister lost like 92 lbs and looks great and her long time BF is not supportive in a different way…he doesn’t like her skinny! it’s just as if u marry someone who is skinny and they gain weight the significant other may not feel the same sense of attraction. This whole weight thing is complicated isn’t it!?

    coral

    March 30, 2008

    Thanks for answering! We had a little argument about this last week, when i wrote to you, but have since talked it out. I told him I need help sometimes, and he still said that he can’t lose the weight for me. As harsh as it sounds, it has really been in the back of my mind when I feel like sitting around instead of working out, or making the right food choices. It does have to be my own willpower, how am I going to maintain it otherwise?

    I was 165 when I met him 5 years ago, and he stuck with me as i gained weight through the years, not saying a thing. I was 225 when we got married, and even then, he always told me he loved me and that I was beautiful. I think that’s why I felt “safe” being heavy. Im losing weight now to be healthy and to actually love myself. Turning 30 was a wake up call for me! Time to get that cholesterol level down, blood pressure in check, and if we decide to start a family, I want to get pregnant when I’m as healthy as i can be (and be able to stay fit as I get bigger!).

    Do I wish he was like my own personal trainer? Of course. But I need to learn to be stronger on my own, otherwise it’s never going to stick.

    Thanks Roni (and all you other folks here on the site!)

    A Box of Chocolates

    March 30, 2008

    Very well said Roni! My husband is not a great coach at all, but I do find that my friends are a great support system as well as all the great people on blogs…with you at top of course!!!

    kyree90

    March 30, 2008

    Oh my gosh! My boyfriend, though he’s a tennis pro and is always coaching other people, loves to watch me eat. And since I love to eat, I regained 70 of the 110 pounds I’d lost before I met him. I think he actually likes me fatter (the boobs are bigger). But I joined WW last August and have lost about 30 of those regained pounds … if I didn’t have him encouraging me to eat things I shouldn’t my progress would probably be better.

    CindyPTN

    March 31, 2008

    I really like how you personalized and explained the motivation factor. Sometimes I think our spouses don’t want to be the enforcer of our own motivation.

    Basically, he’s there for us, but we may think “nagging” if he were to be a real coach or personal trainer.

    sabrina

    March 31, 2008

    you know carol, I have the same typr of problem at home. 3yrs ago I was some where around 135 at the most when I met my now husband, after to 2yrs of dating I weighed in at 184 thats alot of weight to gain in two yrs and so I started WW, when I came home and told my husband how much I weighed, he looked at me and said “you can’t weight that much, you look great”. Now keep in mind that I’m 4’9″ and 184lbs I did not look great, but to him I did and so it was hard for him to understand at the beginning why I wanted to do this.
    But it’s be a year and half and when I say lets take the dog of walk he gets on board. It may take a while but I think that if you keep with it, and make the effort to workout him, he will do the same in return

    Lynn

    March 31, 2008

    I must say, that’s the thing I’m most grateful for… my husband and I are doing this together.

    We got together in our relationship both being heavy, and we’ve just gotten heavier together, so we decided to lose weight *together*. It really does help…

    On the other hand, he’s relying on ME to be HIS support and motivation and nagger, rather than the other way around. As much as I love him, my husband is a slug… if I left him on his own to do it, he wouldn’t. Fortunately, he knows this, so he doesn’t consider it ‘nagging’ when I suggest we go for a walk, or go play tennis.

    Ms Bart

    March 31, 2008

    Great answer and a great question!

    I’ve been following The Biggest Loser: Couples Edition. One thing Jillian said at the beginning has stuck with me. I don’t remember it exactly, but she needed to build an alliance with her team members and having a loved one made it harder for her. When I thought about it, I got it. Loved ones are wonderful because they love us unconditionally.

    I think husbands especially worry about helping wives head to the gym. He wouldn’t want to infer that she was less than desireably. It’s a fine line to walk in suggesting a walk after dinner together and heading to the gym to trim down.

    Is getting a trainer a possibility? How about a girlfriend to help drive you? It’s awesome that you can eat healthy together, though.

    Ms.B

    P.S. I hate how easily men can lose weight.