I was with someone a few years back who was also verbally abusive. I felt horrible about myself. Needless to say we aren't together and I have found someone who does support me no matter what. Since you are married I don't think leaving him is a good choice. I think he loves you he just has a hard time telling you how he feels tactfully. There is nothing wrong with a husband wanting to be attracted to you. My husband when we were first married seemed over bearing in the food department. He would comment on what I was eating and one day I sat down with him and I told him how it made me feel and asked him if he would like someone constantly monitoring what he put in his mouth. We had that conversation before that and it just wasn't clicking, but the last and final time it did. Sometimes men are a little slow on the uptake and maybe he doesn't understand just how much his words are affecting you. I will pray for you and I hope it gets better. Keep going you can do it!
"If God is for me, who can be against?" from holy scripture. (forgot the exact reference in the New Testament)
This quote carried me from an abusive spouse, through single parenting, into a healthy marriage, and in every situation where I was criticized, usually unjustly.
The problem is not your weight. It is within the unbalanced relationship.
Ask, "What am I to learn through this situation?" and, "What is going on within me that I got into this relationship?"
Suggest reading, "Verbal Abuser," to help gain understanding.
Suggest you may want to think about going back to counseling, preferably together, but if he won't go, go for yourself. Consider how his hurtful words affect your kids, and what they are picking up from your relationship.
If you don't take care of yourself, you won't be any good for anyone else.
Thank you all so much for your advice and words of encouragement! This has been such a sore spot in our relationship. Funny, he used to make comments about my weight even when I was at a good weight! He definitely has control/power issues. I'm a strong person so I've been able to stand up and tell him how those comments make me feel. Unfortunately, he hasn't quite take my words to heart. Our relationship is good 95% of the time, but then he says something so hurtful that makes me question everything. I have been to counseling for this very issue. It has helped to empower me but it doesn't make his comments any less painful. As many of you said, I just need to focus on me and make healthy choices. Again, thank you so much!
What problem does he have? The problem may lie with him? There is something bothering him and he uses your weight as an excuse, If you choose to loose weight do it for you. I went to a dietician and had a meal plan done just for me. I have been on it for 2 weeks and have already lost 2 lbs. I went to Weight Watchers last year and lost 21 lbs and gained 16 back in a year. This time I will keep it off.
It could be he is as selfish and domineering as it sounds, or he could just be totally tactless in his real concern for Atomic's health. Either way, the choice and motivation to lose weight has to come from inside. No one can (well, legally anyway) bully you into losing weight.
So, Atomic, my advice would echo a lot of what is already posted. Ignore the criticism and the pressure from your husband. Let him know it doesn't help and perhaps seek counseling. But in the meantime, do what is good for your health for yourself and your children.
Take care of yourself mentally and physically. I wish you the best of luck!
I was with someone like that a few years ago. Because of his comments about what I was eating, I ate more and gained more and more weight. I left him which is probably a bit too extreme for you if you have three children. Once I was out of the relationship I lost all the weight.
I'd advise conselling for both of you or just for you so you can block out his comments and focus on yourslef.
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It is difficult to feel criticized and it can make it easier to feel like the victim. There is the choice here to use this as an opportunity to overcome attachment to that criticism and empower yourself. If you do want to lose that 50 pounds you can make progress with every choice you make to nurture and fuel yourself with whole, unprocessed food, and delete those choices that do not move you toward your goals. You have the choice. There have even been times for me when I used naysayers criticisms as motivation "to prove them wrong". While this is not the optimal motivation, it has worked. Your husband may not have other ways to express his concern for your health.
There's nothing to add except to say I agree with what everyone else has already said. You deserve better treatment from your spouse... no one should have to live like that. Please feel free to post, email, and/or vent.
I am horrified by this, Atomics. I am so very sorry that you are being treated this way. It is unacceptable.
The suggestion right before my post is excellent. Counseling would be a wonderful step. If he refuses, you have more evidence of how little he regards you. Plus, you don't want your kids growing up with the idea that a woman's worth (or anyone's worth, actually) is measured on a scale.
I would say the trouble in your marriage right now has nothing to do with your weight. It has everything to do with your husband's attitude and treatment of you.
Please treat yourself well. You deserve it.
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I'm so sorry you're going through this. While I cannot totally relate to what you are going through, I do know how it feels. My husband has always been supportive of me no matter what I weigh, but when I was growing up I was constantly criticized about my weight and every bit of food that went into my mouth was watched carefully and commented on. Like you, the bullying didn't work and led me to do some very extreme things to myself for over 20 years. I either just ate more, or I starved myself. Thank goodness I found Sparkpeople!
Honestly there is nothing that you alone will be able to do to change his attitude because he does not think he has a problem. In his eyes, you are the one with a problem, and he has to fix you because he needs an attractive spouse. While there's nothing wrong with wanting an attractive spouse, his approach is horrible. The best thing you could do is to try to get him to go to counseling with you. If he won't go, go alone so you can learn how to block out his negativity to do this for yourself. You also need to want this so bad that you're not going to let his criticism be an excuse to comfort yourself with food anymore. You are doing this for you, not for his approval, so there is no more need to justify, argue, defend, or explain what you eat to him. I know it's hard, so hang in there. I'm here for you as are so many other sparkers. Feel free to vent to me anytime if that will help.
I know it's not exactly like I know you both with great depth but ... why are you even WITH this selfish jerk? This is not the behaviour of a person who respects and values you and supports you wholeheartedly in trying to be healthier. This is the behaviour of a manipulative self-centred guy who wants his beautiful trophy wife to be exactly as he demands she be.
I was hoping some of you could give me advice on how to handle an overly critical spouse?? My husband has made it clear that he is not attracted to me at my current weight. I need to lose about 50 lbs. I've tried to lose weight in the past without success. I just haven't been disciplined and motivated enough to do so. Not sure why. My husband watches over what I eat and gives me looks, makes comments or just plain acts very cold/indifferent if he doesn't approve of what I've chosen to put in my mouth. I've told him numerous times in the past that those reactions are not helpful. They only make me want to eat more!
I just rejoined weight watchers last week with a 5 lb weight loss so far. It's so frustrating when I feel like I'm trying but he doesn't see it. Not that I should really care. But he doesn't understand how his affect or words affect me (regardless of our numerous conversations about the topic). How they can undo a good day. I get so frustrated with myself because I'm a very strong person in so many aspects. I'm raising 3 beautiful kids. But there's this one area I'm having trouble with. Instead of seeing me, the same person I've always been, he chooses power in attempts to bully me to get the results he wants. Doesn't work! Just wondered if anyone has had a similar experience or suggestions to get through this while maintaining a healthy self esteem. Thank you!!
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