22 December 2009
How to broach the weight issue
Few subjects are more emotive than that of weight gain, or loss. Nobody wants to be the one to tell their partner they need to tackle how much they weigh but here’s how to do it sensitively.
Tackling your partner about their weight is never going to be a fun task, but as with all other relationship issues, it’s better to tackle head on rather than. Whether you’re worried your partner is over or under weight, the last thing you want to do is erode their self confidence further – read our advice
Do you really need to?
If you are concerned about your partner’s weight for health reasons because they are obese, or you believe they are developing an eating disorder such as anorexia, then well done. You are taking a brave step. However, if in your eyes your partner is a ‘bit too chubby’ or a ‘bit too skinny’ and you don’t feel as attracted to them as you once did, then the problem is more yours than theirs.
Bear in mind that this conversation could have relationship changing consequences, so you need to be completely sure you’re doing it for the right reasons, and not because of your own issues.
Pick your moment
This is not a conversation to have when you’re waiting for the bus, or meeting friends for drinks. This will either take the importance away from the issue or make your partner feel victimised. Choose a quiet time, when you’re both going to be free from distractions.
Show you’re in it together
Make sure your partner knows you’re going to support them all the way. They may just need to hear you’ll exercise with them, or follow a nutrition plan with them, to give them the confidence boost they need.
Let them talk
This isn’t about you lecturing your partner on the weight they should be. Once you’ve broached the subject, give them the opportunity to speak. This may be the first chance they’ve been given to discuss their weight issues with someone they trust – give them your undivided attention. They will probably give you some real insight into how they feel about their weight, and perhaps even why they have the problem they do.
This isn’t just about talking things though. As you’ve raised the subject, clearly you’re hoping for action to be taken. Try and steer the conversation towards actions you can both take afterwards, such as visiting a nutritionist, or booking a session with a personal trainer.