I Am Afraid That If My Wife Loses Weight She Will Leave Me. What Should I Do?

Dr. Martin Binks answers the question: 'Weight Loss in a Relationship?'

ByMartin Binks, Ph.D., Director of Behavioral Health & Research Director, Duke Diet and Fitness Center
December 22, 2008, 3:55 PM

February 1, 2009 -- Question: I am afraid that if my wife loses weight she will leave me. What should I do?

Answer: It's not uncommon for spouses or partners to feel somewhat intimidated when the one they love is making a major life change, especially when it relates to their weight. We often hear people thinking that maybe there will be a personality change or the person will gain such confidence that they'll go out and find another person that's more attractive.

And typically what we'll tell people is that the marriage or the partnership is a lot more than just appearance and weight. And the things that truly matter in the relationship don't change, so really encouraging people to replace that fear with a sense of joined celebration, just celebrate the success.

But if it's a nagging fear, if there are some other issues in the relationship that might influence the relationship once the weight's lost, it's important to maybe seek a couples counselor or somebody that you can talk through some of these fears with so that they don't build and build into something unmanageable. Because it is fairly natural to have certain doubts and so forth.

Of course, talking to your loved one directly about your concerns is often the best way to deal with these sorts of things.

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