You may have heard about Dan Savage’s recent column about the man who has stopped being sexually attracted to his fat wife (perhaps you read The F Word‘s take on it)? In case you haven’t, here is the question in question.
My wife’s skin is a mess, she has dietary issues that cause gnarly gas, she eats bad food that causes her to gain weight. I always thought I was against the society-imposed, magazine-model, porn-star look girls are supposed to have. So it’s hard for me to admit that I’m not cool enough to think my wife is hot the way she is… She’s picking up on all of this, which is affecting her mood, self-esteem, and energy levels. And since she tends to eat more when things aren’t going well for us, this is creating a hugely negative feedback loop on the weight-and-lust fronts. When almost any girl you see is hotter to you than your wife… what the fuck do you do?
Here’s Savage’s answer:
[S]tart with complete honesty. It’s not that hard to say, “You have gotten fat and unattractive and my sex drive is nil, so can we do something about it before I bail on you?… Unless you take up jogging and lose 35 pounds, sweetie, I’m going to have a hard time being sexually excited about you.” The partner either laces up the running shoes or they waddle on with their life.
And here’s an alternate answer from Body Impolitic that I thought was worth pointing you to.
Start paying attention to what you do like about your wife; think about what hasn’t changed in the years when she’s gained weight. Do you like her laugh? Her sarcasm? Her way of buying treats for you? (If the advice comes from a sex columnist, it will include think about what you really like with that person in bed; most likely, that hasn’t changed, or hasn’t changed much.) Focus on those things, and your attraction will come back. It’s good advice, and it can work… So here’s what Dan Savage would never say: if you want to have a good sexual relationship with someone as s/he ages and changes shape, there are some very specific things you can do.
The entry goes on to list those things, and I found it interesting and thought provoking. So, what do you guys think: what would you tell this faithful but unattracted husband to do?
Posted by mo pie