On Twitter, Jen_Lee alerted me to this Ask Metafilter post entitled “I want to be a brain in a jar.” The letter-writer is married to a guy who says he doesn’t want to have with her because she’s fat (among other charming qualities). And it gets worse: they are (read: he is) poly*, and the guy’s girlfriend is living with them. Even worse? The letter-writer blames herself for this.
[*Just to clarify, the "poly" part isn't the bad thing, it's that this is not a healthy poly relationship, in which everyone's needs are being met. This seems like he's using "poly" as an excuse to write off his terrible behavior.]
Can I just be his supportive great best friend who cooks the meals and buys the groceries and pays the bills and is his best buddy and helps him with relationship problems and talks to him and cheers him up and cleans the house and is too fat to f–k? Can I do that? Do I want to do that? Will it really be fixed (“maybe” he said… MAYBE) if I lost the extra weight I’m carrying?
The good news is, thank god, to be found in the answers. The very wise answers.
Should you go on a diet so that your husband, who is in a sexual relationship with another woman, will want to have sex with you? No. What you need to do is figure out why you’re still in this relationship…
he is a dick. I’m sorry, but he is. He’s acting like an asshole despite how it hurts you, and when you confront him with his hurtful behavior, he’s pinning it on YOU. My ex-husband did this to me when we were divorcing – “Well, maybe if you weren’t so ____ or ____, I wouldn’t have to look elsewhere!” This is emotional sadism of a particular hideous variety.
Oh, sweetheart, what? No. I don’t care if you’re supposedly so fat that you block out the sun – if he’s busy sleeping with other women and the only thing he’s learned how to do with his mouth is point out your supposed inadequacies, he’s doing it wrong…
Don’t be the fat girl losing weight to keep your man. It won’t work. Even when you lose the weight, you’ll be on the treadmill of trying to keep the weight off, or there will be something else – you don’t look young enough, he doesn’t like your style, you are so pushy, or your aren’t supportive enough, or something. You’ll never be good enough, because you already are good enough.
And there are some people, of course, who are encouraging her to lose weight “for herself” or “for her health” but even that’s getting shot down.
just like her not getting laid isn’t related to her size, our advice should also not be based on her size. she could be four feet tall and five hundred pounds and the advice would still be “hey, your hubby sounds like a jerk”…
Learn to love your body again — at any weight. I have little doubt that you are lovable and desirable as you are, whatever your partner’s moods and current predilections…whatever you do, work toward finding delight in yourself. Trying to do it for someone else is a dead end. Get right with your body as it is. Don’t fall into the well-baited trap of body-hate and self-loathing while you’re doing it. You deserve better.
I really really really really really hope she listens.
Posted by mo pie