Unhealthy and/or unsafe habits of spouse

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-05-2010
Unhealthy and/or unsafe habits of spouse
18
Mon, 04-16-2012 - 1:08am

TO ALL-

In your opinion, how much and what is a spouse's obligation to confront about unhealthy and unsafe habits?

My wife of five years is great. However, certain things have me concerned. She doesn't like to exercise. She has a gym membeship, but hasn't set foot in the gym in over two years. She could happily avoid fruits and vegetables, except for grains. She drinks quarts of Diet Coke every day. She also is significantly overweight, which doesn't affect my desire for her, but could affect her health. She also will stay late at her school in an unsafe neighborhood.

It is not my style to be a nag. Also, while everything I describe raises the odds of trouble in the future, it's still not guaranteed to happen. Moreover, I could conceivably ruin her fun only for her to die relatively young from an airplane crash. (G-d forbid) So, I want to hear from others. How much do you think a spouse should intervene?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 12-16-2004
Mon, 04-16-2012 - 6:47am

In this case you should support her and lead by example, but never control her, that isn't love.

If she doesn't want to go to the gym, then do things together, start slow by talking romantic walks and other things where you both are moving.

If she avoids green and fruit,

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-13-2010
Mon, 04-16-2012 - 7:58am

I agree with everything Miss said...leading by example.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-16-2004
Mon, 04-16-2012 - 8:07am

When it comes to smoking, the only way I have gotten my beloved brother to stop smoking is to ask him put up a jar wrapped in paper, every time he

Avatar for hugss
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-25-2010
Mon, 04-16-2012 - 8:46am
Do agree with others .. lead by example,
However that being said you could also discuss your love for her & wanting her to be around a long time with you.
DH & I have those conversations now & then.
Good luck :)




Avatar for mrosie
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-23-2000
Mon, 04-16-2012 - 10:22am

I haven't read the other responses so I apologize if my answers are redundant or contradictory. ;)

It can be a tricky thing to try and change someone's habits, especially when they might take any input as judgment or criticism.

Your wife is probably well aware that she could eat better, exercise more and take better care of herself. Some of those behaviors are habits and others might bring comfort during stressful periods.

There are several ways to try and get her attention about these but ultimately any change is going to have to be something that she agrees to.

Many people find going to the gym to be boring and monotonous and I tend to be very self-conscious about exercising in front of others. Prior to getting exercise equipment in our basement, my preferred exercise was walking. In the middle of the day, my coworkers and I would walk around the block and then after work I would walk with a neighbor. We have two dogs so they also helped keep me motivated to get out and be active.

Many years ago, DH and I switched from regular soda to diet and without any other changes, we

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-16-2004
Mon, 04-16-2012 - 10:59am

Drinking

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-05-2010
Tue, 04-17-2012 - 1:41am

startingover2010 wrote;

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-16-2004
Tue, 04-17-2012 - 2:52am

So why dont you

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-08-2008
Tue, 04-17-2012 - 9:56pm

If you already have that approach then what makes you think anything different will come of doing the same thing?

You asked about our partner having unhealthy habits and I would feel obligated to ask my partner to rectify that. I have children and I didn't agree to raise them myself. My DH and I both committed to be here for each other.

Here is what I would do in your situation:

- I would ask my DH to come out to dinner just the two of us so we can talk.

- I would explain how his behaviour is affecting me and tell him I want to help. I want to "do this together".

- I would suggest that he consider counselling...he obviously doesn't love and care about himself as much as I love and care bout him or he wouldn't be doing this to himself (I am being quick here, I would massage this A LOT - stick handling as my DH puts it)

- I would tell him that I would like us to do X together X times a week (exercise related, personally I don't like the gym but I am extremely active). I would ask, "what have you always wanted to do but felt you couldn't??? Let's work towards that."

- I would research some healthy diet plans, read the book and start implementing it for both of us.

As to the dangerous thing, if she is has ANY interest in martial arts or boxing then encourage her to try it. Not

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-05-2010
Wed, 04-18-2012 - 1:31pm

Miss Trygg-

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