Hello. My name is Annie and I am a compulsive overeater.
This weekend, I had a conversation with my pastor’s wife about the surgery I am looking at. Not that I think she really understands why I would consider this surgery—she can’t weigh more than 120 pounds, unless I am really off in my guess. The woman is so tiny. But she knew I was thinking of scheduling an appointment to talk about the surgery. When she asked if I had done that yet, I didn’t think I should lie about it.
One thing she said, though, kind of confused me. She asked if I had thought about the effect that losing weight might have on my marriage.
Of course I have talked to my husband about it, I told her. He is supportive, so long as I am doing this for me and not for him. And I told her that he is pretty adamant about my OA meeting attendance. Even if I do the surgery, he wants me to keep going to meetings so that I can get to the bottom of the reasons for my over eating.
She said that wasn’t what she meant. She asked if I realized how many of the contestants on TV’s The Biggest Loser have gone on to divorce because of the weight loss. “The spouses are very supportive in the beginning,” she said, “but they can’t always handle the way members of the opposite sex look at them.”
Now, a couple of things came to mind. One was, “so I should keep all this extra weight on me and continue to live a less than healthy life because my husband won’t like to see other men interested in me?” I didn’t say that to her. In fact, I didn’t really even think that until I started typing this message. But the thought is there. I am making this choice because it is a good step toward having a healthy Annie living a longer life. I can’t let his insecurities affect my choice.
What I told her is something that my hubby had told me before. He thinks I am beautiful and that other guys look at me the way that I am. He has actually said that it kind of turns him on to know that he gets to go home and go to bed with a woman other men find desirable, and that no other man gets to enjoy me the way that he does. I told her that I don’t know that I believe that other men are looking at me, and that it doesn’t matter to me if they do. The man I married is the only man that I want. “Just because other men are looking at me doesn’t mean that I have to look at them,” I told her.
There has to be some level of trust there. I trust that no matter what, he isn’t looking for another woman, and he trusts me the same way. The only way I can see my weight loss making a difference in our marriage (other than the hope that being smaller will help me to become more adventurous in the bedroom) is if my new body makes me want to encourage the men who are looking at me. That is not going to happen.