If you are a diet-obsessed woman, maybe your friend’s pleas that you loosen up for your own health and happiness aren’t enough to get you to change. But what about your partner’s happiness? If you knew that your militant diet routine was making him feel sad and frustrated, could that get you to change your ways? If you are in a romantic relationship, then there is a good chance that a big reason you count calories and restrict your food intake is to look good for your partner. But what if you knew your partner really, truly didn’t want you to do that? What if you knew that your diet obsession made your partner sadder than anything else—too sad to even think about how toned your tummy is or large your thigh gap is? Here, men tell what it’s like to have a diet-obsessed partner.
They can’t make dinner
Your man can never make you dinner. He wants to make you dinner. You have a busy life. You’re under a lot of stress. And food is love! Your partner wants so badly to make you dinner, but you always claim what he makes has too many calories or too many carbs. You steal from him the joy of feeding you.
It makes them sad
Your partner wants you to enjoy yourself. Seeing you turn down the cupcake he knows you want, or skip your favorite cocktail at the restaurant because of the calories, makes him want to cry a little. The mere fact that you don’t see how perfect you are devastates your partner.
Fun surprises are out of the question
Stopping by your office with lunch, bringing you home your favorite chocolate bar from the drug store, or planning a surprise birthday dinner is out of the question. Food is often an integral part of fun surprises, but you won’t eat any of it. Your partner cannot plan you a surprise birthday dinner at a restaurant you don’t approve of, so he just can’t plan one.
They’re alone at the late-night drive-thru
When you’ve both been out drinking, you both want a burrito or a burger to cap off the night. But only your partner will eat it. So he sits, uncomfortably eating a burger alone in front of you in the drive-thru parking lot. He knows you want it. Now he just rushes through it so you don’t get bored.
They get in trouble for buying chips
Your partner gets in trouble for the groceries he brings home. You treat the fact that he bought chips like it’s a personal insult. When he buys ice cream, you ask, “Do you even care about me!?” The guy just wanted ice cream.
They’re not allowed to mention the diet
Your partner gets in trouble if he tells your friends that you’re on a diet. Meanwhile, all you talk about is the diet. How come he’s not allowed to mention it, but you can talk about it all day?
Their compliments are always wrong
If he tells you you’re gorgeous, you have a nice butt, or that you look great in that outfit, he’s somehow wrong. Not just wrong—dumb! You insult his intelligence for finding you attractive. But what kind of a boyfriend would he be if he didn’t tell you how gorgeous he found you?
It affects their sex life
Women who are diet-obsessed often only think they “deserve” sex on the days they did well with their diet, or on the days the scale shows them the exact number they want to see. Their partners, naturally, do not see these tiny differences. They just know their sex life is on the decline.
Vacations can be no fun
When you’re fixating on your diet, vacations are a bore. You don’t want to hit the hotel’s famous breakfast buffet—you just want a fruit bowl and yogurt. Your partner can’t plan an outing without first checking it doesn’t interfere with your workout time.
Spontaneity goes out the window
Say goodbye to picnics, because your partner will somehow pack the wrong things. So much for stopping into the new cute ice cream place on the way home. If the chef sends complimentary dessert over—you’re not touching it. Your partner cannot whisk you away from work early on a Friday evening for a surprise date because that’s when you hit the gym.
They try to talk to your friends
A lot of men feel like no matter what they say about their partner’s diet, they are wrong. So they turn to their partner’s friends and ask them to talk some sense into her. It can be very frustrating to feel like they need to use a messenger, but that’s the way it is.
Your mom thinks he’s not feeding you
When you go visit your family and they see how thin you’ve become, they look immediately to your boyfriend and say, “You’re not feeding her enough!” They don’t know how desperately hard the man tries to.
The food they make is gross
Your boyfriend does not want to try the tempeh burritos on cauliflower tortillas you made. He doesn’t want to, but he has to in order to be nice. He has eaten a lot of nausea-inducing foods to be polite (and secretly eaten a second dinner after you went to sleep).
They eat different things most of the time
On most nights, you just eat different things. Your partner doesn’t want your diet food and you don’t want his regular food. That’s a shame, because trying foods together is a part of bonding and experiencing life together.
They feel hopeless
Men can feel completely hopeless when their partners become fixating on dieting. They can really feel like they’ve lost their partner and she isn’t the woman she once was. Obsessive dieting can make you cranky, exhausted and just plain difficult to be around.