Is It Wrong for a Man to Suggest A Woman Lose Weight?

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You know, once in a blue there are some great articles I come across on Facebook. Recently I came across an article called “Why I Dated A Guy Who Hated My Body.” For better reference, feel free to read it here. In this post, the young lady recalls a bad experience with a guy she was dating. To lend some perspective, this is a plus-sized woman I’m referring to.  She tells a story of  being with her man. He  then said something that he could’ve worded better. Before he attempts to kiss this woman he says “You know if you lost some weight you’d be really hot.” “Oh no he didn’t!” is the phrase I can collectively hear you ladies exclaim. And quite frankly, I agree. That statement was a bit insensitive amongst other things.

At the same token, she sheds light on his actions prior to saying this. She speaks on how he would get excited when she said she went to the gym.  At times, he would suggest healthier food choices like salad. I can’t be mad at this man in these two instances. He’s dating this woman and seemingly just wants her to be healthy. His comment about her weight was a bit displaced. First off, I wouldn’t say such a thing if I’m trying to get me a little “suga.” Number two, he basically says that her weight is keeping her from being attractive. That begs you to wonder why he’s dating her in the first place.

I’ll leave that for you all to speculate.

This woman seemed to be offended that her man would be happy if she ate a salad. She seemed to not like the fact that he’d be excited to know she went to the gym. If I were him, I’d be happy about that too. I would love for a woman I’m dating to eat decently and stay active. I don’t need a gym rat girlfriend. I just need a lady who doesn’t want to get out of hand health wise. To be clear, I’ve dated plus-sized women. I have no qualms with a chunky girl. I’m fine by it as long as I dig her proportions. But as with everything in life, there’s got to be discretion.

Part of me really feels that the man in question was genuinely looking out for her. Yes, he went about telling his girl the wrong way. But was he so wrong for trying to encourage a healthier lifestyle? In that breath, I say no. But what do you say? Have you ever told a significant other that they could lose a few pounds? Have you ever been asked to lose a few pounds? What’s your take on this whole thing? How do we go about this the right way?

These are my words and I make no apologies.

DamnPops is a writer on the staff at SBM: “I’m not a biter, I’m a writer for myself and others. ” Brooklyn born dude trying to figure out this life just like you. Come on this journey with me. Follow me on Twitter @DamnPOPS  – Damn He Got A Point” (My Column) on Viral Status

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  • James

    Read the original article for context. My thing is if your girl is big when you met her, why complain about it later? I mean is there really that much of difference between a 16 and 18 if her shape hasn’t changed?

    This is a conversation me and my girl used to have a lot. She’s harder on herself than I ever could be. I thinks that’s true of most attractive women. I’m w/ you though, I don’t need my girl to be a gym rat or have a 6 pack. But as long as she’s healthy and looks good naked, I have 0 complaints.

    A few things come into play when it comes to the “hey babe, you sure you need to eat that?”. Best way to handle it is non-confrontational but honest. If your girl was a 6 when you met her and she’s a 10 a few years later, explain why that’s a problem for you. Either she’ll realize she’s slippin and get it tight or she won’t.

  • http://righttoreallove.com/about/ Jay

    No, I’ve never told a significant other that she could lose a few pounds. I honestly don’t think I would either.

    Regardless of what I said, if she doesn’t have a personal desire to work out, eat right or get in shape, there isn’t much I can say to make the situation ‘better’, but there is plenty I could open my mouth up and say that would make things ‘worse’.

    No, I’ve never been asked to lose a few pounds by a girlfriend. I have had female friends take jabs at my weight before though.

    In one case, I was interested in the ‘friend’ so I got on my workout grind, but for the wrong reason. I was doing it to impress her, not for myself. Therefore, as you may have guessed, it was short-lived.

    I believe knowing your partner plays a huge role in how a situation like this would play out.

    If it’s a relationship where the couple can be honest with one another, even when it comes to the ‘tough’ topics and issues, I believe the weight can be addressed, by either partner, without the other getting offended. Yet, this is a level of communication that must be already established.

    If the communication and honesty isn’t part of the relationship, it’s best to either not say anything and deal or say something and deal with the consequences. It just depends on the person involved. Either way it plays out, there will be some sort of consequence.

  • JT

    Is it wrong? No. Why would it be. Folks suggest everything else, why not weight loss if you feel someone is getting out of control with their weight. Its HOW you do it that matters. There are various ways to suggest AND SUPPORT. And I don’t feel as if this constitutes complaining. Whether she was a big girl when you met her or not I think is somewhat irrelevant. If someone is a high school dropout when you meet them, would you not suggest that they get their G.E.D? Agreed, there isn’t a big difference between a 16 and an 18 but if that 16 goes to 18 and then to 22 and then to 24 and so on, I think both parties are ignoring some unhealthy practices. But, to each his or her own. Bottomline: YOU cannot make anyone lose weight, its a decision that they have to make and see through. All you can do is be supportive.

    I always find it interesting that there is NO limit to the things that women can suggest for their man yet the man is somehow supposed to always tiptoe around suggestions he may have for his women. If that is a person’s relationship, DO YOU. lol

    • Gray

      This has nothing to do with male vs female. Men can and are fat too.

      • JT

        What? Men fat too? thanks for that revelation. LOL

    • Beauty In Truth

      GF:”Imma’ need you to stop stalkin these chicks on facebook boo.
      Imma’ need you to stop smokin’ around the kids boo.
      Imma’ need you to start looking for a job boo.
      Imma’ need you to give me ALL the passwords to yo’ phone, instagram, fb, bank account, SAM’s club, etc…BOO.”

      BF: Babe, do you think you could make me a turkey sandwhich with the spicy mustard? You know how I like it. Thanks Boo.”

      GF: “Boy you done lost you’re ever lovin mind, you got me f$&#ed up! I ain’t no damn, Becky! What I look like? Shhhhooooooot.”

      Oh love :)

  • Bree

    No I’ve never told any man I’ve dated to lose weight. Not necessarily because they were all built like greek gods, but because I liked, loved, and accepted them as they were. No man I’ve ever dated has ever told me to lose weight. I did have one ex insinuate and suggest by his actions that I needed to gain some weight. He liked full figured women. I’m not. I asked him why he liked me and what attracted him to me. In fact, we had a sit down discussion about it. I did not want to go through the very thing the woman who wrote this article went through. As for my take, she said it in her article – “Yes. I had stopped loving myself, I had started to hate my body and I attracted a man who didn’t love me and hated my body.” Obviously she knows the answer to her own questions. No matter what size you are, and how you look, Everyone is most attracted to Self Confidence. There isn’t much that’s sexier than that. There really is no easy way to deliver bad news and say something you know a person doesn’t want to hear. Yes you can, and should be tactful.

  • http://streetztalk.net/ StreetzTalk

    Have you ever told a significant other that they could lose a few pounds?

    Yes, but only when asked. In a relationship, I feel that you have a duty to those you date to make sure they are on point in all areas in life. You should be upgrading each other, not settling for the status quo.

    Have you ever been asked to lose a few pounds?

    No, but Ive definitely asked for opinions on what I need to do to get better, and if I was trending in the wrong direction to catch me before I slipped all the way. I’m into health and fitness and I always evaluate myself, so why not have your boo do the same?

    What’s your take on this whole thing? How do we go about this the right way?

    You use tact. Be real but be nice! There’s no reason to tell your boo “You’re a fat fcuk!!! Lose weight!” and think that they will be receptive to you! You shouldn’t push them to do something they don’t want to do, or force ideals on them. You should love them for them (especially if you got with them at a current size/body type). However, I still think you have a right to be real with them for their own personal health. Men, you need to tread LIGHTLY when it comes to women. We have a thicker skin for this, but don’t be as blunt unless they ask you!

    Women will ask “How Do I look” and men will front, telling them whatever they want to hear. That’s WRONG! The truth will help them gauge the perception of their physical looks, and help them get to their ideal look (whatever that is) and at the least feel a little better about themselves and what they have to do.

    P.S. Men and women… don’t be out of shape or sloppy yourselves and throw stones at your significant others! LOL know your limitations before you critique! Hypocrisy aint sexy!

    • Bree

      I agree with you Streetz. There are things to consider though before you bring this up. One thing is how long have you known and been dating this person. Also you should have a good idea of the type of person they are and how strong or weak they are emotionally. Most people, (particularly) women don’t take Any criticism well. At some point, you have to take some responsibility and ask yourself can you truly deal with this person at their worst, as well as their best. Can you deal with them flaws and all. You have to ask yourself how long can you deal with a person while they try, and go through the ins and outs of weight-loss/gain. It’s not an easy undertaking if the level of love and devotion is not there at all, or where it should be. Since we’re just discussing dating, not marriage, you always have the option of letting that person know they are not for you, and walking away. You have to be honest with yourself.
      If you can’t deal with a person at the weight they are when you meet them, and any potential weight gain they may have, then it may be in your best interest to let them go.
      If your not a person that’s physically attracted to full figured women don’t let anyone make you feel bad about your personal preferences. Don’t date full figured women. Sounds harsh, but it’s real. Saves time, heartache, headache, and bs. No sense in trying force something that your not feeling.

    • Bree

      “Hypocrisy aint sexy.” I’ll drink to that! ;)

    • Beauty In Truth

      I’m usually healthier/way more fit then the men I’ve dated (long term anyway). They weren’t overweight but it took them alooooottt more to keep fit. Me on the otherhand, I stay in the gym, and have been eating superhealthy-no meat only real whole grain products-for years. I guess I accepted them, but honestly I’d be lying if I didn’t.admit that I’m attracted to fit and healthy men. It really speaks to me about a Man’s discipline and his ability to keep a routine. I don’t judge the steaks, but it is weird if I want a superheathy meal of lite fish, wheat linguine in homemade pasta sauce, drizzled with olive oil, steamed carrots and peas, with a Syrah or Pinot, and he’s talkin’ about greasy burgers and fries with pop. So these days I just look for similar interests.

      Forget street harrassment, Men need to talk to Women in the gym. We’re not doing all those laps and dips in the 90% male weight lifting area for nothing! Then we can both “get it right, keep it tight!” Lol

  • heyheyno

    I’ve been told by an ex and a guy I was talking to that I was getting a little thick around the middle. It didn’t inspire me to lose weight though. I have told an ex he had a “cookie pouch” and he needed to lose it..lol and my current boo well he worksout a lot and claims he loves my “thunder thighs” smh I have gotten him to train me a few times but I don’t think he cares if I lose weight or not but personally I would love to lose a few and would have no problem if he said well you could probably lose a few in your waist and I can help you.

  • Payne Well

    If she has gained weight while you guys are together, by all means please share it. Myself, I would want to know because we need to still maintain our attractiveness to each other. If you have an intimate relationship with her and are worrying about her health (i.e she’s obese not because she doesnt have the thin legs and arms like you like) then share that. The thing I always say is how you say it. Come with ideas to help. Don’t just say loose weight and then expect her to just say ‘ok’, make sure you are together yourself as well. Nothing like calling a kettle black to destroy the message you want to send.

    • Bree

      Exactly Payne Well. And if your truly “All In” then you should have fitness and healthy eating ideas to help, support and inspire your partner; not just criticism. Most people don’t respond well to being told what to do in a belittling way as if they’re a child. Most people do respond well to positive reinforcement, support, and encouragement. It should be a “family affair.” My s/o and I take walks around the lake and park often. Go to the gym together, find healthy recipes for that person, cook healthier meals, (ladies you can’t expect your man to maintain a healthy weight if your always frying up chicken, and smothered, covered pork chops and mac and cheese). Find healthier restaurants to eat at together, play together, play tennis, racquetball, swim together, take up something fun and active together.
      Losing weight isn’t just about eating less and exercising more, it’s an entire lifestyle change.

  • york3

    I’ve been trying to get my gf to take better care of herself and her habits for a while now. It aint easy. She put on 30+ lbs and I’m not a fan of how she doesn’t address it with any consistency. I’ve tried getting her to work out with me and walk more. There are times she does, but once or twice a month isn’t gonna do it. I’m trying, but the longer it goes, the less she’s willing to listen to any sort of motivation.
    Nobody ever said I needed to lose anything. I’ve been slim thuggin since I was youngin, and I’m very conscious about my diet and activity level. I’ve put on like 30 lbs since high school, but I kinda needed those.
    My take is that you’re expected to maintain yourself. I’m fortunate in many ways, but I still put in that effort. If not the weight, keep the proportions in tact.
    As far as the right way, be honest. Come correct with more than just suggestions. It’s pretty sad that these issues can have a serious impact, but appearance matters. I’m not immune. Sadly.

    • Gray

      You have to point out the obvious, if you haven’t. You go to her sweet as sugar and tell her how you feel “emotionally” towards her first, but if your level of attraction is wavering, you have to let her know immediately there after. You should know her, how to deliver this to her, how she’s likely to react etc…

      I’d like to honestly know if you are contributing to her weight gain? Do you go out to eat all the time, pigging out on junk. I only ask because both of you gained 30lbs…together. By your own admission you’ve always been slim thuggin. Do you eat anything and barely gain weight?

      While my sister barely weighed 100lbs, I weighed 140lbs and she constantly called me fat. She ate everything and NEVER gained an ounce, while I had to watch what I ate. I was healthier than her, and going to Dr proved it.

    • Beauty In Truth

      Buy her some very flattering, bright curve hugging workout outfits, shoes and a cute hat to match in her favorite colors. Maybe even a cute water bottle. Girlfriends like gifts, and if she feels cute in her workout gear, she might be motivated, vs just a high neck tshirt and basic sweats. Tell her that you get excited about the idea of you working out together and seeing her body in motion. I think if you sensualize it, I mean working out really is sensual if you think about it, she’ll be motivated.
      Initially offer her a nice rub down afterwards to relieve sorness. Buy message oil just for this purpose. The whole thing could really bond you two I think, cause it seems you’re into fitness. You gotta seduce her into it. Hope that helps?

  • Gray

    After giving birth to my first child my ex told me I was letting myself go… I had a little pouch at the time which was easily camouflaged. I did not have a muffin top but he saw me naked. He was callous with his words and kept repeating it and asked me in a condescending way, what was I going to do about it.

    While working Full Time, and being a Full Time student nursing and pumping milk for a baby that he refused to help me with. He told me, it would be his turn to take over at a later date…we’re still waiting for it. Nonetheless, my baby was about 7 months old and I was stressed the F out. Don’t bring stress to a woman as it is a weight enhancement tool, and I’m not joking. It’s a proven fact.

  • Beauty In Truth

    I disagree. Not playing devils ad, but fat is not healthy. Our black community has this issue of excusing weight because of our soul food and culture, and very often, not always, working out is looked down upon for woc by other woc. For instance “Girl you skinny, why you runnin?” Or “yoga is for them skinny WGs.” This needs to stop because I’m tired of being the token BG in my zumba classes LOL. But really, Monique and all her “skinny evil women” rhetoric has done nothing to help. Professional guidelines will tell you if you are height and weight appropriate. Fat is not healthy period. It is lying to yourself to think that hypertension and diabetes is fashionable. Cause a heart attack is not cute.

    • Gray

      Wow, this is your response to this statement…..When did you read me state fat was healthy or even ideal?

      Your experiences are your truth, but it doesn’t make it every other BW’s truth. I work out 3 – 4 times a week and the only person to ever put me down for it was my ex, who didn’t want to watch our kid. No one in the Black Community looks to Monique a Comedian as a spokesperson on health. You really shouldn’t assume… I am not fooled. Diabetes nor hypertension were not the topic and if you think weight is a sole issue for the black community you need to reassess.

      My skinny sister has high blood pressure. Skinny alone does not make you healthy!

      • Beauty In Truth

        “Every person who is considered fat to you is not automatically unhealthy!”

        Ms. Gray I think you are over responding to what I said:The comment above. It’s not “my” opinion, there are doctors who go to school for years to help us, and set standards. And the lying to yourself wasn’t a personal attack, my comment was general as in “if you think this way, you are lying to yourself.” I don’t write tacky attacks, but I can intelligently disagree, that is allowed.

        And I dont see many thin/fit woc in the gym. There are some, but not many. Could be other factors too?

        The gym shouldn’t be the last resort imo. Health should be a lifestyle. And in our communities that isn’t emphasized with these little corner stores celling processed sugar snacks, liquor and cigarettes. Health is education.

        • Gray

          Overstand…condescension…over responses… LOL! Which one of us? It’s really not that serious! Your responses are priceless… Congratulations and thank you. Good luck!

        • Beauty In Truth

          I think internet commenting should be gender neutral. I comment to men and women the same, I will not censor my comments because I am a “woman” addressing another woman. Yes your reaction was oversensitive. We are on a Mens’s blog. Why are you taking this so personally? It’s serious to someone. Is this a touchy subject for you? Okay, but I still have a right to comment. Condescending? I was showing respect. Some people don’t like the “truth” but that is my username after all.

          I am confused. Perhaps you weren’t expecting such civility and eloquence in my responses? I mean not all women are housewives of trashlanta. Enjoy your weekend. Really.

  • Brad G

    I’ve dated a variety of women throughout my short life, and it’s only in my most serious relationship that I noticed “relationship weight” on both sides. I was a 2 sport athlete in HS so this personally bothered me, and since I still had an ounce of “sport discipline” left, I got myself back in the gym. I would def encourage her to ride along, but she hated the gym. The only reason I felt the need to say something is because SHE always made comments about her body. I would attempt to support her body until I realized she turned into ol’ girl from White Chicks http://youtu.be/6TFL3e7Wv1w

    Anywho, after time she found a form of exercise she enjoyed and is working towards her body goal. But to answer the question at hand I feel if we’re in love, then we can have this convo in love and support, but if we’re dating for a few months and you get comfortable then I might just flop out the game.

  • http://stanoffewwords.wordpress.com/ Tristan

    The right way is to say let’s do this together, try it on for size (no pun) work out together for a bit, make a pact to eat better and usually results become her motivation.

    • Bree

      Exactly Tristan. If your not leading by example, it’s a little difficult to get someone motivated to lose weight.
      One thing that guys need to do more of is trying to find out the source of the weight gain. Start by talking and discussing what caused the weight gain in the first place. This is the key to solving the root of the problem. Constantly telling someone they need to exercise more, and eat less does not help them when the source of their weight gain is stress, mental and/or emotional issues, or your the source of their stress.

  • http://arafricaine.blogspot.com/ Arafricaine

    I was really big from my early teens to early 20′s,none of my men made any type of weight related comment but incidentally my husband told me this morning im packing up the pound (i have been visiting mcds quite often this month DONT YOU JUDGE ME) i got on a scale and sure enough i gained 7 pounds since march, so i gotta take my little @$$ to the gym more often. I wasn’t offended at all,in my mind i rather a loved ones pull me aside and let me know wassup,before cruel society gets me.

  • Jontae Grace

    I personally like a plus-sized woman. They usually have very pretty faces. We’re BLACK, how can you not like a little extra?

    • Damn He Got A Point

      I really don’t know if the dude in question didn’t like a little extra. It could be that her little extra might’ve been becoming too much. Maybe he just wanted her to maintain what she had. I’m speculating of course.

  • Es Sully

    I’m not sure about this particular man’s motives. However, I think that it is absolutely healthy to encourage your spouse to eat better and incorporate more exercise into their daily life. I wouldn’t make a comment like that because it seemed to attack her integrity. But I would however, encourage the person through my life style….