5 Tips to Help the Woman You Love With Her Body Issues
She may be struggling with body issues without you realizing it. Here’s how to be aware and help her.
If you’re a man in a relationship with a woman who is struggling with food and body-image issues, you can either be a part of the problem or be part of the solution. There is no neutral when it comes to the issue of your partner’s body. I want to help you be part of the solution.
To be clear from the get-go, I’m a woman who spent decades hating my body, struggling with the latest diet, and wishing I was something I wasn’t.
Now I’m a Health Coach and Psychology of Eating Coach with 25 years’ experience helping women reclaim their body, and feel good from the inside out. I’ve also been with the same man — my husband — for 20 years.
And let me tell you, he’s been a powerful part of my healing from my body shame and hatred. You can be that positive force for your mate.
I’m not saying you can cure or fix her body image issues. No one can “fix” anyone else. What I am saying, is that you can be a healing salve to her pain of always wishing her body was different. You can be the safe space for her to try out the counter-cultural approach to actually loving herself, just as she is.
Before I get into five very specific strategies that will help, you support the woman you love with the most important relationship in her life… herself. I want to shine a light on how her body shame and self-criticism may be showing up in your lives, and how toxic it is to your intimacy.
This is how my food and body issues showed up and impacted my relationship… I would look in the mirror pick my body apart and ask my husband tricky “land-mine” questions like:
- “Does this make me look fat?”
- “Do you think I’ve gained weight?”
While we were making love I would think:
- “I hope it’s dark enough that he doesn’t see my fat.”
I would strategically remove his hands from any areas that I deemed unacceptable — most particularly, my belly.