“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#1 Aug 29, 2014
DEAR AMY: I've been dating my girlfriend for nearly two years. We live together and love each other. The problem is that we have very different ideas about fitness.

While my girlfriend is a sweet and caring woman who means the world to me, she is very overweight. She does not yet have weight-related health problems, but I feel it is merely a matter of time (we are in our 30s).

I care about her, and it is driving a wedge between us. I like to go to the gym and do active things, while her idea of a good time generally consists of being docile in various locations.

I've tried several ways to change her lifestyle. I've bought us both gym memberships, signed us up for fun runs, suggested healthier cooking and recipe ideas, and have tried to expose her to fun fitness activities like yoga, Zumba and spin classes.

Nothing sticks! She seems to find any excuse to stay docile and has actually gained weight!

It's beginning to affect my confidence. I'm beginning to feel that I'm just not worth the work it would take her to get to a healthy weight and lifestyle. I feel so shallow that this is a concern for me, but I don't want to go through my middle years doing activities alone and dealing with the health problems a life of inactivity will bring to her.

Do I need to end this relationship? Is this something that can be worked through?-- Healthy Boyfriend

DEAR BOYFRIEND: I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that even if your girlfriend was thin and inactive, you two would still be a mismatch because you are an active person and she likes to be "docile in various locations."

But imagine if your girlfriend wrote to me and said, "My boyfriend will not slow down. He is too thin and fit for me. He will not be docile in various locations with me. I've tried everything I can think of to force him to become more sluggish, but he won't."

I would tell her that she cannot change someone else. That's a simple truth.

Your only option here is to try to change yourself. One huge change would be for you to accept your girlfriend exactly as she is (watch the movie "Bridget Jones's Diary" for inspiration). Another change would be for you to slow down and become more like her.

Realistically, I don't believe you can do either of these things. Be honest with her about how you feel and describe the impact of her lifestyle choices on you. Ask her to join you in talking about this with a relationship counselor.

DEAR AMY: I gave my brother a $50 gift card for Christmas.

Some months later, he took me out for lunch and paid the check with the gift card I had given him.

Am I right in thinking that was a little strange?-- Generous Brother

DEAR GENEROUS: If by "strange" you mean "thoughtful and kind," then yes, this is strange.

Imagine this: You give your brother an expensive bottle of wine or a fresh baked blueberry pie. He thanks you by inviting you to share it with him, thus letting you enjoy the gift while also witnessing him enjoying it.

Your brother arrived at a thoughtful way of using your gift to spend time with you. That's a nice thing to do.

DEAR AMY: Responding to the letter from "B," about an extreme age difference in a relationship, I married a wonderful woman 23 years ago when I was 64 and she was 49.

We were both healthy and happy for 22 years, but she is now paying the price. Walking is a problem and my hearing loss has caused depression.

Most young people do not realize how fast the years go. The old joke is "I'll marry a young girl so I'll have someone to push the wheelchair when I get old." That's nothing to laugh about.-- Achy

DEAR ACHY: Thank you for offering your perspective, but I'm going to assume that your wife has no regrets; 22 years is a lot of happiness.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#2 Aug 29, 2014
1- So basically, Amy's telling the man to become fat and lazy? Dude needs to move on

2- No, I don't see it as the same thing as sharing a bottle of wine. Tres tacky

3- As long as you've got lots of money, women will deal

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me! Charlie

#3 Aug 29, 2014
1 WTF? He's the bad guy for being fit and healthy? He's the bad guy for trying everything possible to get her fit and healthy? I bet if he did not outline all the things he has tried, lamy would have suggested them. Yeah buddy, move on. you want c3po and you have r2d2.

2 I dont see anything wrong with that.

3 would you rather she be 86 like you and pushing your @ss around?

Since: Aug 08

Location hidden

#4 Aug 29, 2014
LW1: You can’t make someone get fit. It takes an incredible amount of discipline, work, and dedication. It either comes from within or it doesn’t. She’s probably never going to be that person.

You need to decide if the pros of being with her outweigh (pun intended) the cons, including her unhealthy lifestyle.

LW2: Who gives a eff? I would laughed about it with your sibling and in good natured fashion thanked myself for taking us out to eat.

LW3: If it makes you feel better about the hell you are putting her through now, consider that she's probably been banging the pool boy for 21 of those 22 years.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#5 Aug 29, 2014
LW1: "her idea of a good time generally consists of being docile ...She seems to find any excuse to stay docile"
Someone needs a dictionary. Amy too.

lw2: What a freak.
Judge Janie

Eagle Butte, SD

#6 Aug 29, 2014
RACE wrote:
1 WTF? He's the bad guy for being fit and healthy? He's the bad guy for trying everything possible to get her fit and healthy? I bet if he did not outline all the things he has tried, lamy would have suggested them. Yeah buddy, move on. you want c3po and you have r2d2.
I don't think she's saying he's a "bad guy" or anything like that, and I don't think he's in any way a "bad guy". I understand his very real health concerns and I don't think he's being shallow. If were shallow, he wouldn't have given her a second look to begin with. It's obvious he truly loves and cares for her. I feel bad for him, because neither one of them is the "bad guy" or is wrong, they're just very mismatched in terms of energy level and life goals, and that kind of mismatch almost never works because those are pretty significant differences. He'd be better off with someone who shares his high energy level and health/fitness goals and she'd be better off with someone more like her.

Personally, although I'm not overweight and I do try to eat and act healthily, I'm far more like the girlfriend. I am NOT a high energy on-the-go person at all; I have to make myself get exercise and move around sufficiently. I feel a lot better when I do so that's an incentive, but I'm still not a constant on-the-go person and I feel very uncomfortable and irritated around those who are like that. "That's just not how my personality rolls. Fortunately, hubby is the same way, both of us can spend hours reading, net and cable surfing, or just sitting on our porch or in the backyard (obviously not in the winter, though, especially not in this western state, lol!), with no problem. We aren't exactly super-active socially, either, which is fine with both of us. Walking the dog is often our major 'activity" for the day or weekend.

Some personality clashes and differences can be dealt with and lived with, but others are too significant for it to really work and I think, in the LW's case, this is one of them.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#7 Aug 29, 2014
Mister Tonka wrote:
LW1: "her idea of a good time generally consists of being docile ...She seems to find any excuse to stay docile"
Someone needs a dictionary. Amy too.
Good catch. I believe he means "torpid."
Kuuipo

Marina, CA

#8 Aug 29, 2014
LW1: The word is sedentary.

The problem is that you prefer an active lifestyle and she does not. Amy is right, you cannot change someone else. But before you give up, I have a few suggestions. Keep only healthy snacks around the house. No cookies or chips. YOU try out some low-calorie recipes, don't expect her to do all of the cooking. One thing that helps me to eat more salads is a delicious low-fat dressing such as raspberry vinaigrette. Try walking with your girlfriend, not running. Try kayaking or biking. And my best suggestion is to take a dance class. Any of the Latin dances in particular; salsa, tango, rhumba, cha-cha. Women (generally) love to dance. Most of all, appreciate her for her good qualities and be generous with your compliments. That will do more than anything else to motivate her to be her best.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#9 Aug 29, 2014
Kuuipo wrote:
I have a few suggestions. Keep only healthy snacks around the house. No cookies or chips.
You realize she's a grown ass woman who, if she does not already do the household shopping herself, is still capable of going to the store to get whatever she wants, right?
Kuuipo wrote:
Try walking with your girlfriend, not running. Try kayaking or biking.
Assuming he can get her off the couch.
Kuuipo

Marina, CA

#10 Aug 29, 2014
LW2: I wish I had a brother like yours. Of all the people that he could have chosen to spend time with and use the gift certificate on, he chose you.

LW3: Team Sublime. ;-) Good one!

Since: Aug 08

Location hidden

#11 Aug 29, 2014
Kuuipo wrote:
LW1: The word is sedentary.
The problem is that you prefer an active lifestyle and she does not. Amy is right, you cannot change someone else. But before you give up, I have a few suggestions. Keep only healthy snacks around the house. No cookies or chips. YOU try out some low-calorie recipes, don't expect her to do all of the cooking. One thing that helps me to eat more salads is a delicious low-fat dressing such as raspberry vinaigrette. Try walking with your girlfriend, not running. Try kayaking or biking. And my best suggestion is to take a dance class. Any of the Latin dances in particular; salsa, tango, rhumba, cha-cha. Women (generally) love to dance. Most of all, appreciate her for her good qualities and be generous with your compliments. That will do more than anything else to motivate her to be her best.
I'm all about the raspberry vinaigrette.

“On Deck”

Since: Aug 08

French Polynesia

#12 Aug 29, 2014
L1. Have you tried the ol' carrot at the end of a stick trick?

Docile?
My honey bees are docile. LOL
Kuuipo

Marina, CA

#13 Aug 29, 2014
Mister Tonka wrote:
<quoted text>
You realize she's a grown ass woman who, if she does not already do the household shopping herself, is still capable of going to the store to get whatever she wants, right?
<quoted text> Assuming he can get her off the couch.
Yes, I totally get that. I am only sharing what works for me. I don't keep cookies or chips in the house. And I think she will get off the couch when she finds something that *she* likes to do. For her, "fun runs" aren't it.

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