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Cut women some slack

Most young couples go through the same phases. The guy starts out with a “normal” size; could be stylish or not.

The woman is clearly making an effort to look good. Months pass, the man is subjected to regular home-cooked meals that do not deter his pre-marital snacking habits.

Inevitably, he adds a couple of kilos here and there. In the wardrobe do-over, the woman has a say in purchasing decisions and usually, the guy becomes a lot more stylish than he previously was. He could embrace his new size and roll with it, join a gym or recalibrate his eating habits or both to put his folds in control.

Meanwhile, the woman conceives. With the excitement of a first pregnancy, she gives in to every craving. She adds kilos everywhere. The baby comes, and the demands of breastfeeding invite even more kilos.

Two years later, the baby is weaned and she is determined to fit into her pre-maternity clothes. She checks out a couple of gyms near home, but settles for a slimming diet because she has to rush home to the baby and wifely duties after work.

She conceives again. Three children later, she donates her clothes. She settles into her new size, the endless cycle of diets and the 21-day bouts of exercise guaranteed to rid her of specified quantities of fat.

Some give up, some stick with it and register some success while others can afford a personal trainer to get them to and keep them at their ideal size. Life just isn’t perfect or even fair like that, but the real difference between these women is the kind of support they get from their men.

There is the completely disinterested guy. He maintains ignorance of her struggles, and may not even acknowledge she has put on weight. When she tries to introduce healthy meals, he stills brings home roasted meats and fast foods because he claims to have eaten enough vegetables when they couldn’t afford better.

Another guy will only busy himself pointing out the many things she can do to get back in shape. He knows about the best gyms, and brings printouts of highly-rated diets, but his own lifestyle doesn’t change.

He is too busy to work out or help out at home. He also still hangs out at the neighbourhood grill where she could join him if she so wishes. He continues to complain about how she isn’t portable anymore.

The dream man will pay for the gym membership, and commit to pick up the children from school so that she can go work out. He will walk with her and eat his roasts for lunch at the office and not sneer at the steamed carrots at dinner.

If everything fails, he starts calling her “my size” to reassure her. It may not be an ideal size, but it is what he has got. So, he rolls with it.

It isn’t easy for us to meet your every ideal, but it would help a lot if you were the dream guy. 

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