Losing weight for many people is very hard. It’s probably worse when you have someone who supposedly loves you threatening to call the wedding off if you don’t lose weight.
Celebrity Jessica Simpson is in just this position. Her fiancé Eric Johnson has apparently told her that if she doesn’t shed the pounds, the wedding is off.
The trouble is, is Eric Johnson’s demand a sign of a caring man who wants to see the love of his life look and feel better, or is it a sign of bullying? Obviously no one knows the circumstances of the couple’s relationship, but it’s said that you marry someone for the way they are warts and all, although in Jessica’s case it’s her weight. If this is correct then it sounds like bullying.
It is certainly true that many spouses get concerned about their other half ‘letting things go’ but some think Eric Johnson’s attitude is not good.
Discussing someone’s weight problem however is an issue that can cause argument. It is also something that is likely to cause offence. But obesity is a major issue, particularly in the industrialised societies. It is also a growing problem for children, many of whom prefer to lead a sedentary lifestyle, playing computer games rather than playing in the street or park, or playing sport.
Broaching the subject of a child’s obesity with a parent is also something that many professionals are wary of doing. So, what is the best way?
According to psychologists William Miller and Stephen Rollnick, who recently published a book entitled ‘Motivational Interviewing in Health Care: Helping Patients Change Behaviour’, the first thing that should be done is put the family in control. Rather than imposing health views, it is better to determine whether the family think there is a problem in the first place.
Once the family members realise there may be an obesity problem, health care workers should simply offer support and advice. It is up to the parents and children to make the decisions, and only when they are ready to do so.
Perhaps Eric Johnson should heed Miller and Rollnick’s advice if he is concerned about Jessica Simpson.