Thoughts

LA Fitness

My husband was peppering me with questions and guidelines and rules after joining a gym. It was he who paid for the membership as a gift and I felt that he didn’t really want me to have it. He was worried that I would look hot and meet someone at the gym or something. I got so mad and started to cry, a connection that I loathe. He has no idea why getting back in shape is so important to me. I don’t want to need him anymore, or anyone else for that matter. For as long as I can remember, I have needed more than my fair share of attention from men on my appearance, but for a short while after having my son, I didn’t need anyone’s approval but mine. I was amazed at what my body was capable of and, for a while, I approved of myself and that’s what mattered. I just want to feel that way again. I want and need the opposite of attention from men by joining the gym. I want the attention of myself, the admiration of myself. It’s the only way that I can ensure I don’t repeat this years’ past mistakes. Taking back what should always have been mine, is my goal for this year.

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3 thoughts on “LA Fitness

  1. I am particularly attracted to this post because it has been brought up by several close friends in recent weeks and continues to be an ongoing issue in their relationships.

    In one case the wife of a close friend is “bent out of shape” because in the last year she has decided to transform her life and hubby is in panic mode. The most obvious changes are her appearance. Four days a week at the gym and regular visits to the spa and hairdresser are certainly turning heads everywhere she goes. The “stay at home” “soccer mom” from last year is nowhere to be seen. She is away from home a lot more than she used to be with her new activities and new friends, and hubbies insecurity has become the conversation at almost every social meet.

    In the second incident another fellow in the group has a wife that is just starting the “gym” thing now. He too is a little “off balance”. He finds himself “checking” on her, making issues of every little thing that looks “out of the usual”. This is not helping his insecurity one bit.

    Now I understand the issue here is with the men (or is it?), as their women have done (it appears) nothing wrong. Every woman I have ever talked to has made it abundantly clear that they dress and groom for themselves. Some will even say on occasion dress and groom for their men.

    My question for you however is this: Even though your “stint” at the gym was to make you feel good, where you able to relate to your husbands “insecurity”? How did you resolve it between you, or did you just make it his problem and leave it for him to get over on his own? What emotion caused you to “cry” at his change in attitude? What did you mean when you wrote you did not want to “need” him, or any man in the future? How do you think he would have felt if he told you that he did not want to need you in the future?

    I would be interested in your thoughts on this as it appears this is a very common issue between many couples, and I am suspecting the real root cause/contributing factors are not so obvious.

    • I feel that a re reading would answer most of your questions, but I will reiterate here as I tend to be unclear. I cried because I was angry. Angry at his distrust, his setting me up to fail, his pretending to be supportive and not actually supporting. I said that I didn’t want to need anything, specifically citing attention, from any man in the future not necessarily that I didn’t want to need anything (at all) from a man. (And there’s my ambiguity). And considering I told this all to my husband and he subscribes to and reads my blog, I think I can deduce how he feels about what I’ve said as he’s told me, so it wouldn’t help to imagine how I would feel to empathize as I would feel differently. I was not able to relate to his insecurity. It is his problem, not mine. He understands that to respect my own body and feel good about myself I need to go to the gym. It affects every aspect of our lives together and my own negatively if I don’t right now.

      While I should in no way be used as a barometer for all women nor my relationship as a litmus test for all relationships with this same issue in our context, security in my self worth by my own standards is essential for the survival of our relationship. As I said in my post, I need attention. My husband is not always capable of giving me a sufficient amount. It goes then that I seek it elsewhere. I’d like to seek it from within rather than from without.

      Attention from men is rarely hard won, attention from other women-in a positive way- is a more positive and driving influence and something to be worked for, attention from ones self, feeding ones own needs and becoming self sufficient makes every relationship better. I don’t have to be a taker when I feed myself love and attention. My husband becomes a partner, not a crutch- someone I have by my side not because I depend on him or need him, but because he delights me and because I want him.

      Does that make sense?

  2. Yes that does make sense. I absolutely agree with you that for a woman to be whole she must be free to be her best. Most men really want their women to look and feel confident about themselves. The problem happens when men, who think like men, and know how other men think, suddenly become aware that other men will be attracted to their woman just as they are. They know that this will increase the “hits” their woman will receive. They also know as they become less attentive their women will become more vulnerable to the attention from other men. I would suggest that probably your husband was not expressing distrust in you as much as distrust of other men around you. Of course, the real issue is far more complex, and it appears you have worked out an “understanding”. Thank you for sharing.

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