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Is skinny more attractive than overweight?

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GuiltAndShame posted 7/8/2020 23:27 PM

(Intro: I was a selfish terrible cheater, chasing after younger skinny women. I am determined to be better and to never again hurt my wife)

I hope that the description below is accurate & complete.....I’m very tired but want to put this out there.

During an argument via messages tonight, triggered by her receiving a Facebook friend suggestion for one of my skinny online affair partners, my wife asked me if I thought that skinny is more attractive than overweight. I answered honestly and quickly “Yes”.

She then said that I must find her less attractive now than when we met (she was quite skinny when we met, and now has a little belly which happens to most women who were pregnant).

I told her that attractiveness involves more than just physical, and that I am much more attracted to her now than ever before.

She said that she was talking about physical attraction, and that by my own admission (that I prefer skinny over overweight), then I MUST find her less attractive physically now.

I told her that her physical attractiveness is only slightly less than before, because she still has that pretty face and smile and great hair and awesome body that moves so well.

She said that she finds me more physically attractive with more weight on, and that she feels that physical attraction SHOULD grow with the relationship regardless of body changes, and that she is deeply hurt that I don’t feel the same way.

I don’t know what to do. I understand what she is saying, and I understand why she feels hurt, but I don’t know how to help. I feel stuck and stupid. I feel so upset and sad that I have hurt her and made her upset again. Maybe she is 100% right and I am 100% wrong. Maybe I am “damaged goods”.

[This message edited by GuiltAndShame at 11:30 PM, July 8th (Wednesday)]

hikingout posted 7/9/2020 00:16 AM

So let me ask you this - when your wife is being triggered by something can you recognize it? Like when she asked the question did you think “she is comparing herself negatively?”

On one hand, I can see you are working on being truthful, which is a goal. But I would maybe take a minute and evaluate where she was coming from Before answering. If we can do this we can speak more to the hurt that we caused. It would have probably been a good opportunity for you to reassure her, to apologize for making her feel less than.

For honesty you get an A but for empathy you are lacking. I remember you saying you always felt like an ugly duckling and needed a lot of reassurance. Sometimes drawing on our own experiences with insecurities what do you wish someone had said to you? Also it tells me by how you felt as an ugly duckling you place a lot of emphasis on more shallow things. Spend time really evaluating what you value and why. Make a list if you need to. Sometimes our own thought distortion can be analyzed and dispelled.

GuiltAndShame posted 7/9/2020 00:43 AM

hank you for the quick reply, HikingOut!

“....when your wife is being triggered by something, can you recognize it?”
Yes, I recognize that something caused such a big change in attitude and behavior, although I don’t usually know what (in this case, she did not reveal the trigger until late in the argument, when I asked what had changed to shift us from a great day to a bad day). I did not think “She is comparing herself negatively”. I just answered the question honestly.

“.....evaluate where she was coming from before answering”. I guess I have avoided doing that in order to not seem to be “manufacturing” or “crafting” an answer that may not be honest. Should I have asked her “Why do you ask?”?? As a wayward, I do not feel entitled to question questions or seem less than cooperative.

I tried to empathize, reassuring her that her physical attractiveness is still great and that her overall attractiveness is better than ever to me. She also asked who I would pick as the most physically attractive if she were in a lineup with my affair partners. I told her that would pick her, that she is the most attractive.

You’re right about me feeling like an “ugly duckling” growing up, needing reassurance, seeking affirmation and attention, feeling insecure about my looks and my abilities.

Regarding emphasizing shallow things, I do not think that I emphasize looks over other values. To me, looks don’t mean everything, but they also don’t mean nothing either. Same with sex.

Looks are just one aspect of attraction, and there are many other non-shallow aspects (which I told her about, and which I value). But she was laser-focused on looks.

Rideitout posted 7/9/2020 05:45 AM

During an argument via messages tonight, triggered by her receiving a Facebook friend suggestion for one of my skinny online affair partners, my wife asked me if I thought that skinny is more attractive than overweight. I answered honestly and quickly “Yes”.

BS here, but, I'll give you my answer. If it were me, you would have done the right thing. And what you say here:

“.....evaluate where she was coming from before answering”. I guess I have avoided doing that in order to not seem to be “manufacturing” or “crafting” an answer that may not be honest.

Would have been EXACTLY the wrong thing. "Crafting an answer" is a fancy way to say "think of a lie, weave in the truth, and do as much sidestepping the issue as possible". Again, if were me, NEVER "craft" an answer, give me THE answer. There really is only one answer to this question, "yes; in general, I find thin more attractive" or "no, I do not". You can EXPAND on that answer, "But too thin is a problem too, and I think a lot of people take it too far today". And if asked, expand further into "Size 4 is great, 2 is too thin, 8 too heavy".

Now, I wanted to tell you that I thought your answer was good, and it's the answer I would give if asked, but... You need to listen to someone other than me on this. A lot of people ask questions where they do not want the answers, and I feel like this may be one of those things; we need some people who do that to come in and comment here. If I were you BS, you would have done exactly the right thing, and if my weight was an issue and you told me so, I'd know exactly what to work on to make myself more attractive to you and be grateful for it. Honestly as a BS in general, I'd be appreciative for any honest feedback, it's something lacking dramatically after an A. But, that said, I feel I'm strongly in the minority here, wait for some other people to respond and see what they have to say.

As an aside, but do you know what your Meyers-Briggs personality type is? I'm just wondering if you're the same as mine because one of the things called out is placing a very high value on facts and the truth, to the point of hurting people who aren't ready for or interested in what "real honesty" looks like. I know it's always been an issue for me, one of the big reasons my W cheated is because she just wanted someone to "tell her what she wanted to hear" and I was not, and never will be, that guy. I'm going to tell you the truth, not in a mean way if there's any way to avoid it, but I'm not going to try to "craft" an answer to the point where it totally obscures the intent of the question.

GuiltAndShame posted 7/9/2020 06:36 AM

Thank you, Rideitout! I appreciate your insights!
I will look up my Meyers Briggs type.

GuiltAndShame posted 7/9/2020 06:38 AM

As clarification, during the latter part of the argument, my wife did say this: “I appreciate your honesty and you did the right thing. It simply doesn’t make it hurt less.”

GuiltAndShame posted 7/9/2020 06:50 AM

Further follow up. She also said that her main issue is that our feelings on this are opposite. That she finds me more physically attractive now, and that I do not find her more physically attractive now (because she is not as skinny as she was earlier in our relationship).

[This message edited by GuiltAndShame at 6:57 AM, July 9th (Thursday)]

MrCleanSlate posted 7/9/2020 07:42 AM

G&S,

In some respects the classic "does this dress make me look fat question" is still so panic inducing because we all know that is not the actual question.

As HO pointed out you answered the question but missed the point and the empathy.

My AP was almost exactly opposite my BW, she was taller, not as fit bodied, smaller chested, etc. I didn't consciously do that but after a lot of therapy I understand that I was looking for that degree of separation.

I get that some people (men and women) have a 'type', but for me I can appreciate a whole range of women as it usually has more to do with how they carry themselves (i.e. it is not all based on looks alone for me).

Would another woman perhaps look better than my BW. Sure. Would I say the other woman is more attractive, probably not. Attraction involves way more than looks or how a person carries themselves. It is the smile she gives me when I come in the door, the kiss as she leaves for work, the way she brushes her hair before bed, the way she knows how to touch me, etc.

The short answer you gave at the beginning that skinny women are more attractive to you left the rest of your responses null and void as they were seen as backpedalling by your BW. You answered the wrong question.

Here is the thing though, any women that look remotely like my AP are not even given a second look by me. I can tell my BW is looking to my reaction too and it is a trigger.

hikingout posted 7/9/2020 07:44 AM

You might be right, but I was not meaning to craft an answer. I would not have asked why do you ask. It’s safe to assume that any question like that is because you cheated on her your entire marriage. I simply would have started by apologizing for it even being a question, knowing that I put it in her mind. The backstory isn’t the Facebook post the back story is how you have treated her during your marriage. I think answering honestly is important but I was troubled by the lack of empathy. You can be honest and empathetic.

I agree with her that it’s troubling that you haven’t grown a deeper appreciation of her in all ways. Because you have concentrated on finding some. With shallow characteristics to help you feel better about your shallow characteristics. It’s a lack of appreciation for who she is.

Most happy couple I know spend a lot of time appreciating the other person and focusing on that appreciation. Therefore the attraction continues to grow and flourish.

Again, I think honesty is best but these are opportunities when you miss them you need to understand why you missed it so you don’t miss it again. And you need to be able to articulate how your past affair behavior has stunted you and your relationship. I do think you have been very shallow and it’s because you have focused on instant gratification rather than building a deep and intimate relationship with your wife.

I hope this clarifies my response.


MIgander posted 7/9/2020 07:48 AM

Answering as a woman here, the differences between men and women inherent in us (and there's always an exception to the rule), men are more visually stimulated while women are more emotionally stimulated. Really, there's nothing wrong with you having a difference in opinion on what makes someone sexually attractive. You're a man, she's a woman. I know my BH has trouble with us having differences right now as he perceives them as a threat to our unity. I view differences now as supplementing each other for what we may lack in perspective or in strengths. Not as the negative that I used to see them. Maybe bring that up to her? Ask her if the differences are troubling her because she feels a lack of unity over them?

With the facts you had at the time (being unaware of her pain from the FB suggestion), you answered honestly.

My husband is a lot like you too- honest, but maybe lacking a little in tact. It's one of the things that drew me to him initially because I had dated so many who had "told me what I wanted to hear" instead of the unvarnished truth. Unfortunately I went back to that with AP , and look what that got me .

Maybe when body image questions come up again, you can tell her some of the physical qualities you DO admire- like you like her hair, her smile, the way she looks when she sleeps. Stuff like that. That was lacking in a HUGE way in my marriage and definitely the animosity I nursed from that need not being met helped me justify the affair.

Maybe ask her what would help? Would she like to know more about the positive things you see in her? Maybe ask if she's lacking reassurance on an emotional level too? Like she needs to hear how kind and caring or dedicated, etc, she is with specific examples brought to mind? (Specific instances because otherwise it sounds like smoke being blown up her ass .)

My husband prefers another body type and hair color to that which I've been provided by nature, but there are things he does like about my body and he's been more open about that lately, which does help immensely.

DevastatedDee posted 7/9/2020 08:14 AM

Weight/age is to women what penis size is to men. Say she cheated on you with men who were more well-endowed. One day you ask her "Do you find larger penises more pleasurable?" and she answers honestly "Yes". She follows it up with "But I like yours the best".

That is where she is emotionally right now.

[This message edited by DevastatedDee at 8:18 AM, July 9th (Thursday)]

DevastatedDee posted 7/9/2020 08:18 AM

FYI, it really sucks to flat-out know that your spouse cheated on you with women who were more attractive than you. Been there, don't wish it on anyone in the world. You can say that she's the most attractive, but given how women are judged on our weight, she'll probably never believe you.

Weight is something that we can change, but we often cannot change post-pregnancy belly without surgery. My XWH cheated with younger skinnier women. It's a blow that I personally could not have gotten past.

pinkpggy posted 7/9/2020 11:37 AM

That was rude. End of story. Try to have some empathy. You should not have said she was less attractive now, after cheating.

I honestly find my husband more attractive now than I did when we met.

[This message edited by pinkpggy at 11:38 AM, July 9th (Thursday)]

TKOGA posted 7/9/2020 12:15 PM

"I told her that her physical attractiveness is only slightly less than before, because she still has that pretty face and smile and great hair and awesome body that moves so well."
Are...are you serious? The fact that you consciously went after younger, skinnier women and then have this to say to her? Bonehead move, man. I'm surprised she's sticking around through this. You do not appear to have much empathy. At all.

GuiltAndShame posted 7/9/2020 12:39 PM

Thank you to everyone who replied. I have read all the replies, and have some comments or questions below. I don’t know how to do the fancy copy paste......

This will probably offend some of you, but I think if you ask ANYONE who is overweight, including myself, “Honestly, would you be more physically attractive if you were skinnier?”, I bet that the majority of people would answer “Yes”. Or to ask it another way “Would losing some weight increase your physical attractiveness?” I know I would answer “Yes”, and I told my wife that I would. But she says that I am shallow. I have never thought of myself as shallow, because I also highly value other things besides looks.

MrCleanSlate:
“As HO pointed out you answered the question but missed the point and the empathy.”
What point did I miss? Was I not empathetic when I told her that she was very attractive to me, and that my attraction toward her is based on a whole lot more than just looks?
“Attraction involves way more than looks or how a person carries themselves. It is the smile she gives me when I come in the door, the kiss as she leaves for work, the way she brushes her hair before bed, the way she knows how to touch me, etc.”
EXACTLY!!! And I told her that. But she continued to focus on only the looks portion.
“The short answer you gave at the beginning that skinny women are more attractive to you left the rest of your responses null and void as they were seen as backpedalling by your BW.”
Backpedalling how??? Back toward what?

HikingOut:
“I simply would have started by apologizing for it even being a question, knowing that I put it in her mind.”
I did not know that I put that question in her mind. I was not aware of the trigger until much later in the argument.
“I agree with her that it’s troubling that you haven’t grown a deeper appreciation of her in all ways.”
I call BS on this. I fully and deeply appreciate my wife in many many ways, and I have told her so, describing all the things I admire about her.
“And you need to be able to articulate how your past affair behavior has stunted you and your relationship.”
I have been open and honest about how wrong my past behavior was, and all of the terrible consequences of that behavior, consequences impacting her and our relationship and myself.

MIgander:
“With the facts you had at the time (being unaware of her pain from the FB suggestion), you answered honestly.”
EXACTLY. I had no idea about what caused her to ask the question. I just thought it was a curiosity question, looking for an honest answer.
“Maybe ask her what would help? Would she like to know more about the positive things you see in her? Maybe ask if she's lacking reassurance on an emotional level too?”
Good ideas, thank you. But right now she seems to be 100% focused on me seeing her perspective, that my weight has zero influence on my attractiveness to her, and that I should feel the same way about her.

DevastatedDee:
“One day you ask her ‘Do you find larger penises more pleasurable?’ and she answers honestly ‘Yes’. She follows it up with ‘But I like yours the best’.”
That’s basically what I did. She even asked if she and my affair partners were in a lineup, who would be the most attractive? I told her that she would be, and she called bullshit.
“You can say that she's the most attractive, but given how women are judged on our weight, she'll probably never believe you.”
I fear this may be true.

pinkpggy:
“That was rude. End of story. Try to have some empathy. You should not have said she was less attractive now, after cheating.”
What was rude? For me to say that I think skinny is more physically attractive than overweight? I don’t see how that is rude. Would it have been empathetic to lie and say ‘No, skinny is not more physically attractive than overweight’??? With all of the emphasis on WS being open and honest, that was not an option.

Darkness Falls posted 7/9/2020 13:01 PM

I think women who ask these kinds of questions put the person they’re asking in a no-win situation. I understand wanting to know the answer, but it’s just a landmine if you ask me.

I myself tend to find guys more attractive with more weight than less, so I understand where your W is coming from there, but I find women more attractive with less than with more. 🤷🏻‍♀️

When it comes to physical attractiveness (considering all factors, not just weight), we can’t help what we find attractive. It just is what it is for each of us. JMHO.

DevastatedDee posted 7/9/2020 13:05 PM

But right now she seems to be 100% focused on me seeing her perspective, that my weight has zero influence on my attractiveness to her, and that I should feel the same way about her.

I haven't asked her, but I'm just going to throw this out there. She probably thinks of marriage as more than the best value booty call one can find. There are men much more attractive than you are and she could have slept with a plethora of them with little effort through the years. She did not. Marriage is a different world from trolling for the best ass.

I know I sound combatative. I know, I know. I'm trying to be completely straight with you.

There's an idea that two people meet and fall in love. They get married. There is an understanding that the two will age and not be the hottie that they once were. But it's okay, it's safe to age. It's safe to lose your perfect tight skin and perky boobs. It's safe, because you love one another and you will still find one another attractive even when you are both old and gray and saggy and wrinkled. It's safe to have health problems or imperfections. It's okay to need a cane to walk one day. It's safe to have a stomach virus in one another's presence. It's a special bond that allows you not to be competing with other men and women. It's a sacred space. It's a place where you get to be real with another person and fully accepted for your insides and outsides.

You took a shit on that sacred space. You kicked her out of it. She is in a place that NO ONE should be. She is in what is supposed to be her safest place feeling like she's in competition with other women because she had the nerve to age and develop imperfections. In a healthy relationship, one can think "goodness, I am hotter when I lose weight/work out" and do so for one's own sake as much as for the other. In a relationship where your spouse cheated with skinnier and younger women, you think "maybe if I fucking starve myself and get $20k of plastic surgery I'll be something he could find attractive." You don't feel safe and you don't feel like you are accepted for who you are. It's broken, man. I don't know how you put that back together. You took from her something more precious than all the diamonds in the world.

GuiltAndShame posted 7/9/2020 13:07 PM

TKOGA
Not answering the question OR lying were not options. She demanded an answer, and WS should never lie.

gmc94 posted 7/9/2020 13:10 PM

But she says that I am shallow. I have never thought of myself as shallow, because I also highly value other things besides looks.
Dude, hate to break it to you, but having an A is the EPITOME of shallow ("lacking in depth of knowledge, thought, or feeling" )

Looks like the replies triggered something in you. Might want to check on that. Might want to find your empathy glasses and re-read that post about penis size and how that FEELS to you, rather than how you were put in a no-win situation by the question (keeping in mind the absolutely "no win' situation you put your BW in, your family in, and your M in, by choosing to "chase after younger skinny women" ).

ETA:

She is in what is supposed to be her safest place feeling like she's in competition with other women because she had the nerve to age and develop imperfections.
Are you able to take a minute and really hear this? Really FEEL just how fucked up that is? Not trying to shame you... trying to show you the door (that only you can actually open) to EMPATHY.

And that's what I see HO trying to do as well. IOW, when your BW asked that question, did you even consider WHY that may have been a question from her -apparently out of the blue? why not?

It's super important for a WS to know - in their bones kind of "know" - that their BS is probably thinking of the A ALL THE TIME. Like every fucking minute of every fucking day all the time. I'm 2.5 years out and there is not an hour that goes by that it's not in my mind. The betrayal, the lies, the 'who the fuck did I marry', the "how could he do that to me", the fear of the past, fear of the present, and fear of the future, etc. It's ALWAYS there, like the dark cloud of dirt that follows old "Pig Pen" from Peanuts. ALWAYS there.

[This message edited by gmc94 at 1:20 PM, July 9th, 2020 (Thursday)]

realitybites posted 7/9/2020 13:14 PM

Is it really just skinny? Or is it also younger?

Not asking to be snarky, just asking.

Because we all get older, you do as well.

Nothing wrong with you telling her what you find attractive, I think that she is digging for a deeper answer to the question. And where your reality is at.

Have you asked her what she finds physically attractive in a man?

Sometimes its good to hear both sides. Maybe it might be a shock to you how she actually feels? If she is brave enough to tell you.

[This message edited by realitybites at 1:14 PM, July 9th (Thursday)]

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