- What to Do When Someone You Love is Overweight
- The First Step to Take to Talk to a Loved One About Weight
- Dos and Don’ts for How to Talk to a Loved One about Weight
- Conversation Guide for How to Talk to a Loved One About Weight
- 3 Ways to Help Loved Ones Who Are Overweight
If someone you love is overweight or has food issues, you may struggle with how to begin a conversation about this very sensitive topic. There’s no one right way to go about how to talk to a loved one about weight. Before you start any conversation, PRAY. Ask God for guidance. Check your heart.
You know yourself and your loved one best. Below is a general guide to help. If a conversation starts to go down a wrong path, end it for that day and take a break.
Don’t worry about getting the exact words right. If your reason for bringing up the subject is genuine concern and care, your loved one will realize this is your intention. Be sure to read the other posts in this series first, including The First Step to Take for How to Talk to a Loved One About Weight, and Dos and Don’t for Talking to a Loved One About Weight.
Conversation Guide for How to Talk to a Loved One About Weight
Possible conversation starters:
“I want to talk to you about something that’s been on my mind and has me concerned.”
“This might be a difficult conversation, but it’s important to me.”
“Are you open to having a conversation that might be difficult, but I think is an important one for us?”
“Is now a good time for a more in-depth conversation? It might not be an easy one.”
“I’ve been concerned about your health lately.”
“I’m worried about you because of your fitness level.”
“I love you very much. You are sexy and desirable to me no matter what! But I’m concerned about your health and how you are doing.”
“I am concerned about how you are taking care of yourself.”
“What are your thoughts?”
“I’m not saying this to judge, but because I want us to have lots more years together.”
“I’m not saying this out of judgement, but I’ve noticed you don’t seem to have much energy lately. What are your thoughts about that?”
“How have you been feeling lately?”
“Do you feel like now is a time you want to make some changes?”
“If you were to make some changes now, what type of changes would you make?”
“If money/time were not an object, what type of changes would you make?”
“What is the biggest obstacle that holds you back from making changes?”
“What is the toughest thing for you in all of this?”
“I love you.”
“I’m here for you.”
“I’ve been thinking I could do ________ to support you. Would that be helpful?”
Notice that your main role is to listen. Give helpful feedback like, “So what I hear you saying is…” after your loved one is speaking. Look in his or her eyes.
You are engaging with her in what is one of her deepest vulnerabilities. These conversations are tough, yet when you are willing to be supportive in this way, you take your relationship to a whole new place of love and security.
**One final, important note: If you are a parent, and the person who is overweight is your child, this is a different situation. I am not a doctor and am not offering medical advice. Always seek the advice of your health professional.
As the parent, it is your responsibility to care for the health of your child. If your child is overweight, this is a problem you need to work toward correcting. You bring the food into the house. You control your child’s schedule. I know this is tough, but NOW is the time. Stop making excuses. Get an appointment with your child’s doctor and set up a plan to work together as a team to head in the right direction to bring your child to a healthier place.