Every time I’ve been in a serious, secure relationship (i.e. more than two years) I gain an average of 35 pounds, which makes my body feel wrong and makes me uncomfortable. Every time I’m single, it all falls back off in months. The only exception to this rule was an unhealthy relationship, where I was often miserable, and I fell below my usual single-person weight, which also felt uncomfortable. I’m newly into a relationship again, and am trying to stave it off. My boyfriend has complained recently that since we got serious, I’ve been prioritizing the gym over morning cuddles, and won’t share the cookies or treats he’s made anymore. I try to make physical activity a shared thing—tennis, hiking, gym trips, and more, but he’s not really that interested. I don’t love those things either, but I need to stay at them if I want to keep the weight off. How do I explain this to him? I think he thought he was dating a relaxed woman and got gym Barbie instead, and is confused.
—Trying Hard in Tennessee