Question: I love my husband but I find his body unattractive. Before marriage, he lost a lot of weight and got sagging skin. He got surgery to remove it from his abdomen, but not his back, so he has loose skin there. He gained some weight back, so now it looks loose and bulgy at the same time. I didn’t notice this before marriage because we didn’t spend much time together and the clothes he wore didn’t show it. I’m really anxious and want to ask him to get it removed. How do I go about this?
Thank you for your question.
The point that you bring up is important. A man should care to take of his hygiene and his body for the sake of his wife. Even though physical attraction is not everything in a marriage, it is still important. Hopefully, you are keeping up your end of exercising, dressing up, smelling nice, and eating healthy as well. Now, how do you tell him?
You know your husband the best, and you know how he will react to you. If he is the type who appreciates you sitting down and talking to him about it at length, do that. If he is the type who better appreciates a simple comment like, “I know of a good doctor who is better than your last one“ or “I want to start keto, do you want to do it with me?“try that. Usually, a short comment will spark a train of thought, which will eventually spark action by the grace of Allah. Here are some general tips:
-Ask Allah to help you speak to him and ask Him to bless you and your family with health, strength, and devotion to Him.
-Choose good timing. When he is relaxed, not stressed out, not in the middle of work, not while he is eating or hungry, but when he is relaxed and has free time.
-Speak respectfully. Always treat another as you want to be treated yourself; as the Prophet told us, may Allah bless him and grant him peace.
-Be honest and use positive words, not an accusatory tone.
-Motivate him by cooking healthy meals and not buying sweets. Make healthy desserts. You control most of what goes in his stomach!
-Don’t try to control his eating habits or force him to exercise. It must come from within him, and pressuring him will only cause resentment.
-Also, pray istikhara about the surgery. Istikhara should always be employed for big decisions like this and followed sincerely.
-Take steps yourself to get rid of your anxiety regarding this. I don’t want you to stress and lose sleep over it. Focus on his good points and do your best, and leave it in Allah’s hands.
May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, Tafseer, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Master’s in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan, where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She recently moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.