You’ve gone Primal. Your spouse? Not so much.
Well, alright, he (or she) is trying to eat healthier or at least he’s trying to abide by the new house rules. Maybe he doesn’t really care about the diet but he cares about you and so he smiles and nods while you rant and rave.
You pity him. He’s still fat, still depressed, still lazy, still forgetful, still hungry all the time, still impulsive, still smelly, and you? You haven’t looked and felt this great since high school.
But he’ll come around, right? Once he sees the amazing transformation you’ve made, he’ll have to jump on the wagon sooner or later, won’t he?
Some people get lucky. They go Primal and their marriages succeed. Actually, there are a whole lot of successful Paleo couples out there but not all of them involve two Paleo partners. Most of us have spouses who end up tagging along at 70/30 or maybe less. Maybe that’s fine and maybe it’s not. It all depends on the luck of the draw, your tact, the level of junk food addiction present, the severity of conditions and deficiencies, or the extent of problems the couple suffered before.
Your Spouse Is Not a Project
No matter how much your ideas make sense you aren’t likely to change your partner. We all have our own unique needs, motives, emotions, intelligence, and our very own time for making changes. It is not our job to change our partners but to find one that we can accept for who they are.
But things might get a little complicated when you suddenly find yourself a new person.
So, the question is, can you live with your spouse after this major metamorphosis? Can you flutter from your chrysalis a new and colorful person while the worm remains glued to his old ways?
I’m not saying that you shouldn’t stand by his (or her) side (and possibly enormous backside). But the truth is your spouse may never change. Is that okay with you?
It’s more than just perspective that changes. It’s not just energy levels. It’s not just looks. It’s not just behavior. For most of us, at some point, our biology starts to change.
Scientific American reported that birth control pills affect a women’s taste in men. If a woman starts a relationship on the pill (which so many women do) and then she goes Primal, or even just quits the pill, her hormones can be altered in such a way that her attraction to one type of man actually shifts (was this ever the case with me!). At this point there’s not much she can do, she’s no longer interested.
Hormonal imbalances are also known to affect a marriage on an intimate level. After years of being married to someone with a low libido a mate may develop a perfectly satisfying addiction to porn (I’m kidding… kind of) or he may consciously turn off his own sexual desires. When the spouse finally bounces back, ready to go, the partner may not.
Nutritional deficiencies can affect a person’s psychology which can erode a perfectly good marriage over time or even confuse a person into sticking with a bad marriage.
Magnesium and vitamin D deficiency, for example, can cause symptoms of depression. Deficiencies of magnesium, zinc, iron, B6, and others can make a person irritable. Lack of saturated and omega 3 fats in the diet can contribute to mood disorders. Zinc deficiency can cause low libido in men and women. An imbalanced gut ecology can lead to social embarrassment and irritability.
Food allergies and food chemicals like food colorings, MSG, and the slew of other chemicals we daren’t pronounce in the presence of those more educated than ourselves, also cause uncalled for, extreme, or sudden mood changes.
Unless you were one of the lucky few, you’ve had your fair share of irritability, emotional breakdowns, and short fuses – all a product of false moods, or food moods as I like to call them.
Making a Choice
Once this stuff is out of your body, you’re eating ample nutrients, your blood sugar is even, your cells are nicely padded with fat and protein, and you’re quite a bit calmer than you used to be you may not feel like you fit well with your old crowd – the people with whom you’ve had long term relationships.
You have two choices, and waiting for your spouse to change is not one of them. You can either accept your partner for what he/she is or you can not. It’s pretty black and white. Your reasons, however, may not be.
My Own Marriage Didn’t Succeed
My marriage suffered a great deal from my health problems. When I was about 24 my libido crashed. I was severely malnourished and bordering schizophrenic from advanced celiac disease. I was constantly irritable, I had deep depression and insecurity – I hated myself and everyone I knew. My digestion and microbial environment (you know where) was so messed up, I was embarrassed to be intimate.
Then, in 2005, I went Paleo – and my house went Paleo too. I don’t know if my husband really cared about the diet, I suspect that he didn’t, but he went along with it anyway. I “lovingly” packed his lunch, cooked his breakfast, and made his dinner, so he was kind of stuck with it.
The problem was that I brought Paleo into every aspect of my life. I ate Paleo, I exercised Paleo, I quit smoking after 13 years, I quit drinking – I made an absolutely commitment to living well.
He drank, he smoked, he still took head ache medicine, he didn’t care about exercising, etc. Our paths diverged right then and there. A few months later I was pregnant and so breaking up wasn’t much of an option. He wasn’t a bad guy, and so I stayed to see if I could make things work.
He quit drinking and I thought that maybe if he would quit smoking too he wouldn’t smell anymore, or if he would pin down his allergies maybe he’d get happy, or if he would just get to the bottom of his nutritional deficiencies maybe we’d start having sex again. Maybe. Maybe in time things would change. So I stuck around in an unhappy marriage, always wishing that things were different.
And then that guy broke in to my house and tried to kill me.
We are so fragile, so breakable, and our moment here on earth so fleeting. Sitting around waiting for him to change, hoping the world would work itself out for my sake just didn’t make sense anymore. I had to get it myself if it was there to be gotten.
My health was still a challenge after the break in but I kept experimenting with variations of traditional diets. I didn’t know much about brain chemistry back then, but stabbing around in the dark and reading lots of books eventually got me on a path to strength and happiness until finally I didn’t need someone to lean on anymore.
It felt selfish. It felt insensitive. It felt arrogant. But it also felt so unbelievably liberating. Our relationship had become empty. Since going Paleo, since witnessing just how fragile we are, and how little control we have over our own lives and even less over the lives of others, and since becoming happy and realizing how much wonder and beauty there is to see, I, personally, couldn’t stay with a man who didn’t experience life in the same way.
It is unfortunate that we take vows in the altered state of the standard American diet. I was a severely malnourished celiac on antibiotics and birth control when my husband and I were married. I found out years later that the person that said “I do” wasn’t even me.
It is sad to uproot children from the two people they love the most – we should try at all costs to avoid it – but it is also sad to show children loveless, hateful, abusive, or lifeless relationships. Breaking off a marriage is a big deal for everyone involved but staying in one that isn’t working can be just as big of a deal.
I would love to hear about other Paleo marriages – how they have failed or how they’ve thrived.
October 25, 2011 at 8:05 am
very interesting and personnal story you are sharing ! My (lack of) libido is a problem for my marriage. I find that both the society and my husband are waiting for me to be ” ready to go ” at every moment … and i am not ! i stopped the pill, well .. last month, after 15 years ( i took the pill when i met my husband) and i have started a paleo way of life since a few weeks. My goal : feeling great, stop my food cravings, and get my libido back ! Don’t know how i may react in the future, but i am married since 12 years, and breaking is not something i can envisage right now, not because i am afraid of it, but because my view on marriage is to make 2 different people go together for good and bad moments.
October 25, 2011 at 8:11 am
I felt the same about marriage. I was married for 10 years. It took 3 years for us to break up after I went Paleo. My circumstances are totally different from yours of course, but I wonder how many others find their values changing after going Paleo. I never wanted to divorce. I wanted us to work out so bad. I wanted to grow with him. But it wasn’t happening.
October 25, 2011 at 10:19 am
i can totally understand that, i guess that everybody who is involved in a marriage does its best to make it work, and i have no doubt you did your best too. What i was saying is that for me right now, i can’t imagine beeing divorced;
October 25, 2011 at 8:27 am
“food mood”: niiiice.
The institution of marriage is so old and pervasive that there must be something to it. Without those vows, would we ever be able to trust as completely, be and become our whole social selves as fully (whether that’s the self we are on the SAD or not) and model for our children what it means to rely on another human being to be there no. matter. what? There are obviously limits to when that’s a good thing – abuse is not on – but it’s such a tighrope sometimes. I think it can only be in retrospect that we can say, that wasn’t just a rough patch, that was fundamental differences growing up between us.
October 25, 2011 at 8:37 am
That’s so true Lauren. While I was still in my marriage I asked those questions constantly. Is this just a rough patch? Are we fundamentally too different? I asked and I asked, for three years. These are not easy questions to answer, especially while you’re in the thick of it.
October 25, 2011 at 9:01 am
I went Paleo in May and a couple of months later my husband decided he’d better make some changes too. He understood that me getting myself in shape meant that things might change with us and he wasn’t willing to risk losing me so he could stay fat. So now we’re on the wagon together. I am so lucky, and so thankful.
October 25, 2011 at 9:09 am
Going Paleo is a journey on a different path and is another one of those things that unites or divides depending on the pre-existing state of one’s relationship.
October 25, 2011 at 9:54 am
My husband and I have been married for going on 8 years. I too felt like Adeline. And stuck in a rut. Since I am the sole food provider in my family(we even all pack lunches). My family really had no choice but the make the change as well. There was a bit of whining for the first month or two as they were detoxing. But after my husband and I started loosing weight, we are happy on this journey and acting like kids again(in the bedroom too). We each lost 50lbs. We tease each other and say “I love you 50lbs more”. Of course we are joking, it’s fun for us to realize we are happier being healthier and feeling better!!
October 25, 2011 at 10:22 am
i am so longing to act like a child again !
October 25, 2011 at 10:42 am
It’s funny my husband found out about paleo first. He knew it’d be a stretch to have his pasta loving wife on board. I said he was crazy first but then a few months later one of my good friends told me they eat like that too. I told my husband I wanted to try and told him all about it. He’s like yeah! I that’s what I was suggesting a couple months ago. He always has good ideas.
Anyway we were on off for a while during my second pregnancy but now we are only paleo and making new things- fermented foods bone broths etc. I don’t really think its helped out marriage. Our marriage was good to begin with. We’ve been married only 3 1/2 years but have already have had 2 kids, both lost our job after buying a house, sold our house bought another, which meant moving both times I was pregnant ( I dony recommend that)… So becoming paleo wasn’t really that difficult or straining on us. I do think we have better moods and have more energy. Once we get more sleep, little hard sometimes with two small children, I think we’ll be even better!
It’s also interesting about birth control. We dot use it for religious reasons and have studied a bit about how it could have effects on moods. I’ve had one good friend I mine start birth control and she became different. It was really sad. I can really see how that would effect a marriage unknowingly.
October 25, 2011 at 11:27 am
I’m still early in the process- mostly VLC vs. Paleo because I’m still trying to figure out what works for me. I already bump heads with my husband a little because he’s always tired and grumpy and now that I feel better it’s hard to listen to him complain and not try to “fix” him.
I’m learning that I have to back off a little. He’s not entirely unwilling to take the journey with me, but he’s not interested in changing his lifestyle yet. I do think we’ll be able to negotiate the change together because my husband’s a pretty fit guy and he’s just vain enough to do anything to maintain that as he gets older– which I have to confess is a big motivator for me as well.
October 26, 2011 at 11:19 am
LOL that’s awesome! Some amount of vanity can be good for some people. It can keep you healthy and hardworking for sure.
Diet is kind of like anything else we love. Sometimes we just have to do it on our own. My boyfriend is not into math or philosophy or writing. These are my personal things and that’s just that. So it is for nutrition too with a lot of us. We pursue our own interests apart from our partners, they support us, but they don’t always go along.
Pingback: Is A Long Marriage A Happy Marriage? Or Just A Long One? — Alison Golden
October 25, 2011 at 11:37 am
Thought provoking post, Peggy. I got married for the first time at 34, my husband also for the first time at 44. We’ve been married 13 years and have twin boys aged 11. I went Paleo a year ago, my husband did not. I’ve got healthier and slightly more energetic. I lost around 3lbs. My husband would like to lose maybe 5lbs. But really the outward change effects of paleo have been minimal. My husband eats my food and buys bread for himself to make sandwiches and toast. He drinks way too much caffeine for my liking but that’s his choice.
I’m afraid my views on marriage are rather dull. I think we way over-romanticize love and marriage which is unfortunate because expectations are way too high and huge disappointment ensues.
Marriage (or a stable relationship, married or not) becomes most important when children are involved. At this point happiness isn’t about the individual self it is about the larger unit. The more children one has, the more important it becomes. There is no doubt in my mind our children benefit from our family unit (a unit that has been carefully and consciously crafted by my husband and I.) It provides them with stability, rituals, opportunities, and life lessons that wouldn’t be available if the unit weren’t intact. When times are tough I see how much sustenance they get from this family even if, at times, me or my husband wants to run away from our responsibilities (and each other )
Love is really about pleasure points in the brain being activated and as such is a biochemical reaction. There are many ways to get those chemicals set off and it is important to make sure the balance between our stress and positive feeling hormones is right if we are keep our relationships going.
I ended up writing a post on my own blog in response to this as this was getting rather long. Speaks a lot to what I have been thinking about recently.
October 25, 2011 at 2:10 pm
Alison, thanks for your reply. I have some friends and many relatives who have the same view on marriage – my parents are two of them. Some of those couples get along just fine and some of them don’t, but they stay together because like you said, it’s for the family unit, or for the kids.
My parents were beyond loveless. They lived in their own rooms and didn’t care for each other’s personalities at all. I always yearned for love. I wanted a fairytale relationship. While my husband and I had problems well beyond the scope of this blog, maybe if I had been a different type of person or had experienced things a little differently, I could have made it work. But, while this situation isn’t ideal, I still do think it is better for my daughter that we split up. Sometimes, divorce needs to happen, some people aren’t cut out for it, but yes, I agree, when children are involved one needs to be very careful in their decision.
October 25, 2011 at 12:30 pm
My wife stuck by me while I gave up smoking. I dropped off an 80 a day habit … I would always say 40-60, but knew deep down it was 80, if not 100 at weekends when I didnt have to work … anyway, dropped off that to nothing. Stopped! Didn’t smoke anymore.
For the first few weeks it was hell, first few months it was hell … after a year or so, it wasn’t so bad and after a few, I was back to my normal self, but much much fatter.
I gave up smoking on my 30th birthday. I started to do something about my weight (well, fat) coming up to my 40th. I want to give my wife back the guy she married – happy, fun, slim with loads of get up and go. I’m already there, but continuing to lose fat.
She’s primal/paleo by proxy. I’m the family cook. She still eats bread, still eats sweets, still drinks a LOT of fruit juice, but that’s her – she’s a little size 6 (UK), so US 4? I don’t want to change her.
This article is excellent! Too many people can get caught up in themselves and want everyone around them to be the same – their partners don’t stand a chance if that is the case. Giving each other space is the most important part of marriage – not too much, of course, but personal time, personal space and a respect for how each other are doing things for themselves and for each other.
Again, this is a well written article mixing personal experience and advice which is particularly valuable for anyone reading.
October 25, 2011 at 1:51 pm
October 25, 2011 at 2:18 pm
Thanks for sharing Paul! That’s a whole lot of cigarettes! Whoof.
What you said about wanting to give your wife back the guy she married really hit a nerve with me. That is love. It’s hard to be happy in a relationship with someone that doesn’t love like that.
October 26, 2011 at 12:51 pm
We’re both on our second marriage and take care not to repeat the mistakes of past relationships.
October 26, 2011 at 4:47 pm
I’m on my second LTR and definitely not making the same mistakes as I made the first time around! I learned well from that major failure.
October 25, 2011 at 12:48 pm
I have always taken the stance that my food choices shouldn’t be anyone’s burden, so I never made a big deal out of my grain-free, dairy-free choices. And my husband looked on with amusement, but not much interest. I would read aloud passages from nutrition books and talk about what I was learning, but I still always made dinner for me and dinner for the family (which is easier than it sounds since paleo is simple food). Over the last year my husband has gotten more and more interested, he actually read Robb Wolf’s book (I told him it was funny) and began asking more questions. Then I started reading Primal Body Primal Mind … I don’t know which passage I read finally triggered it, but next thing I knew he was packing salads for lunch, he was having a bed of greens instead of pasta. And now, he is totally supporting me on getting our kids entirely off the gluten (other grains and dairy will be down the road). It will be a process, but having two paleo parents on board makes it a lot easier, and having a paleo partner really rocks!
October 25, 2011 at 2:20 pm
That’s a great story Cathy! So, you were able to say, yes, I want to be with this guy for who he is right now, I don’t need him to change. That’s lovely.
October 25, 2011 at 12:59 pm
Very interesting post, Peggy. You piqued my interest in an idea about sexual jealousy, and how it might be related to nutrition since you experienced a loss of jealousy after going paleo.
Food is such a primal, emotional field of activity, it’s bound in a web of connectivity in our interpersonal relationships of all kinds, and obviously food-mood is a huge player in sex drive, emotional states, etc.
In a previous life, as a raw vegan & dating raw vegans, any move away from raw veganhood was seen as a threat to the relationship. My sitting down to a big, bloody rare buffalo steak was seen initially as an affront to the relationship. I chose not to hide it, as it was my body’s craving and it seemed both natural and correct.
As a health practitioner who uses the paleo diet as an therapeutic intervention, I’ve seen a fair bit of relationship strife over diet. However it seems that most couples get through it when the significant benefits of this diet are seen and understood by the other partner, and also realizing how much hotter the other partner is getting–the resistant partner realizes that he/she needs to get their act together.
For myself, I met the woman I’m currently dating through a paleo event, so it’s a non-issue, or even a glue that keeps us hanging out and having fun together in ways that involve food.
Back to my original comment–I’ve seen in numerous cases including in my own relationships, a big decrease in jealousy. It stands to reason that if nutrition is sub-par, the body would create feelings to safeguard the perceived sources of nutrition-i.e. a partner, since food is perceived as scarce by the limbic system, any investment by a partner in another person would be seen as a further threat to one’s food intake.
It seems that many HG cultures are a lot more permissive and open about “sharing” in relationship, which also makes sense from the evolutionary perspective–when food is plentiful and relations are cordial among adults, paternity is not as important as all the adults share food and partake in raising the children. Examination of some, indeed most, HG tribes seems to corroborate this.
Thanks again for the thought-provoking post.
October 25, 2011 at 2:30 pm
Fascinating reasoning, Luke. I’ve never understood what jealousy is. I’ve thought it’s just another false mood but maybe it’s deeper than that. Jealousy is a huge interest of mine since I used to have a bon fire sized problem with it back in the day. It wasn’t really something I had to work through in the end, it just went away. Amazing.
By the way, not everyone cares (or is able to care in their current mental state) about the positive changes both mentally and physically that the other partner is making. I always thought it would work out that way too.
I think the worst case is when the person has lots of mental problems. Maybe it’s easier to say, hey I want to lose some weight, but when you are out of control in your mind, maybe there is less hope. I have observed this to be the case in many people I have known.
October 25, 2011 at 3:57 pm
I went Paleo 6 months ago, when my second daughter was 4 months old. I needed to lose 60lbs to get back to the weight I was pre-pregnany (1st child). My husband is 6’2 and 155lbs. It doesn’t seem to matter what he eats he still stays slim. However he has always been plagued by acne, digestion problems, athletes foot and occasional low energy. He has never been fussy about food and will eat anything that I prepare for him (or a not so healthy alternative someone else may over him at work or at a social gathering). In our house I do all the shopping and all of the cooking. I am lucky that he is so easy going about the whole thing. He has mentioned that he feels a lot better since going on the new food regime. Last week at work there was Halloween candy circulating of which he indulged quite a few times. His acne returned and he complained that he felt horrible all week! I was so glad to hear that. I don’t think he truly believed how powerful the connection between what you eat and how you feel (your health) can be. He also has loved watching me lose weight, and my improved looks and mood.
I think that it is important to set a good example and keep things positive. If your partner sees your joy and improved health hopefully they will be supportive of your changes and ideally make changes in their own life as well.
October 25, 2011 at 9:04 pm
Sandy, I agree, staying positive and being supportive is very important, but what I’m getting at is that sometimes when your health changes for the better – your mood improves, your looks, your attitude, your energy and everything – living in a negative environment might not work anymore. Ideally, one’s partner would see the positive changes and jump right on, but it doesn’t always work that way. It’s the people who have been hit the hardest by ill mental health and then recovered that end up at such a great turning point in their lives.
October 25, 2011 at 6:32 pm
My husband is not paleo, or even a real foodie. He cares about being healthy, but has different ideas on what it takes to achieve health (and is fairly relaxed about eating junk food…well, compared to me, anyway). I don’t ever expect him to come on board with paleo or traditional eating. I can’t make him eat fermented foods (although I occasionally can sneak a bit in), and I can’t make him give up bread (he acts like he will starve to death if he can’t make a sandwich). He’s got good genes, and I just hope that the food I make for him is enough to keep him in good health and help me make healthy babies. I do wish that he would give some things up and add certain things in, because I’d sure like him to not die early, but I do recognize it’s his body.
He does seem fairly healthy, thank goodness. I’m the one with the health problems. I feel like I’m in this weird spot right now, like I’ve just come out of the depressed/no energy/low libido/don’t touch me/I’m going to freak out and have a meltdown muck, and into a place where I can actually be normal and perhaps even have a healthier marriage. But yeah, all my issues definitely injured things a bit, and I think he’s just so used to the old me that now I’m trying to take steps to strengthen our marriage, and I think he’s a little unsure of what to do. But we’ll get there. Thank goodness I decided he’d be a good husband for me while I was in a very rational state of mind. His good qualities are still very important to me.
Anyway, not that our marriage was ever really in danger, but I feel like I could say that going paleo (or traditional, even, as that was really helping me, too) could actually “save” our marriage, because it is saving me.
October 25, 2011 at 11:27 pm
” I feel like I could say that going paleo could actually “save” our marriage, because it is saving me.”
Love it !
October 26, 2011 at 7:09 am
October 26, 2011 at 11:05 am
That’s what I thought too. I was just certain that as I became more tolerant of people and my situation in general, it would change our dynamic, and that maybe my chilling out would just fix everything. It didn’t happen for me, but it definitely happens for some people!
We have so much in common Lisa! All of my issues not only injured things but clouded things too. I didn’t even know who I was married to while I was such a mess mentally. It wasn’t until the fog finally cleared that I was truly able to say, wow, I don’t belong here.
October 26, 2011 at 7:46 pm
I think the difference between your ex-husband and my husband is that your ex was not in a good place, and mine is. At least, that’s what I deduced from your story. It makes sense that you wouldn’t want to stay with someone who is dragging you down. I purposely selected a husband who was both strong and could also handle my issues, though I always felt bad he had to deal with them. I’m so glad I can be healthier now and that my issues are becoming less and less of a burden for him.
October 26, 2011 at 8:05 pm
I think that’s the difference between my ex-husband and the husband of everyone who has left comments here. Mine was not in a good place. Unlike you, I didn’t really ‘select’ him. We got together when I was 19 and a very busy, muddy headed, SAD college student. But it all works out in the end. I’m not complaining.
October 26, 2011 at 8:51 pm
LOL, apparently so (about everyone else’s husband). I was extremely fortunate to have been clear-headed enough at the time I was dating my husband, because I wanted to marry two or three guys before him who were fairly messed up. I was always lucky enough to have gotten dumped, or in one case the guy moved across the country while my depression cleared enough for me to see I needed to dump him.
November 6, 2011 at 6:35 pm
To Lisa and other ladies going Paleo.
As someone who just came through a wife of 24 years leaving because of a lack of communication, please, please, please talk about your issues with your husband.
I would not wish the pain I went through during this separation on my worst enemy.
Us men are very dense and need a 2×4 in the head some times to get our attention, you need to sit us down early before little issues pile up and the love goes. You need to say “Fred, I’m very serious, these are things I’m having issues with and I don’t want them to effect our relationship”. My wife never did that, and to my regret it now appears too late to change that.
I know now the dynamic that keeps relationships going, it seems simplistic, but based on my observations and everything I’ve researched this last four months attraction boils down to numbers. Men & Women react in different ways, but we all follow a basic hierarchy, we tend to marry people on the same physical/mental level as our self. If for example you are both a 6 on a scale of 10 on a physical/ compatibility scale when you are married and there is no serious issues the relationship tends to be stable, but if hubby slips to a 4(gains weight develops bad habits, slovenly dress) a 6 wife is beginning to wonder about other options if he doesn’t change. Or if on the other foot hubby 6 hits the gym, begins to dress up like a Calvin Klein model and bumps up to a 8 he begins to also wonder about other options.
It’s not so much about drifting apart, it’s about one or the other losing too much of the edge they originally had compared to their spouse. So please, ladies, if you feel hubby is letting you down, tell them you see family and friends all around separating and divorcing and are afraid, that you “don’t want it to happen to us” . As dense as us men are we’d get that, our guts would twist and the floor would feel like it was falling away and we’d move on it quick.
Even though my wife made it plain there was no hope in reconciliation, I took a long hard look at myself and realized I was not near the man I once was and needed to make changes my life, whether she came back or not. Since then I’ve hit the gym nearly everyday, cycled 10 miles a day, have taking up daily meditation, yoga, and changed my diet. In four months I’m down to 10% body fat and am in better shape physically, mentally and spiritually than I ever have been in my life. All of this I would have gladly done If I had only known how she had been feeling.
October 26, 2011 at 6:21 am
I had the opposite experience, happily. As I began to recover from celiac, heal my gut with the GAPS diet, and practice more meditation (all this AFTER many years of insufficient Primal living), I stopped being so stressed out about my relationship. I was suddenly just okay with the fact that I was in love with him, imperfect and careless with his health as he was. He fulfilled me in ways that practicing health could not, and that, for the first time in several years, became enough. Would I have loved it if he jumped on the bandwagon, and made all the changes he promised to me -and himself- he would? Yes, but truthfully it might have just fed my orthorexia. Having that balance keeps me grounded, keeps me living. Or so I’ve come to discover.
October 26, 2011 at 10:59 am
I would expect that going Primal would save some and lose some, depending on the situation. Going Primal can be a good lesson in learning how to accept people’s decisions and even faults.
In my relationship now, I experience the same things you are talking about and it is great. He’s definitely into health but not like I am. He allows himself to indulge more than I do and I just have to accept him for that. It’s nice being able to love and accept someone for who they are. And yes, the balance definitely keeps you off the orthorexia path!
October 26, 2011 at 1:32 pm
Thank you so much for sharing this Peggy.
I am lucky, my partner is into eating primal. We have different goals (he wants to gain weight) so he is eating more fruit and stuff, but he is feeling SO much better (as a former carb addict). We have somewhat the opposite libido problem, mine has always been super high, and his is not so much, but I think that eating this way is helping with that, partly just because he feels so much better mentally and is less stressed.
I feel like eating this way is making us closer as well as having more energy and being more healthy!
October 26, 2011 at 4:46 pm
You’re welcome! That’s the way it should be, Jessica. Growing together is what relationships are all about.
October 26, 2011 at 5:02 pm
Another great article Peggy! My husband has been very tolerant of my food needs, since I started GF several years ago. He has been much more skeptical as I moved into a paleo framwork – he’s fat-phobic – but he still accepts that I am trying to make choices to feel as good as I can. Since I do most of the cooking, he’s semi-paleo now, but still makes gluten foods for himself sometimes. So, the food changes have not been much of an issue for our marriage yet. I anticipate that it may become a bit more of an issue when we have kids and need to decide what kind of food to feed them, or explain why daddy eats spaghetti and mommy doesn’t. However, my husband has always stayed fit (as I generally have) so we don’t have too much of the changing appearance to deal with.
Incidentally, I went off of hormonal birth control a little over a year ago. My body seems happier and fortunately it did not affect my attraction to my husband! However, I replaced the HBC with the paragard IUD. My period is very irregular and I get tons of spotting in between. (My theory is that it keeps you from getting pregnant because you can’t have sex…) However, as I zero in on my diet and try to cut out sugars (I have a wicked sweet tooth) and eat more seafood, I get much less spotting. It’s another example of how concious eating can help influence your body’s behavior. So, I will continue with the “eat more seafood” campaign and try to have more sex!
October 26, 2011 at 5:08 pm
We have to deal with that a little bit around here. My boyfriend doesn’t eat much non-paleo food, he’s pretty happy eating carbs that grow fresh out of the ground, but occasionally he loves a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on gluten free bread. My daughter actually thinks it’s pretty funny. “Why does Julian have a loaf of bread mom,” she says while her jaw hits the floor. It’s no big deal though (as long as there aren’t any mental problems involved) dealing with our differences.
October 26, 2011 at 10:05 pm
What an amazing story you’ve told. What incredible posts from all kinds of people.
I place a good relationship above everything. Even Paleo.
I know staying together if you’re not healthy or happy makes sense. Can’t argue with that. If there’s a spark, a hope you should work on it. Try to stick it out.
I’ve been married 31 years and have been a health nut all my adult life. (Wasted a lot of time on low fat and aerobics) I’ve been Paleo for two years. My lovely bride has never worked out. Intentionally followed an eating plan. (Though she cooks some wonderful Paleo meals.) “If she gets desire to exercise she lays down until it goes away” goes the family joke.
I was tortured and unhappy in the early years that I didn’t have a thin and fit wife. I was an example. Doing the right things and she had no interest. Wasn’t motivated. Didn’t care.
Finally I realized that no one else can make us happy. We can’t change anybody but ourselves. I have a loving wife who couldn’t live without me nor I without her.
I wish all the luck in the world to people struggling with this issue. If you have a good loving person don’t throw them back. Make yourself happy and love each other.
October 27, 2011 at 6:50 am
Dana, thanks for sharing you wisdom. That’s exactly what I was getting at. You have to accept a person for who they are if you really love them. I couldn’t do that, because there wasn’t a spark, because our relationship was very bad, and because my health had changed me so dramatically (emotionally and mentally).
Incidentally, I am in the same boat as you now. My boyfriend eats pretty healthily, but he absolutely despises exercise. So here I am this gung ho Primal mommy and he’s a little twig. While I wish he would exercise because it would be good for his health, the fact doesn’t change the way I love him!
October 27, 2011 at 10:37 am
I love how your vows were made by “some other person”. In truth, your vows mean nothing to you and you looked for an excuse. Modern marriage is a joke to most women today.
October 27, 2011 at 10:49 am
A little bitter eh? In truth, you know nothing about me. Though I suppose it probably is hard to believe that such major changes can happen to people when you’ve never seen them yourself.
November 16, 2011 at 12:22 am
Well, we know what you told us about yourself. And that’s that you’re an oath breaker who doesn’t stick it out when times are tough.
Sometimes the truth is brutal.
November 16, 2011 at 5:55 am
There’s nothing brutal about a message from a judgmental chick who knows next to nothing about another person’s situation. It’s not even possible to be offended by such a simple minded comment!
Furthermore, it is a wild assumption on your part that I don’t stick it out when times are tough. You assume this because I had a divorce which implies nothing more than that there was one visible instance in my life, after 10 years of sticking it out, in which I bailed – for reasons that are largely unknown to you.
Does a 1500 word article make me so transparent that you can judge me without a doubt? Sounds a bit self righteous to me.
And what if I were incapable of sticking it out when times are tough?
Think about it.
What if that were one of my faults (like judging too quickly and making people feel like shit is one of yours). Would that make me a horrible person or maybe just someone who has an issue she needs to work on – like all of us do?
Have some compassion. The world needs it.
November 16, 2011 at 7:23 am
In the right situation, it’s morally wrong to keep an oath. Every oath carries an implicit “until the other side breaks it first.”
October 27, 2011 at 12:31 pm
Ha ha! Let’s let the judgey troll stay under their bridge.
November 15, 2011 at 2:14 pm
Wow. Harsh is right! Are you saying it is better to stay in a loveless, unhappy marriage just because you took a “vow till death do us part” then to leave and try to find happiness elsewhere? If this is your view, I hope you are in a happy marriage, otherwise the only way you are getting out looks rather grim…
October 23, 2012 at 2:10 pm
Kill them instead of divorce, and you won’t be breaking your oath… *eyeroll*
October 27, 2011 at 12:32 pm
Man! I came here thinking I was going to find a recipe for Paleo French Fries using a rutabaga, and I end up getting completely sucked into this article.
Let me just that it was very brave of you to post something so personal in the way you did. The reason I found it so engrossing it that I am going through it right now with my wife and kids. I am totally Paleo focused, but only about a month into it, so I am still getting dialed in. However, I feel great, dropped 10 pounds, am full of energy, and by God, I want the people I love to have this experience as well. The thing is, my wife weighs about 106 pounds and looks fantastic already and kids are kids, so my audience is not exactly yearning for a change. I am trying to compensate by trying to make things really tasty and it is hit or miss. My wife is competely emotionally addicted to processed carbs and sugar. I KNOW they would all do better going Paleo, but getting them there by way of my motivation may not work because I have never been the despotic dictator type. I think the kids I can wear down, but my wife has flatly stated that she won’t give up certain foods. The thing that really gets me is that she won’t even read a sentence about Paleo. Maybe it’s too large a paradigm shift. I do all of the cooking and grocery shopping, and short order food preparation is getting me down.
Philosophy huh? Khalil Gibran says that in marriage there should be “spaces in your togetherness” and “the strings of the lute are alone though they quiver with the same music,” but, to flog the metaphor, that assumes you both are trying to play the same song…
I am not trying to bash my wife and I recognize that I might be just as obstinate if she were trying to turn everything around on me. It’s just frustrating in this early stage when I am relearning how to navigate the grocery store.
October 28, 2011 at 9:28 am
“Magnesium and vitamin D deficiency, for example, can cause symptoms of depression. Deficiencies of magnesium, zinc, iron, B6, and others can make a person irritable. Lack of saturated and omega 3 fats in the diet can contribute to mood disorders. Zinc deficiency can cause low libido in men and women. An imbalanced gut ecology can lead to social embarrassment and irritability.”
I have been taking all of the above mentioned supplements, except for iron, because it has always been at a good level. I donate blood on a regular basis, and they tell me it’s in the higher range, too.
I thought I was getting everything I needed through my paleo diet and supplementation, but I was becoming more and more depressed. I was getting very discouraged, because I was eating the healthiest I ever have for ten months now (absolutely no cheating either) and I fell deeper into depression. Then I learned about how selenium is extremely deficient in our foods today and if you aren’t getting enough it could cause irritability and depression. Also, I had been taking iodine regularly, but come to find out not enough. This nutrient helps regulate your mood as well. Dr. Davis, Wheat Belly author, recommends 500mcg-1000mcg daily. I was only getting about 100mcg. So I upped my intake of iodine to 900mcg and added 200mcg of selenium to my daily supplementation, and lo and behold, after two weeks my depression is completely gone, zero irritability. My energy levels have soared, too. I am in a constant state of contentment. I still cannot believe that I no longer have to try to get myself in a happy mood, which was impossible without these two additional nutrients; so I would just give up trying. Now, I’m actually humming and singing during the day as I go about doing my chores, which I have not done in a long, long time. Also, I upped my daily intake of raw grass-fed butter and EVOO. Now I have boundless energy. If I stay up late one night, the next day I don’t hit a low later in the day; my energy stays constant as well.
Peggy, thanks for this post with such personal information. You are such a giving person to share the most intimate details about you; and I know you do it, so that your stories can help others get through theirs more easily. It will help a lot of people understand why things are falling apart with their partner when you would think that it would only get better, because your getting better and healthier.
My husband and I had grown apart as a result of my mental, physical changes. After getting past a long, rocky stage between us, he is now on the same page and things have never been better. We are growing together again. We are a team working towards optimal health by supporting each other all the way. We are falling in love all over again! Here’s to your health, everyone!!!
October 28, 2011 at 11:07 am
Wow Eva. That’s so fortunate that you found the missing link.
It definitely is important to realize that when you take on a marriage you take on ups and downs. Sticking it out is all part of the game. It’s important to give it ample time before ditching out. And who knows, maybe that will never be necessary.
October 28, 2011 at 10:09 am
I haven’t read all the comments, so I don’t know if anyone else brought this up. Also, based on your story, it’s most likely it doesn’t apply to you. Nonetheless, it’s an important consideration for anyone undergoing a major life change or adjustment, whether going paleo, changing (or dropping) religion, or anything else of similar magnitude. The thing to remember is this:
There is no more annoying fanatic than the recent convert.
In my experience many, if not most, who have just accepted any sort of new “system” are True Believers, prone to trying to convert everyone in sight. They KNOW they’re RIGHT, and they KNOW anyone with a different outlook is WRONG.
And people Do Not Want To Be Converted. They find the True Believer unbelievably irritating. Unfortunately, if the new True Believer is in a relationship, the other in that relationship may refrain from expressing anything that might lead to conflict. Of course, holding in that irritation can lead to nothing good, and can emerge as anything from moodiness to a breakup.
So, next time you (the general “you,” not you in particular, Peggy) “convert,” remember that those around you aren’t going to immediately share your newfound certainty. In fact, for better or worse they may never share it, so try to keep your enthusiasm reasonable.
October 28, 2011 at 11:03 am
Oh I wouldn’t say that. It probably did apply to me! I was young, immature, and had truly been born again. I probably annoyed the heck out of him.
Thanks for sharing your wisdom, Micheal. This is something that people need to hear.
October 28, 2011 at 12:30 pm
Michael, you hit the nail right on the head. This is so true. I’ve been that way so many times in my life and lost count because of all the diet changes in my life. I once believed that being a 100% vegan was the best, most nutritious diet in the world and everyone should be eating that way. Well, that lasted four years until my health started going downhill. But here I am today, paleo and lovin’ it. Trying not to preach too much, but it is difficult to contain my enthusiasm sometimes, especially around those who are somewhat open to it. But I have learned exactly what you so nicely put together in your post and leave others alone to either help themselves (or not) if they don’t want my help or advice. They are the ones who will have to suffer due to their ignorance, and my only hope for them is that one day they will find their way to true health.
October 28, 2011 at 1:39 pm
Peggy & Eva, thanks for the kind replies. I’ve been that True Believer many times, too. It’s something I never quite seem to remember not to do in all the excitement of discovering new ideas and ways to do things.
I was a vegetarian for a few hours one day (posted about it here: http://pizsez.blogspot.com/2011/08/i-convert-to-vegetarianism.html). Fortunately it wasn’t long enough for me to “get religion” about that one. I’m still very passionate about what I believe (and about what I don’t), and if pushed I’ll fight back like a cornered grizzly, but for the most part I’ve pretty much gained enough wisdom to stop being annoying for too long.
October 28, 2011 at 2:33 pm
I’ve learned this so well with all my “transformations” over the years that I just keep it to myself now. For the most part my friends and acquaintances know nothing about my diet except that I “eat weird”. Nobody cares so why annoy them with it? It’s just my thing now, and my daughter’s, and that’s it. But even with her I just teach her and tell her to make her own choices. She’s dang smart and I trust her to find her way.
The human race is going to hell in a hand basket anyway so there’s no point in trying to save the world.
October 29, 2011 at 12:33 pm
I cannot agree more!;D
October 28, 2011 at 3:27 pm
Great article and interesting comments. Since I turned 40 I’ve been on a mission to get back into shape through nutrition and fitness (mainly triathlons). I discovered Paleo last year and went 100% in March of this year. I can’t believe the difference it has made.
That said, I think my family is doing pretty well. My husband has taken the 70/30 approach, and I can deal with that fairly well. We also live on the same property as my MIL, so she has seen some benefit as well. Dinners are almost always Paleo (with the rare exception of some added bread/rice/pasta for them) – but they rarely ask for it any more (a win!).
My health and fitness have done wonders for my confidence and for my marriage. It has rekindled the romance in our relationship, we are more caring/loving with each other, and our sex life is off the charts. We have been married 24 years this year.
It hasn’t been all wine and roses, there have been some bumps along the way. And as my husband continues to enjoy more Paleo foods he wants the crap less and less. It might take some time, but he may just turn out to be closer to 90% if he keeps working on it.
October 29, 2011 at 3:09 am
Dietary changes dont’ cause personality changes; personality changes cause dietary changes. Or, more specifically, certain types of personalities choose certain types of diets and other types choose others. If “going paleo” causes you to get divorced, it’s only because physical health was the means by which a fundamental difference was exposed. Generally speaking, people who embrace the “paleo lifestyle” – and I mean that in the widest sense possible – do so because they think more independently and actively than other people. First, they realize the high status that physical well-being deserves upon a person’s hierarchy of value; and second, they choose paleo to put it there by using their highest value: rationality. Conversely, in general, people who don’t embrace the paleo lifestyle – and who default to the mainstream take on physical well-being – do so because they don’t value rationality and intellectual independence; and thus don’t recognize the paramount importance of physical well-being.
That’s one explanation. The other, less common, one is the OVER-valuing of physical well-being. This is when one person in a relationship seeks to become healthy for the sake of being healthy, and refuses – or hesitates – to put that health to use doing things which will contribute to the health of some other aspect of life if it means lessening one’s physical well-being. Even if the spouse of such a person were perfectly rational in his or her estimation of the relative value of physical well-being, there would still be a problem because the spouse would be seen by that person as undervaluing physical health.
In either case – one rational and one irrational person or two irrational people – the personality problem(s) is/are caused not by the dietary habits per se, but rather pre-date them, and the dietary habits just expose them.
October 29, 2011 at 8:38 am
Grant, all I can say is WOW!!! In a good way, of course!
October 29, 2011 at 10:44 am
Yes, the personality problems probably do pre-date them as I am quite sure mine did. But as I was never able to tell exactly who I was it was difficult to figure out who I should be with, until the time when I was able to actually recognize my personality. I went through an identity crisis every 3 or 4 months throughout all of my life (funny to think of now). I could never figure out if I was strong or weak, laid back or strung out, ambitious or lazy. My personality was very much disguised by my mental problems.
My personality was unveiled by changing my brain chemistry, for example, and by increasing my nutrition, by eliminating inflammation, and by changing bacterial imbalances. You can’t say that someone who recovers from schizophrenia, say, isn’t going to be a totally different person when the symptoms go away. Sure there are some fundamental aspects of the personality that will always be and always were obvious but many that were not. Maybe my recovery didn’t change my personality (and maybe that’s just semantics) but it did bring aspects of it to the foreground which none of us had seen before. I had always been anti-social, indecisive, very very quite and insecure, obsessive compulsive. That is very different from the ambitious, boisterous, confident, and decisive person I am today. I imagine this is really difficult for people to understand who’ve never been there. Most people (arguably) don’t have such major mental problems and if they do, they’ll probably never have the chance to recover from them.
So, while I think there is a whole lot of truth to what you say (and it was an enjoyable read!), I think it should be added that in certain instances diet can reveal an otherwise hidden personality which can make the relationship problems obvious and no longer a question.
October 29, 2011 at 2:07 pm
I do know from my personal experience that dietary choices play a major role in our personality. Sugars, grains, especially wheat, cause me to become irrational, irritable and unstable. When I used to eat those foods, the day before my menses, I would become psycho b**** from hell (this would be my way of knowing that it’s coming the next day; my husband would always make mention of it, too) and have cramps the first two days into it. Since eating paleo, I have no idea when to expect it and no more cramps at all. I am in a constant state of contentment with very little that will set me off anymore. There is this unusual calmness, and I say unusual, because I have never experienced it quite this way in my entire 49 years of life.
October 30, 2011 at 11:04 am
So true about personality. For example, I was always labeled as shy, but I’m not all that shy. My family thinks I’m high-strung and quick tempered, but I see myself as laid back and patient. It’s just that my body chemistry takes over my personality at times. Right now I’m trying to figure out if I’m really lazy or not. I was labeled lazy as a kid because I often did not have the energy to do things…or the focus. After I had my son, my energy plummeted to an all time low, so I went into a survival state where I did as little as possible to conserve my precious little energy. I’m doing more work as I feel better, but I think I’m about to discover if I’m really a hard worker or just a little bit lazy, haha.
October 31, 2011 at 2:22 am
Peggy, that is so true! I feel your words, and I totally agree because I’ve been there every step of the way, I felt all that confusing and changing emotions, mixed up feelings, like my life was a bad rollercoaster. I felt all the pain, all the shame, loneliness, confused feelings, depression,physical pain, different ilnesses..One has to go trought it to understand how deep and how hard it is to spend more than 10 years of your life not living but dying slowly. Even now when I still don’t feel as good as I should( my health is improving but slowly since I was a total reck)I feel so much better than before that I cannot even explain it. First of all when you don’t feel so much back pain and headache every day it changes you immediately because you are not grumpy and sad, and depressed and swollowing yet anouther painkiller, and let alone when you finally get your first period after 6 years not having it at all,and when your face starts to look like you are a normal person, without the dark circles and without hundreds of acne…I have so much more reasons to write but I will stop. This alone is enough to make somebody change into a different person, happier, more pozitive, optimistic, energetic and so on. Everybody who thinks that we are exaggerating-come and spend a day in our shoes!! Or 10 years if you will. And only that we will hear what you have to say.
October 31, 2011 at 10:54 am
Lilly, I wrote this for other people who are in the same situation. Obviously it’s not the type of thing that most people could understand. Thanks a lot for sharing and sympathizing.
October 29, 2011 at 3:18 pm
“It is unfortunate that we take vows in the altered state of the standard American diet”
…yup. i think it is unfortunate that we feel compelled to take impossible vows at all.
SAD or not, doesn’t it seem nuts to think that we won’t change, y’know… THAT much from age 22-42?
my love is based on value. there is no altruistic principle involved at all. it’s very selfish, and at the same time, selfless; if i demand value from my woman, i’d better be damn sure that i’m giving her value in return. we owe each other nothing…
…so she knows exactly where i’m at. there’s no confusion. when she asks me “why do you love me?”, like every woman in the world does, i don’t say “well, the giant man in the sky tells me i have to ’cause we took our vows”. hah! THAT would get me laid fer shur. ;D
no. i tell her “why do i love you? because you give me value. you’re with me because i want you with me.”
that’s love, no?
October 29, 2011 at 3:50 pm
Absolutely! This was going to be a topic for another day.
Forever may happen for some but it shouldn’t be expected and it shouldn’t be a big deal either. I was just talking to Richard of http://freetheanimal.com about this a couple of weeks ago. Once you’ve become a totally rational person you simply must accept the possibility that a couple may drift apart.
I don’t believe in life long vows anymore. I believe in respect and honesty but delusions of forever are not for me. And, like you, my partner knows very well where I stand. I suppose that’s probably why he hasn’t asked me to marry him. hehehe.
I think there are probably a couple of types of people. One type may be better cut out for LTRs. My boyfriend probably could stay with me for the rest of his life, happily. Me? Probably not.
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October 30, 2011 at 4:55 pm
Wow. You certainly found the excuse you needed to make yourself feel good about yourself. “It’s not my fault! It’s his fault! I would never have married such a person if it wasn’t for the American diet!”
Sad. Very sad. Glad Paleo can give you a good excuse to help you sleep at night. I pray your kid grows up, reads this as an adult, and sees how ridiculous this really is.
October 30, 2011 at 6:40 pm
I don’t see it that way at all! In fact, I don’t really think of fault at all. Either we were both at fault or chance was at fault. We were very different people. We met when I was 19 and suffering from a lot of mental issues. We were very similar back then and served each other very well for many years. I have never screamed “It’s not my fault! It’s his fault!” as you say. So many many things were my fault, and I’d be the first to admit it. In the end I changed and he didn’t. This kind of thing can happen to people for any number of reasons, mine happened to be the relief of mental issues. And your accusation that “I would never have married such a person if it wasn’t for the American diet!” is a wild assumption. “Such a person”? He was a fine person or I wouldn’t have been married to him for so long.
Some would say that I should have continued to wait for him to change and that I am wrong for ever making the call to leave. You are entitled to your belief in “till death do us part” and I am entitled to my beliefs.
I don’t need any excuses to feel good about myself. I do what I believe in and that is all.
October 30, 2011 at 8:20 pm
You have every right, Peggy, to do what you believe in as everyone does; and you don’t have to justify why you make the decisions you do to anyone. We each live with our own choices and the results of those choices. I understand you did what you had to for a better life and there is nothing wrong with that. Everyone is entitled to a happy, fulfilling life.
October 31, 2011 at 9:08 am
So Primal Parent, did you take full custody of his child, the house and half of everything he owns, too? Are you collecting alimony?
If so, you’re a standard case of everyday evil that permeates our modern society.
If not, then kudos to you. Acting on your whims is certainly your prerogative as a willful person, but stripping someone else bare in the process certainly is morally (even if legally) reprehensible.
October 31, 2011 at 10:41 am
Clearly, you have already made up your mind about me and maybe all women?
“his child” “everything he owns” I was just a leach to begin with right?
You are obviously new around here and don’t know that my husband and I split custody and that I live in a tiny apartment and that I don’t drive.
And that break ups and relationships are so damn complicated and private, it is never anyone’s business to judge them.
October 31, 2011 at 1:14 pm
Your absolutely unjustifiable insinuations about Peggy’s situation aside, I must ask: When exactly did you meet my ex?
October 31, 2011 at 11:21 pm
What an awesome story. Good for you, very inspiring. I have experienced much of the same with gluten intolerance and mental illness. It is amazing how much you can change, how life can be breathed back into you. We are fragile, and I have to remind myself how close to destruction we can come, that our health and fullness of life can be brought to it’s knees with the wrong nutrition/environment/luck. I don’t think it is wrong or ‘selfish’ to want a partner who can live life with the same richness you enjoy, sometimes paths diverge and I think that is ok. I think the ideals of monogamy are wrong and in some sense oppressive…
November 1, 2011 at 11:58 am
Fantastic post. I have seen my friends go through this with their husbands and boyfriend when they go Paleo. I am lucky that my boyfriend has fully switched over. It took him about 4-5 months to make a complete switch but we are much stronger for it and are doing CrossFit together now. I am soooo proud of him and look forward to when we have kids together raising them free of the SAD diet.
Thank you for sharing.
November 1, 2011 at 12:48 pm
Out of curiosity, would you have felt the same way if your husband left you for someone fitter/better looking before you ‘found paleo’? If he makes any reasonable amount of money, he likely could have. Single, 30+ women are dime/dozen. I’m sure there were lots of younger, good looking women at his office – Why do you think he stayed?
Or, with your eventual new partner (who you’re with because you’re both ‘hot’) – what do you think will happen when your beauty starts to fade?
Think he’ll stick it out, or trade you for a younger, prettier version of you?
You can justify hormonal changes all you’d like, but anyone who looks can see what you did.
But, sadly, unlike loyalty, beauty always fades.
November 1, 2011 at 1:06 pm
It amazes me how much these strangers seem to know about me!
November 1, 2011 at 2:12 pm
Peggy, I know you know this…it doesn’t matter what strangers think or say, because in the end it is you who walks in your shoes and you have every right to do whatever you have to in order to live a happy, enjoyable life. Those who choose to stay in a relationship that has nothing but pain and suffering holding it together is just that…their choice. You chose to end that, and if someone doesn’t like your decision that’s not your problem, it’s theirs. Stay strong!!!
November 1, 2011 at 2:38 pm
Thank you and all of my regular readers for coming to my defense this week! People can be so petty and simple.
The commentors know nothing more about me than that my husband and I split up and that I’m a pretty girl. Their simple minds then extrapolate that hotness had something to do with our breakup (my husband and I were both hot, so ugh, ok). I wish I could lay out some of the problems of our relationship. Would they feel like idiots! It’s tempting but obviously those are details I have to keep to myself. I could defend myself against all these silly things but it’s just so stupid. They aren’t talking to me anyway, they are talking to a few details that they filled in with colored pencil.
So let the ridicule of this imaginary person come! Morons.
November 1, 2011 at 2:42 pm
Thank you for getting all these very important concepts down in one post. It is absolutely amazing to me that when the fog lifts… life doesn’t look the same at all. I had hunted for Paleo for years and adopted many aspects of it on my own. But once I realized the extreme deleterious effects of grains… and once I found Paleo everything changed. I’m glad to see others have had similar journeys. And thanks again 4 the reminder – life is short and life is fragile. We need to do the very best we can to ensure that our lives are as relevant, robust and lively as we can make them! ‘Sittin’ on the couch and eating Oreos is not my idea of living. Sometimes getting out there and getting things done, means we leave some people behind. It just can’t be helped.
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November 1, 2011 at 11:32 pm
That’s an interesting outlook! And I apploud you for the courage to tell your personal story. I think that a lot of people get stuck in a similar situation, but instead of making the step forward and end their relationship, they start blaming themselves and either quit the healthy lifestyle “in the name of marriage” or just sufer through their marriage! Keep it up! You are doing great!
November 2, 2011 at 8:21 am
November 2, 2011 at 12:43 pm
It takes a lot of courage to leave a relationship (more than it does to enter one, in my opinion). You haven’t chosen an easy path by leaving, so I’m just astonished at all the people who think you’re taking the easy way out of a hard situation.
Anytime you make drastic changes in your life, relationships can suffer. Whoever thinks marriage is somehow magically exempt is very near-sighted.
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December 11, 2011 at 11:31 pm
Wow, thanks for sharing.. I have been slowly reading your blog more and more. I’m now 27 weeks and paleo is not what I have been, I’m trying very hard before pregnancy I was much better never been strict though I would love to have your discipline.. But on the marriage thing that spoke to me because as soon as I got pregnant my relationship with my husband went south, big time. We always had problems, I didn’t want to have a child now but I won’t say I regret anything I’m in love with my son and the idea of being a mother.. Weeks ago we were on the verge of separation and divorce now things are looking a bit better. He stopped eating healthy (he was never quite paleo or great but much better than when we first met). However he was a workout fiend and huge in muay thai- now he sits around after work watching football and hasn’t worked out since I got pregnant! And he took up chewing tobacco and eats only junk. He was always a super sexual person now he refuses to have sex! I don’t know if his libido is dead or if its me, he downloads porn and I hate it so I know he’s doing his thing just not with me..And Im totally into sex right now and have always been but especially now, I crave that closeness! I haven’t gained much I think I know I still look attractive because other men hit on me!
Anyways I’m really divided because I’m trying to be paleo and his eating habits are ruining my own but I don’t dare say anything because he will get all upset. I’ve been walking on glass in the last 3 months trying to keep the peace, and trying to change my bad habits in how I use to interact with him. As well I don’t want to make excuses for not eating right. I got over bulimia a year ago and I finally have a healthy view and relationship with food. Its hard because although it seems he wants to stay together now that my hormones are rebalanching as the pregnancy is in its third trimester and I feel way more stable and strong I’m not sure I can live with him if he continues on like this, he is not the man I met. Anyways I pray things will be different after the baby comes but thank you for writing this blog and I am happy you are strong and feel that although your marriage has ended it was for the best and it sounds like there is no animosity which is rare! Best, Amanda
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