Is Weight Gain Grounds for Divorce?

Is Weight Gain Grounds for Divorce?

People get divorced for a variety of reasons. There may be adultery, financial issues, substance use, addiction, or domestic abuse involved. But maybe you want to divorce for a superficial reason — your spouse’s weight. 

It is uncommon for someone to get married and never gain another pound throughout the marriage. The truth is that we are all going to gain weight at some point, whether it is through pregnancy, menopause, stress, poor eating habits, chronic medical conditions, busy lifestyles, emotional trauma, eating disorders, and other reasons. 

Your spouse may have gained 20, 50, or even 100 pounds. This can cause you to lose physical attraction to them. Should you get a divorce? 

The truth is that none of us is perfect. Our appearance changes as we age. The young, thin girl you married 30 years ago may now be in her 50s with gray hair and wrinkles. Your husband may have had a full head of hair 20 years ago, but now his hair is thinning and graying. 

Divorce is such a drastic step when you are unhappy with your spouse’s physical appearance. Before you file for divorce, it is important to take a look at yourself and accept the changes of time. Have you gained weight? Are you still the same as you were when you got married? Most likely, no.

But if you do not want to stay married, you technically do not have to. You can divorce your spouse over weight issues, but should you? 

Why Do People Gain Weight?

Maintaining a healthy weight is not always easy. People are rarely the same weight as they were when they married 10, 20, 30, or 40 years or more ago. Here are some reasons why:

  • Not prioritizing health
  • Health issues
  • Too little time to exercise 
  • Not willing to cook healthy foods 
  • Pregnancy, childbirth, and nursing 
  • Childhood trauma 
  • Emotional issues 
  • Eating disorders
  • General unhappiness in life or marriage

There are many reasons for weight gain. It is important to understand that marriages and people in general are complicated and complex. A seemingly small problem in a marriage can cause stress, which can lead to overeating and weight gain.

Should a Spouse Divorce Over Weight Gain?

In Florida, you can divorce for any reason. You do not need to explain why; you can simply list “irreconcilable differences.” But is it morally wrong to divorce a spouse over weight gain?

Think about your marriage vows. You vowed to stay married to your spouse for better or for worse, and in sickness and in health. Weight gain falls under this, so you could say that divorcing your spouse because he or she got fat could be breaking these vows. At the very least, it is shallow.

But let’s face it. We all want someone who looks good to us. We are attracted to certain types of people. Men are especially visually inclined. In fact, a poll showed that half of men would dump their female partners if she got fat. Only 20% of women would do the same if their husbands or boyfriends got fat.

Those who are rich and/or successful would be more inclined to divorce over weight gain, especially if they believe they could get any woman they wanted. At the very least, they would be more likely to cheat on their partner.

But keep in mind that people do change in other ways as they get older. They get wrinkles and gray hair. Some lose their hair. Others get cellulite. Then there are some who develop chronic medical issues and deal with physical side effects, such as weight gain or skin problems. What happens in these situations? How would a spouse feel about divorce due to old age, something that we will all face if we live long enough?

What do married people say about weight gain and how it affects their marriage? Some admit that they are vain and would divorce their spouses over significant weight gain except if they were pregnant. They claim you have to keep up the attraction once you are married. They worry that weight gain means no sex, which will eventually lead to divorce.

Others believe that divorcing a spouse over weight gain is superficial and if that is the way that someone feels, then they should divorce anyway. 

What Should You Do?

If your spouse has gained so much weight that it is affecting your relationship, the best thing you can do is communicate. You need to be honest with them. Tell them how you feel about the relationship. Let them know that you want them to take care of their health and physical appearance, which includes weight. You can even suggest exercising together and working as a team.

If the overweight spouse is willing to lose weight, it might make both spouses feel better. If they are willing to make the effort, they will improve their self-confidence, which can definitely improve their marriage.

Seek Legal Help

While divorcing your spouse because they gained weight may seem spiteful and vain, we all have standards for beauty. If your wife or husband has gained 50 pounds or more, they may no longer be attractive to you, especially if you are healthy and keep yourself in shape. 

You do not need grounds for divorce in Florida. If you no longer want to be married, you do not have to be. Broward County divorce attorney Scott J. Stadler can help you end your marriage so you can be happy and find the right person for you. Schedule a consultation with our office today by calling (954) 398-5712 or filling out the online form