Woman Shares Struggle Of Living With Obese Spouse: ‘I Lost Myself Taking Care Of Him.’

Every time her husband was ill-treated, it just wounded her soul. Woman shares struggle of living with obese spouse. She lost herself in her long dedicated journey in looking after her obese husband.

Dana Rosser, 57, from Orlando, Florida, shared in an interview that how one partner’s weight has emotional bearing on their partner. When Dana met her husband-to-be, Dr. James “Butch” Rosser, a laparoscopic surgeon, weigh up 460 pounds. After Dana & James married in 1995, Dana fought with the challenges of supporting her beloved husband with obesity.

Dana has recorded these challenges in her book, “Thru Thick & Thin”. Dana & James’s story is now the theme of the documentary, “More Than What We See.”

When Dana met James, she obviously saw James’s weight. But besides his weight, she also looked at his intellect. They smiled and realised that they had the similar Christian ethics. So she looked at his charm and that’s what she fell in love with. James is an eminent surgeon but what really hurt Dana’s feeling, when people thought she was with him for his fame and fortune.

As James was too heavy, he couldn’t walk lengthy distances because his knees would hurt and he would sweat a lot. Neither couldn’t he play outdoor with their girls when they were growing-up. At night, he snored quite loudly and would stop breathing as he dealt with obstructive sleep apnea. Dana would elbow him to make sure he was okay as she had a fear of him dying in his sleep. Dana was that worried for his health that she couldn’t actually get a good night’s sleep because she was always checking to make sure her husband was alive.

Dana survived with a continuous unease in the back of her mind that something was going to happen to him. It caused her great agony as she was in so much love with James, but she just didn’t know what to do with all those diverse feelings like embarrassment and annoyance.

There was an incident when they were all boarding on a plane and James sat down, broke the flight seat and ended up in the lap of the person behind him. Obviously Dana’s first line of defence is guarding him, thus she worked with the flight attendant to get re-seated, and made sure that co-passenger was all right and that James was all right too.

When Dana sat down and thought about what occurred, she was totally embarrassed and irritated. It wasn’t just him that it happened to, it happened to her, too, because passengers were looking at them and made fun out of the thing.

In somewhat a similar incident, they were getting on an elevator and people deliberately got off because those people were thinking the elevator would breakdown. Dana can’t believe how thoughtless individuals are, when an unfamiliar person asked James, “Just how much do you weigh?” Dana wouldn’t say whatsoever, but she would give them the nastiest look. We all know that Obesity is an ailment and Dana don’t think people understand that.

When they went to the cinema, they always had to have a seat in between them because James was so large. Dana’s heart was breaking when she would see other pairs sharing popcorn and enjoying by sitting right next to each other, and they actually couldn’t do any of that.

Dana saw him maltreated and that would just hurt her soul. It would make gradually weaker by seeing how other people treated her husband. It was so awful that it makes Dana cry now. Dana was constantly on the lookout for difficulties. If they were going to an eatery, she would either drive there or look online to see if they had seats without the arms. She wouldn’t choose an eatery or restaurant that had cubicles. She would rather choose one that just had fixed tables.

They both love live performances, plays and basketball, but James couldn’t fit in those chairs. Dana remained at home with James even though she didn’t want to, as home was a harmless place for him. Dana felt embarrassed even if she did go out with friends. Dana felt lonely when she was at home with James because she wasn’t living her best life. She was becoming isolated like James and she was losing who she was.

Dana didn’t tell James how it was disturbing her because she didn’t want to make James feel bad and to add to the whole lot that the world was already throwing at him. Dana eventually turned to “stealthy healthy” cooking to help James. She was cooking with less salt and fat, but without making it seem like she has deleted the yum factor from James’s menu. Dana would full the pantry with some Turkey, lower sodium tomato sauce and baked chips in James menu.

James tried several diets in order to lose weight, but this did not yield any good result. James got a gastric bypass surgery done in 2001 and post that, he was eating less food than his 4 years old twins. He had a lot more confidence as he lost about 160 pounds, had more energy and didn’t have sleep apnea anymore.

James is been capable to uphold his weight loss and Dana was really proud of her husband’s accomplishment. They go to concerts, walking and swimming. But then again James struggles always as obesity is for a lifespan.

But then comes up fresh issues. They went to a concert and Dana saw these ladies checking out James and that scared Dana. She became insecure and thought that James is going leave her for somebody else. Though James never gave her any reason to think that, but Dana thought so in her mind.

Those who are supportive to their loved ones with severe obesity, Dana would tell them that they are not alone and there are lots of people in the same fight. That’s hard to say, but you have to own your emotions — the good, not so good and ugly. Dana loves her husband but there are times when she was ashamed.

Lead with love when you talk to your loved one. Be clear in your mind when you talk to your loved one about their weight – ask yourself whether your reasons are coming from a place of love and whether there are other personal or relationship issues at play?

Ask, “Is there something I can do to make it easier to make healthy choices” instead of threatening that you would leave if they do not lose weight. This attitude is definitely not going to work.

Dana didn’t take good care of herself and that includes mentally. So remember – self-care. Dana lost herself while she was worried about her husband and trying to take care of him. If there are things you like to do, you can still do them and be there for your loved one. It is important not to miss yourself! This is no small task, but it’s vital.

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