Sometimes I think you really don't understand me at all

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Each week, sexpert Glamazon Tyomi answers questions from clients and fans. This week, she addresses a letter from a man who is concerned about the way his lady perceives her body and how it’s impacting her self-esteem and their relationship.

What’s good, Ty?

I want to begin by saying I appreciate the advice you’re giving men—that’s why I’m reaching out to you. I’m man enough to admit that I don’t know everything about sex, even though I’ve had a lot of experience. You make it easy to relax and ask questions without killing my ego.

My question deals with my girl and her body image. I’m a fit guy. I eat a clean diet. I work out at least five times a week, and when I can’t make it to the gym, I’m doing some type of physical activity. When I met my girl she was into fitness, working out just as often as me, and watching what she ate. That all changed after we had our son. She’s lost her motivation to get back into the lifestyle and has been feeling miserable about it. She’s also put on some weight on her lower body. I love it, but it makes her feel unattractive and she won’t let me touch her intimately. She worked out during most of the pregnancy, so her body is still in good shape, but she just doesn’t seem to see herself the way I see her (she is perfect). We haven’t had sex since our son was born—and that was almost a year ago. I know they say children can change things in relationships, and this is our first kid, so I’m uncertain of what to do. How can I help her work through this? I appreciate your help.

Peace, Buff Daddy

Hey Buff Daddy,

Thank you for showing me so much love!

Your issue is common but tough. Body image issues happen, especially after women go through childbirth. Her body has been through a lot, and now she has a little one to care for as well. Being a mother is a new beginning for her, so there’s likely a lot going on, mentally and physically, that she might not be sharing with you.

The first thing that I want you to remember is that you cannot change her perception of her body for her. That is something she has to do for herself. Any type of help you offer should be merely a loving suggestion; she must be willing to employ the suggestions to shift her perception of herself. Your goal is to help her remember the truth about her perfection. So I have a few suggestions:

1Think of the things you appreciate about her and periodically text her compliments. You can even make personalized memes to express your love to her. Leave her Post-It notes with loving reminders around the house. The more she is reminded of how wonderful she is, the better.

2 Encourage her to spend more time in the mirror. Doing mirror work is a common practice for connecting with the body. Suggest that she use the time to say at least three things she appreciates about her physical body, like, “I appreciate my_________, and I am grateful to have them.”

3 Remind her of how powerful she is. She can change anything about her body that she doesn’t like. Support her by scheduling regular one-on-one time with your son to give her the freedom to schedule alone time as she sees fit.

4 Encourage healthy eating. Actively participate in cooking and grocery shopping, and gradually incorporate better food options. This doesn’t mean you should nix everything that’s “bad.” Instead, aim for moderate changes to push the dial towards better health while talking about the changes you’re making.

If these tactics don’t seem to be working for her, ask if she is willing to talk to a therapist. She doesn’t have to be alone in this battle.

Good luck!

Glamazon Tyomi

Glamazon Tyomi is CASSIUS’ resident sexpert. Follow her at @GlamazonTyomi.