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Girl Talk: Sympathy Weight

Q. During pregnancy, I gave in to fast-food cravings. My husband always joined me. I've got my shape back, but he's 25 pounds heavier. Do I tell him it's a turnoff?

A. You could say nothing, close your eyes, and pretend a cabana boy has mysteriously shown up in your bedroom. Or you could help him get back into shape. Don't tell him to lose weight: Think of what you would do if he uttered those words. You can say that you've noticed his energy has flagged and you're worried about his health. In the end, though, the decision to get into shape has to be his.

But you can nudge him along. Stock the kitchen with healthful foods. If he suggests KFC, say you want to keep the pounds you lost off.

If he doesn't get the hint, it's time to tell him how his gluttony is coming between him and more sex.

The word sex will get his attention. Explain that you want more intimacy but, thanks to sleep deprivation and low estrogen levels, you need help to get the party started. Like what? Time together, in the form of nightly bike rides or morning walks with the baby. A better sex life is a delicious carrot to dangle in front of him, and it may be the only vegetable he's had in a while.

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