I'd always been insecure about my size 24 frame but my cheating hubby thought I wasn't big enough... By Leanne Davies, 31

I looked in the mirror and sighed as I pulled on yet another size 24 baggy top. At 18st 8lbs, I was used to wearing shapeless, dark coloured clothes to hide my flabby frame.

But the worse I felt about my figure, the more I ate. I could easily eat a packet of biscuits without pausing for breath, and it wasn’t unusual for me to scoff an entire bucket of chicken.

Food was my escape, and there was nothing I loved more that settling down in front of the TV with a takeaway, and my husband Gareth.

I met Gareth, 31, in January 2009, and we hit it off straight away. Soon we were in a serious relationship.

He treated me like a princess and was always spoiling me with fancy meals and thoughtful gifts. The best thing was, I knew he liked me exactly the way I was. He’d always comment on my figure, saying he liked larger women and that he appreciated my curves.

Then within a few weeks of us being together, he told me that he loved me. It was fast - but it felt completely right.

‘I love you too,’ I said, a smile spreading across my face.

Our relationship progressed quickly and a year later, in January 2010, we got married in front of our friends and family. Too self-conscious to wear a white dress, I opted for a bright red frock instead.

I was head over heels in love, so when we discovered I was pregnant just before the wedding, I was over the moon.

Our son Ziggy, now eight, was born in July 2010, and along with my son from a previous relationship Brandon, now 15, we were every inch a happy family.

Gareth loved being a father - he absolutely doted on the boys - and I loved being a mum again. But as Ziggy grew older, I struggled to keep up with him.

Just running across the room after him made me feel breathless, and I couldn’t jump around and have fun with him in the same way Gareth could.

Even little things, like the 15 minute walk to the local corner shop, took me at least half an hour, and I would huff and puff my way around as I carried all the extra weight around with me.

And although Gareth insisted I was beautiful, I certainly didn’t feel like it.

My confidence was non-existent, and I grew jealous of all the other yummy mummies dropping their kids off at the school gates, while I waddled around in my drab, tent-like clothes.

‘That’s it,’ I snapped one sunny afternoon while I heaved myself off a patio chair. ‘I’ve got to lose all this weight. I’m sweating like a pig.’

‘You look great just the way you are,’ Gareth soothed. ‘Besides, I’m not sure I’d fancy you as much if you were skinny.’

His words were cutting, and my hubby’s attitude towards me becoming healthier made it very difficult to do so - even when doctors were urging me to lose a few pounds.

The load I was carrying caused me knee and back pain, and I was always sluggish and unwell.

I knew the problem was my size, and time and time again, I tried - and failed, to lose weight.

Every time I tried to eat healthily, Gareth would always persuade me to fall off the wagon. He’d order in a takeaway, or come home with a family-sized bar of chocolate for me to snack on.

‘Gareth, I’m trying to lose weight!’ I’d protest. But he’d always convince me to give in.

‘Ah come on, it won’t hurt,’ he’d say. ‘Plus I think you’re gorgeous as you are, you know that.’

He’d watch as I made my way through the entire bar - by myself. And after that, he’d grab a big packet of crisps and help me to polish that off too.

But afterwards, I’d feel consumed with self-loathing and guilt. It didn’t help that although Gareth ate just as much as I did, he never put on any weight. He was as skinny as a rake.

I told myself that the next day would be different, that I would try to be a little healthier.

But after a day of being good, Gareth would always persuade me to indulge again. It was a vicious cycle, one I felt I could never escape.

Then in April 2013, Gareth changed.

He became distant and withdrawn. He didn’t seem interested in family life, and was always glued to his computer and mobile phone.

‘I’ve got a work night out tonight,’ he announced one day. ‘But I won’t be home too late, don’t worry.’

I didn’t mind - I wanted Gareth to go out and have his own life - and I happily waved him off as I made the kids their tea.

But I didn’t hear from him all night.

I tried to call, but his phone was switched off. I went to bed, expecting to see him lying next to me in the morning. But when I woke up, he was nowhere to be seen.

I realised that Gareth hadn’t even returned home.

That’s when I started to worry. Had something awful happened to my husband?

I began to fear the worst, and frantically started to call his colleagues.

‘We didn’t even see him last night,’ one of them told me. ‘Sorry Leanne, I’ve no idea where he is.’

When Gareth strolled in at 11am, I was beside myself with worry.

‘Where have you been?’ I asked, clocking he was still wearing the clothes he had on the night before.

‘Sorry love,’ he said. ‘I crashed on a workmate’s sofa and my phone battery died.’

But his workmates hadn’t seen him all night....

I stared at him in disbelief as I realised the man I loved had just lied straight to my face.

I smelled a rat - and it was time to investigate.

Gareth got showered, dressed, and went straight back out. As soon as he left the house, I sat down and guessed the password for his computer.

As I clicked into his emails, nothing could have prepared me for what I found.

Gareth was on a string of online dating websites, set up specifically for men looking for Big and Beautiful Women (BBW). I felt the bile rise in my throat as I realised he’d been messaging multiple women - and had even arranged to meet one on the night he went missing.


At nearly 19 stone I was big - but clearly Gareth wanted bigger. I furiously called him and told him to come home straight away.

I couldn’t help but lose control.

‘I’ve seen your pervy messages,’ I spat. ‘I know where you were last night. You’ve got a lot of explaining to do.’

At first, Gareth tried to deny it, but when faced with the evidence, the colour drained from his face.

He had no choice but to admit the betrayal.

Heartbroken, I threw him out straight away, only to hear that he’d moved straight in with his flabby floozy.

I couldn’t believe it.

We still speak for the sake of our son Ziggy, eight, but since divorcing Gareth on the grounds of adultery, I’ve moved on with my life in more ways than one.

I married Robert, 33, in June 2016, and we have a three-year-old daughter, Elora-Dana. With Robert’s love and support, I joined Slimming World in December 2017.

I’d always wanted to lose weight but Gareth made it clear he fancied me fatter. If anything, he wanted me to get bigger.

But with the rat firmly out of the picture I was able to shape up and get healthy and now, after shedding an incredible 7st 9lbs, I’m a slinky size 10.

I feel like a brand new woman and although Robert loves my sexy new shape, I lost weight for me, not any man.

When my ex-husband dumped me at 19 stone for an even bigger woman it was a big, fat shock. But it turned out to be the kick I needed to change my life for good.

Gareth says: “It didn’t bother me about her size and I didn’t think it should have bothered her. I have visited plus-size dating sites. Everyone has a preference, it just so happens that is my preference. I was unhappy, so I went out and had a one night stand.”

At 19 stone, Leanne felt self-conscious and insecure but when she caught her hubby cheating with an even bigger woman she got the last laugh when she ditched him - and nearly eight stone! Sell My Story helped Leanne share her story with thousands of women for a top fee. If you want have a story to tell, why not contact us to find out how it works!


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