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foodie + non-foodie=doomed?

Does anybody have a significant other who thinks that being a "foodie" means having an eating disorder? And can a relationship between a foodie and non-foodie ever work???

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  1. See the thread "A chowhound married to a picky eater . . . divorce? ;-) "


    1. Non-foodies have their own disorders. They laugh too hard at their own jokes, their passport is usually expired, they wear mismatched clothing, and their favorite phrase is "Huh?"

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        1. Mrs CHM's favorite restaurants are Applebee's, Chili's, and On the Boarder. Mine are not. She won't eat any seafood, steaks are well done with a ton of A-1 on them. She thinks paying any more that $8 for an entree is insanity. She refuses to try new restaurants or anything too weird.

          We've been married for 24 years and I wouldn't trade her for anyone.

          1 Reply
          1. re: chileheadmike

            At least the price has been right along the way. For your silver anniversary next year, you can thrill her with a chili cheese dog with onions.
            Cynicism aside, congratulations. Stories like yours are nice to hear, CHM.

          2. My Dh is a foodie in many ways but not in others....he doesn't like Thai or Indian food and generally prefers American, French and Italian but will eat Mexican, Vietnamese or Japanese under peer pressure. Lunch is my saving grace. That's when I have Thai, Indian, and fun things like falafel.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Janet from Richmond

              How can a foodie arbitarially eliminate certain food types and remain a foodie?

            2. "And can a relationship between a foodie and non-foodie ever work???"

              No. Run like the wind unless you're prepared to sneak out to have solo meals at interesting places or drag this lame-o around and have your meals ruined by their constant bitching or the pitiful guilt trip they'll lay on you if they condescend to join you at any restaurant that isn't boring.

              It's a big world with plenty of attractive and interesting people out there who also enjoy good food. Find one.

              4 Replies
              1. re: Bob Martinez

                I completely disagree! The important thing is not so much whether both partners are 'foodies' but whether there is mutual respect and enough compromise in order for both to indulge their passions. You don't have to share everything in a relationship but you do need to encourage your SO's interests and make an effort if they ask you to.

                My fiancé eats everything I make but until he met me, his diet was mainly made up of convenient foods and until this very day, he would reach for the white bread, butter and baked beans for lunch every single day. I have to censor myself not to be dismissive because I think he is wonderful and amazing in every way and like somebody said earlier, I would not trade him for anyone else.

                1. re: Paula76

                  Can he salsa, samba, cumbia, mambo...?

                  1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                    None of the above, Sam...Can you believe it? :-) Saying that, as a 'porteña' raised in an asphalt jungle, I can't either but the joys of mixed couplings are endless. I couldn't think of anything more boring than being with someone with exactly my same background but each to their own...

                    1. re: Paula76

                      So what DOES he specialize in and do you like those items?

              2. Works the same as a relationship involving questions like toilet seat up v. toilet seat down, PC v. Mac, action film v. chick flick. If SO treats you with respect (no "eeeeewww, you're eating THAT? or constant teasing), and you treat SO with same (no holier-than-thou foodie 'tude), it works just fine.

                That eating disorder accusation, though? That sounds a little hinky, and suggests some other nastiness other than you like vindaloo and SO like beanie-weenies.


                2 Replies
                1. re: cayjohan

                  agree 100%.

                  someone who doesn't start out by being into the things that make you happy & whole---- but is willing to taste, try, and journey along with you, that's a beautiful companion ;)

                  but someone who sees your joy & your exploration as some kind of "disorder" that they want no part of-- in fact, to her/him, people like you are super-duper big freaks and you probably need help. . . yeah not so much :(

                  clangity-clang go the warning bells, as we'd say. . .

                  1. re: cayjohan

                    I wonder how beanie-weenies vindaloo would be?

                  2. It *can* work... there are SO many other things to do together besides cook and eat...<grin>

                    1. I recently dated a guy and NO it didn't work, but it wasn't that he didn't enjoy different foods than me and I cared less his fave place is Olive Garden. He was willing to try my places if I asked, but ... he was picky. I think being a "non foodie" and picky is different. He didn't like pesto, cilantro, olives, peppers, onions, NO seafood, etc etc. And since cooking is a big part of my life, and important to me ... almost everything I cooked was eliminated. He would try something but immediately it was I don't like it. At a restaurant there would be 1 or 2 items that he could eat if that, lol.

                      So a non foodie I think can work, just respect each others likes and dislikes, but picky if like in my case was very difficult and definitely didn't work. The last straw was a BBQ we went to. He couldn't eat anything. Chili had beans and onions, no sausage (grilled), chicken was too spicy (bbq sauce), no dip it was salsa again no onions, and beer was fosters, sam adams and others, he only drank miller light. Then he asked the host to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. That did it :)

                      Foodie vs non foodie sure, just work at it.
                      Foodie vs picky eater...probably not, it will be hard

                      1. I would definitely worry about the "eating disorder" thing. That sounds just a tad controlling. Mutual respect is very important in a relationship and that does not sound respectful at all. (A whole new level vs. just not enjoying food like we do.)

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: evewitch

                          Agree that it's all about respect.
                          If I encountered anyone who pathologized me as having a mental health disorder based on my taste and interest in food, I'd run away. Fast. It can only get worse and migrate into all aspects of our daily life together.

                        2. Sure it can work. But just think carefully about how willing each of you are to compromise. My husband used survived on Kraft Mac n' Cheese and Red Baron pizzas and Chili's take-out until we met. But he'd eat just about anything I served him, and now he'll order the Venison in Cranberry-Balsamic reduction at a restaurant.

                          But before him, I dated a guy who wouldn't touch anything that hadn't been deep-fried or that had ANY form of sauce (mayo, ketchup, soy, you name it). And that was NOT changing. As a result, we could never cook for each other (I wasn't into the Banquet frozen dinners he "cooked" and he even eschewed homemade tomato sauce), so we had to eat out all the time. And because he wouldn't touch any form of ethnic food (Mexican and Italian included!), and I wouldn't eat at the major chains more than 2-3 times a week, we often ended up eating at TWO difference places! And when we traveled!!!?!? Ugh...he ate almost exclusively at McDonald's across India, and still lost 10 pounds on the trip.

                          Food was hardly the demise of our relationship, and we had tons of fun together, so I wouldn't say that's what doomed us, but it was exhausting, and now I can fully appreciate the willingness of my husband to eat bizarre foods like olives, mangoes, and sriacha sauce :)

                          1. I can imagine few things so soul-destroying as having to cook, day in and day out, for someone who couldn't care less about what he put into his mouth. (Or having to eat the food that such a person might cook.)

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: pikawicca

                              I completely agree. Here's a conversation that will never happen: "I might fix a pimento sandwich while you finish that tray of corn dogs, but why is there a can of Reddi Whip and a quart of Miller High Life near the fireplace?"

                              1. re: pikawicca

                                I guess because I enjoyed food festivals and wineries and travel and trying new places and with his food pickiness he hated to do stuff like that. He was always uncomfortable at peoples house for dinner, it just made things too difficult and he didn't ever enjoy himself. It was beyond just not liking a few items, but not liking anything. I love cooking for someone but not being able to cook almost anything for him was very hard. All of my favorite foods, all the fishing I do and eating fish 3-4 times a week. He didn't eat any of that.

                                It wasn't a match. I do care about cooking for someone and would hope he enjoys it, but this was just too many differences to overcome. Maybe for some it wouldn't of been a problem, but for us it just didn't work and I found it really hard to be with someone who was a picky eater. I love going out of town, wineries, art festivals, food festivals, trying diners and small places and because of his eating habits he was miserable. So his food habits affects what we did as a couple and therefore it didn't work.

                                1. re: pikawicca

                                  It is a horrible thing. I've semi-resolved this by cooking one meal for myself, and cooking some blue box mac n cheese with hot dogs for the SO. But when that's the only thing he wants to eat? yeah, its super frustrating and just depressing that of all the wonderful and exotic things i cook, that is what he wants for every dinner...

                                  So, I guess the jury is still out....

                                2. Remember there is always room for education.
                                  I was with a guy for 7 years who started off as a total non-foodie, but by the time I left him (I didn't say it worked out!) he insisted I teach him to cook 'properly' before I went.
                                  He is now happily married and as far as I am aware still eating 'well' because that's what I taught him to do.
                                  They CAN be trained!

                                  1. It can work as long as nonfoodie is not a metaphor for a boring lout with zero imagination and taste of any kind, and as long as they respect and accommodate your foodie needs.

                                    Years ago I had lunch with a wonderful ex-boyfriend and another of his also-then-ex-girlfriends. He's a terrific guy, but it was so funny - we were seated on the patio of some semi-fashionable place that was conveniently located, and he wanted a ham sandwich. He asked for one. Asked whether he wanted (something like) the one on the menu on a croissant with cornichons, frisee, wasabi mustard, pimentos and goat cheese, he asked, "Can I just get a ham sandwich?"

                                    The waitress didn't understand. We watched him enunciate, with increasing (controlled, internal) rage, no, just a HAM SANDWICH. He had to resort to: "I want ham, on regular bread, with yellow mustard. And maybe some mayo. And maybe some cheese, but not goat cheese. Do you have that?"

                                    The other ex and I were doubled over crying in laughter by the time it was all said and done.

                                    8 Replies
                                      1. re: Cinnamon

                                        "It can work as long as nonfoodie is not a metaphor for a boring lout with zero imagination and taste of any kind, and as long as they respect and accommodate your foodie needs."
                                        True that, and realize that it works the other way as well. It's just as hard to deal with a tedious over the top "foodie" who makes an opera production out of every meal and is a constant source of self-important prattle about their wonderful and mysterious relationship with food. Pffft.

                                          1. re: Samalicious

                                            How very true ... I have dated an over obsessive foodie as I called it. We went on a road trip, just for 2 days and never again. I love food, but I also like just having fun. So half was my part in cooking which he loved but then we had to just stop along the way.I made these great egg wraps I kept warm in foil we took and ate the first hour. Then I made my dip for later that night a roasted red pepper and olive dip with crackers when we got to our destination. Well in between was lunch ... Well car problems and we were in the middle of no where (not in FL) and other than Wendy's and BK, and a gas station, I didn't see anything. He couldn't eat anything. To him every meal has to be perfection. Dinner was worse, we picked up steaks to make at the resort. Now this is a low key summer type of resort. NO fine china. Lots of BBQ, relaxing etx. Well I swear he wanted to make it a 5 star dinner for the president. Dinner was good but it was such a "PRODUCTION," we didn't enjoy a bite. It does go both ways. Good point. The way home had to be a few small town diners and lets just say it was not pretty. I loved the diner with tomato soup, and grilled cheese ... Classic. Not him.

                                            So yes Cinnamon, good point. Over obsessive is just as bad as a non foodie.

                                            1. re: kchurchill5

                                              Ding! Winner!
                                              "Over obsessive is just as bad as a non foodie."
                                              A classic combo of tomato soup and grilled cheese is a great foodie lunch, indeed. :)

                                              1. re: kchurchill5

                                                It was really Samalicious' point.. I just concur. Whichever way overly-obsessive leans - to foodie or nonfoodie, avoid!

                                                1. re: Cinnamon

                                                  I knew, I was just agreeing to the point again. I think it was such a good point

                                              2. re: Samalicious

                                                "over the top "foodie" who makes an opera production out of every meal and is a constant source of self-important prattle about their wonderful and mysterious relationship with food..." @@@@ SO FUNNY@@@@

                                            2. Rule of relationships: you should never *expect* change from your partner. You can only change yourself. Soooooooo many people nurse expectations, and, as they say, expectations are pre-meditated resentments.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: Karl S

                                                Karl S, are you a chef or a shrink? Good advice in both arenas.