Forget money, sex, late hours or family dramas: the latest thing ripping couples apart is … wait for it … food.
It’s a bold statement, granted, but just look at all the dietary differences these days. Carnivores, vegans, white-meat-only eaters, gluten-free enthusiasts, to name a few. You only have to consider the woman who put the sex back into spoon licking – gourmet glamour puss Nigella Lawson – to know that food is life’s greatest aphrodisiac, but what happens when you’re dating someone whose food tastes differ drastically from your own? Like, when you love a beer and your girlfriend’s a teetotaller? Or, if you prefer a steak still mooing but your partner’s at the tofu end of the spectrum? And don’t get me started on couples where one person’s always dieting while the other lives on stuffed-crust pizza.
Though for some this may be a deal-breaker, I tend to think food is only a big deal if you make it one.
“There’s this feeling that if we eat the same thing then we are the same thing and if we don’t, we’re no longer unified,” said Dr Kathryn Zerbe, a US shrink who specialises in eating disorders.
Getting around it, says Dr Zerbe, is about compromising and finding meals you both enjoy. Resisting the urge to label your partner a freak or point and guffaw at their choice of chow – and having a list of restaurants to repair to when things get heated in your respective culinary camps – may also help.
I mean, look at Nigella and her hubby Charles Saatchi. “Charles doesn’t really like proper food. He prefers a bowl of cereal. We often climb into bed together with a bowl each of cereal, ice cream and biscuits,” the domestic goddess once said.
They even weathered the storm when Charles spurned his wife’s cooking to embark on a weird egg diet which saw him shed a whopping 25 kilos. She’s still cooking with full-fat cream and raiding the fridge at midnight, so it must be love.
~ Have you ever been in a relationship where your partner had drastically different eating habits to you? Let’s hear it, people…