Weight Loss Support - Picky Family Members

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05-22-2011, 04:36 PM
I've been struggling to start a weight loss plan for the last couple of years. Really, I need a lifestyle overhaul. But, I am ready in my head to really commit now.

The trouble for me is food. My husband is... in the nicest terms for it, a picky eater. No veggies. Not even tomato-based sauces. Also no fish. His definition of a great meal is burgers and fries or a pizza.

How do others get around the picky eaters in their households? I don't have time to cook multiple meals, for sure. I am about ready to just tell him that he is on his own!

05-22-2011, 04:42 PM
I would tell him he is on his own.

Or you can make the food he likes, but lighten it up so you can eat it too! For example, make extra lean turkey burgers and baked sweet potato fries.

05-22-2011, 06:52 PM
I have picky eaters in my house. My husband is picky. He is a steak and potatoes guy. My 7 year old only eats white food. I am pretty much carb free. My 3 year old is a good eater. I pretty much for dinner eat a salad and a protein that my husband will eat. But, I add a carb that I don't eat that my husband and children will eat.

For a long time I used the picky eaters as an excuse. There comes a point that I just have to do what I have to do for myself. If losing weight is important to you then you need to find what will work for you and not use the picky eaters as an excuse. Some meals I sit down to dinner with my family of four and there are 4 different plates of food being served.

05-22-2011, 08:42 PM
I would try to talk to your hubby and see what his issue is. I mean some people say "I don't like xyz" but when you ask them if they have tried it, they will say no, so they don't even know if they like xyz. I used to think I didn't like blueberries, I was wrong. So I agree with a previous poster, try making healthy alternatives or try new meals. Ask him if he is willing to try your new meals, and if he dislikes it, he doesn't have to eat. Keep a frozen pizza in the fridge for those "no" days. Hope it works out!

05-22-2011, 09:16 PM
There's nothing wrong with fend-for-yourself policies. Neither my husband nor I are picky, but we do have different food preferences, so for most part, our household is under a "fend for yourself" policy. We used to take turns cooking, but "fend for yourself" has worked best. If either of us feels like making something more complicated than a meal-for-one, we may run it past the other ("I have a taste for meatloaf, would you be interested), but we keep a lot of freezer containers handy just in case the other person isn't interested.

I like to make a crockpot full of veggie soup. Hubby will have a bowl or two, but I eat it all week long. He does have leftover phobia, pizza is just about the only thing he'll eat leftover the next day (it's not the leftover aspect that bothers him, it's the eating of the same thing he had yesterday, so the freezer containers work great. Leftovers are "new again" a week later).

05-23-2011, 01:01 AM
Tell him he's on his own.

Make a meal for two, if he eats it then great. If he doesn't, then pack up the leftovers and use them for lunch the next day.

My mother always had a rule for dinner. We ate as a family, and whatever was on the table was dinner. You didn't have to eat it, but she sure as heck wasn't making anything else.

You're not a short-order cook. If you make dinner for the family, they can enjoy it or make their own.

05-23-2011, 07:42 AM
My mom was a good cook, and we all HAD to eat what she cooked. When I first got married my husband was so picky and spoiled. I made dinner every day and it was a balanced healthy meal. He wanted me to cook a completely different dinner just for him. And what he wanted was not healthy food. He told me food was love. I told him food was food, and I had too busy of a schedule to come home tired and then and run a restaurant just for him.

No way was I coming up with a 3 page menu. I was working and going to school and I was not going to encourage poor eating habits or cater to a selfish individual. Turned out he was momma's boy and was extremely self-centered. I had too many other things to do with what little time I had at the end of the day to cater to some nut case.

I was buying all the food at home. So I told him I wasn't running a restaurant, the meal was balanced and healthy. I told him he had 3 choices. It was either eat what I bought and cooked, buy his own food and cook it, or go to a restaurant and pay them for the food and cooking.
He ended up eating at a restaurant and paying his momma to cook for him.

And then he wanted me to make the ethnic food his momma made, some stuff made out of beef lungs...of all things. I didn't want any cow lungs in the house. I told him if he brought anything like that in the house he could just move back in with momma. LOL

Needless to say, he had other major problems and the marraige did not last long. He actually thought he could create a marraige that was a one way street. He was looking for a stand-in for his aging momma. I was going to pay all the bills, do all the work around the house, buy him a new car, pay for vacations, cater to his every whim and wish, and he would do nothing and live the life of Riley. He had delusions of grandeur. He thought he had married a sweet young dumb thing that he could re-mold into momma. Boy was he in for a reality shock when none of that was happening. :D

I sent him to a counselor. He could not create his fantasy world and was not willing to make the transition from a spoiled little boy to an adult man. And he did not want any kids, NO sex either, because he was determined to be the perpetual child. And he was 35 and spending most of his time crying the blues at momma's house! :D
So I divorced him. It was such a bazaar experience for me, dealing with a fruitcake at such a young age.

05-23-2011, 02:46 PM
WOW Jolina!! Seems like you made the right choice.
As far as picky eaters I don't get the concept in adults. My husband will eat anything except fish, but i still make fish for myself and on those nights he'll eat the sides and make it work.
I think your husband has to realize that you are making a lifestyle change and he has to grow up a little. Chicken breast and broccoli is not some exotic meal that he can't eat. If he insists on something else then maybe he'll just have to make it himself.

05-23-2011, 03:49 PM
By all means if someone is a picky eater or has strict dietary preferences/requirements or something of that sort, they should fend for themselves.

Personally, I converted to a vegan diet exactly 2 years ago today and though I'm not an adult yet and still live with the family, I have never expected my mother to cook me my own special, separate meals. 100% of the time I cook for myself, separate from whatever my mother makes for her and my father. Anyone who can't or won't eat whatever is offered to them, especially any adult, should absolutely be on their own in preparing their meals. I honestly think it shows a childish mindset for someone to expect otherwise.

05-23-2011, 05:38 PM
I think there are lots of ways for families to work around different food issues.
first, what is he willing to do to help? If you make the meat and veggies, will he make the carb portion? Does he really eat the same thing (or two or three things) all the time? If thats what he wants, is there a way to make it healthier? ( low fat cheese on pizza? lots of veggies on it?, whole wheat crust? etc)
If its really that narrow, sounds like a fend for yourself most of the time thing, and avoid cooking two meals, but if you can make a meat dish and veggies and he can add the starch portion, that might be a nice compromise.
good luck

05-23-2011, 05:51 PM
With two "adult" kids in the house, my husband and I have adopted an "every man for himself" policy. I make sure we're stocked with the makings for what everyone will eat, but cooking it is up to them.

BUT, if someone (usually DH) is grilling, he'll ask if anyone wants anything on the grill. So, while he's eating and grilling steak, he'll throw some chicken on for me. And if someone is making pasta, they'll make extra, but it's up to the individual to add sauce, veggies, etc. So, while we may not eat the same things, we often eat together and no one person feels the burden of cooking for all.

05-23-2011, 06:24 PM
I cook one meal. If anyone doesn't want to eat it, cereal is the other option. That's me though... I'm no short order cook.

05-23-2011, 06:54 PM
It's hard, I know, part of you wants to do it cuz you love him but then remember what you are doing is not helping his health either.

I'd sit him down and have a serious talk- specially if you guys have kids- you don't want to teach them bad habits!

My hubby used to be SUPER picky. I gained 45 lbs after I got married cuz of him and cooking what HE liked. I told him how upset and unhappy I was and told him I wanted to eat healthier and if we wanted kids we should BOTH eat healthy. I agreed to start off slowly and now while he is a bit picky he is much better about his eating. He eats fruits and veggies now- he actually requests veggies, etc.

I started off with things like making meatloaf full of ground veggies (I still make them that way), turkey chili, steamed broccoli, etc. I found changing one or two things really helped him try it and over time he's found what he likes and doesn't like (He's not a seafood person and that's fine on those days he cooks for himself).

Sometimes you need to be a little selfish and it's wrong of your hubby to expect you to only cater to his food needs and not your own.

05-23-2011, 07:22 PM
Thanks, all. It is nice reading that some of you are in similar (or in Jolina's ex's case, much more difficult!) situations.

I can definitely do some substitutions. I am fortunate that he will at least eat stuff with ground turkey instead of beef. But yes, he would gladly live off pizza, hotdogs and hamburgers and be a happy man.

I pretty much am in the same boat as beerab. I have gained at least 50 pounds living on his food choices and it just isn't working. Will power is always a problem for me, so if I'm making him pizza, it is next to impossible for me to eat my grilled chicken/salad :) We don't have kids yet, and he knows I am unhappy with my weight, so I don't think I will get too much arguement with whichever way I go.

Thanks again for the feedback!!