Have you ever had to deal with a picky eater? What would you do if you were in the same situation as the one a reader described below?
I have a question. My husband in a picky eater. We have no kids, yet. It’s just my husband and I, and we are in our 30’s. You could say we come from different worlds. I could eat most anything you put in front of me. My husband will wince at lasagna, any type of casserole, chili, most soups, and cold sandwiches, except PB&J. By now, being married for more than 4 years, I know what he eats and doesn’t eat. So we pretty much create shopping lists and trips to what he would eat mostly.
Any advice for a young, married wife and for the future of our family, maybe future picky eaters (I hope not)?
It’s not easy, is it, to have a “picky eater” in the family? We have one son, in particular, who was a very picky eater and who would be upset with himself that he couldn’t stand certain textures or flavor combinations. Two years in Guatemala, eating foreign food, cured him of some of that finickiness and now he eats a far bigger variety of foods than he did before.
Of course, I don’t think you want to have to send your husband to Guatemala for two years, so here’s one strategy I have found can work so you don’t have to be confined solely to your spouse’s food preferences (or turn into a “short order” cook):
1) On Day One, make a main dish that your husband likes, but make enough that there is some left over for the next night. (Did I mention he’ll have to tolerate leftovers?) Include the desired cooked and fresh vegetables to round out the meal.
2) On Day Two, make a main dish that you would like to eat, with enough left over for the next day (if you don’t want to eat whatever you’ll fix for him on day 3). Your husband can eat the main dish from the night before, along with the cooked and fresh vegetables you are serving on day 2.
3) Just keep repeating this strategy from one day to the next and you’ll both have something you like at each meal. Also, if you always serve two cooked vegetables and two raw vegetables at each meal, then you can make sure that at least one cooked and one raw vegetable dish is something that your picky eater likes.
It’s not easy dealing with a picky eater. And sometimes the person themselves wishes their body liked the tastes and textures of the food they get. While I don’t believe in catering to fussy eaters, yet there are things you can do (such as the strategy mentioned above) that can reduce power struggles at the dinner table and make mealtime more enjoyable for everyone.
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