Every married couple has something they don’t agree on. It doesn’t have to be anything major, it could be what to spend their extra spending cash on or what movies to rent for the night. Oddly enough we bicker the most about FOOD. That’s right, inside I’m a fast food fatty and my husband is a health nut who apparently never heard of a word called flavor. This doesn’t bode well when it’s time to make dinner or pick up food on the way home and for years this was probably the only consistent issue we never agreed on.
I’ve heard many husbands and wives talk about compromise, and I’m not here to say that it’s the wrong approach but what if you went one step further and reached a total agreement where neither party feels like they’re giving up anything? Sounds too good to be true right? Well here’s what I learned from our food battles:
-Pointing fingers gets you nowhere fast. This thought process that only one person can be right at the end is a sure way to NEVER resolve the problem. You have to get together as a team and think of food as the issue, not your spouse. You have to be willing to understand that you aren’t the same person but you are the same family, and you have to be willing to fight for this so that it never grows from a stupid small issue into something larger. Team up!
-Educate yourself. The turning point for us was when an episode of Barefoot Contessa popped up. I learned that my husband had never watched a cooking show and I had watched the food network but never actually TRIED any of the recipes. From there we made a pact that we would make dinners together every evening. We suddenly began using our oven, pounding out our chicken, buying herbs, learning about new types of veggies and fruits, becoming brave enough to buy meat at the deli counter, and storing all sorts of produce correctly. The idea of practically starting from scratch as a team made food fun while we educated ourselves on how to make dinners flavorful and healthy! With this discovery I didn’t have to give up flavor and he didn’t have to give up eating healthy.
-Get Creative! We had to understand that deep inside I would always love french fries and that was totally okay! We searched out different fast food chains that had healthier food options and we began to treat ourselves on special occasions without a feeling of guilt. It did take a little creativity to find those go-to spots but it was totally worth it in the end!
So I guess you could say that Ina Garten from Barefoot Contessa saved our marriage. Haha But really it takes a couple willing to work together and be open to new options, don’t just compromise but discover a new solution! No one should feel like their sacrificing just to pretend the situation will get better! Often we feel it’s either a black or white answer, either my way or your way, but really you can create a third option where both parties are right! So if you disagree about that movie rental try renting a genre that neither of you have seen before, or if you don’t know what to spend that extra month’s cash on, try donating it to a really great charity! Really there is no I’m right or you’re right… but let’s find a new answer together.