Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Parenting & Relationships

Tell Me About It: Remarks about food choices grow tiresome

Remarks about food choices grow tiresome

Q: Iím going on vacation soon with my in-laws, siblings-in-laws, and their spouses. Over the last few years, Iíve been working on eating fewer unhealthy foods like bread and dairy, and as a result I feel much better. This has resolved many stomach issues Iíve dealt with.

Every time I am with my husbandís family, the mood is "vacation" or "celebration" and the foods they serve are always those I try to avoid, like pasta for dinner and chocolate cake.

I get looks and occasional comments about declining those foods, such as how annoying the gluten-free trend is. Do you have a suggestion for how to handle this?

Lifestyle Choices Burn

A: Yes, the commentary is annoying and pushy ó not to mention the fact that a welcoming family would make at least a minimal effort to provide food everyone can eat.

But theyíre saying a lot about themselves and virtually nothing about you, because theyíre butting into something that just doesnít affect them. Youíre taking personally what isnít personal.

Through trial and error, you learned that you could resolve your stomach issues by not eating bread and dairy. OK then! So you donít eat them, thatís a good start. Now finish the job by responding just as matter-of-factly to your in-laws: Youíre you and they arenít and so letís move on:

"Yes, thank you, the gluten-free thing is annoying ó Iíd give anything to eat cake without feeling sick. Oh, and bread ... donít get me started."

I do take issue with one remark you make here, and it might point to why this family isnít more sympathetic: When you refer to "unhealthy foods like bread and dairy," you reveal judginess of your own, no? Bread and dairy are not unhealthy, theyíre just fine for ... people for whom theyíre just fine. If you want to be left alone to your food choices, then the most productive thing you can do is leave others to their food choices, too.

Comments
Plan your weekend Dec. 15-17: Katy Perry, boat parades, Star Wars parties, comics Gilbert Gottfried, Michael Carbonaro

Plan your weekend Dec. 15-17: Katy Perry, boat parades, Star Wars parties, comics Gilbert Gottfried, Michael Carbonaro

Plan your weekendSuperstarKaty Perry: In the ever-escalating arms race to be the most eye-popping pop star on the planet, sometimes you have to call in for backup. Even if youíre Katy Perry. When plotting her lavishly spectacular Witness Tour, which ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Top things to do this week: Star Wars parties, comics Gilbert Gottfried, Michael Carbonaro

Top things to do this week: Star Wars parties, comics Gilbert Gottfried, Michael Carbonaro

NEW HOPE: Star Wars partiesWith the opening of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, the force of fan excitement is strong, so of course there are Star Wars parties this weekend. The giant movie complex Riverview 14 GDX is having celebration with characters from...
Updated: 1 hour ago
5 things to do under $5: Gasparilla Bowl beach day, Hanukkah on Ice, boat parades

5 things to do under $5: Gasparilla Bowl beach day, Hanukkah on Ice, boat parades

1 Battle at the Beach: The Gasparilla Bowl is coming to Tropicana Field on Dec. 21, but before that the bands, cheerleaders and dance teams from Florida International University and Temple University will have a day of beach-related games and competi...
Updated: 5 hours ago
6 gift ideas for grandparents and grandchildren to spend more time together

6 gift ideas for grandparents and grandchildren to spend more time together

A grandparent can be a tough person to buy a Christmas gift for. Likewise, many grandparents are stumped on what to get the kids besides some cash. Why not make your Christmas gift something you both want more of: more time together making memories. ...
Published: 12/13/17

Tell Me About It: Overwhelmed parent weighs out options

Overwhelmed parent weighs out optionsQ: Since my kids were born, my job basically covered the cost of day care. The kids came home overtired and overstimulated.As they became preschool age, I restructured my work to freelance so I could drop off and ...
Published: 12/12/17

Tell Me About It: Identity of biological father is revealed

Identity of biological father is revealedQ: When I was 18, my mother revealed that the father I grew up with was not my biological father. She claimed she didnít even know my bio father, and never contacted him again after their brief weekend fling a...
Published: 12/11/17

Tell Me About It: Parentsí extreme sheltering feels creepy

Parentsí extreme sheltering feels creepyQ: My daughter, 11, has three friends from school. One girlís parents are generous hosts. "Emma" is an only child and has a pool, fun toys, great snacks.The problem is that Emmaís parents donít let Emma be a gu...
Published: 12/10/17
Top things to do for the week of Dec. 11-17

Top things to do for the week of Dec. 11-17

Katy Perry: The Teenage Dream songstress roars into Tampa’s Amalie Arena on Friday ($45.75-$195.75). amaliearena.com. Hanukkah: The Festival of Lights begins Tuesday, bringing fun celebrations including Hanukkah in the City at the Sundial St. ...
Published: 12/08/17
Updated: 12/12/17
Wild weather expected, 2 boat parades canceled

Wild weather expected, 2 boat parades canceled

Boat parades that were planned tonight in South Pasadena and St. Pete Beach have been canceled because of weather fears.Organizers said they will not be rescheduled. Heavy rain is expected to approach the gulf coast near sunset Friday ahead of a stro...
Published: 12/08/17
Fun and profound Hanukkah celebrations around the Tampa Bay area

Fun and profound Hanukkah celebrations around the Tampa Bay area

It’s time to observe the Festival of Lights, starting at sunset Tuesday and ending Dec. 20. Many congregations seem to be having a great time, because Hanukkah celebrations this year are hilarious. There’s a menorah made of fidget spinne...
Published: 12/08/17