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To be so bloody frustrated with adult fussy eaters?!

(46 Posts)
SmellyMuffin Sun 17-Aug-14 13:44:09

My dad is a very, very fussy eater. His diet is very limited, he will only eat egg and chips, steak and chips, gammon, pie and chips, roast dinners (but only if cooked in a a certain way)traditional stews or a fry up. He won't eat anything "foreign" anything "fancy" spicy or anything in any kind of sauce, rice pasta and any fish other than cod are also off limits.

He's always been this way and I appreciate we will never change him now (early 60's) but I get so incredibly frustrated by the way it impacts on all our lives. When my parents go on holiday they even have to check in advance that there are restaurants selling English food so my dad will eat it.

We frequently go out for Sunday lunch as a family, but we are restricted because dad will only eat in one particular place. It's a two for one pub place, OK, but the food is obviously fast food shoved in a microwave. Dad likes their roast dinners though because they serve them the way he likes them which is with cremated meat, watery packet gravy, frozen Yorkshire pudding and with the veg he likes which are carrots, peas and potatoes. So we always go there, on a few occasions we've managed to get him to go somewhere else he's moaned that he hasn't liked what he's had. He wont even eat a dinner if it's serve with mashed potato (even though he likes roast and boiled, work that one out?) or if the food is "piled up" which is how they serve diners in nicer places.

My brother and his DP have already stooped coming with us because in my bro's words the place is "crap, the food is shit and it's full of screaming kids". It's also only got 4 stars on the hygiene rating which makes me boak every time.

I recently took my mum away for a few days and said she'd never eaten so well. We ate at a Mexican place, a lovely Italian, and an Indian all you can eat buffet. Stuff she'd never be able to do with my dad. It made me sad, going our for a lovely meal at a nice place is one of my favourite things to do. My poor mum hardly germ to do this.

AIBU to think my dad should get over his fussiness? Food is food at the end of the day!

FunkyBoldRibena Sun 17-Aug-14 15:28:15

If there was cauliflower cheese anywhere near my dinner I would vomit. Seriously, I wouldn't be able to help myself.


I hate fish, the smell, the thought, the sheer vile yukkiness and yet I have sat next to people eating it and managed to not throw up over them. Same with lamb [buerk]. because I am an adult

hamptoncourt Sun 17-Aug-14 15:34:25

Good for you funky. I can assure you I would not vomit willingly. In fact I absolutely hate being sick. And where did I say I threw up "all over" someone?

I didn't realise being an adult meant you could stop yourself from vomiting at will. Better go and tell my aunt who is suffering with chemotherapy induced nausea, and my niece who is suffering from morning sickness to stop being so fucking childish eh?

FraidyCat Sun 17-Aug-14 15:40:43

For every 'shit' (to him) meal he gets he should get the occasional 'good' ( to him) preference.

I don't think you get it. My father was like OP's. He wouldn't eat the "shit" meal. He would sit there looking grumpily at all the selfish people who had taken him to a place where there was nothing he could eat.

Imagine someone served you a large steaming human turd on a plate. Would you eat it because it wasn't your turn to choose the food?

FraidyCat Sun 17-Aug-14 15:43:57

You might think there's difference between a turd and food generally fit for human consumption, but I think for some people, using some primal part of the brain, there isn't.

pictish Sun 17-Aug-14 15:46:45

Then those people are very silly. confused

LRDtheFeministDragon Sun 17-Aug-14 15:48:43

Honestly, he is an adult, he isn't going to starve for not eating a meal at the same time as everyone else.

Have you actually said to him how unappealing you find the food he likes? I have a family friend like this, and she honestly believes 'everyone' likes 'ordinary food' (similar to what your dad will eat) and that' the basic place to start from. Her DD eventually had to explain to her that some people find the food she likes just as revolting as she finds pizza etc. So sometimes she will come and just have drinks having eaten first. It helps that she likes to eat at around 6 and so there's still time for her to come and socialize at 7.30 or 8.

Could you try that?

FraidyCat Sun 17-Aug-14 15:49:09

OK with hindsight I think my metaphor went a little to far. My father would eat rice if in a social situation where he couldn't get out of it. So it wasn't completely impossible. (Though he wasn't totally averse to rice in the first place, he just thought it was only acceptable as a pudding.)

Tikimon Sun 17-Aug-14 15:52:00

Stop catering to it then. He's an adult. It takes 40 days to die of starvation, longer if the person is over weight. If he doesn't eat at a restaurant he can make his own food at home.

I have been to restaurants where there's nothing on the menu I want to eat, I work around it and order something that I can nibble on to be polite (and that DH will eat when we get home).

DogCalledRudis Sun 17-Aug-14 15:58:18

I really don't understand the problem. People are allergic/vegetarian/vegan/religious/just don't like it... If you want to make food, make it something easy.

Jux Sun 17-Aug-14 15:59:14

OK, so he's an adult and should get to choose the food he wants. So every other time, so should your mum. You obviously vote with your feet and go where you want, inviting your mum to go with you.

Toddlers, apparently, need new food to be offered up to 20 times before they see it as normal. Maybe you could try that with your dad? I know dd used to refuse liver, but it didn't take her 'having' to eat it more than 5 times before she started enjoying it, and then she was quickly into "ooh, yummy, liver! My fabourite!". Same with lots of other things.

DogCalledRudis Sun 17-Aug-14 16:04:23

I'll also say my opinion as a 'forriner' -- english people are very conservative about their food...

Saltire Sun 17-Aug-14 16:04:46

MY friends son is 18 and is incredibly fussy. he only eats battered fish (not fish cooked an other way, or in breadcrumbs), chips, bacon, those breaded chicken things that birds eye make, potato waffles (but not potato in any other form), spaghetti Bolognese as long as it is just mince and tomato puree, no other ingredients. and the pasta and sauce have to be served in different dishes. and if there is so much as a drop of say gravy, or peas on the plate, he bins it. He ahs been like this since weaning. He has seen specilists and all sorts.

Witchway said about their FIL and being fixated on places to eat. My FIL si the same. For example he will only eat fish and chips out of Harry Ramsdens. In his opinion there are no fish and chips to match. Even on a trip to Whitby, or Blackpool if there is no Harry Ramsdens he won't eat the fish and chips.

NoNoDontEatThatBloodyHellFFS Sun 17-Aug-14 16:06:20

Having food issues that make you 'fussy' (usually phobia or sensory issues) do not make you silly or pathetic, any more than food issues resulting in anorexia or obesity make you silly and pathetic.

The problem is that he expects everyone else to work around his issues. It's selfish, and easily solved by refusing to pander to him 100% of the time.

Aeroflotgirl Sun 17-Aug-14 16:09:14

I would go out with mum without him, he sounds like a nightmare! Or just ignore his moaning and go where you want to go! It's unfair that he has to impose his places onto you, why should you all suffer.

mummytowillow Sun 17-Aug-14 16:14:08

My dad is the same, no Chinese, Indian, pasta, rice or sauces.

He even calls baked potato and sweetcorn 'foreign' foods!

We went on a cruise, it was painful to watch him and my mum scanning the menus for plain food. They usually ordered off menu.

They wouldn't even try anything, even knowing they could get something else if they didn't like it.

At my wedding my mum said I had to have a menu my dad liked! She pulled a face when I had a BBQ in the evening. My wedding so I had what I wanted.

PuppyMonkey Sun 17-Aug-14 16:14:29

I don't understand how he is able to dictate what the rest of you do and where you eat. Can't you just tell him you're having a change this week and if he doesn't like it, he can stay at hone. He will sulk but is that any worse than you lot all moaning about the crap good in his favourite place ?

I think you're being too indulgent of him and I say that as someone who's a very fussy eater.

PrimalLass Sun 17-Aug-14 16:15:47

If there was cauliflower cheese anywhere near my dinner I would vomit. Seriously, I wouldn't be able to help myself.

Me too.

FunkyBoldRibena Sun 17-Aug-14 16:15:49

You might think there's difference between a turd and food generally fit for human consumption, but I think for some people, using some primal part of the brain, there isn't.

Disgust is a learned response; we aren't born with it. We just react to what we learn are good and bad things. Which is why some kids will happily eat a turd.

hampton court - there is a huge difference between chemo inducted nausea and sitting on a table with some macaroni cheese. Why do you feel it necessary to play the cancer card?

pictish Sun 17-Aug-14 16:20:01

I thought the same Ribena.
Don't think the two are comparable somehow.

BarbaraPalmer Sun 17-Aug-14 16:23:00

MIL's mother will only eat salmon or chicken. This only started when her husband died, before that she'd eat a normal diet.

It's tedious, but it's her choice. I do cater for it, in as much as I sling a chicken breast or a salmon steak in the oven for her at the same time as I cook whatever the rest of us are having.

However if we're going out, I don't plan the restaurant around her extreme fussiness. She can come or not as she chooses.

hamptoncourt Sun 17-Aug-14 16:48:18

Yes primal apparently some people have some kind of super power that enables them to stop nausea. I wish I had it. I have a friend who is sick every time she smells TCP. I love the smell but it doesn't stop me feeling very sorry for her.

Vomit is vomit Funky. The cause of nausea is totally irrelevant. "Play the cancer card." You sound so lovely.

Thanks to the posters who have PM's me to warn me that a poster has form for being goady and nasty.

I shall disengage and hide the thread rather than feed their need.

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