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Mom Wants Me To End It Over His Celiac
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So for a little over a year now, I've been in a relationship with a wonderful man who has celiac. He has all the classic symptoms, stomach/intestinal pain, gas, bloating, irritability, mood swings, etc. If you're here, I'm guessing most of you are quite familiar with all that. And I won't lie, when he's been glutened, it's hard. He gets mean and withdrawn all at once. But I love the guy. And the rest of the time he is funny, attentive, sweet...just a great person. Before we were together, I never cooked, but now I'm cooking and baking all the time. My kitchen is gluten free and it's awesome. I stick to the diet almost entirely when I eat out too. It makes me feel better AND I can kiss him. But he works in a restaurant and I think that's where a lot of his contamination happens accidentally.

ANYWAY he and I have been seriously talking about taking the next step and making our relationship more...permanent. We've looked at rings, houses, etc. But my mother keeps asking me if I'm sure. If I can handle a lifetime with someone that has his symptoms. I've been doing a lot of soul searching and plain old research into celiac and I really think I can. I understand that marriage is hard anyway. Bringing another person in your life for forever is hard. I have no delusions that it'll be easy. But as far as chronic illness is concerned, this isn't that bad. But she keeps nagging me about it every time we talk. As if he's damaged or broken or something. It frustrates me that she feels that way. And that she doesn't realized she raised a stronger daughter than that. UGH!

He is the best thing that's happened to me, he just happens to have celiac. The desease defines his diet, not who he is. I wish she'd get over it. Anyone else with a similar story?

end rant.

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No, not unless you consider my hubs similarly "diseased" by his ex and son. Which quite frankly , he was. My mother did ask me if I was sure if I could do it...and many times later, as The Nut Job interfered in our lives - she asked many more times.

Eventually, it worked out for us (kids grow up and coparenting with an ex is no longer necessary). Wow, we were giddy. Perhaps a different line of work would have a similar effect?

I found you learn to adapt or die (not in the literal sense, but the relationship). Remember, your mother is not marrying him. You would be.

Is it a big deal that he gets depressed and mean with a glutening? Yes. Is it any worse than any other "bad habit" or negative personality trait? Only you can decide that. But I will stick my nose in and say y'all need to have a SERIOUS discussion about it and set some ground rules.

Love doesn't conquer all, but communication and honesty and friendship can. With a lot of love around the edges.

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I don't see any problem with him being a celiac I do not like that he gets mean & withdrawn. How mean is mean? what does he do? Maybe he is mean cuz you are trying to help to much when he feels bad & rather be lft alone? If he needs to withdraw for a while & you know he does, is it really a problem for you? Ppl do need private space ya know sometimes & maybe that's how he deals best with a glutening. You need to discuss thisso you know when to help him & when to let him be. & do not ever tell mother when he is sick. none of her business & gives her ammunition. Just smile & say he's fine even if he's hovering over the john @ 3 am.

Grown children who tell their parents too much are asking for interference.

Well Good Luck!

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Honestly, I think you mother has half a point. Hear me out.

It doesn't sound like he takes his condition completely seriously. I used to work in a restaurant also, but I was getting glutened constantly. I made the decision to move into a new line of work after a sufficient amount of time passed when I was being extremely careful and still getting sick. He needs to face up to the fact that he is going to have to find another job. If he isn't willing to do everything to make himself better, then your mother has a point.

While accidents happen, if it's happening more than once every 6 months or so, then he probably isn't being careful enough.

I do not think it would be wise to get married to someone who was not willing to take their condition seriously and take 100% responsibility for it. Whether or not he has a disease is not your mothers business. Whether he has a disease and he is not willing to follow the treatment fully, knowing it will hurt both him and you if he doesn't, that is her business.

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Grown children who tell their parents too much are asking for interference.

ABSOLUTELY!!!

This is YOUR life, not your mother's. You are perfectly happy living a gluten free lifestyle--what's it to her??? Why does she need to know if he is not feeling well anyway? I don't report my husband's bowel issues or moody moments (which ironically were only provoked after he visited HIS mother :lol:) to my mother. Nor does he report mine to anyone--even in my darkest days of illness from celiac. That's no one's business. And everyone has moody days. I mean, really...what are you like when you have your period or the flu?? :)

For the most part, the guy is a gem. You said so yourself. And you are the perfect girlfriend--willingly adjusting to all a gluten-free life entails!

You're a sweetheart!

But I am very concerned that he is having so many continuing symptoms. That's not a good thing.

When you say he is "mean", do you mean he gets quiet, grouchy, throws things, hits you? what? Because if he feels lousy, then it is understandable. If he is abusive, that's a different story.

Run, do not walk, away.

How often is he being "glutened"??

If he is constantly being CCed working in a restaurant, he needs to find another job, seriously ---because more is happening to him INSIDE than just a bad mood and some gas.

I think I am a little bit offended that my being a celiac means I am "damaged goods". :unsure: It's just a dietary restriction --would it be okay if he were a diabetic?

I am glad my hubs did not see me that way when I was near death with this thing--before diagnosis. He could have walked--like some people on here had happen to them---but he did not. He cared for me like I was a child some days. In Sickness and in Health.

But I am not like that anymore because the disease is in remission. It does not sound like he is doing a very good job at staying gluten-free, hon.

If you were my daughter, I would ask you...what do you want, hon? If you really love him, it's your decision. But if she is questioning your judgment, ( and I don't know how often she butts into your life) well, that's a whole 'nuther issue and she won't stop here---it will only get worse.

Just wait 'til you have kids. :lol:

Just my two cents! Best wishes to you.

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I agree with Maximoo. I don't like the sound of mean and withdrawn either. You two need to sort that out. :huh: He might need a different job? Otherwise, celiac isn't a big deal, as you've noticed. It's a little limiting with travel and eating out but nothing like a lot of other health problems.

You are treating him great. It's so nice to have a spouse or family members who really understand the diet!

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Wow - I had never even considered someone would end a relationship over something like coeliac - just seems such a non issue. Shame on your mum - if he is the man you love and coeliac is the worst thing you guys ever have to go through then I think you'd be having a brilliant life!

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I married a diabetic and together we had a child who has celiacs and Hashimotos. And I'd do it all over again in a heartbeat! They are my life.

But: I don't know how mean is mean. Diabetics and get grouchy if their sugar is too low or too high but mine doesn't use it as an excuse. And also, you could marry a perfectly healthy man who could be in a wreck and be brain damaged the next day. BUT....if mean is really mean....RUN whether he has celiac or not.

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Let me clarify the "mean" thing. He's in no way abusive. He's never hit me or thrown things or anything even kinda like that. We both have a very sarcastic sense of humor. Usually I love it! Just when he's been glutened, it gets biting and personal in ways it doesn't usually. His verbal filter just slips a bit. And I don't tell mum about it. She just saw it once when she was visiting. His roommate drank out of their carton of milk while eating something glutenous and didn't tell him till later. I think his careless roommate is as much a part of the problem with CC as his job, but they're locked into a lease together. He takes his celiac seriously, his current job is just getting him through college, and he's almost done. He'll have a safe job soon. :-)

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Let me clarify the "mean" thing. He's in no way abusive. He's never hit me or thrown things or anything even kinda like that. We both have a very sarcastic sense of humor. Usually I love it! Just when he's been glutened, it gets biting and personal in ways it doesn't usually. His verbal filter just slips a bit. And I don't tell mum about it. She just saw it once when she was visiting. His roommate drank out of their carton of milk while eating something glutenous and didn't tell him till later. I think his careless roommate is as much a part of the problem with CC as his job, but they're locked into a lease together. He takes his celiac seriously, his current job is just getting him through college, and he's almost done. He'll have a safe job soon. :-)

I hope he directs some of the biting sarcasm at that dang roommate.

Anyway, something I mentioned once in jest here was a "safe word" that either party can use when feeling abused by gluten (him by the physiological effects and as a warning, and you as a "back off, turkey! warning).

Anyway, I joked about it with my hub and he immediately agreed it could be useful; although he told me its obvious when I get glutened (to him).

Anyway, sounds like y'all are a great couple. Hey, your challenge (health wise) is out front and visible. That's more than alot of couples get. Y'all can deal with it, if you choose.

I say live and love (and talk about it with each other).

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Just a word from the mom prospective.

This is what I would say to one of my boys who started getting serious with a girl with an illness. I would want to be certain they knew all there was to know about the illness and the future path of the illness - in general & realistically. I would want to be certain they knew what stage the girl was in. In the case of Celiac, is she compliant with the diet. Does she " cheat"?. etc.

I would then want to know they knew what that illness meant for themselves on a day to day, week to week, etc basis. Know all the limitations.

Some of my concern would be based on how old or mature they are. You sound like you are grown with your own home so you are probably good.

Maybe your mom just needs some info for herself about his Celiac. If she realized that its not a big health deal if you stay gluten-free, maybe she wouldn't mind so much.

I think we all want perfect partners for our kids - same religion, values, good-looking, healthy, tall, smart, etc. But the main thing I want for my boys is someone who likes them, loves them and is good with them. If you can show your mom that and explain away her fears about his health, you should be good.

Now if he's 22 with 5 kids by 5 different moms and rude to her..... :(

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I am a little suprised that your mom is concerned about your bf's celiac. I have grown children who can't eat wheat, grandchildren who are on gluten-free diets. We are just as normal as the rest of the population. I think I would be careful what you tell your mom, she might be too involved. If she is expressing this concern, I wonder if it is really the celiac she is concerned about. Is it possible for him to find work where he is not working with food? By the sounds of the situation he would benefit from getting out the kitchen. I get mean when I get sick and I have done some real stupid things. If you are not talking abuse, then he just needs to make sure his diet is clean and he is not being exposed. I wish you all the luck in the world.

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Let me clarify the "mean" thing. He's in no way abusive. He's never hit me or thrown things or anything even kinda like that. We both have a very sarcastic sense of humor. Usually I love it! Just when he's been glutened, it gets biting and personal in ways it doesn't usually. His verbal filter just slips a bit. And I don't tell mum about it. She just saw it once when she was visiting. His roommate drank out of their carton of milk while eating something glutenous and didn't tell him till later. I think his careless roommate is as much a part of the problem with CC as his job, but they're locked into a lease together. He takes his celiac seriously, his current job is just getting him through college, and he's almost done. He'll have a safe job soon. :-)

My husband and I also are quite sarcastic in our humor. My ex-husband was as well. I am quite fond of sarcasm. Now by no means is someone with any sort of health issue damaged goods. Your mother needs to mind her own business about that, if it doesn't bother you it shouldn't bother her. On the other hand, my ex-husband's sarcastic sense of humor would sometimes turn biting and personal when he was moody. That dear, is abuse. Like it or not, it is abuse. It is the reason I ended up divorced. Today you shrug it off, but eventually he'll almost certainly wear you down. You won't notice it happening until one day (if you're lucky) you'll wake up and realize that you consider yourself completely worthless and he's the one that drove you there. You need to have a very serious discussion about this and he needs to stop. Period. Maybe he needs to be alone. Maybe he needs to learn to control his tongue. Certainly he needs to find a new job. (Yes, I am aware of the fact that you are going to rail against everything I said and say he isn't abusive but you're wrong. Period. Verbal abuse, emotional abuse is still abuse and is equally and sometimes more damaging than being pushed around and hit.)

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I am also divorced from verbally abusive marriage that threatened to turn physical. As Adalaide says, a health problem is not a reason for someone to turn "biting and personal" and that is emotional abuse. It wears you down in ways you might not expect. One day you wake up and realize you are walking on eggshells, self-esteem gone, afraid to speak lest he lose his temper again. There are also serious issues with escalation that may not appear until you're married.

Adelade is also right that you'll say he isn't abusive and things won't escalate. We all do. Rationalization and denial are very powerful survival mechanisms and we use them automatically to cope with bad situations. You can't see what you were denying until you are clear of the situation. You are also rationalizing if you think the behavior will only ever be when he is glutened. Perhaps it is now, but it shows that he is not willing to control his temper and that he considers you a valid target for attacks.

The "biting and personal" stuff needs to stop. Period. Full stop, never again, or you do not marry him. Feeling ill from gluten (or anything else) is NEVER an excuse to emotionally abuse someone you love.

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I wonder if she's more concerned about the potential for that meanness to escalate than about the disease itself.

I'm someone whose moods are dramatically affected by gluten (and other factors), and I can be pretty horrid to be around. Just because the gluten got me doesn't mean I have a *right* to that behaviour. I've also been on the other side of low-level ongoing emotional abuse. It's not a good thing. I can understand why your mom would want you to be cautious.

That said, the celiac in itself is not a reason to cut off your relationship. I would look at how he copes with it.

I'd consider the following in making my decision:

  • If work is a source of contamination for him, is he doing everything he can to find a safer job?
  • When he is in a mood, does he take responsibility for it (acknowledge he is not in his right mind)?
  • Is he showing a trend of getting nicer to you during his mean moments? (I'm not talking about the apology here, I'm talking about his own efforts to improve himself when he is at his worst)

I'd have a heart to heart with him and bring these things up as necessary before you can marry.

As for your mom, once you have made your decision, you'll want to talk with her. In a neutral way, thank her for her concern, validate that you heard her concerns, let her know how you addressed them, and tell her that you must have her support now that you have made your decision. If she can't do that, you'll need to figure out your own boundaries and hold them up. Mistakes or not, this is your life. She needs to let you live it for yourself.

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Honestly, I think you mother has half a point. Hear me out.

It doesn't sound like he takes his condition completely seriously. I used to work in a restaurant also, but I was getting glutened constantly. I made the decision to move into a new line of work after a sufficient amount of time passed when I was being extremely careful and still getting sick. He needs to face up to the fact that he is going to have to find another job. If he isn't willing to do everything to make himself better, then your mother has a point.

While accidents happen, if it's happening more than once every 6 months or so, then he probably isn't being careful enough.

I do not think it would be wise to get married to someone who was not willing to take their condition seriously and take 100% responsibility for it. Whether or not he has a disease is not your mothers business. Whether he has a disease and he is not willing to follow the treatment fully, knowing it will hurt both him and you if he doesn't, that is her business.

I agree with you about his working in a restaurant. Unless he is in a gluten free restaurant and it doesn't sound like he is...he's not taking this seriously enough.

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I am also divorced from verbally abusive marriage that threatened to turn physical. As Adalaide says, a health problem is not a reason for someone to turn "biting and personal" and that is emotional abuse. It wears you down in ways you might not expect. One day you wake up and realize you are walking on eggshells, self-esteem gone, afraid to speak lest he lose his temper again. There are also serious issues with escalation that may not appear until you're married.

Adelade is also right that you'll say he isn't abusive and things won't escalate. We all do. Rationalization and denial are very powerful survival mechanisms and we use them automatically to cope with bad situations. You can't see what you were denying until you are clear of the situation. You are also rationalizing if you think the behavior will only ever be when he is glutened. Perhaps it is now, but it shows that he is not willing to control his temper and that he considers you a valid target for attacks.

The "biting and personal" stuff needs to stop. Period. Full stop, never again, or you do not marry him. Feeling ill from gluten (or anything else) is NEVER an excuse to emotionally abuse someone you love.

While I've been in the same boat as you (ex-fiancee used to yell at me, then New Year's Eve he pushed me down the stairs. New Years Day I had a U-Haul in his driveway getting my stuff and my kids' stuff out of there), I partially disagree with you.

Celiac, when not taken care of, can cause bouts of depression. Depression makes a person moody. I have had depression since I was a preteen (so at least 20 years). My kids can visibly see when I'm having ups and downs. I am not violent, but I get crabby - really irritated. It doesn't mean I would ever hurt my kids or another living thing for that matter.

Beside, if being glutened causes someone to not feel good, that person might tend to be crabby and irritated. When interacting with another person they could be mean - without being violent.

Sorry for the OT, but I just wanted to chime in that mean isn't always abusive.

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I think there is way too much over thinking on this issue by many. I also think that anyone who would consider a Celiac "damaged goods" of sorts should open their eyes and take a look at most of the American public. They are in way worse shape than many Celiacs I know. They eat crap, they don't exercise and are in generally very bad shape. There is no big deal in not eating gluten and being healthy. Once it's mastered, it becomes second nature. I eat healthy foods with a little baked goods thrown in...what's so weird about that? :blink:

As for Mom's attitude, I understand because I have a somewhat critical mother and you know what I do? Ignore her. I rarely call her and she has made it that way. I am nice to her when I see her but we do not have a close relationship and I have no problems with that. If you love this guy and he is a good man, then marry him. He may have to change his job but you will talk about that before you marry him. This is between you and him. You are sweet lady to go the extra mile for him and that is what makes a good marriage. Good luck to you and I wish a lifetime of happiness for you both!

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I agree with the over thinking. (Although it's clearly with the best of intentions!)

If he's being verbally abusive, of course it's time to reconsider and/or leave.

If he gets crabby and irritated, well, I guess he's human. Seriously, NONE of the women responding on this thread find themselves acting crabby/short/irritated during any part of their cycle? None of the women OR men with children responding on this thread ever acted crabby/short/irritated during the first few weeks/months/(years?!) of your child's life when you weren't getting enough sleep? And none of you responding on this post have ever acted crabby/short/irritated after a long stressful day on the job?

Of course we all have!

And of course NONE of that excuses verbal and/or emotional abuse. But only the OP can say (and only once she is really, really objective) if that is the case.

If you guys can function together and can work through the tough times (including when he's glutened), that's a really (good) big sign!

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