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hapi2bgf

Non-celiac Spouses Please Advise

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Someone please explain this to me.

My spouse and I have a regular heated debate about using cast iron pans and non-stick pans and why EXACTLY I cannot use them. It is to the point that I no longer buy bacon (it HAS to be cooked on a cast iron pan . . . blah blah blah)

Next is what happens at a restaurant. I have to specify my food requirements with the server and my spouse makes comments and faces that make me feel like crap. If I call him on it on the spot it gets thrown back in my face. Its like my food requirements cause him embarrassment. If the food comes out wrongs he tries very hard to help the server get it right, or get something that I can eat. But, I have heard him explaining celiac disease to other people in a very positive way, and explianing that I have it and what being gluten-free has done for me etc. all very positive. I don't go crazy keeping a gluten-free house, but all meals except pasta and panckaes are gluten-free. Plenty of non-gluten-free snacks in the house.

So how does it make you feel to have your spouse get very sick, go through tons of doctors, surgeries, etc only to find it is celiacs? How does it effect your life?? Does it bother you to have to live with a celiac??

Someone please enlighten me as to what is going on :(

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My husband says, in response to your last two questions, "It doesn't affect my life at all, and it doesn't bother me."

I said, "But I don't make the pancakes you like any more,"

He said, "Yeah, I make them."

I asked, "So it doesn't bother you in restaurants, to have me asking lots of questions?"

He replied, "It's not my favorite thing, but clearly I have a more reasonable view of things..."

Now, I didn't get terribly sick, have surgeries, or go through tons of doctors. I am fairly gluten-nazi in the kitchen, but he still has his gluten-filled stuff if he wants to make it himself.

Talk to him, ask him why he displays contradictory behavior, and if he can identify what his fear is with respect to the restaurant questions. And include in that discussion, why the arguments about decisions you make about your own health. I don't mean confrontationally, but there are deeper issues at work here, clearly.

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Maybe he is having a hard time adjusting too, I dont know. Now my sweetie is the opposite. He inquires at different places if they have anything gluten free. He is on the road everyday for work in our area and he always tells me of a sign he saw stating gluten free somewhere. He did a job at a jewish bakery and asked the guy if he knew anything about gluten free items---he sent him home with an armload of gluten free cakes for me. We were in a Boston Market one time to eat and I requested no biscuit on my plate--I had to argue with the girl about not putting it there---finally he raised his voice and told her that I did not want the biscuit, that I could not have the biscuit, that the biscuit would make me very ill and if she didnt want to follow my orders, then we would go eat somewhere else--------well, I got my plate without the biscuit, but we never returned to eat there. He is very supportive of me--some of us are very lucky people. Deb

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I am the non celiac spouse, I am female, he's a guy.

No, none of this is embarrassing to me.

As a matter of fact, I am a "pit bull" when it comes to requesting gluten-free or finding out if something is gluten-free. Not to say that I am more concerned than he is, but I'd rather have two skillets (gluteny and gluten-free) just to make sure that his food is definitely gluten-free. Believe me, it's not easy as we have a small 3 rm apartment and are cramped in to begin with, but I have two toasters, and two sets of wooden spoons and rubber spatulas, only one bread machine and that's gluten-free.

It doesn't bother me to live with a celiac.

We've been married 26 years and I took him in sickness and in health (it's been all sickness, I hate to say); but despite that I wouldn't want it any other way.

I have to say, however, my husband refuses to go to restaurants and hasn't since he was diagnosed in 2003 (he went 27 years misdiagnosed).

He just started getting the desire to call manufacturers to find out if something is gluten-free, prior to this, I had to do all of the calling and emailing. His depression was too great for him to care about himself when he got diagnosed. I had to take over and do it myself and create a gluten-free environment at home and he finally picked his head up and looked for a reason to live and get involved in this new celiac-world.

What does bother me, is our un-caring world.

During 2003, when my husband was first diagnosed, and he was so sick that I was worried about him needing to be hopsitalized over this, my Bayitch of a co worker at work would hear me calling manufacturers (not every day, not all the time, but in the beginning I needed to do it a couple of times a week or so) to see if certain foods/medications were gluten-free. Bayitch knew my husband was very ill and just had testing etc. And she made a stink about my calling during work hours (I was also calling during lunchhour, but sometimes they would call me back or the call would run into 1 PM back from lunchtime - and we are office workers and the big boss wouldn't care if he knew. I was frequently coming in early and staying late anyway, so it wasn't as if I was missing time. I don't smoke, so I never took smoking breaks. This woman just wanted to make trouble for me).

Fast forward to 2004 and this Bayitch took about two hours a day almost every day to tell everyone about her new engagement, then her upcoming wedding, and on the phone with stores and you name it when she was planning her colossial wedding. At this point Bayitch was annoying EVERYONE around her with her phone calls (to round out the picture: she was 38 years old and never married before, so this was a big deal; daughter of a millionaire who worked because her father was a playboy over the years and sent her to relatives to live with because he was always dating bimbos, so she was constantly rejected and she learned to survive by being a bayitch). In 2002 Bayitch complained about one of the assistants who was on the phone during the assistant's wedding planning stage. The assistant made only one phone call to the organist a week before her wedding. It was a short 4 minute phone call to discuss the music. And don't you know that bayitch went to that assistant's manager to complain. That's why the lady is a bayitch.

Anyway, it's my experience that the USA isn't ready for this disease. They are ignorant, unyielding, uncompassionate - until they get a disease or health problem. I have tried to get 3 lower price restaurants that we used to go to to find out if they can accomodate gluten-free and one said "No." and the other two said they'd have to get back to me and it's been over a year. My husband said to leave them alone as they gave their answer by their silence. (These are not upscale, white-linen restaurants; more like diners, well one is a white-linen type).

By the way, I am starting a new job in December I just got tired of working with this bayitch (now she is on a 4 month maternity leave and she went to management to request that I work on her accounts while she's out. She knows the work will get done right. She knows which side her bread is buttered on). Anyway, she is the embodiment of what all uncompassionate people are like. She's the poster girl for the gluten world that refuses to understand.

Sorry this is so long, as I was talking it hit a nerve.

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My husband sounds a lot like Tiffany's. However, he figures the less I eat of the other stuff, the more for him but 99.5% of the dinners in the house, our breakfast, and my lunch is all prepare so I can eat and that is what the family eats. We occasionally have other sides and they keep regular bread etc. His lunch is his own...that is when he splurges, then I come home and clean the kitchen again.

After getting sick from the old cast iron skillets, I kept bugging everyone for a new one, just of my food for Christmas last year and that is what I got. So we have the small one for the boys' grilled cheese sandwhiches, we have the regular big one for other foods that we rarely use now unless I am strapped for pans, then we have mine. If we use the two big ones, the food is kept separate so that I won't get sick.

Our non-stick skillet is used exclusively food I can eat.

In resturaunts, he doesn't seem to care and has no problem with me sending food back if it comes out wrong and in fact, insists on it. He just goes on with his eating...

I am a bit psycho on the kitchen cleaning and he seems to think I go a little overboard but it saves me from getting sick so I don't really care.

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Guest nini

hubby said even though it limits the restaurants we can go out to, he can still eat a steak so NO it doesn't affect him at all.

now at first he was a bit resistant to it and didn't want me making a big deal in restaurants, but eventually he realized how much healthier I was and how much healthier our daughter was so he came around to realizing that it was a necessary part of life.

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I'm the non-celiac spouse here -- never, ever embarassed. Why would I be? There are times where it makes me sad that we can't eat out except for like 2 places (we used to have a "date" every other week for lunch, while our kids were in school) and he can only have 3 or 4 things there so WHAT's the point for him, but I've never been embarassed.

And yes, there was (shame on me) a time where I was angry -- but I honestly think, looking back, that I was just grieving for a carefree eating/travelling couple I wanted us to be. And frustrated that there was absolutely nothing we could do about that (as far as the celiac disease dx goes) As far as I'm concerned, we're in this together. I'm just glad he feels so much better!

joanna

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I am the non celiac, my husband was diagnosed years before we met. When he was first diagnosed, gluten free cooking was a science experiment. He and the ex wife (or maybe just the ex) decided not to go out of the way for non gluten experiences.

I find gluten free cooking fairly easy, with all of the products available now. How do you think my husband felt to have,lasangna, chocolate chip cookies, carrot cake, for the first time in years? When we go out to eat, I explain things to the server....mostly because I thought his description was over the top and uneccessary. I can explain very quickly what could be a complicated conversation. I am in no way embarrassed by my husband's gluten intolerance. I can't imagine what he went through before diagnosis.

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My ex-wife was always embarresed by it and would get very angry when I made special requests in a restaurant. My girlfriend is perfectly fine with it. She is always going out of her way to find gluten-free foods and restaurants.

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Thank you for all the replies!

Gypsyfey - what is your short description that you use in restaurants? I know that is one of his complaints - I tell them I am allergic to wheat , rye, barley, and oats and request no bread, no seasoning, etc. I still have problems when the food arrives. Any thoughts?

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hapi2bgf,

I recently ordered a set of Triumph Dining Cards, for Celiac, but haven't used them yet:

http://www.triumphdining.com/

from their website:

Ready to Enjoy Eating Out Again?

Triumph Dining Cards Do What Others Don't!

If “No Wheat, Rye, Barley, or Oats” was enough, we wouldn’t be here! Celiacs across the globe know that gluten hides in surprising places and that clear communication is essential to safe dining.

That’s why Triumph Dining Cards do more than just skim the surface. Our cards are:

Custom written for each cuisine, specifying unique and hidden gluten sources - no cookie-cutter text here!

Expertly translated by Ivy-League educated, native speakers

Extensively researched - backed by thousands of hours of research and field testing

Edited by celiachap

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I quizzed my BF. We live together, so the relationship qualifies.

He said, the only time he gest embarrased is when it gets takled about too much at table. I actually feel the same way, I don't really want to spend an entire meal with friends or family discussing my eating problems.

He's totally cool with me taking forever to order though, and is very supportive when I decide to leave a restaurant cause its not working out. I've done that a few times.

He understands it, and if very careful with his gluten that he has in the kitchen, and hsa actually helped me from accidently cross contaminating myself a few times.

Elonwy

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Next is what happens at a restaurant. I have to specify my food requirements with the server and my spouse makes comments and faces that make me feel like crap. If I call him on it on the spot it gets thrown back in my face. Its like my food requirements cause him embarrassment.

A friend of mine who is a waiter once said to me that waiters often have to deal with rudeness because hungry people are irritable and rude and want to take it out on someone -- preferably a stranger.

It sounds to me like your husband has a firm grasp on your limits as a Celiac. But when he's hungry and he wants to eat and you are (justifiably!!!!!) holding things up by deliberating over ingredients and cross contamination issues, he loses it. From your perspective, you are concerned about your health and trying to not get sick. But in his hungry state, all he hears is the "mwah mwah mwah" sounds that adults make in those Peanuts cartoons. I'm not saying that your husband has a point or that he's not being a bit of a jackass in these situations, but it doesn't sound like he outright thinks that you are full of crap either.

The next time your husband gets irritable, take note of what time it is. If it's close to mealtime, you might want to shut him up with a snack.

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