22 Mar
Chomp, Chomp, Slurp

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

I’ve been dating this guy for about 2 1/2 months now. He is absolutely wonderful, sweet and thoughtful. Every day I have known him I’ve been grateful for having found such a great catch. But….his table etiquette is horrendous. He inhales his food like someone is going to take it away any second, eats with his mouth open, and chomps his teeth the whole time he’s chewing (with mouth open of course). It drives me insane!   How do I bring this up and tell him nicely that this bothers me?

Signed, I love you but…

_______________________________________________

Dear Love You But,

So, here’s the thing.  I could suggest that you tell your guy, “Hey, did you see that there’s a new and fun table manners class being offered at the Y? Wouldn’t it be fun if we enrolled?” Or that you should gaze into his eyes and whisper, “I adore you, but please close your mouth while chewing,” but I won’t.

Because unless he’s been looking for Mommy, he’s not going to appreciate it and he’s just going to resent you for criticizing him.  And I think that we can all agree that it’s so much better being the resentful party in the relationship. Not only does it give you the higher moral ground and lots to complain about to your friends, but it can also lead to health complications like high  blood pressure from holding in the rage.

The question that you need to answer is– can you live with him the way he is? Is his wonderfulness overshadowed by his eating habits? If you can accept that you will never change him and love him anyway, mazel tov.  Otherwise, unless he’s the hunger strike type, move on.

Marinka, TMH

8 Responses to “Chomp, Chomp, Slurp”

03.22.10#1

Comment by Lara.

Admission: I have refused to continue dating people because of table manners. It grosses me out. Superficial? Maybe, but to me, this is like addressing BO a lack of clean clothes, not just a style issue.

I think this is something that bears addressing, especially if he/you do any socializing or he has a professional position. The state department gives table etiquiette lessons to diplomats, it’s not like he’s the only one out there.

So it’s about presentation. Private, respectful, “I thought you’d like to know that when you eat, I can see your food, and you spray me when you talk with food in your mouth” and NO MENTION of how grossed out you are.

The way he reacts will tell you if he’s not the catch you think he is, or if he’s an even bigger one.

03.22.10#2

Comment by Michelle.

That is a deal breaker for me. YUCK!!

03.22.10#3

Comment by Plano Mom.

I agree that she should talk to him. If anything, she will have done the next girl a favor.

03.22.10#4

Comment by the mama bird diaries.

A good catch is hard to find. So if you love this guy, tell him very nicely about his table manners. Pick the thing that bothers you the most and focus on that as the key element so he doesn’t feel overwhelmed. He probably doesn’t even realize.

03.22.10#5

Comment by Maddnessofme.

See, for me – it’s a great weight loss benefit. When I see somebody eating with their mouth open, it makes me lose my appetite. So, win-win.

Downside, this is usually a prerequisite for the guy being a total slob in the rest of his life. His bachelor pad is probably not tolerable.

03.22.10#6

Comment by Karen at French Skinny.

Here’s the thing. SERIOUSLY, I’ve been married 12 years. Imagine eating breakfast and dinner with him for the next 10 years. Staring at his disgusting mouth full of food while he rambles on for 1460 meals. Not really listening because if he doesn’t shut it soon you will Ninja him with a freaking frying pan.

03.22.10#7

Comment by Rachael.

If it’s the right guy you’ll learn to stand up, be a grown up and say “you’re smacking” like I do. I have very few complaints about my partner but when something is bothering me I try to be honest even if it’s not the nicest thing for him to hear.

03.22.10#8

Comment by amy.

Ugh, once dated a guy whose manners were GROSS at the dinner table. Like pull your face out of the trough buddy. Bleh.

Lived with a guy with some manner issues and nicely suggested ‘elbows of the table!’ and a few other things. Of course he had to bring it up in front of his parents and they added it to the reasons they hated me 🙂

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