When your partner doesn’t understand intuitive eating or undieting
This is a common concern we get.
Many partners are still in the diet world OR they have an easy relationship with food.
So they don’t get the struggle of trying to get OUT of the diet mentality.
The first step:
Knowing they don’t need to GET IT for it to be the right thing for you.
It is not your job to educate them on this or get their permission or support.
I know it’s nice to have your partner be on board but that is just not always possible.
If they are genuinely asking questions (without judgement) there are absolutely things you can share with them including the cheatsheet you can download from this episode at www.thebodylovesociety.com/64
But if their questions seem judgemental, "Why did you buy so many cookies?", this can be a slippery slope to a difficult argument.
Someone who wants to keep their viewpoint will not be swayed otherwise. There is a really great video that shares about how arguing with someone makes believe their side even more strongly, if they aren’t wanting to truly learn about another perspective. That video is linked in the show notes.
Secondly if your partner is making comments about food and your body that are just not helpful in this journey you can set a boundary.
How to do this:
Sit down (or write something if that’s too awkward) and tell them what YOU need at this point.
After your partner has seen you dieting for years and years they may be a bit thrown off by this new and very different way of living.
It can be confusing for them so you might need to set the stage for a new way. Seeing it from their perspective for a minute can be helpful - your partner might think they’re being helpful when they question the foods you’re buying etc because for the last 20 years you have been trying to avoid these foods.
BUT it is still important to create a new understanding with your partner.
I am really getting into learning more about intuitive eating and being an undieter, i know it may seem different than what ive done in the past. I dont know if you know this but dieting has left me feeling _________, this is what happens everytime i start a new diet _________ , they havent even worked and left me with a lot of messed up thoughts about food and my body….. Whatever is true for you. Being open and honest as much as you can.
Make an agreement (for the partners who dont get it or understand and who are choosing to not understand):
- I’m trying this new way, this is what i know is best for me so lets keep all food and body talk out of our relationship.
- This can obviously be amended and altered if the partner is getting into it or seeing the results of your food and body freedom.
As for the agreement: write down exactly what you need from them and then tell your partner. Be specific as possible so they truly know where the lines are drawn.
What happens when your partner crosses these boundaries??
How does it make you feel?
Let them know this.
That being said - when you set boundaries people will want to test them. Be strong in what you need from them and call it out when lines are being crossed.
How do you reinforce boundaries when they're being crossed?
- Remind them that food comments are not a part of your relationship and leave the room.
- Don’t respond to the comment - don’t engage or give energy to it
- Whatever else you feel is the best for you.
Be sure to download the cheatsheet if this is a conversation you want to have with your partner. This sheet will allow you to prepare and get your thoughts down before you chat with them.
You can grab it at www.thebodylovesociety.com/64
And be sure to follow us on instagram @thebodylovesociety, we offer coaching and tips and tools daily to make your journey to food and body freedom that much easier.