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Grossed out by spouse's table manners

I can't believe I am writing embarrasses me. My spouse has terrible table manners...generally speaking, but worse when we are alone together. My back crawls sometimes. Mostly it is packing mouth full..then talking while chewing. I find myself saying from time to time "honey, swallow first..then continue" but it falls on deaf ears and the habit continues. I find myself eating alone in front of the TV a lot because I can't stand the noise or the view. Am I just nuts here? I look around at others and no one else I know seems to have the same level of this problem.

Thu. May 31, 5:36pm

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oh no

you could tell him how you really feel, might not go down well, but it could also be symptomatic of other things, you just be fed up with him.

Thursday, May 31, 2007, 6:08 PM

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My husband was not raised with table manners either. I understand where you're coming from. Just try to remember that he was like this when you married him, but you still love him in spite of his faults.

Thursday, May 31, 2007, 6:38 PM

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Try one of the heart to heart talks and tell him it's really bothering you. Ask him first if you have any annoying habits that he would like you to change. Maybe you can make a game out of it. If you tell him in a caring way instead of a nagging/mothering way, he may be more receptive.

Thursday, May 31, 2007, 10:29 PM

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Have dinner with a friend who tells it like it is, maybe they will say something to him/her or make a comment that makes them realize what they are doing. He/she might not even realize what they are doing is so offensive.

Thursday, May 31, 2007, 10:56 PM

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try and get a mirror installed... or place a long mirror that is tall on the floor and position it right where he or she will see it while sitting in their spot across the room.. so when he or she sits down to dinner will see themselves in the act and maybe change their habits on their own. It is worth a shot... don't explain that is why the mirror is there, just make something up.

Friday, June 01, 2007, 8:58 AM

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oh- just to add... say mirrors add or reflect light in the room... say you are seeing if the mirror can make the room brighter or look bigger...

Friday, June 01, 2007, 8:59 AM

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Don't make it about keeping score. Just tell him you find it unattractive and leave it at that. Sadly many folks associate bad table manners with a lack of intelligence and/or social ineptness. However it is about being aware of how your behavior is perceived by others. If you're grossed out by it, how many others are? I know I tend to gobble down food and talk with my mouth full as well. I grew up with a military dad who insisted we all eat like we were in a mess hall, so I have had to overcome that. Now I can eat with just about anyone of any social standing and not fear my table manners, but I have to make an effort to set my fork down, put my hands in my lap and chew. I try to keep my lips together when I chew so I can't talk with my mouth full, and I take smaller bites so I can swallow quickly if I need to take part in the conversation. Good luck!

Friday, June 01, 2007, 9:53 AM

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I know I've posted this in other threads, but there may be an underlying medical reason for it. I have a friend who had a deviated septum/concha bullosa that was so severe he could not breathe through his nose at all. He had to chew with his mouth open so that he could breathe, or risk passing out!

Another thing -- a lot of the problem is stuffing his mouth & eating too fast, right? As part of my weight loss journey, I focussed on buying and/or preparing small portions of absolutely DELICIOUS foods. (No giving up ice cream for me! Just giving up large helpings of cheap ice cream, in favor of tiny helpings of high-milkfat kinds.) When one has just that tiny, savory portion on the plate, one is much more likely to take a small forkful and close one's mouth on it to really get the taste. Even if your husband isn't losing weight, you could serve smaller portions and let him go back for seconds.

Friday, June 01, 2007, 10:14 AM

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my friend's boyfriend does the same thing, even with company! she asked, pleaded, begged for him to pay attention to his manners, but to no avail. finally, she got sneaky and videotaped him eating. then she showed him the video. at one point in the video, he has so much steak in his mouth that he can hardly speak, but he speaks tell her to stop making grossed out faces. i haven't seen the video, but i cook often for them and they told me about it last night. he has been making a concerted effort for the past 2 days, anyway. i've broken off relationships with past boyfriends for such a lack of manners. maybe that's shallow, but if they were worth it, i would have been able to overlook their table-manner flaws. when someone sucks buffalo sauce off each individual finger, i can't take anymore!!

Friday, June 01, 2007, 10:50 AM

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My husband's pet peeve

Sometimes when I can hear my husband's jaw moving it grosses me out so I let him know and he chews a different way. Same thing with me;I understand sometimes if I'm chewing "loudly" it can be annoying and when I'm made aware of it I can stop. But JEEZ, no table manners? Chewing with is mouth full of food? What if you showed him how? I mean, with a knife in one hand, a fork in the other and showed him how to eat properly. I don't know how you would deliver such news but maybe he was never taught. I feel for you, I'm sorry you have to deal with would drive me mental.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007, 8:34 PM

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Did he eat like that BEFORE you got married? My Ex used to slurp his cereal so loudly, I had to leave the room or turn something noisy on to drown out the noise. Annoying. Notice I said "ex." He's found someone else he'd like to hear him slurp his cereal now! It's much quieter at the breakfast table these days! LOL!

Tuesday, June 05, 2007, 9:26 PM

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My husband does the same thing. He chews loudly with his mouth open. It's especially annoying when he's eating something hard, like nuts. I knew before we got married that he had less than perfect table manners, but he never chewed with his mouth open. I'm not sure why he does it now, but it drives me crazy. I constantly say things to him, he says "sorry" and tries to tone it down... until the next time he eats something. UGH. I feel like I'm raising my husband. It makes me angry because that's something his mother should have done.

Monday, July 09, 2007, 6:21 PM

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My boyfriend literally sucks on the beer bottle. It drives me up the wall. There' no way to change it, just tell him it ticks you off and leave the room. He might stop to keep you there.

Monday, July 09, 2007, 6:32 PM

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