Help! My boyfriend won’t budge on meat and three veg

Q: MY PARTNER of five years hates to eat out in restaurants, trying new food or eating anything that's not steak and three veg.

I'm a very keen cook and foodie.

I thought I could change him, but he's so resistant and I'm getting sick of it.

Can we get past this incompatibility?

A: LOTS of couples have stark personal differences and yet remain in healthy, happy, balanced relationships.

So the first point to remember is you don't have to share all your interests and passions to share a passionate, loving life together.

The second, and equally important point to bear in mind, is you cannot change anyone!

Sure, this is a smaller issue to hope one would change, than say, being a serial cheater, but regardless of what needs changing, only the person themselves can do the changing.

You are in control of yourself, and your partner is the boss of himself.

In an equal partnership you can negotiate together, through heartfelt, earnest, open communication, what your priorities are as a couple.

Change of any kind is slow and you may have to settle for less than what you most desire on this specific issue.

The compromise in a relationship may be that he gives a little more on this issue, if you give a little more on another issue that is important to him.

Both of you need to feel heard and be happy for your relationship to be sustainable.

If he agrees to try one new thing a month with you, or eat out with you once a month, then you can share that passion of yours together as a couple, while perhaps also agreeing that you can find other outlets for your foodie passion elsewhere, such as with other foodie friends.

Also, since you cook, perhaps you can entertain at home as a couple, and involve your family and circle of mutual friends.

This expansion of your worlds together, in several ways at once, can enable both of you to find enjoyment from various aspects of entertaining.

Rather than making the foodie experience only about the food, make it about socialising and enjoying good company, drink, laughs and all the other aspects of dining and entertaining as a couple.

When compromises are a win-win not only are both partners happier and more fulfilled, but they are more bonded and connected too.

And when both of you continue to communicate and also both try new things, not just food, but many passions and interests, both each other's and entirely new ones, then you remain not just compatible and balanced as individuals in a happy couple, but best of all, stimulated and with a shared value of growing together, which is the best way to be.

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