I’ve often said in the 4 months since I was diagnosed with celiac disease
, a severe gluten intolerance, that I have the least glamorous disease
in the world. My symptoms after eating gluten are mostly large intestine related, and that is as specific as I’ll to get with anyone who doesn’t have the disease. Unless of course I’ve had a few drinks, at which time I might try to explain what “leaky gut
” means. I might also accidentally say “bowel” instead of “gut.”
No joke, this is what happened to me last week at a bar. After those words spilled out from my mouth, and after the guy I was interested in responded, “That sounds, um, messy...” I ran to my bus stop, cursing my stupid disease and my inability to be suave about it
Luckily guys are more accustomed to talking about gross things than most girls are, and he still asked my friend for my phone number after I ran away in embarrassment. For our date, he researched a restaurant we could walk to after I got off work since I neither drive nor bike. Bonus point number one!He also took the time to find a celiac safe restaurant for me
. Bonus point number two! It was a Vietnamese restaurant, a cuisine I had never tried before but consists mainly of rice and rice noodles. Still, I ended up ordering practically the only thing on the menu that had soy sauce without realizing it.
Soy sauce contains gluten, so I stared at my plate, panicking about what to do with the lovely dinner my date had just bought for me. Bonus point number three: He switched dinners with me!
The last thing I was majorly concerned about is the fact that I can’t kiss a guy who has eaten gluten. I have to either explain this to them before they eat anything, or ask them to vigorously brush their teeth with Crest (not all toothpaste is GF).
For this reason I am probably one of the only people in the world who would be relieved to hear that their date has mono
. He was actually exposed seven weeks ago and was most likely not contagious, but he didn’t want to run the risk of infecting me since I’ve never had the kissing disease before. Bonus point number four!
This scenario turned out ok for me in the end, but overall I am still feeling awkward about explaining celiac disease to my dates.
Do you have any experience navigating both the food allergy world and dating world?