Shortly after I met my boyfriend of three months, he decided to become a vegetarian for health and ethical reasons. I’m a hard-core carnivore with a ravenous love of rare meat (I’ve even killed and cooked my own deer and turkey). I wasn’t sure how we’d get on, but we’ve proven to be a good match outside the kitchen. My issue is with his breath. All of a sudden, every meal he eats contains onions — “for flavor,” he says. He brushes his teeth, but the pungent smell of ramps, red onion and garlic persist.
He says he feels better than he has ever felt, and I love his commitment to his health. However it’s getting difficult to want to be intimate with him. I’ve gotten to the point where I’m avoiding kissing him, even during sex — but there’s only so many times one can insist on reverse cowgirl. How do I let him know about this problem without making him feel bad, and how can he resolve it without giving up his new-found love of veggies?
Your boyfriend’s health may be on the rise, but his love life is going south. There is nothing sexy about bad breath. It’s time to let him know how his oral odors are affecting you.
Talking to a partner about personal hygiene issues can be a delicate matter; try to keep it light. Say how happy you are that he’s feeling good and enjoying his vegetarian lifestyle, but that his influx of onions has been noticeable on his breath. Tell him how much you love being intimate with him and that you don’t want something as silly as bad breath to get in the way.
Make it easy for him to take care of the problem — stock up on mouthwash, floss, toothpaste and tongue scrapers (my dentist says that scraping the tongue is the best remedy to bust bad breath). You also might remind him that onions and garlic aren’t the only ingredients that add flavor to a vegetarian meal. Look online to find a yummy veggie dish that calls for spices rather than onions and prepare a romantic dinner for two — with a side of rare beef for you, of course.
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