Hey y’all! Ben here!
Thanks for checking into The Three Tips For A Successful Trip To The Grocery Store As A Newly Wed Couple.
This is a hilarious topic for me because I think I had the hardest time adjusting to this. Sounds simple and easy, but it has the potential to be a silent threat to your relationship. Y’all. This is crucial. Let me first tell you about the time Tristan and I tried grocery shopping together as newlyweds. Tried. So I grabbed a cart and we got right after it. Like how hard could this be, right? Let’s back up. At this point, I am very serious about my fitness nutrition. Tristan ate Kid Cuisine Mac and Cheese and chicken nuggets when I met her (somethings never change, Ha). That’s how she was raised though. I was raised in a very health conscious home *(ask Tristan about the time I first found out what margarine was)*. Anyway, I walk over and grab a couple of bags of brown rice, 5 bags of Steamables Broccoli and enough chicken to feed the five thousand. What do you expect from a fitness guy? I think I just had in my brain that nothing was going to change about my diet, because health and fitness is very important so I was sure she would see it my way. This idea just proves how unprepared I was for marriage. Example number 1435600 of why The Handley Co. came into existence. So I walked back to the cart where she was and she said what in the world are you doing? I replied, uhh getting my meal prep stuff? Like duh? Doesn’t everyone meal prep? The story ended with a whole lot of unloving words and no meal prep. There are three important key tips to look at with our story. Upbringing, View of money, and making a list!
#1: Your upbringing will influence the habits of how you both shop, eat, and communicate in the store.
Ben’s up-bringing: My mom always did the shopping and cooking. Dad hardly even came to the store and rarely cooked. He ate whatever she cooked. Therefore, the male influence in my life that I followed wasn’t involved much in this area. Naturally, I adopted this. We sat at a dinner table for every meal we ate at home. That was a huge deal. When we ate, it was never fried or processed. It was always fairly healthy, well priced food.
Tristan’s up-bringing: Tristan’s mom did most of the cooking but it was upon the requests of whatever her dad was hungry for. Her dad would never go to the store or contribute to this area of the relationship. Tristan ate in front of a TV because her dad was practically addicted to TV. So that value of sitting at a table together for family time (or lack of) looked different for her upbringing then mine. She ate like CRAP might I add. Tristan grew up less well off then my family and ate whatever was cheap. This is all she knew.
Us together: Pretty much polar opposites. Which is totally okay, but we didn’t know this about each other until we were about to explode with anger and have a clean up in aisle 9. It wasn’t pretty, let me tell you. This isn’t something y’all would think would ever become a source of tension. *(Not as bad as the time I insisted on buy wooden clothes hangers at Bed, Bath and Beyond. Ask Tristan about that one too)*.
#2 Your view of money will influence the habits of how you both shop, eat, and communicate in the store.
I was living on campus for the last few years before we got married, so I never had to go to store since I could eat at the dining facilities on campus. Tristan was living on her own and managing her own budget, bills, and grocery shopping. I never had to think about how much to spend in a grocery store because before college, my parents paid for everything. Tristan was very mindful and aware of how expensive food and toiletries were and brought that perspective with her. Therefore, my mindset was I need to meal prep, it doesn’t matter how much it costs, and Tristan will do what I do naturally because I live a healthier lifestyle. At the time, the benefits of establishing healthy habits was more important than the cost of the food. It isn’t that Tristan didn’t want to eat healthy, its that our upbringings and views of money influenced us and it was never discussed before. There is another sub point I feel is appropriate to add for the gents. Ladies, hold tight. Men, admittedly I must say that I felt threatened and insecure that she had more experience in budgeting and purchasing things since she lived on her own. It made me feel like if I didn’t have control in this area, she would have an advantage over my life experience and that threatened my role as a provider. I didn’t want to admit that she had valuable financial and life experience and work with her on that. I was prideful. If you don’t struggle with this, then PRAISE GOD. If you do, try to look past your pride, and work together even if it makes you feel less then. Marriage is two becoming one, You can’t do everything by yourself. Remember that.
#3 Make a list.
I don’t care if you use an app, pen and paper, whatever. Find something that works for the both of you. Get in a habit of sitting down with each other and talk about what you would like to eat that week, then make a list together of what you will need. It isn’t rocket science. Tristan and I like to spend Sunday evenings at a coffee shop. It’s our dedicated time where our Type A personalities thrive. We get our planners out and write out our plans for the week. During that time, we talk about what we want to eat that week, then make a list. There you have it. Spend some time together prior to the grocery store and talk about your upbringing, your value of money toward groceries, and make a list! Happy shopping!