"There's nothing I want on the menu", said Ben in the old familiar way... But there was no way I was getting up and leaving. The menu was fine... stuff Ben normally eats at home... and the Georgian veggie restaurant in Bath came highly recommended.
So I stayed put and Ben reacted by sitting with his book in silence, refusing the offer of a drink. And when the food arrived, he just stared at it while I tucked into my delicious meal. I knew what he was staring at: the olive oil drizzled all over the side salad and garnish plus the Bruschetta-style open sandwich also brushed with oil... So he just sat in sullen silence while ED, the eating disorder, refused to let him eat.
I ate my meal and then I ate his meal as well because I didn't want the embarrassment of being faced with a baffled waitress who wouldn't understand why the delicious food lay untouched. Goodness only knows what our fellow diners thought, but I didn't care.
I paid for our meals and we made our exit in silence.
Then I frogmarched Ben back to the railway station because there was no way I was going to pay for us to tour the Roman Baths (which was the primary reason for our 5 day break in the West Country).
Ben (or, rather, the ED) ranted, raved and wept in full view of everyone in the crowded Bath station and tried to blame me for why he hadn't eaten his lunch ("I only went there because you wanted to" etc etc). "No," I said (amongst other things, including why I was never going to stop working at this until I'd finally banished the ED from Ben's life), "It was purely and simply because of the eating disorder. The eating disorder was at the heart of this."
So I ended up paying for a second lunch in the M&S cafe to make sure he got some food. I 'drowned my sorrows' in a coffee and Millionaire's Shortbread Slice, wondering what the hell we were doing in the M&S cafe when we were surounded by some of Bath's finest eateries, not to mention the fact we'd already "had lunch".
But to Ben's credit, he did choose a load of challenge foods, including a Mars Bar, so it wasn't all bad news.