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Dating With PKU
How To Explain PKU To Your Partner

It is one thing to be open with family and friends about your PKU, but what about when you start dating someone? You might be wondering when the right time is to tell that special someone about your life with PKU.

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Sharing information about your health is a very personal decision, there is no set time to do it! It is completely up to you how and when you tell people you have PKU. Some people are comfortable talking about their PKU and some people prefer not to tell anyone at all. You might want to be immediately upfront or hold back for a little while, either way it’s not something you should worry about! Hiding your PKU from someone might actually put more stress on you and the longer you leave it, the harder it can be to open up! Sharing with someone can help you to stay on track with your diet because they will be able to support you.

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Dating
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Dating can be whatever you make it, but often involves eating out. If you are weighing out exchanges in a restaurant, the subject of PKU may come up sooner than if you had gone for a walk. If you don’t want to talk about your PKU yet, it might be worth planning some alternative ideas for dates to suggest such as:

  • Going to the cinema, a concert or gig
  • Getting active and trying out mini golf, ten pin bowling or ice skating
  • Taking a trip together to the museum, aquarium or zoo
  • Or be really adventurous with things like kayaking, paddle boarding or rock climbing!
  • Taking a long walk and a visit to a pub. Remember that you will need to count some alcoholic beverages as exchanges. Aspartame is a sweetener that is often used in ‘diet’ or sugar free food and drink options, always look out for this on the label as it contains phe.

You could wait for a natural time to bring up PKU, such as before a meal, or when you need to take your protein substitute. Start by telling them about your protein substitute and why you take it, then you could explain about your low protein diet and how you have to take your blood spots. Making sure that your partner knows about your PKU and your dietary restrictions can be helpful if they will be involved in preparing food for you.

Most people will have never heard of PKU as it is very rare! Once you tell them, they may be interested in knowing more and ask lots of questions. Don’t be concerned if they don’t, it might just be that you have explained everything! If you are feeling worried about telling someone about your PKU, planning how you would like to tell them might make you feel more at ease but always remember it is up to you, how and when you tell people you have PKU and if they are not supportive, perhaps they won’t be the best partner to have anyway!

If you and your partner are thinking about starting a family of your own and would like some more information on planning a pregnancy, click here.

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