We all have certain things we absolutely love. A TV show you can’t stop obsessing about, a specific hobby you enjoy, or an interest that feels as integral to your life as breathing. But what happens when your partner doesn’t share your interests?

In today’s guest post, Pamela, author of The Picky Bookworm, will talk about just that. As a serious reader, she shares her top tips on dealing with a partner who isn’t into reading.

Keep reading for more of her best tips!

Being with a Non-Reader as a Bookworm

BY: Pamela

As a lifelong bookworm, I’ve always enjoyed reading and being around others who enjoy reading and want to chat about books. Super funny, then, that my husband is the furthest thing from that. The last books he read were the Twilight series, and that was before I met him. He is just, quite simply, not a reader. You might be wondering, then, how I, a huge book nerd, navigate our relationship.

After all, how can you avoid frustration when your significant other doesn’t have any interest in one of the things you enjoy the most?

Well, it’s not easy. But here are my top tips on dealing with a non-reading partner (or a partner who doesn’t share your hobby).

1. Find Interests You Do Share

My husband and I have several things we enjoy doing together, like watching movies or playing pool. We spend enough time doing these other activities that when I want to go off and read on my own, he doesn’t feel slighted or ignored. Of course, there are times he wants to talk and I’m too into my latest novel, but having common interests helps to keep our relationship on an even keel.

So, find things that you can do together. New hobbies to explore or things you already have in common.

2. Find Interests you DON’T Share

Ok, this may seem like a contradiction, but I promise, it’s not.

Just as you should work on finding common hobbies, it’s equally important to find things you can enjoy on your own. For example, my husband loves playing Fallout 4. So, while he’s on the X-Box, I’ll grab my tablet and read a while. This way, we’re in the same room, but doing our own activities. We can spend time together, but separate. (In early childhood this is known as parallel play.)

It may sound silly, but it works for toddlers and it can work for your relationship!

Related Read: Summer Reading List: Books I’m Excited to Read This Summer

3. Support Each Others’ Hobbies

I cannot stress this enough. Find a way to support your significant other in the things they enjoy. Even if you don’t get it. When you send that support out, you’ll find that it comes back to you in spades.

Even though my husband doesn’t like to read, he’s found a way to support my book-centered blog/company. He even helps with my marketing efforts by talking about my candles at work.

4. Find The Silver Lining

I love talking about books, and there are times when I feel bummed that I can’t really have a “book club” type chat with my husband. But, I’ve also learned to appreciate certain aspects of that.

For one thing, he lets me talk about books anyway. And I don’t have to worry about spoilers! See? Silver lining.

No matter what it is that you’re into, if your partner isn’t a fan, there’s probably at least one benefit to you. Find that silver lining and appreciate the crap out of it.


Pamela is the author of The Picky Bookworm, a book blog dedicated to all things books. There, she shares prompts, discussions, and reviews of various indie and self-published books.

She also hosts a podcast, offers proofreading and editing services, and sells bookish candles on her shop. You can find her on social media with the handle @thepickybookworm.

Thanks so much to Pamela for this fantastic guest post! Make sure to check out her blog and podcast!

For fellow bookworms, do you have more tips for dealing with a non-reading partner? Let me know in the comments below!

1 Comment

  1. avatar
    Mind Beauty Simplicity says:

    I think it keeps a nice balance when you both share and don’t share hobbies. My husband is a gamer & I love to read. We will spend time in the same room together doing different hobbies. But we also love reading together, working out together & watching certain tv shows.

Let me know your thoughts!

About Author

30ish Lifestyle blogger, relationship "expert," and modern-day agony aunt.
Sometimes humorous, always honest.