Eating with others

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Sa Lionne
Sa Lionne's picture
Eating with others

I get so confused by what other people eat. I feel like i need to reeducate my eating habits and beliefs but I have so many confusing 'models' around me.
For example, my husband eats massive amounts of whatever he wants, but only once or twice a day. This is the opposite of what I should be doing, but he's the person I eat with the most often. I feel guilty when he refuses 2, 3, 4 times to share whatever I'm eating, then at mealtimes he'll encourage me to eat more. (I told him a few months ago about my bulimia, and he is wonderful about it, and tries hard to understand but doesn't quite get it. He thinks that I need to eat more, which is true, but i'm not ready for huge meals yet. Also I know he loves my body - even more when I'm bigger than when I'm thin - and he wants me to love it too, and to be happy. So he's honestly trying to help, but the temptation to keep eating is sometimes too much and it sends me into a cycle)
I also work in a restaurant, and I watch people have a great time eating a three course meal with dessert, or come in and have a huge piece of cake with a hot chocolate, while I beat myself up about even a tiny taste of what they're having.
Eating dinner with friends or a self-serve barbeque type social event is terrifying for me. Watching everyone eat rich foods, have seconds if they want, and stop eating when they're full is torture.
They do it like it's the easiest and most natural thing in the world, and I haven't been able to do it since I was a child.
I feel like it would be easier to get a grip on re-establishing normal eating patterns for my body if i didn't have everyone else's right in front of me all the time. But on the other hand, surely watching 'normal' food behaviour is the best way to be able to imitate it?
How do you guys deal with this? Is is better to try and ignore other people's eating patterns entirely, or to try and use them as a model?
Big love

Tania
Tania's picture
Hello Sa Lionne, you really

Hello Sa Lionne, you really describe what I experience too. This is the challenge right now for me to follow structured eating from breakfast to dinner. I live with my partner and he eats one meal a day, only, plus some quick breakfast. He does work for him, no eating disorders at all, but I cannot do the same, because this makes me reaching dinner time like I would eat the entire house. I can manage during the day because I can have the breakfast I need (well I am still on a restricted diet mentality, but ok I am trying..) and then prepare my lunch box (which is a great way to keep lunch 'structured'), but dinner is a problem. Without speaking about dining outside, with my partner or friends or colleagues: I haven't been able to stick to structured eating even once yet when I ate outside. I think it's still early for me, and it may be for you too, maybe we just need some more time for structured eating at home or in a 'safe environment' before being trained enough to be able to do it elsewhere. My next goal is trying to focus on my own meal even if I am having it with my partner, and ask him not to insist to have some of his or prepare large portions than someone needs to finish later on..
Sorry for not being of much practical help! Sharing can help anyway, I hope!
Hugs from Italy XXX

Sa Lionne
Sa Lionne's picture
Ciao! I agree with you, it is

Ciao!
I agree with you, it is so hard to try to structure eating when people around us seem to eat without any structure at all. It's like learning to swim without ever being taught - sometimes I feel like i'm going to sink!
I'm going to share your goal of focussing on my own meal even when eating with my husband or others. Even if it means saying no to dinner with friends if I feel like I can't do it.
Best of luck, lots of courage - let me know how you go.
Bisous from France!! xoxox

Tania
Tania's picture
Ah, you are in France! I was

Ah, you are in France! I was in Lyon just 5 days ago yuuuuu!!!! :-)
I do feel empowered to know that you are sharing the same goal of mine. I feel stronger, I hope it makes the same effect on you!
I am visiting my parents' and I was able to do it tonight at dinner, just an hour ago. I tried to follow the e-book word by word (well, I cannot trust really anything else right now): one bite at the time, chew slowly, put the fork down in between bits, talk and make conversation by putting the fork down without mixing food, chewing and words. It worked! I even enjoyed the conversation with my parents at some point, by not mixing food and words, and this is a double miracle :-).
I am on a diet/restrictive attitude though, I know I need to work on it because the risk is that I get soo hungry that I will end up binging, but for tonight I gained one micro-millimiter against bulimia. I hope I will be able to do it tomorrow again, I cannot really trust me..
I wish you a brilliant night of dreams. Let me know how it goes, returning the bisous XXX

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