Hate Eating with Others? - Learn All about It!

Written by: Shruthi Chacko – M Sc

Last updated date : April 27, 2022

Are you someone who has a “hate eating with others” mentality?. Does it make you stressed out?. Do you wonder ” why can’t I eat in front of my family?” In fact, everyone feels uncomfortable eating around others at some point in their lives. Whether it’s a first date, a meeting, or a family event. It is okay to feel like that. 

Chapter 1:
Try to Understand What Triggers You

Try to understand what triggers you. People hate eating in public for a various reasons. Maybe, it may take some time to know why you don’t like it. But, that is okay. Probably you are someone who hates eating in front of your family. Perhaps, you at dining outside. In fact, the reasons could be that you are scared that you will drop food or eat in a very clumsy way. Hence, whatever the reason, take some time to learn and identify what scares you. So, that it it becomes easier for you to overcome it


Chapter 2:
So ” Why Can’t I Eat in Front of My Family?”

There could be various reasons. Maybe, one of your family member has made a comment on your weight. Now, you feel as if you are judged whenever you eat with her/him. Sometimes, it something that only exists in your mind.

Let me paint you an example

Celine is the mother to Tanya. She’s back living with her mother due to some financial difficulties. Celine seems to eat very little, which makes her daughter quite anxious. She goes on tom compare how much she eats to how much Celine consumes. She tries not to look at her plate at dinner. But, she  occasionally does it. In fact, she gets bombarded with obsessive thoughts about how much she is  eating vs. how much her mother is eating. (Food is the only difficulty) She says that her mother is a very unselfish, kind, and hardworking person. She constantly feels as if she is trying to live up to her example.


Chapter 3:
Hate Eating with Others? – Try to Understand Why

There are many people who are anxious about eating in public. The cause of this anxiety may not be because of the meal. This fear could be linked to anxiety about what other swill think of you when you eat. Those who have an eating disorder, maybe be worried that their loved one’s will ask them about eating. Perhaps, they think they will be forced to ear or they will be judged. Also, individuals with larger bodies feel stressed about eating in public.

If you become anxious while eating in public, there’s good news. It doesn’t have to lead  to avoiding social situations. Because this fear keeps showing as an anxiety condition, managing it as such is atilso beneficial. Consult a professional to learn more about the anxieties that are causing your anxiety. Also, learn how to restructure your thoughts and use appropriate coping methods to reduce them. Likewise, don’t be afraid to getting something to go first. You could order a snack or beverages from a cafe. Perhaps, order merely an appetiser to start.


Chapter 4:
Different Kinds of Worries

If you’re afraid to eat or drink in front of people. You’re undoubtedly worried about a long list of embarrassing occurrences that could occur. Some of them may include the following:

  • Your hands will begin to tremble.
  • Your fear that you might spill your food or drink
  • You’ll choke and draw unwanted attention to yourself.
  • You’ll either puke or you will loose control of yournbowels.
  • While eating, you might appear unattractive.
  • When you eat spicy food, you will be flushed.

Are you more concerned of how others will view you or with actually eating the food? To gain a better understanding of your own problematic eating behaviours and possible future steps. Ask yourself these questions.


Chapter 5:
Tips to Follow If You Hate Eating with Others

Here are few tips to help you out if you hate eating with others and wonder ” why can’t I eat in front of my family?”.

Try To Shift Your Focus

When you are constantly thinking about food it’s become the default response. This makes you nervous and worried about eating. Try focusing on something other than possibility of spilling your food. Try to focus on the current conversation. Also, try to be a part of the ongoing conversation. Likewise, if being social makes you anxious. Try to concentrate on the food. Turn your attention away from the process of eating. Instead, focus on the texture and flavour of your meal. You start to notice, how you will find it easy to eat with your family, once you start to do this and stop this whole ” Why can’t I eat in front of my family?”

Try To Practice With Your Friends

Do you hate eating with others? Well, try eating in public with someone that you are comfortable. It could be your friend or colleague from work. But, make sure you are eating in public. That is the whole of point. It sure is hard when you do it for thr first time. But, gradually, you will see that you will do better in public. When you are with your close friend, try to be all messy and spill out some food consciously. Does that sound crazy? But, there is a reason why you might want to do that. You will realise that when you face that fear it makes a lot of change.

Hence, you understand that, spilling your food is nothing to be scared of. When you go next time to a restaurant, you will see how you are able to handle with the situation in a better way.


Chapter 6:
Take Small Steps If You Hate Eating with Others

If you feel that, eating with others causes terrible anxiety. Then the best thing to do is take a break. If you are at the restaurant, go to the restroom to take a breather. Maybe, you are at home eating dinner with your family, you can go upto to room to clear your mind and relax. When you take these little breaks, you are giving your mind a break. Time to relax and unwind.

Hence, it not always necessary to go all out, and have a very difficulty dinner in public. You can take it slow. Pace with your body. See what your body is telling you. Listen to it, but also challenge it when you feel like you need to. You will see that when you take it slow, it lasts longer and stronger.