I was thinking about the fact that I ate more than I should/wanted to when I was on that boat, and my husband was not around.  When he is with me I worry about what he’s thinking and end up eating less, or more healthfully. To impress him? That’s not good.

On the other hand, when I am with my mom I tend to give myself permission to eat everything in sight and to make the worst choices, because that is what she does.  She definitely played a large role in my habit of eating to squelch emotion, eating to celebrate, eating when sad or bored or tired or depressed or angry. I’m not blaming her, I’m just saying… this is where it started, and how I learned to pass it on to my poor unwitting next generation as well. Even now (or maybe especially now) she will always choose the richest, meatiest, chocolatiest, thing on the menu. Maybe because she is in her 80s and she thinks, why deprive now? She has never been on a diet as far as I can remember, except right after her open heart surgery when her cardiologist made her go on a diet. My father pretty much administered it and she was very angry and resentful about the stuff she couldn’t eat.  After a few years she just kind of ignored it and I think ate even more as a bounce-back.

Anyway. We will all eat with all kinds of people with their own food issues, all the time. And the thing that is important is to keep grounded in our own plan, our own commitment to what we are going to eat or not eat.  In the past, I’ve been with people who ate like birds, and it made me nervous and panicky, and want to eat even more. Or else I would get in some stupid, silent “I can eat just as little as you!” competition.  That then backfired as soon as I was out of their sight.

I’ve been lucky that nobody has really tried to push food on me since I’ve started this. A friend came over for dinner and brought a beautiful looking pound cake but I wasn’t tempted and she was also really sweet and apologetic, and the people who could eat the cake enjoyed it. (guess who? Mom!) I think it’s a lot easier to say you are on a diet for medical reasons than for vanity reasons because if you just say you want to be thinner, people say, Oh you look just fine!

I am almost relieved that I have this medical “excuse” to fall back on. But really, we all do. We all need to be healthier and more conscious.

How do the people around you affect your eating habits? And how do you deal with it? (if at all) Foodie wants to know!

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