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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay, so I was just wondering if anyone else has the problem of eating in public, like at a restaurant?

I never used to have this problem, but within the last 3 years or so I have a hard time eating in front of other people - especially in restaurants. Mostly because I think people are staring and snickering at me the whole time, but I know that isn't the case. I think I'll be okay, but then I get there and I am fine at first, then my hand will start to shake (only just a little) and I can't seem to bring the fork or spoon to my mouth. Its like I want to eat, but I can't. I try to force myself to at least eat half of the food on my plate, but most of the time I have to get a takeout box for my food and eat it when I get home.

I hope this dosen't sound weird.
 

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Too School for Cool
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I have this problem too. It's not a huge problem yet, but I'm noticing it more and more. I'm just really worried I'll spill something or drip something or that people will be appauled at how I eat.

I think a lot of people have troubles with eating in public, actually.
 

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I'm fine with that right now. But I have recently started to avoid going into restaurants and just go thru drive thru. Imagine my surprise when I took my mom's car and her fuse on her windows blew and I had to open my car door to order....soooo embarrassing.
 

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I used to have this problem. What I did was look at my eating habits through another persons eyes. I just ate normally, but I remained aware of how I was eating. After doing this several times I noticed that I don't really do anything that would cause someone to stare at me. I was eating just like other people were eating. I wasn't making a scene while eating, I wasn't being a slob, and I was wasn't eating with my mouth open. I was eating like a normal person would, so I developed that mindset and it hasn't bothered me anymore.
 

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Beautiful Mess
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I have a problem with eating in front of others. I don't like eating steak or anything you have to cut up because I am fearful people are going to laugh or make fun of the way I cut my steak,etc. If I do eat in front of people, I make sure to only eat foods that are easy to eat without leaving a mess such as french fries, hamburger, etc. I wouldn't want to eat a muffin in front of people because of the crumbs, and I don't like to eat a salad in front of people because I am afraid I won't eat it "right." I have seen some people eat the whole salad from left to right and I don't do that.
 

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Gone, Hopefully forever
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i dont like to eat in front off others but i force myself to. i usually feel people will be watching me and laughing about how i eat or what i eat, for example im kind of underweight and if i am eating a small meal i sometimes feel people will be judging me and commenting on me about my weight
 

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It helps to know I'm not the only one who struggles with this. I love to eat at restaurants that serve good food, but I don't get out too often because of my anxiety. If a restaurant is especially crowded (or especially empty) or if I feel like the place is more of a "scene," then I begin to feel awkward and uncomfortable, like I don't belong there, like people are gawking at me.

I end up avoiding conversation or eye contact with other diners and I oftentimes get paranoid and start monitoring the conversations going on around me. I get really bad at holding conversation during the meal.
 

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Definitely. With a facial deformity, I'm a tad self-conscious about anything that involves my mouth. Even breathing through my mouth in public makes me uncomfortable. :)

But when I get hungry enough, it doesn't matter... And it helps that I like to breathe sometimes.
 

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Yeah, I always think that people will snicker if I drop something or at the way I put food in my mouth. It sounds ridiculous when I put it like that but I do feel a bit strange if a lot of people are around. And when I was younger people (family and one friend) commented about the way I ate. I've gotten better at it though.
 

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In orbit, always
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I can eat at a diner counter or a bar, or some other place where it is acceptable to sit alone. But I feel terribly awkward sitting alone in a restaurant where tables and booths encourage direct conversation with someone. It is more cost-effective for me to cook on my own.
 

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Renewed Hope
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The only public eating I get anxious about is eating in the cafeteria because through out most of last year, every time I tried to eat by myself someone would invite me to their table and I appreciate the kindness to invite me but I always felt uncomfortable and I never talked to any one at the tables. Now this year most people leave me alone but sometimes when someone I have never seen before is walking in my direction, I fear they will ask me to eat with them.
 

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When I was growing up I had a friend, a girl about my age at the time, who was Very large. Her size didn't bother me because I was her friend. I liked her. We had a good relationship. BUT she would NEVER eat in front of anyone either. I found out later, after she passed away from a heart attack at age of 36 that she had guilt issues about her eating. She felt guilty about eating. I got this from her Mom. She sent her for therapy about it. When she passed away she weighed over 400 pounds. She had a night job at the post office so almost no one ever saw her out and about. Otherwise she lived like a hermit. I felt very bad about this and wished I had kept in touch.
 

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killer of conversations
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This is pretty common among SA folk.

I'm alright at smaller, quiet restaurants. If the place is packed, I'm out. Usually I have to find a window seat. If I know there are people surrounding me entirely I'm much more likely to panic.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yeah, big crowds at a restaurant freaks me out. I feel like all eyes are on me. I am better if there is a small crowd and I sit in a booth because those are usually not in the middle of the floor in a restaurant like tables are.
 

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I hate eating in front of others as well, don't ask me why. When I'm just with people who I know well and feel comfortable around I'm fine, but when I'm with people who I don't know very well, I just don't eat. Especially when you are walking one way and you know other people are coming the other way towards you and might see you eating! What's most embarrassing is when people ask me why I'm not eating... And you know, I don't even know the answer myself! I end up saying something like "I'm not hungry" and stash the food and eat it later. :blank I thought I was pretty weird always feeling like people are watching me eat until I realised that other SA people feel the same way.
 

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Perv Ranger #14
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I have a problem with this too. Most of my high school years i went all day without eating because i felt as if i was doing something wrong every time i went to bite into something. Even now I don't like to eat in public. I know no one is paying attention to me and i tell myself that but something in the back of my head is telling me that im going to embarrass myself if i do.
 
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