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I can't eat with my girlfriend
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I can't eat with my girlfriend

I've been going out with this girl who I am in love with for four months now.  Everything is great except for one thing.  When ever we go out to eat, I can't eat with her.  I can be very hungry, yet the second I see food or have to try to eat it, i feel as if there is something blocking it from going down, and if I try to force it down I will throw up.  I feel fine before and after eating, it's just eating with her that's a problem.  This has happened every time we go out to eat together and I don't know what's going on.  This is the first girl I've really had true feelings for and I'm thinking that may have something to do with it.  This has never happened in my life before except for with her.  I have a very good health record in the past, nothing that would lead to this, and when I'm not with her I can eat normally.  I see her every day around campus and I have tried eating light with her, but even things such as ice cream made me feel like I was going to throw up.  Luckily I haven't thrown up with her yet, but I have gotten to the point where I have had to swallow the throw up back down and it's only a matter of time until I do fully throw up in front of her if this continues.  

Can anyone give me some help on this?  I would rather try to fix it than avoid it because sooner of later, I am going to have to eat with the one I love.  Can anyone determine what I'm going through?  Any thoughts are appreciated!  Thank you!
Tags: eats, girlfriend, eat, food, Eating, help, problem, problems, helps, feel, feeling, day, Anxiety
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723959_tn?1314747825
Awww, that is so cute.... I don't mean that in a bad way... You are so in love with this girl, i bet she would be flattered that she makes you feel this way.. Can you talk to her about it, i don't know of any med that can help with that. maybe u should tell her, when me and my husband first started dating i was the same way. After time i realized i was eatting in front of him. But it took a good 6 months, when i was going through that i did tell him that i could not eat in front of him. When u are around her, are u nervous? It may just be anxiety, because u are so head over heels for this girl.  I really think it will go away with time:-)

goodluck,

kalie
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480448_tn?1403547723
I have to second the "Awwwwwww".  :0)  I know you are distressed about this, but it will get better with time....and it really IS pretty cute!  (Sorry!)

I have to ask...have you ever had an incident in your life where you have choked,  or vomited in front of people?  Reason I ask...is you story reminds me a bit of mine and my hubby's best friend.

When he was a teenager, he was at our local amusement park for the yearly school picnic.  Well, after eating something, he went on an upside down round and round ride with a girl he REALLY liked a lot.  He ended up loosing his cookies.  The worst part (according to him) was that he didn't actually "let it out"....he swallowed (ewww) the vomit.  Since then (he is 43 yrs old now)...he has developed a pretty significant anxiety disorder...and still has trouble eating in front of girls.  Obviously, in his case...he has a bad memory which has haunted him...but essentially the fear is the same.  We always tease with our friend that actually it could have been way worse!!!!!  He could have hurled all OVER her!  But, he said he feels it is worse b/c of the "gross" factor.

Try to relax as much as you can...and really, right now the answer is simple....if it causes you that much anxiety...then DON'T eat in front of her.  And, I agree that maybe if you feel you guys are close enough....then share this with her.  It may be all you need to allow you to relax enough to start eating in front of her.  And when you do..start slow and small...gradually working your way up to larger meals in a sitting.

I can also tell you from living with anxiety my whole life that the FEELING you get that you will choke...is just that...an anxiety driven sensation...you won't actually choke...and most likely, you won't throw up either, you just FEEL like you will.  Just take your time.....I bet it gets better the more comfortable you become around her.

We've all been there to an extent...every new relationship I've been in...in the beginning....I stuck to half of a side salad when we would dine together.  Sure enough, after a few  months and after I grew more comfy with the person...I was downing dozens of wings, fries, and whatever else was put in front of me.  LOL!

Best of luck...just try to relax!
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480448_tn?1403547723
Oh, and I forgot to mention....it certainly never hurts to discuss this with a doctor...perhaps asking for a referral to a psychotherapist.  Often times...just exploring the fear and discussing it with a 3rd party (especially a professional) helps tremendously!!
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the Exact same problem, i  been going out with this girl for like 2 weeks tops but i can tell i feel for her deeply, in the past ive taken alot of girls out for romantic meals and im fine we chat eat get along fine but i never really feel anything for them atm i feel so much for this girl i cant eat round her its happened 4 times we went out to pizza hut first and i ate 1 bite of pizza and had to run to the toilet to vomit and second was Spurs we had steak and i couldnt even look at it i had to run to the toilet again to vomit when i got back i started eating and it felt like there was a wall in the back of my mouth i was chewing it a bit then swallowing by drinking to force it down cuase i didnt want her to eat alone but i cant bring myself to tell her
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Avatar_m_tn
I have the exact same problem!!!! It really ruined valentines day and I still have no solution,but know your not alone
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Avatar_n_tn
yeah guys, thats the same exact thing.  I havent eatin with her for a while, its been almost 6 months since we started dating and im hoping it will pass eventually, but If you guys ever find any valuable info, please post a link here.  thanks
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Avatar_f_tn
OMG  I cannot believe I found this stream.  I have NEVER found anyone with the same problem. Except I have been going out with my boyfriend for 2 and a half years and it JUST started happening in the past 8 months. I have ruined valentines and our anniversary because of it. As soon as we sit down to dinner or I even smell food I start to have panic attacks or just feel naucious and have really bad anxiety and I cant eat anything. My boyfriend thinks im crazy and I have never found anyone with the same problem. He is starting to think I have an eating disorder. Its really weird though cuz it only happens when we are out to eat. if we are just hanging out at home I can eat fine.
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Avatar_m_tn
I totally see where your coming from, the mere sight of food in front of me around my bf or gf makes my anxiety kick in,  it seems almost as though it traits from a more vague type of anxiety

have you ever gone out to eat, and its crowded and full of noisy, nosy, blabbering teenagers, and thus cant eat in this situation, i think that your, well, "our" situation tree's offa this one.'

while i dont know what to do to help, seeing how i am still searching for the same answer, i do wish you and your girl the best of luck...=)


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Avatar_m_tn
Hey not only do you guys have a similar problem, but the problem is so well known that there is even a name for it! It's called Phagophobia. Some of you might have slight variations on that though, or something slightly different.

Phagophobi specifically, is a fear of swallowing, or of eating, or of being eaten. There is also something called Sitiophobia which is a fear of food or eating. (also known as Sitophobia or Cibophobia).

You may have something different though, I'm no expert, but really these kinds of things are well known. I am amazed at how common anxieties are! So many people with one kind of another. They mostly seem to work in the same way too, it's about getting in to mental cycle that goes round and round and you never get anywhere. The solution is all about breaking the cycle, but it's easier said than done. The best thing you can do is go to see a doctor or a psychologist or whatever, and have them teach you how to deal with  your problem or suggest a book to teach you, or ideally both!

In the meantime you could always tell your friends/partners/whoever that you have this problem about eating and hope to overcome it soon. They might try to help you. Personally I am scared to tell anyone though because my problem is a fear of people kind of... so I am scared that if I tell someone I have this strange fear of people and it makes me act all nervous and weird, that they might think I'm really weird. A fear of eating in front of someone seems a little bit more straightforward though so I think I could probably find the courage to tell people about that. You may think differently though and maybe I'd think differently if that was my problem instead! It would be cool if you could do that though because it would no doubt make it much easier on you, and it may even cure your problem.

But either way, speaking to someone and/or getting a book about this kind of thing will get you started on working towards a solution. Good luck!
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Avatar_m_tn
Nay:

I experienced the same thing for two years in high school.  I was dating a girl and we hung out a lot with her family, of course.  During the weekends we would eat at restaurants in parts of the city I was unfamiliar with.  I really loved her family, but, for some reason, halfway through my meal I felt like my body was going to shut down.  I would get up from the table and run to the bathroom.  Nothing would happen.  I would go outside, and I would feel better.  All of the sudden I would calm down and I could return to the table, but I didn't finish my meal.  

Looking back.  What I think is most interesting is that my fear of throwing up never happened.  Not even close.  It was like it was all in my head and not in my stomach.  

Maybe knowing that other people experience these types of things will make you feel less like you're abnormal, and more ready to embrace and accept what you're feeling and eventually it will get better....
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Avatar_f_tn
I see how you can relate this to Phagophobia  but it is really nothing of that sort. I dont have a fear of choking at all. or eating in public or eating infront of people. i eat alot all the time.  It is just I think I have created a trigger for myself that restraurants with my boyfriend are the enemy. and somehow i have embedded in my brain that if i go out to eat i will have a panic attack. so i obsess about the thought and even start to panic. its a horrible cycle.  I am going to start seeing a cbt therapist soon.
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Avatar_f_tn
This used to happen to me.  One time it got so bad I had to break up with a guy I really really liked.  I used to lose my appetite everytime I got a boyfriend until I was about 16 and I met an easy going guy who was my friend first.  

It also helps when other people are not involved in your relationship.  When other people would get in our business it would stress me out.

You can try a homeopathic remedy like Calms before you go out to dinner and see if this helps at all.
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Avatar_f_tn
WOW, honestly..I have the same exact thing !! :)..it actually gets a little bit easier to breathe right now knowing that all of these people on here have that same panicy feeling ESP. out in public. As soon as I even walk into a public place (ANYWHERE) I get choked up, breathing gets heavy & I also produce alot of saliva so swallowing gets even harder to do & that interferes with my breathing cause I feel like I'm choking!!! AHHHH! I hate it so much. Let alone sit & eat out with my BF of 4 years?! FORGET ABOUT IT! as soon as I sit with food in front of me I get all jittery and then can't breathe & lightheaded. The next thing I know I'm in the public bathroom kneeling down concentrating on breathing mechanisms...Or..outside. This also happens to me every day at home usually at noon or so and then before bed. I don't feel like the same person I was a year ago before this all began! :( The only thing that allows me to go out in public is drinking and feeling a nice strong buzz...which I try to avoid since my grandma was an alchoholic..so I find myself at home all the time...I cannot sit still even at home.  My heart is palpitating as of now...I dont know what to do anymore...I feel at times I need more sugar to make this constant light headedness feeling go away, which ultimately leads to numbness and tingling in my hands and feet. My boyfriend thinks Im insane & doesn't understand at all..says its all in my head. But its not, I feel it all too much to be in my head.
Anyone know my symptoms ?! grrr...
Marnee
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Avatar_n_tn
hi i understand how u al lare feeling but i have been with my BF for 5 years and i have never once eaten with him. obviously it drives him mental cus we never go out anywhere to eat and i never eat with him. even when i go out to restaurants i cant eat i will starve than eat... im nto marrying this guy and im like how the hell am i going to be able t eat with him. i have told him i cant eat with him but he just thinks im silly and not to worry ..its nto just him its even with close friends and in restaurants i cant eat.. the onl ypeople i can ea twith is my mum dad and brothers....
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Avatar_n_tn
Wow.  I'll join the club bc this has been happening to me FOREVER.  I didn't really put it together until about last summer when it got REAL bad.  I was dating someone and I just could NOT eat with him.  He ended up breaking up with me... which was probably the worst thing he could've done... bc now it's given me even MORE of a complex about it.  Mine is a lovely combo of indigestion, diarreha, and vomitting.  I am now at the point where I just have to be overwhelmed and it happens... I don't even have to be out with them.
I went to my doctor... she did a physical and an ultrasound... and it all came out fine.  I opted for no endoscopy or colonoscopy... as once we broke up, the symptoms miraculously disappeared.  However, now I fear they are back, as I'm dating someone new... and so I went back and was forthright with how I felt it was anxiety-driven.   She gave me a very small prescrip of xanax which seemed to help initially... although, last week, I went to dinner and out of the blue, we finished the meal and were settling the check and i had an overwhelming sense of nausea.  I just about made it home in time before all hell broke loose. I am at my wits end... I'm about 5'2... about 110lbs... I run about 15 miles a week and go to a trainer... so I do have outlets for stress... and yet, nothing seems to work.  I have pepsid AC, which sometimes works... but not always.  I wish I could get to the bottom of it.. as I don't want to lose another guy to my stupid stomach issues.  
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Avatar_f_tn
I totally understand. We have panic disorder. which is basically fear of fear. you have created triggers for yourself so you think you will have  panic attacks if you go out in public or certain places and even the thought of it makes you nausious. i have the same thing. I get reallly bad anxiety in the morning and at night. I have been going to CBT therapy for the past month and even though its really tough i think it is helping. it is all about facing your fears and putting yourself in situations you dont want to be in to overcome them and eventually the anxiety will go away. but if you keep running from it. it will keep getting worse.
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Avatar_f_tn
babsbunny,

dont waste your money on any other doctors or tests cuz you dont have stomach issues i promise. its alll symptoms of anxiety. whenever i get anxiety i have feel super nauscious and I have to go to the bathroom every 5 minutes. It is completely normal. Once you over come your anxiety your stomach will go back to normal. just dont run from it. you will get better.
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Avatar_f_tn
this might sound really weird but I learned this tool from my therapist a few weeks ago and it really works. what is funny about anxiety and panic is positive thinking will not help the situation. negative thinking willl.
the next time you feel anxious/anxiety/ or panic coming on. get a notebook and write over and over again whatever your absolute worst thoughts or fears are. i.e. like 'i am having a heart attack and going to die' 'i have lost my mind and have gone crazy and i will never be able to eat again' etc...
keep writing it over and over again. and the anxiety will go away.
its really crazy how this works. you are basically accepting what is happening to you... once you accept it. you wont fear it anymore. and the only thing that keeps anxiety going is fearing it.. or running from it. once you accept it. it goes away.
goodluck!
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Avatar_n_tn
I think this is finally getting better!  I have eatin with her twice now in the past three weeks and it's been normal.  Although, I had a salad and some pasta (pretty easy foods to eat), but it's a start.  I took two Tums right before it and I don't know if that helped, but I'm gonna keep doing it for a while!
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Avatar_f_tn
Don't worry I have the same problem as well. I have been dating my boyfriend for 7 months and I still throw up every single time I eat around him. Even if i eat shortly before I see him I still throw up. I haven't found a solution yet but if I find one I'll let you know.
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Avatar_f_tn
i have this exact same problem.  i've been going out with my boyfriend for a year and i can't eat out with him.  my stomach gets super nauseas and i can't eat. if i take really really small bites it can sometimes go down but my stomach is so resistant that i just usually eat nothing.  i went camping with his family and we ate out twice and i hardly ate anything, his parents probably think i'm anorexic or something. but my boyf said his mom loves me, which is reassuring but i still can't eat in front of all of them!  it's not like i have a problem talking with his family, if we just sat down to have a conversation it'd be totally fine but once food is in the equation that's when i freak out and that's what i don't get!

when i was 10 i ate too much in a restaurant and threw up on the floor on my way outside to get fresh air. this is the last time i threw up!  i'm so scared to throw up now.  i always think i will throw up when i'm eating with them/him but i never do. i'll gag but tha'ts it.

i had this same problem with my last boyfriend.  it started with me having dinner with his family at their house. his dad made soup and i ate all of it and then his dad brought out ribs and once i saw them and smelled the rich bbq sauce aroma i ran out of the room cause i started to gag. ever since that incident i have had this problem.  my family and my last boyfriend's family are still good friends so we've had dinner with them, and now that i'm not going out with this guy anymore i'm TOTALLY fine eating with them! what the hell!

i saw a cb therapist for about 6 months and she really didn't help. she kept wanting me to challenge myself and i was really resistant so that probably didn't help the process along.. i tried ativan once (during the dinner with my current boyf) to calm me and it helped my stomach but i still hardly ate anything.  the best cure i've found is weed.  it helps in every situation.  but i get really goofy when i'm high so i can't smoke when i eat out w my boyf's fam.. ah.

i don't know how i'll ever go on a normal dinner date. i want this to go away. my boyfriend's birthday is this week and i don't want to go cause i know this will happen to me.
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Avatar_n_tn
wow, yeah thats exactly what I have.  Still no cure yet tho :(
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Avatar_m_tn
i have the same problem .. im madly in love with my girl but this is ruining our relationship , she thinks im perfetic , the doctors cant find no problems yet it makes me sick eating in front of her :(
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Avatar_m_tn
i have the same problem .. im madly in love with my girl but this is ruining our relationship , she thinks im perfetic , the doctors cant find no problems yet it makes me sick eating in front of her :(
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Avatar_f_tn
Um okay I'm a girl and have this too... Although I started off with it without being in a relationship and I just couldn't eat out unless it was with my family and now that I am dating I get it along with feeling hot and nauteous and the scary thing is our first date I actually did throw up and we weren't even eating:(( I'm guessing it's from stress and idk maybe I have something but I wish it could go away because it's making me a different person:((
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Avatar_m_tn
thank god i found a family here ,,,i am soo happy that there are great lovers here sitting with same problem ,  . ... according to my experience it gets better the more u hang out with ur girl.  Face ur fear ,  it worked for me never mind vomiting, after u vomit just drink some juice and then start eating again ,if u vomit again then do the same ..... to get rid of the fear first try to have liquid foods just like coke and other soft drinks. never try anything thick like "krushers" in front of her. Then increase ur level .....this really works
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Avatar_n_tn

I am extremely happy to find this ! I have been suffering for too long, and I was questioning my life, the way I am and everything else !

It all started 5 years ago, when I finally went for a walk for the very first time in my life with someone I liked. I had a miserable love life and I felt rejected all the time. So that day, while we were having a nice chat I felt I was like gonna throw up. I went back home, and I couldn't eat for the rest of the day, and during the next day too.

Since then, I hadn't had an intimate moment with anyone else, so basically I forgot about the problem. But when I started "dating", the thing came out again. The first day we went for a drink, I was very cool and nothing happened. The 2nd time we met, I was about to vomit, everytime he tried to kiss me I was like, stop, I dont feel good. And after that, it became my ugly routine. Every time we go out, I end up throwing up. We broke up, and then went back together, but same thing...
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Avatar_n_tn

I am extremely happy to find this ! I have been suffering for too long, and I was questioning my life, the way I am and everything else !

It all started 5 years ago, when I finally went for a walk for the very first time in my life with someone I liked. I had a miserable love life and I felt rejected all the time. So that day, while we were having a nice chat I felt I was like gonna throw up. I went back home, and I couldn't eat for the rest of the day, and during the next day too.

Since then, I hadn't had an intimate moment with anyone else, so basically I forgot about the problem. But when I started "dating", the thing came out again. The first day we went for a drink, I was very cool and nothing happened. The 2nd time we met, I was about to vomit, everytime he tried to kiss me I was like, stop, I dont feel good. And after that, it became my ugly routine. Every time we go out, I end up throwing up. We broke up, and then went back together, but same thing...
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Avatar_n_tn
One day I literaly vomited in the street. That was the worst moment of my life. I always have a panic attack when we meet, it's unbelievable. Recently, I felt so pushed and tired I spent a week without eating well, I was dying, starving, I went to the doctor he told me I was so anxious and it does cause all the creepy situations I am having. I am doing a therapy since 2 years now, but it hasnt worked that well. It helps, but, I am vomiting still when I go out with someone I like Basically, I don't go out with lots of guys, but the 2  only guys I liked and I had a close physical contact with, they saw me at my worst. In one moment we are kissing or holding hands, and the next moment it's me throwing up the minimum quantity of food I had eaten.

It's horrible, it had made my life HELL. I am so tired of this problem, it ruined my social life and the way i feel about myself. It's a circule of guilt, starvation, love, hate, and depression.

I hope one day I can get a healthy relationship / date and enjoying it. Like truly, deeply. I am 25 years old, and never enjoyed a date.
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Avatar_f_tn
I think I may have found a solution that works , I was only able  to eat with my girlfriend when we weren't actually together more like 'friends'  I was able to go over to hers and sit down with her family and go out for dinner and stuff not a problem , but as soon as we got the title of being officially together it started , but what I found is that I am super comforatable eating around my family , I have invited her over alot to eat with my family and I find It not a problem at all , and it is slowely becoming more and more easier to eat around her family and when we go out , it's more of a mental battle like having a fear or the fear of eating when I'm with her , and eventually talking myself into the feelings of nausea to the point where my heart beats really fast and the smell of food makes me want to puke , I also figured out that when your heart rate increases slow down your breathing ( in through the nose out through the mouth ) start of with small amounts of food on your fork then gradually increase while slowing down your breathing every now and again , take tiny sips of water aswell which will wash down the feeling of that "Blockage" in your throat , at first when you start dating someone you will feel a bit nervous and that will bring on these feelings when eating but just remember THR they will also be feeling just as nervous just not in the way you do , it's more of a fear of being the centre of attention the main focus like for example when eating with your gf/bf and your family , they will be the centre of attention and you will be able to eat , the moment you are out with them all the attention is on you and you would probably be feeling nervous enough about the date , same with eating with their family the more closer and comfortable you get with there parents and stuff the easier it will become , maybe have a dinner with your parents and their parents with you and your bf/gf aswell which will probably break that barrier

I hope this helped guys ! Remember it's a metal battle not an illness use my technics and goodluck !
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7520541_tn?1391568257
Oh my gosh! I'm so happy to know that there's more of me out there! The only difference between us is this... I can't eat in front of my best friend of 6 years. And I'm a girl. She's a girl.  This only started a year ago! My throat closes up and I can't breathe, my hands start shaking and I get really, really, insanely cold. I'm fine eating anywhere else, with anyone else, but not with her... I don't know what this is. I don't have any other anxieties, and I'm perfectly healthy. My body is fit too, because I'm on my school's Drill Team, the Crimson Cadets. Has this problem ever happened to a 13 year old? Do any of you guys know? My heart is palpating as I type, just thinking about her. Oh yah!! I forgot to mention that I can't even talk around her either. Everything just goes blank! I'm desperate here! What do I do?!?!
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