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A group of people are gathered for a festive potluck, but a sad-looking man stands off to the left with a drink in his hand and an empty plate.

Avoiding Food to Survive a Night

Every year since I got married to my beautiful wife, we have been throwing an annual party to celebrate our wedding anniversary. We invite all our very close friends and family members over to relive those wonderful moments we shared at our wedding and create new ones. One thing we try to keep a tradition is to make our parties potluck-style, where most people bring either a dish or drink as a contribution. We did it the same way for our wedding and it always seems to work out perfectly because people really put in tender, love, and care into their dishes. As great as my family and friends’ cooking maybe, I avoid eating the food during the party to ensure I will have at least a decent time.

Lamenting the food I avoid

What sucks about not eating at these parties is that I miss out on all the great food people have put their hard work, effort, and money into making. Don’t get me wrong, the food still ends up consumed, just not by me when guests are over. Every single dish always ends up looking amazing and so delicious, and I hear everyone else talking about how great the food tastes. We all know the best compliment you can give someone who brings food to your home, is how great the food tastes. But, unfortunately, I have to avoid almost all of it at the party. Many of the dishes usually contain trigger ingredients, such as onion and/or dairy, or are high carb dishes that will leave me extremely bloated and uncomfortable.

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This tactic of not eating throughout the entire party is not the healthiest thing to do, but it is the safest, and it seems to work for me most of the time. However, one thing I learned from the party this year is to make sure I save to-go plates for myself because that way I can enjoy some of the food later, but also suffer in my own privacy if I have to. Heck, what is the point of asking people to make all that wonderful and delicious food, and never try any of it?

Avoiding an IBS flare-up

I have written a couple of articles about my past years’ experiences at my anniversary parties, and I realize one common theme with me every time I throw these parties is that I always avoid eating food to hopefully lessen the chances of dealing with a flare-up. If I were to suffer an IBS attack, I would probably end up rushing to the bathroom several times and staying in there for almost an hour at a time, which I’m sure people would eventually notice. And although many of my friends and family now know I have IBS, I still can’t find the comfortability to deal with my symptoms in front of them.

More importantly, I have so many friends and family members who I haven’t seen in a while that attend these annual get-togethers, and I would hate to be absent or experience intense and distracting pain while I’m trying to catch up and be a good host. My parties usually last for almost 10-11 hours, and the only thing I put in my stomach, for the most part, are liquids. Other than that, I’m summoning up reserves of strength and energy to make it throughout the rest of the day and the clean up afterward.

I wish I could eat the food I want

Avoiding food to survive a night with friends and/or family seems to be a common tactic for many people with IBS. If we want to go out and enjoy our time out with loved ones or acquaintances, then it may take avoiding food for a while in order to dodge a possible flare-up. We wish we could eat whatever we want and not face any consequences, but that is not always a luxury we get to have.

Can any of you reading this article relate? Do you find yourself avoiding food when you’re out with family and/or friends just to be able to have a good time? Please let us know in the comment section below and thanks so much for taking the time to read my article!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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