The Binge Eating Diaries: Dear Food Police


This blog is dedicated to all of the self-proclaimed members of the Food Police out there. It’s your turn to listen because I’ve had about enough of your false arrests!

binge eating food policeI’m eating a meal. I’m enjoying the flavors, the textures, the smells, and the company.

I’m eating exactly what I’m in the mood for: mindfully and happily. I am content.

But my positive feelings start to tighten in my chest. I’m emotionally handcuffed the moment you put in your two cents about what I’m eating, how much I’m eating, and the speed at which I’m eating it.

I’ve gone from satisfied and satiated to self-hating in under six seconds.

I start second guessing every single bite and wonder: Did I eat too much? Should I be embarrassed? I wasn’t thinking about the calories… should I have been thinking about the calories? Is EVERYONE thinking about what and how I’m eating right now?

All because you had to stop chewing your food to spew about mine. Thanks a lot…!

Personal Service Announcement: Please Stop Commenting on My Food

With all due respect, please shut up. I don’t really care if you were trying to be playful or funny. I, as your target for the evening, am not amused.

You want to talk about food? Eating habits? Talk about your own!

What I eat, when I eat, and how I eat – are my decisions to make. Not yours to judge. I’ve spent well over three years learning and practicing what works for me… and what doesn’t.

Read This Related Article:
Q&A Part II: Making Peace with Food and Eating

I know my body. My needs. My desires. My cravings. All you “know” is what you’ve seen during this single meal I was hoping we could enjoy together.

I’m doing my best to ignore your remarks. But now you’ve gone and spoiled my appetite.

I don’t know how I can say this any more clearly: I did not order “Your Opinion” for dessert!

Dear Food Police,

When you play Food Police, you hurt my feelings.

Yes, it’s my responsibility not to victimize myself or let you “get to me”. (I’m working on that.) But I’m asking you now (in advance) – when we’re eating together, please put away your badge.

Even if you think you’re helping… you’re not. Shining your spotlight in my eyes and interrogating my every bite – is not helping!

And the best part is – I don’t even know what you’re trying to help. I was fine and dandy before you started with the accusations. I’m not guilty and have nothing to feel guilty about.

Whatever decision I make – is my own. There are no “good” foods or “bad” foods. No right ways to eat and no wrong ways. I do not follow your Laws of Consumption or your Mealtime Regulations!

So, unless you’re going to illegally cuff me for my awesome mindful eating skills – I’m going to finish my meal now. Or maybe I won’t… my stomach will make that decision. Not you.

I rest my case!

Yes, I Take It Very Personally.

Our culture has given all of us the green light to go ahead and say what we want, when we want, about whatever we want. But your rudeness and inconsideration can cut as sharp as knives and leave lasting scars.

Read This Related Article:
It Happened This Week: Advice from Registered Dietitians, Not the Food Police

I have a list of people in my head that I’ve charged with this crime. Their words forever clouded what could have been a great memory. Now, all I remember are the comments and the judgment.

(A recent encounter left nachos seasoned with someone else’s shame.)

And for what? Did they honestly think they were being funny? Did they just want some attention? Or did they merely want to redirect the attention away from themselves? Are these suspects blissfully unaware of the lasting effects of their words? Or are they striking down on me with malicious intent?

If I didn’t question them in the moment, I’ll forever wonder why. It will partially define how I remember this person… forever.

My Needs, My Desires, My Cravings, My Food Choices

Even if you don’t know my history with Binge Eating Disorder, I can’t think of a single person who enjoys being the centerpiece on the dinner table – when it comes to their food choices and eating habits.

They’re personal – not a topic for roundtable discussion. We make ourselves vulnerable when we sit down and share these intimate moments.

Read This Related Article:
The Binge Eating Diaries: Help Me Stop Binge Eating

The first few times I ate in front of others during my B.E.D. journey, I felt naked – down to my tendons and bones. I was exposing the most fragile part of my existence to others, at the risk of being scrutinized.

So when you say “Woah! I didn’t know you could eat like that!” or “It’s a good thing we didn’t share!” or even “Really? That’s all you’re going to eat?” I feel assaulted. For my sake, and yours, please learn how to use your social filter.

If I were to start making a mockery of your favorite hobby, your craft, or your skill, I would look like an a**hole. But when it comes to food – you feel as though you’re commenting on a single choice I just made. Nothing deeper.

Well, to me, food is about as deep as you can get. It’s one of the few things we actually need.

So it feels invasive when society tells me I need to eat less and then you tell me I need to eat better…

Actually, I’m the only one who knows what I need. And if that isn’t personal – I don’t know what is.

Until Next Time,


Have you ever felt attacked by the Food Police? Please feel welcomed to share your stories and comments below in this safe space.

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Jacki Monaco

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