Sometimes, I don’t like to share…

There’s a Honey Nut Cheerios commercial that promotes the fact that they’re not just good for you but taste good, too. The commercial is set in a restaurant, and the waitress brings the order to a table of about six people. Everyone’s getting a bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios, but they’ve ordered either “the yummy cereal” or “the heart-healthy cereal.” (I had to paraphrase because I couldn’t find the video online.) After everyone digs in and praises their food choice, one patron looks at one of his companions and says,

“Can I try yours?”

This is a favorite question of many people who go out to eat in groups. However, it’s one reason that I often dread group dinner outings. As someone who has Crohn’s Disease, I enjoy the times when food acts as a friend and not an enemy. However, in order to increase those instances, I often make very specific meal choices when I dine out. My dinner companions, on the other hand, usually tend to order things that I cannot eat. So I find myself in an awkward position when everyone starts sharing their food while I stay silent. As much as I would love to be a team player, doing so would mean giving away most of my meal and not being able to eat the majority of whatever else was at the table. Then I just look like the kid who never learned to play well with others.

So, the next time you go out to eat with a group, if someone doesn’t offer to share their food, you may want to reconsider asking for a taste. Either that or don’t be offended when they turn you down and don’t offer an explanation.