View Full Version : Handling social situations
08-03-2008, 05:54 PM
Two days ago I had two separate things happen and I was curious how others would have handled it.
First of all my dbf bought me some "coconut water". I looked at the ingredients and of course it had high fructose corn syrup, some milk and other things I can't pronounce added to it. I thanked him and didn't say a word about the stuff in it making it something I won't drink. He was being thoughtful and he's obviously not a label reader. I didn't want to downplay the act of kindness by telling him I won't drink it. I'm not sure what will come of this "coconut water" at this point. How would you have dealt w/ that situation?
Later that night a person at work brought me a pie. She works in another department so she's not familiar w/ my eating habits. I'm really not sure why she brought me a pie. She seems like a very shy and nervous person so there is no way I would say I don't eat sugar, etc. as she's presenting me a pie. I enthusiastically thanked her and then let my coworkers eat it once she had left. Later that night she came and asked me if I'd had a piece of it yet and I said I hadn't had the chance but I'd get to it later. She hasn't asked about it further. I felt dishonest but I certainly didn't want to deflate her joy in giving me a gift. How would you have dealt w/ that situation?
08-03-2008, 07:25 PM
I always start with thanks-thank you for taking the time, thank you for the effort, thank you for thinking of me. If it is a kind gesture that might be repeated-then I feel I need to be honest so that it's not repeated...ie she makes another pie.....I'll just say, Thank you so much, I appreciate the thought and time that went into it, it's beautiful and smells wonderful, I don't eat.......but will be happy to share it w my friend, co-workers, etc and enjoy sharing it...and end with gratitude as well!
08-03-2008, 08:44 PM
I'm not sure how to handle these situations either so I'm glad you asked too! I had a friend specifically bring a salad to a party because she knew I was there eating raw foods. Her salad contained things like cooked pasta, bottled salad dressing, canned beans, hard boiled eggs, ect. It was so thoughtful to do so of course I had to eat it while I was there (I'm far from 100% yet so I am not that worried about it) but at the same time I felt bad because she had tried hard but really missed the mark at the same time! It's hard because so many things that seem raw to the general public, like the canned beans and such, aren't at all, so even when people really mean well, they still don't know.
08-03-2008, 10:17 PM
Yes it reminds me a little of when you visit another culture and they are DEEPLY insulted if you don't partake of their offerings which might be some raw seafood....blubber, etc. Stuff we Totally would Never eat.....but I have heard, as I'm sure we all have, that if you don't, you couldn't possibly show them more disrespect.
....even as a child, upon hearing this, I imagined that I would fake a stomach ache in that situation...because there is No way I would eat some of the stuff people eat!
....and this is a social problem, no matter the gift, if it doesn't apply, which it so often doesn't...what do you do? I have found that if you can find a way to be graciously honest, people will begin to chose gifts with more care. But then again...if they put a lot of thought into it yet again...ie, the salad, it would be very discouraging. ....My Dad now gives cash for gifts....my mom, gift cards...
Maybe she gave you the pie, because she noticed you were exceptionally healthy looking and it was her way of finding out if you work at it....or not. Especially if she's shy....? Long shot I guess....but at the same time I also wouldn't be surprised! ...Looking for an embassador? Maybe she is wondering how healthy people handle junk food social situations so she can know what to do herself? I think, Everyone wonders this, raw or not! ....everyone is on a diet afterall, or wishing these social situations wouldn't make them cheat all the time, lol.
It's totally socially acceptable to say 'oh sorry, I'm vegetarian'....but raw vegan, not so much.....so I tend to stick with 'Dairy and wheat give me a really hard time....sorry though, happy to share with people who can enjoy it' ....which is all true. ....still kind of a copout. But I am a fence sitter in so many ways.
08-03-2008, 10:49 PM
for the dbf:
smile with a big happy thankyou. then later, when the time is right...
let dbf know (with happy smiling eyes and a warm voice) that you looovvvee how sweet he is and just wanted to let him know your interest in ingredients as you wouldn't want him to waste his money or anything like that.
re-enforce with hugs and love and thankyous
gal at office (note: shy girl, drawn to you - perhaps cause of your energy? nice compliment):
with the same warmth and thankyou's let her know that you actually don't eat those things...but wow you are sooo sweet! thankyou darling!
maybe bring her a raw dessert one day to return the loving gift.
i find as long is you seem healthy, happy and sparkling people don't get offensive.
08-04-2008, 12:32 AM
What they really wanted to do was please you, so I agree that you should thank them profusely and give them the attention they were seeking.
With the dbf, it depends on how new he is whether he can handle the full truth. I am really puzzled over the pie-bearer...
Anyway, I have to say that I am super proud of you for struggling with this and not caving in=)>
08-04-2008, 01:45 AM
I think you handled both the situations Graciously. I would've dealt with is similarly I'm sure.
I think it's nicer to be gracious then to go into the explaination of why.....
08-04-2008, 02:37 AM
Hey Raw Yogini, I struggle with this because it's really easy giving advice and it's an entirely different thing when you're actually in the moment of the act of kindness when it comes to food. I would've probably done the same thing.
My second stage of advice around whether or not to be completely honest?...hmmm....with your dbf I would mention the high fructose corn syrup and dairy as the reasons why you cannot drink the coconut water. With the co-worker, it seems maybe she wants to establish a friendship? Then she needs to know the real you...and the real you doesn't eat sugar and cooked pie. :) Perhaps bring in a raw dessert and share it with her. Then break the news about the sugar and why you don't eat it? This will save her the embarassment of continuing to bake pies that you don't eat. Eventually she's gonna pick up on this if it continues. lol. I'm not making light of the situation, but sometimes I have a dark sense of humor. Like attack of the killer (sugar) pies with a betrayed co-worker. And with your dbf maybe buy a couple containers of real coconut water and show it to him so he knows which one to buy in the future for you. Maybe even skip the dairy & HFCS talk and save that for later.
Honestly, again I probably would've handled it the same way you did! But having time to think about it if it happened again I would try to follow my advice above. But that's not even a guarantee as you just never know how you're going to respond in certain situations as everyone is different and you have to gauge the energy & circumstances.
I think you did great by acknowledging their acts of kindness and following the guidance of your intuition in the moment. There must've been something telling you it wasn't the right time to share about your eating/lifestyle preferences. Especially with your bf who wanted to please you and give you a gift. I guess I should've just said this in the first place. This last paragraph is the crux of my advice. :D
08-04-2008, 01:01 PM
Thank you all so much! It gives me a lot to think about and I can be better prepared for future things that come up. I especially like the idea about giving my coworker a raw dessert. It's great! I'm going to do just that. Tonight we're going to have a raw ice cream party so I'll let her know so she can have some.
My bf already knows my eating habits. We've been together 3+ years and we live together. He's just not a label reader.
RawHeaven, loved the scene I got in my mind of attack of the killer sugar pies and betrayed coworker, lol!
Again, thanks for taking the time to give me some ideas!
thanks for bringing this up. i agree it's helpful to have some options on how to deal with such situations ahead of time. :)
08-04-2008, 03:04 PM
i'm honestly very conscious when people bring me stuff to eat or any kind of "present" out of the blue. I'm from Ukraine and maybe i'm a bit more "supersticious" but since many people know the power of energy and thought and are capable of using it in good or bad ways... i'm careful with presents. I might thank and seem nice and grateful...but i might not eat or wear the present (it happened on several occasions that some coworkers of my grandmother, who were jealous of her position, brought food to her that made her terribly sick afterwards in strangest ways..)
Maybe it's too far off :D and i don't want to make it sound all scary and such :D i guess if it was someone i knew, i would definitely thank and SHOW how surprised and grateful i am, depending on the situtation i wouldn't mention about raw the first time. But maybe later i would say something about my special eating patterns ;)
08-04-2008, 03:34 PM
Funny, I feel more like Riiiya. Maybe us foreigners just think differently? I'm getting more and more cynical and I would suspect some sort of set-up by the people in the other department, trying to see how serious you are about your way of eating. The bf situation? In my case it would be easy, I only drink water, from my own distiller. I would probably tell him that I appreciate the gesture, but that I cannot drink it, because I'm serious about my nutrition.
I have absolutely no problem telling people how I eat. I figure it's nobody's business and if they can't handle it, no skin off my nose. They are the ones with aches, pains, and a medicine cabinet full of drugs. I'll explain the why's, if someone is genuinely interested. Most people who know me are aware, that I had cancer and will NEVER allow myself to do that again.
08-04-2008, 03:59 PM
I do have trouble telling people how I eat if they are presenting me with a gift of food. It turns a kind gesture into an all-about-me moment. I would thank them and then regift the present. Sharing it with your co-workers was a brilliant idea.
If she asks if you ate the pie you can tell her it was delicious. You don't have to say you didn't eat and you only know it was delicious b/c you heard your co-workers saying so.
Then, if the person seems to want to become friends, there will be a time and place to talk about your eating habits.
08-04-2008, 07:02 PM
Pilgrim, that is exactly how I felt! That it would turn it into an "all about me" moment which I didn't want to do.
As far as being suspicious, no. I really don't think that is the case. However, there are a couple of people I work with that I would have been very suspicious of their motives but not her.
Thanks for taking the time to respond. I totally appreciate it!
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