Lately, though, I've been feeling guilty about something else: my gluten free diet. While research has shown that guilt can be beneficial - by helping maintain relationships, equalize power and, in a way, show that someone cares - this is one kind of guilt that every celiac or person with food allergies needs to scratch from their daily menu. Not sure how? Keep reading to find out!
Now, the guilt I've been experiencing recently differs from the guilt that most Americans report. In 2014, clinical psychiatrist Louise Adams described food guilt as an "epidemic" - and, considering the conversations I've had and comments I've overheard, that epidemic hasn't decreased in the years since. Yet, when I feel guilty about food, it isn't because I'm eating too much, too little or "incorrectly" according to a particular diet.
|How could I feel guilty about this!?!|
I feel guilty when I go to a friend's house and can't participate in the home-cooked (but cross-contaminated) chicken dinner everyone else enjoys.
I feel guilty when someone tries to make me feel included - by offering a "gluten free" product or suggesting a restaurant with "gluten free" options - and I have to explain the difference between gluten free and celiac friendly.
I feel guilty when I'm shopping for groceries and my gluten free certified product costs double the "regular" version.
|As one blogger put it: so delicious, so pricy!|
I feel guilty that I can't be the "easy" girl - the girl who can adventure on a moment's notice or stay overnight without taking two bags and a cooler.
I feel guilty that I can't find my favorite, GF products just anywhere - and that planning might as well be my fourth eating utensil.
Basically? I feel guilty that I'm not - and will never be - what society would consider "normal".
|As proven from senior prom photos...|
Of course, rejecting gluten free guilt is more easily said than done. But when I cringe at my grocery store receipt, I remind myself that my body needs and deserves safe fuel - and that I am lucky to work hard enough to afford safe food. When my cheeks heat red at a friend's house as everyone eats a gluten-filled dinner, I focus on enjoying the company instead of the food. And when I wish I was less "high maintenance" and worry that my diet will keep me from finding the right person for me, I think of all the people who already love me, like my friends, family and even fellow bloggers.
|Lots of love!|
In fact, maybe we need to follow Selena Gomez's lead and "kill it [in this case, guilt] with kindness" - to ourselves and to people we have (possibly) wronged. All I know? The next time guilt over my gluten free diet attacks, I won't try to ignore or deny these feelings. Instead, I'll see it as just another step in my celiac journey...a journey that will shape an even happier, healthier me!
*Also found at Wine'd Down Wednesday, Wow Me Wednesday, Sunday Food & Fitness and Saucy Saturdays!*
Do you ever feel guilty about your gluten free diet? Are you a Selena Gomez fan? Comment below!