|Topic Review (Newest First)|
|06-06-2016 02:26 PM|
I mean, things like your mother-in-law handing your two-year old daughter a chicken leg to teethe on would be normal with an omni partner/family.
|06-06-2016 01:59 PM|
|06-02-2016 10:30 PM|
|06-02-2016 12:30 PM|
While I'm new to being a vegan, I am an experienced counselor (though relationships aren't my specialization). People grow, and change, and despite what the media might want you to believe, it's completely normal for your girlfriend not to be the "same person [you] met" five years down the road. Ideally these changes take place as couples slowly grow together. Sometimes, however, one member of a couple will change in a rapidly, and in a big way. No one can ever force a person to change (or change back), so when a big change occurs that is contradictory to your own beliefs/values/wants, you have to re-evaluate the situation. Self-reflect on yourself and your own values and concerns. Patiently listen to her as she explains why she thinks veganism is the correct and only way. Seriously consider her concerns (because, after all, many of us feel this way). Eventually you will have to establish your own hard boundaries. In other words, what would constitute "crossing the line" so badly that you could no longer pursue the relationship for your own mental-health? Then, discuss those boundaries with her, and ask her to make her own set to discuss. Sometimes you can come to a compromise, but unfortunately (and realistically), sometimes you can't.
I don't know you, or your girlfriend, but to me it sounds less like her being vegan is an issue, and more like her controlling, dominant sense of entitlement over the running of BOTH of your lives that has created the issue. I have decided to go vegan, but my husband has told me under no uncertain circumstances would he force our children to live as vegans (if we even have children). By nature, they would eat primarily vegan food in the house, but if we were to go out to restaurants or friends' houses, it would be a different story. And I understand his side of the argument. He wants them to have the opportunity to make their own informed decisions later in life. I don't like it. I'd prefer they at least be raised vegetarian (because it would be much easier for them to stick to a vegan/vegetarian diet down the line than to decide to do so on their own), but I don't have full authority over the running of our household, or raising of our children. It's a joint effort, and compromises must be made when there are two opposing sets of values and wants.
Sorry for the long reply, but I hope at least some of it helped!
|06-01-2016 10:41 AM|
I'm glad you are here, and applaud your asking for help and advice; you are most definitely in the right place
While (I assume) my husband and I are a bit older than you and your gf, we too are in a similar situation, as I recently decided to become vegan as well. I did not want to pressure my husband into adapting his lifestyle as well, because we did meet and get married as omnis, so I didn't think it was fair to him to ask him to make such a radical decision overnight, as I did. The only thing I asked of him, since I do the cooking, was to respect my decision to not cook meat at home, and he was not only OK with that, but also willing to hear my reasons and is making an effort to cut down his meat/dairy/eggs as well, even outside the home.
While I understand where your gf is coming from, I have also both seen and experienced that no one likes to have decisions made for them or forced upon them, so your initial reaction is understandable. Becoming a vegan is a commitment that one should make for themselves, not feel pressured upon them. That said, I think there are many ways that a couple with different beliefs can make things work, as long as both are willing to compromise and respect each other.
Of course you are not obligated to change because she wants to, but perhaps you can make the effort to do a little research and understand why she might want to make this change. My husband watched a couple documentaries with me and I think that helped him understand where I was coming from Additionally, I think discussing the future and kids right now might be adding too much weight to an already challenging situation. Perhaps give it some time for the new lifestyle to sink in, and each of you find your groove, before adding more stress
I wish and hope all the best for you and your gf
|06-01-2016 08:07 AM|
|Heaven is a Halfpipe||
I think the nail was hit on the head by saying new people to vegetarian and vegan lifestyles are quite angry because most people stop eating meat and consuming dairy as a result of learning the level of suffering animals are put through to farm meat and some dairy products.
Listen, at the end of the day this is more of a relationship issue and how you interpreted being dictated to how your children would be raised, I wouldn't like it either if for example she was a meat eater and said our children would be raised on meat whether I like it or not, probably a reason I'd be hesitant seriously dating a meat eater - our ideals simply wouldn't gel together - but if I did, I know I'd feel strongly about our children to not be eat meaters. I wouldn't put it quite like your girlfriend did but I kind of see where she's coming from.
I'd just assure you that raising children without meat is perfectly okay and healthy; human beings are not carnivores, nor omnivores for that matter. There's a reason we don't water at the mouth when watching wildlife documentaries of lions tearing flesh from zebras, nor do we consume raw meat like all of the worlds carnivores do. Our teeth and digestive systems are much more comparable with herbivores and more and more cancer and other devastating illnesses are being linked to meat consumption. This alone should be a reason I'd just go along with your children not eating meat, better to be safe than sorry.
I'm not preaching to you, just trying to assure you that human beings including children can be more than healthy without consuming meat, so I'd advocate raising your children without meat and let then decide for themselves later on what they think is better for them.
|06-01-2016 06:10 AM|
Agreed with the person who said her being a new vegan is probably playing a big role in how she reacted. A lot of new vegans are angry because they just learned what they were taking part it.
"I want them to be able to choose their life, not us."
I know this always sounds like a good idea (every one says it), but one problem with this: You, the parents, will have to choose their life until they're old enough. You're not going to let a two year old choose what they eat, or they'll probably eat candy all the time.
I stopped eating meat when I was 20 years old, and I wish my family had never fed me meat. My husband was raised as a vegetarian from birth, has never wanted to eat meat, and is happy his parents never fed it to him.
This answer may have some bias in it since I eat vegan, but I personally feel that there is way less of a chance that your kids will regret their lifestyle if you feed them vegan, at least until they are old enough to learn where their food comes from.
|06-01-2016 06:02 AM|
They may calm down as they convert themselves, and accept you for your own opinions, or realize being vegan needs to be so much more that they can't tolerate to be so close to what they see as unethical behaviors in others.
I think you two need to really come to terms with your choices before becoming serious
|06-01-2016 05:20 AM|
It sounds like your biggest issue is not with the fact that she is vegan, or that she wants to raise your kids vegan, but the way she went about expressing it to you. Which is totally understandable. I recently went vegan and am dealing with a similar situation with my fiancé. He has definitely described me as "crazy" more than once.
The first thing you need to do is accept what she is saying, despite her less than patient way of saying it. She's saying that she is vegan, she is going to be vegan for the rest of her life, its something that she feels extremely passionate about for (I'm assuming) health, ethical, and environmental reasons. And she wants her children to be raised according to her beliefs, because it would break her heart to raise them any other way. I tried to compare it to my fiancé by saying it would feel like we were raising our kids to be nazis or racists, just to put it in perspective.
Obviously I am projecting a lot of my feelings here but I hope it will be helpful to you!
Next I would suggest that you have some decision making to do. You should look into your own feelings about the issue. Are you really okay with her being vegan? How about raising your kids vegan? Do you truly understand her reasons for going vegan? The next questions is important: how far are you willing to go towards veganism or eating a plant-based diet? Are you willing to start taking small steps towards it? My fiancé is not 100% vegan but he agreed to eating 100% plant-based in our home - nothing comes in that isn't vegan. I do all of the cooking and shopping (gladly) to make it easier. He helped me understand that I can't expect him to change over night like I did. People have to come to their realizations in their own time.
Than hopefully you and your partner can come to a place where you can talk about it openly and patiently. It would probably be a huge sign of faith if you watched some documentaries with her (Forks Over Knives is a good place to start - not graphic at all) to show her that you are open-minded and care about her feelings. You need to decide between the two of you how you feel about each other's stance and whether or not you are okay with the other person keeping those beliefs over time. If either of you aren't okay with it, maybe you need to reconsider the relationship. Its important to be honest with each other about this now, for the sake of both of your happiness!
|06-01-2016 02:38 AM|
Hi there OP
I notice you say your girlfriend has only just become vegan which I think is an important point here. It think it's fair to say that a lot of people are quite 'evangelical' about the lifestyle when they initially become vegan - I know I certainly was! She is likely to be less "radical" after a few months, although obviously still remain passionate about her choices.
With regards to children, of course your gf is going to want to raise her/your children in a way that she feels is morally correct. It would be hypocritical for her to feed eggs, dairy and meat to them whilst following a vegan lifestyle herself. Are you currently planning a family? If not then I would put this issue on the back-burner for a while rather than get angry about it; talk about it rationally if/when the time comes.
For what it's worth, there's nothing wrong with wanting to feed children a healthy, natural plant-based diet. Meat, eggs and dairy aren't exactly health foods - there's plenty of information out there about the health risks. I would question why a parent would even want to feed their children food linked to increased rates of cancer anyway.
"This fact allowed scientists to separate the effects of eating meat from other factors. Overall, these studies showed significant reductions in cancer risk among those who avoided meat. In contrast, Harvard studies showed that daily meat eaters have approximately three times the colon cancer risk, compared to those who rarely eat meat."
We owe our children the best start in life and that does not mean feeding them animal products.
Do you have an objection to the vegan diet itself or just the way your girlfriend has presented it as a fait accompli?
|06-01-2016 01:57 AM|
Or maybe not, maybe you are reaching out, and we can grab your hand. A few facts about veganism:
1. It is better for the environment to eat vegan than it is to stop driving a Hummer SUV.
2. Your risk of heart disease, stroke, colon and other cancers drops dramatically by going vegan.
3. There is unbelievable cruelty and revolting practices against sentient creatures taking place every minute around the globe.
4. It isn't difficult or expensive to give up animal products. The hardest thing is the reaction of friends, families, colleagues, and loved ones.
|06-01-2016 12:56 AM|
Of course this forum is for vegetarians and vegans.
Maybe you can inform yourself about the reasons that your girlfriend wants to be vegan. Is it for the environment, for health, for the animals, for peace on earth, for beter morals, etc.?
Raise your children in peace with peas and let them decide later (18th year) which direction they want to go to.
(You don't need to teach them morals by letting them eat meat, smoke, use drugs, use alcohol or kill somebody as "you need to do this once in your life")
|06-01-2016 12:33 AM|
Vegan girlfriend issues... HELP
Okay so a few days ago my girlfriend decided she was going to go 100% total vegan. No animal products whatsoever. I was fine with it and I supported her decision. Well, tonight we got into a conversation about it and I told her I had no interest in the vegan lifestyle. Then she started to tell me that I didn't eat healthy and wasn't a healthy person because I ate meat and eggs. I evenntually leveled with her and agreed to not eat eggs. It was fine. And then she said "if we have kids, they're going to be raised vegans." THAT got me fired up. I told her that it sounded like she was not going to give me any say in how my kids would be raised. And she said "that's exactly what I'm saying". She literally became this radical vegan over night and then informs me I wont be able to say what my kids can and cannot eat. I want them to be able to choose their life, not us. And I don't know what to do about it. Or what how to respond to that. Any help is appreciated. Thank you and please don't judge me for not being vegan.