I read this this afternoon and could have seriously cried from knowing someone close is encouraging. I have not been telling people I am vegetarian yet, but of course they are slowly finding out (even though it's been awhile) and oh my, it is so tough to deal with discrimination (because really, a few comments I've had so far sure feel that way). I am not trying to convince anyone to 'convert' nor am I pressing my opinion on anyone at all, but I do not get the same respect. I am 9 months pregnant, and apparently that's a ticket for people to belittle my choices or question my knowledge (which I've spent COUNTLESS hours researching via books, documentaries, online and more). I am so informed, more than probably my husband would know, and he's watched me poor over information for months now (whom I am so thankful for support, despite one or two comments that I can easily forgive
lol ). I've been asked soooo many times if I'm eating enough protein for the baby (which I suppose is a valid question, but still a little insulting- not one I couldn't handle though). The worst happened today before I saw your reply, it was from a stranger whom referred to me as a fat vegetarian who doesn't know nutrition (which I explained I was actually pregnant- and I am the appropriate BMI carrying a very obvious hard round belly, plus was in much better shape than him). He replied that eating a baby for protein doesn't make me pregnant. HUH??? But even this doesn't bug me as much as close people in my life making off hand (but sincerely concerned, I guess) remarks.
Anyway, this has turned into a frustrated gripe when really I just want to thank you for the local support- can't wait to check out the places you've mentioned. I was at Planet Organic this past week and LOVED it, can't wait to try the *meats* at Loma's- there are no good 'meats' here at all, lol.
Thanks for sharing your story too, I plan to be vegan one day, but it seems this is about all I can handle in 'cattle country' right now.