When a friend changes - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 02-26-2016, 08:07 PM
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When a friend changes

Have you ever had a similar-minded friend who suddenly changed? My ex-roomate used to go between being vegan/vegetarian and was always talking about animal welfare, animal rights etc, but then she started changing. She started eating fish and seafood again, despite the fact that she's watched documentaries about over-fishing and the like, and used to talk about how horrible and bad it was.

She also hated the horse-racing industry because of the terrible treatment of horses and because of the hundreds of thousands of horses bred and killed in the industry every year, then last year she went with a group of friends TO the racing. She kept coming up with all these excuses like "I didn't want to go, it was peer pressure, my friends wanted to go" etc and it all sounded like such bull**** to me. If you really were as against it as you said, then no amount of your friends asking you would make you go.

And to top it off, she changed her profile picture on FB to a photo of her at the races. If it really was peer-pressure and all of that, then she would have been ashamed/embarrassed of going and wouldn't be showing off the fact that she did go to everyone.

We have really drifted apart recently, even though we used to be close, and I'm starting to wonder whether I even want to try and keep the friendship going. I don't like to judge others on things like this, and I'm close friends with heaps of meat-eaters and people who unknowingly support cruel events, but they do it unknowingly. I think this effects me more strongly because she was so informed, watched all the documentaries, spoke out about it, always talked about how forward she was for animal rights etc, now she seems to have gone back on everything. At least my other friends who do those things never pretend to be anything they are not.

Has anyone else ever been in a situation like this?
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#2 Old 02-26-2016, 08:53 PM
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I myself actually stopped being veg for a few years about ten years ago. I know. I am embarrassed and ashamed about it.

It was laziness and wilful ignorance for me. I had just moved in with a guy who ate meat and for some reason it just felt easier to turn a blind eye to everything and go along with it.
I honestly have no idea. I mean. No one in my family was veg. But that's as good of a reason as I can think of as to why and it doesn't even make sense.

I definitely think that it's other people who make being veg difficult. The whole social pressures and expectations and feeling like the whole friggen world is against you... Sometimes people give in to that. Because it can be so very tiring.
Yes, it's nothing compared to what the animals go through and I'm not trying to excuse it. It's just a thing that happens sometimes.

It's sad because she had you though. But you did say you've been drifting apart. And she's your ex-roommate. Living with you would have made it so easy for her in just day to day things. Having that support system change would give her this feeling like she's less accountable now. Because now all she has to answer to is herself.

I have had friends who change and drift from. And also had bad endings to relationships with other friends. It is never easy.

I'm sorry you're having to watch her change. It must be hard. I hope she goes back to it one day like I did.
I wish I had more advice to give you. But all I can do is give you my perspective on the other side. I don't know how helpful that would be though. It was something I had to go back to on my own. And realising that even if I was the only person on the planet who didn't eat meat I still wouldn't want to... That was after adopting an orphan lamb for me though... I doubt that is viable for most people.

I guess all you can do if you want to keep the friendship is to try to think of her like everyone else. :/
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#3 Old 02-27-2016, 10:35 PM
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I haven't had to go through that exactly, but I am sorry to hear that. It is sucky.

The only advice I really have for that is to just either let the friendship go, or talk to her about what you're feeling. You can't force her to change back to the way she was, but if it hurts you or bothers you on a personal level, you should at least make those feelings known. Maybe just ask why she's letting "peer pressure" affect her personal beliefs.
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#4 Old 02-21-2017, 08:48 AM
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It´s a tough situation, people are always maturing and changing it is a constant process. Also the friends of you friends will heavily influence them over time. Probably why most of us don´t have the same friends we did when we were 10 years old.
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#5 Old 09-12-2017, 12:28 AM
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I know you feel bad to continue the friendship. No worries. You don't focus on it for some time. Keep engaging in other activities.
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#6 Old 02-04-2019, 04:22 PM
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It’s a horrible feeling when we think we no longer know who our friends are anymore, it must be a pretty hard and sad time for you right now.

However, have you considered why your friend has suddenly changed her behaviour? I can’t say this is the reason why, but I have a feeling she was a vegetarian and so forth because she felt it connected you two, so that you two had something you could bond over, and the reason she has changed could be a sign that she is just trying to be herself (some people genuinely don’t like the vegetarian/vegan lifestyle) or it could be her way of telling you that maybe something is going on with your friendship, and that she doesn’t feel as close to you anymore.

Also, on that note, have you also really examined your feelings for your friend? I couldn’t help get the feeling that you only really seemed to like her as friend when she shared your views and lifestyle, but now if she is actually expressing how she feels (that she doesn’t really like the vegetarian/environmentalist lifestyle) you seem to want to end that friendship because it clashes with your beliefs. If you’ll forgive me for saying, if your friendship was truly deep and meaningful, you wouldn’t be so quick to throw it away over something like this. Again, sorry for saying, but I feel that maybe your friendship wasn’t all that meaningful to begin with, if all you care about is her changing views.

Have you thought about talking openly, honestly and without judgement or anger with her? Also, if this behaviour is really her, have you considered maybe getting to know this side of her, to try and deepen your friendship? If that’s something you don’t want or can’t do, then I suggest you end your friendship, otherwise you’re both going to become frustrated, hurt and drift apart which won’t do both of you any good.

I hope you two stay friends, as friendships should be cherished.
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