ok, brace yourself, open your mind, and remember that i'm saying this from a place of kindness, as someone else who does this too.
honestly, i think this is as the bottom of it all
: "I'm so sick of obsessing about it, and I do obsess about it, if that makes any sense"
and "Oh, also, I spend lots of my time obsessing"
it doesn't really matter what you're obsessing over really, but its blatently clear from your post that you're definately overthinking the crap out of stuff (in this case vegetarianism and your place in it, and your perception of the world at large) and getting youself into a big complicated tangle that leads to conflict and indecision and justification and sadness and negativity and guilt and feelings of failure and inadequacy. if i was you i'd stop doing that. does it make you happy? i doubt it very much. it'll just make you neurotic, miserable, and give you an ulcer.
i say this as a reformed overthinker myself.
if you want to commit to saying "i'm a vegetarian", if your desire to be one is sincere, just take a deep breath right now, and say it. and its done. decision made. end of. you'll feel a lot of releif for just breaking the cycle in one little way. now, hold on. i bet you're already thinking "but what about when i screw it up?!?!?!". firstly, you're predicting that you will, when you don't know the future, and secondly, how does thinking that make you feel? crappy. so tell yourself that what matters is that you're gonna give it your best, and that you'll deal with a bump in the road when it turns up, instead of playing it out before the problem even happens. cos you will. you'll get right back on the wagon, and sooner or later you'll stop falling off at all. practice makes perfect.
so maybe you won't ever reach perfect. thats ok. you're good enough. if you're trying really hard, thats what matters. give yourself permission to be human and err. i'm not saying "go forth and err muchly on tuna", but stop knocking yourself. if
at some point later on you start dillydallying about wanting to eat fish, and get your head into the meaning of ingesting death and blah blah blah, wham, you'll get into a complex mental tangle, stuff a dead fish in your mouth, and wake up the next day feeling like crap. so don't go there. it hasn't worked in the past, has it? next time you find yourself veering fishward, just stop, clear your head, say "i'm a vegetarian, i don't eat meat- this isn't food, its a fish! i eat tofu!" and move right along mentally. shake it off as an old habit and carry on the veggie-ism. sounds very simple. is a very simple concept. it works.
the most important thing you need to know is that those thoughts that flow through your head, they're not something that just happens to you
, something that you fall victim to, that you're helpless against. that internal dialogue is something you create and perpetuate. practice mindfulness- this evening, and tomorrow, try and be aware of your thoughts as they wander around, and if they go somewhere unhelpful then pause, say "oh! look at that!" backtrack, and take a detour. its something you have to practice, but it'll change your world.
thoughts travel in predictable patterns, down familiar routes. bumping them off the welltrodden path can be a challenge, but the path you're on isn't nice, so work at it. its very easy to think about how unjust the world is, cos you're so practiced at it, its like tying your shoelaces... how easy is it for you to think of the swathes of people who are becoming self aware, who are out there informing others, making changes, etc- in a positive way? not so easy. but a damned sight more constructive- maybe it'll motivate you to see the good, the kindness, the compassion in people- the glimpse of hope thats out there, and to encourage it to grow, to add to it.
so you want to be a gracious dinner guest. i do that all
the time. i'm appreciative of being invited, i make sure to give my host advance notice of my special food needs, i offer as much help and information as they want or need, i'm polite, i tell them that whatever is delicious if it is, i thank them for the effort, i ask for a recipe, and i'm comfortable enough with myself to say something if a mixup happens, sort it out somehow without eating something i don't want to or feeling guilty, and we all still have a good time. and people are ok with it. like your family is. and if someone is narrowminded and can't deal with my choice, who cares?! thats their loss- i can either drink all their veg*n booze, and eat elsewhere later, or they can have a boring dinner without me while i spend time with nicer, more openminded peeps. yeah?
you really can do whatever you beleive you can do. the only thing stopping you right now is your own self-talk, and lack of faith in yourself. don't let it! you're doing great
so far, all you gotta do next is start to clue in a little quicker when you begin to slide, and grab hold of your self-belief, a good cookerybook, and some support from VB
i think it'd help you to have a look at the info in these worksheets (and no, i aint selling them, but i have had therapy using them, and it was GOOD stuff. very insightful. the crazy things we say to ourselves in our own heads- you wouldn't beleive it!
... even better, you might wanna work through the whole chapter of depression, self esteem or perfectionism (whether you think you're depressed or a perfectionist or not- learning is always good stuff- hell, why not do all three?!). http://www.cci.health.wa.gov.au/resources/consumers.cfm