How long before you can really call yourself a vegetarian? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 02-01-2013, 03:41 PM
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I've been eating vegetarian about 4 weeks now.  Is that long enough?  Or is it more like 3 to 6 months?

 

Yes, I know I shouldn't need to justify my decisions or my commitment to anyone but here it is.

 

I was eating at a buffet recently and the guy manning the steam tables told me there was some <whatever meat> that he had just set out so to make sure I got some.  I told him thanks and kind of brushed him off.  He kept looking at me and I finally said, "I'm a vegetarian."  He was taken aback and acted like I said I have the world's largest rubber band collection.  And I felt weird because I don't even know if I'm really a vegetarian but it just came out.

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#2 Old 02-01-2013, 04:05 PM
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According to the International Vegetarian Society, it's 47 days, 4 hours, 23 minutes, 7 seconds. Just kidding, of course.    blush.gif

I called myself a vegetarian on the first day.   I knew I wasn't eating meat again, and I didn't.  

 

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#3 Old 02-01-2013, 04:58 PM
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You can call yourself a vegetarian whenever you feel comfortable. It took a while for me because I felt the need to prove myself.

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#4 Old 02-01-2013, 05:38 PM
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I believe its okay the moment you make the decision! ;-)

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#5 Old 02-01-2013, 06:38 PM
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Whenever you want!
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#6 Old 02-01-2013, 06:45 PM
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It's up to you.

It's a bit like giving up smoking; when do you call yourself an ex-smoker? It could be the moment you make a decision, or it could be a while, after you have managed to not smoke for a few days, or weeks.

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#7 Old 02-01-2013, 08:51 PM
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And just like with smoking, if you break the commitment one time for some reason, it doesn't have to mean you never come back.  I think it may actually be detrimental to focus too much on absolute categories, where you might say "I'm not a vegetarian anymore."  Not if it's something you believe in and really want for the long term.


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#8 Old 02-01-2013, 10:22 PM
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i think it's whenever you think you can stick with the decision
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#9 Old 02-01-2013, 10:58 PM
 
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Whenever you want!
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#10 Old 02-01-2013, 11:04 PM
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It's been long enough! Wear your veggie label with PRIDE!! :-)

 

Maybe celebrate your veggie month with a vegan cupcake!

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#11 Old 02-01-2013, 11:05 PM
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It's been long enough! Wear your veggie label with PRIDE!! :-)

 

Maybe celebrate your veggie month with a vegan cupcake!

Oh, because, clearly a vegan cupcake is tastier than a regular one. ;-)



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the blog I write. It's mostly about food. Some healthy. Some junky. All vegan.

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#12 Old 02-01-2013, 11:29 PM
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I finally said, "I'm a vegetarian."  He was taken aback and acted like I said I have the world's largest rubber band collection.

That happens.  Don't let it bother you.  People might judge, but many will be helpful, and most will usually at least not actually try to stand in the way, if they know you don't want meat.  Occasional awkwardness and complications will still come up, but we're proud of you, anyway.


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#13 Old 02-02-2013, 02:31 AM
 
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I think when you know your commited.Also I wouldnt pay any attention to that guy cause he was just reacting to someone he didnt understand.Thats ok cause everyone here does understand.

I'm Snowqueen,clean,green,and not to be seen.For now.
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#14 Old 02-02-2013, 02:32 AM
 
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I think when you know your commited.Also I wouldnt pay any attention to that guy cause he was just reacting to someone he didnt understand.Thats ok cause everyone here does understand and were not scared.

I'm Snowqueen,clean,green,and not to be seen.For now.
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#15 Old 02-02-2013, 01:57 PM
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I'll call you one now if you like. If you don't eat meat - you're a vegetarian (congratulations!)


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#16 Old 02-02-2013, 11:26 PM
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It took me about 6 months being someone who "doesn't eat meat" to go to "vegetarian".

Like Snowqueen and Zirpkatze, I believe calling yourself a vegetarian is a commitment that you're making. It really is a statement against the usual dietary habits of most Western societies, so, I was careful in 'outing' myself for quite a while. (Though I didn't have someone trying to give me meat a lot of the time, so it was pretty easy to just not have to categorise myself for that long).

 

It probably also took longer because I had a friend who went 'VEGETARIAN' at the same time I did (we'd both seen the same news footage of cruelty at an abattoir). Unfortunately, the friend was very good at declaring their dietary choice but not very good at following it through and fell off the wagon a month later, without ever looking back. That made me more reticent to call myself a vegetarian because, even as a meat eater, I saw it as a title that really deserved a certain degree of respect because, to me, being vegetarian is more than diet. Personally, being a vegetarian, is about choosing more than not eating meat. (But it's a pretty good start)

As my partner says "It's when you feel it". So, did you feel right in calling yourself a vegetarian? Did you get that swelling feeling in your chest? (No, not heart disease, because studies are showing that you're decreasing your chances of that by not eating meat. What a healthy person you are! :p) Then yeah, you're a vegetarian.

If you're not getting that 'feeling', then you can still say you "don't eat meat" until you feel comfortable with being a "vegetarian".

 

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#17 Old 02-03-2013, 05:13 AM
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"It's when you feel it" is the kind of thing women tell me sometimes, and it always just confuses me, because I don't operate that way.  I make decisions, and then I become comfortable with them, not the other way around.  It's all good, though; there are different kinds of people, which is a positive thing.  However, I do strongly agree with the rest of what you said, about a respect, a commitment, and a statement, myself.  But that, too, is up to the individual.  If you're not certain yet in your heart-of-hearts that you are Vegetarian with a capital "V," whatever that means to you, but you start saying you are one so that waiters won't bring you the regular side dish with beef in it, that's totally fine.


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#18 Old 02-03-2013, 06:04 PM
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"It's when you feel it" is the kind of thing women tell me sometimes, and it always just confuses me, because I don't operate that way. 

 

I'll let my incredibly masculine, decisive partner know that :P He'll be thrilled. Ha ha.

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#19 Old 02-03-2013, 06:16 PM
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I'll let my incredibly masculine, decisive partner know that :P He'll be thrilled. Ha ha.

No offense.  And I didn't intend to stereotype.  That comment was purely anecdotal from my own experience.  Like I said, people are all different.  There are still ways that I don't really understand, but sometimes I think that I would be better off if I could.  Just trying to improve our odds here of expressing something most helpful.


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#20 Old 02-05-2013, 12:43 PM
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As others said, whenever you want.

If you start declaring it though be prepared to:

- Tell people why.
- Be grilled - people will look for reasons to make you look like a hypocrite in order to make themselves feel less guilty.
- Hear a bunch of stupid jokes / putdowns. People tell those things like they came up with it themselves, not knowing we've heard it all a million times before.

Honestly, dealing with other people is by far the worst part of being a vegetarian.

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#21 Old 02-05-2013, 01:14 PM
 
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What it comes down to is "am I going to stick with this?".

If the answers yes, go for it. If the answers no, then don't, unless you want to seem silly.

 

-Slave 

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#22 Old 02-05-2013, 01:24 PM
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As others said, whenever you want.

If you start declaring it though be prepared to:

- Tell people why.
- Be grilled - people will look for reasons to make you look like a hypocrite in order to make themselves feel less guilty.
- Hear a bunch of stupid jokes / putdowns. People tell those things like they came up with it themselves, not knowing we've heard it all a million times before.

Honestly, dealing with other people is by far the worst part of being a vegetarian.

+1

"Oh, you're a vegetarian?  I think I'll have a veal sandwich with head cheese for lunch."

It's usually something like that on FB.  Why is the response to "I'm a vegetarian," no matter how nice, always a statement about eating some really disgusting form of meat?

For me, living in a very rural area, the worst thing is poor planning and being hungry in a small town. 

"Do you having anything vegetarian?"
"Sure, we have fish and chicken!"
"Vegetarians don't eat fish and chicken"
"I know plenty of vegetarians who eat fish and chicken. Thelma Mae, my vegetarian friend, loves our fried chicken fingers." 

So remember when you go out to eat, Tofu Hunter, that to many fish and birds are not animals.  Oh, and don't forget the broth.  Soups are scary... most are made with meat stock.   

Sorry... I got carried away. 
 

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#23 Old 02-05-2013, 02:04 PM
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You can call yourself a vegetarian with a little "v" as soon as you make the decision.

You can call yourself a Vegetarian with a big "V" once you've heard, "I'm in PETA - People Eating Tasty Animals" enough times to lose count.

--Fromper
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#24 Old 02-07-2013, 02:22 AM
 
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As soon as you make the decision that you no longer want to eat meat ;-)

 

Ive been vegetarian for 8 years mow,,, and still I get jokes and comments about it being silly.

 

I really enjoy being veggie and have learned to try loads of fab new foods and recipes ;-)

 

http://www.vegetarian-world.com/

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#25 Old 03-06-2013, 09:43 AM
 
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Hi

I just joined.  I only recently made the decision to become a vegetarian having thought about it for quite a while, cutting out more and more meat and then taking the final leap.  I did ponder whether there was an amount of time before I could say I was a vegetarian but figured, as others have said, it is whenever it feels real.

 

I have noticed a few comments both here and on other threads where posters relate negative reactions to their choice to be veggie or vegan.  Several of my friends are vegetarians of 20+ years.  It never occurred to me to question their choices when we first met and so far I haven't experienced any negativity, jokes or questions.  Is this unusual?!

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#26 Old 03-06-2013, 10:03 AM
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So, who does have the world's biggest rubber band collection??


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#27 Old 03-06-2013, 10:11 AM
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So, who does have the world's biggest rubber band collection??
te5anegu.jpg

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#28 Old 03-06-2013, 11:09 AM
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They should drop that off a tall building and see how far it bounces! popcorn.gif


"There is more wisdom in the song of a bird, than in the speech of a philosopher...." -Oahspe
"The thing is, you cannot judge a race. Any man who judges by the group is a pea-wit. You take men one at a time." -Buster Kilrain, The Killer Angels -Michael Shaara
"Anyone who doesn't believe in miracles isn't a realist." -Billy Wilder
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