The Vegan Struggle - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 10-02-2017, 11:20 AM
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Unhappy The Vegan Struggle

After four years of being vegan, I decided to write about my experiences. Although it has been a rewarding decision I have also experienced some annoying moments that I know a lot of us can relate to. I would love to hear about you guys' experiences too.
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#2 Old 10-02-2017, 02:43 PM
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I feel like developing a thick skin and a lot of patience with people is a necessary part of being vegan. So many protein questions!

"If we could live happy and healthy lives without harming others... why wouldn't we?" - Edgars Mission
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#3 Old 10-02-2017, 07:39 PM
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My biggest struggle has been dairy temptations! I find the healthier I eat the less the cravings.

-Anita J.
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#4 Old 10-03-2017, 08:03 PM
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I sometimes imagine that, because I am vegan, people are scrutinizing my appearance, personality, intelligence etc. For instance, if I am grumpy at work, I worry that people will form a generalized assumption that vegans are grumpy people. Similarly, I worry that, because I am skinny, I am reinforcing the stereotype of the "skinny vegan".
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_________

Specific recommendations for a healthy diet include: eating more fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and grains; cutting down on salt, sugar and fats. It is also advisable to choose unsaturated fats, instead of saturated fats and towards the elimination of trans-fatty acids."
- United Nations' World Health Organization
http://www.who.int/topics/diet/en/
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#5 Old 10-04-2017, 04:22 PM
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Yes, you are correct; lots of patience is required! Patience at meals out and talking with servers to explain and question, patience when dealing with questions (even the stupid ones), patience when dealing with people who don't get it or criticize us... when it comes down to it, it's other people that make being vegan difficult, for the most part.
I am used to being different for several reasons but mainly in my upbringing and lifestyle so it doesn't bother me to be different and have to stand up for myself in a polite respectful educated manner even though passion tries to get the best of me.

I think another struggle with being vegan is being kind when dealing with people that get angry and have an attitude; it's interesting how people react with jokes and teasing or get defensive-even family and friends and it can get heated very quickly so I've learned to mostly stay quiet.

It's also surprising how widespread cognitive dissonance is: people claim to love animals and yet eat them.. it truly makes no sense but I was once there and not that long ago, only over 5 months now though I stopped eating veal about 20 years ago after finding out what it really was = ( See, there, I also didn't see the contradiction.. alas, I digress.

I think being vegan also can be a struggle when you don't know any other vegans in real life near you and none of your friends are so that requires safe places to go to like this where other like-minded people are to talk with and ask questions, discuss various topics etc... Then again, I know several who have gone vegan after watching WTH (What the Health?!) documentary but it's only about health, I believe, for them whereas I am passionate about the animals and the environment as well.

There's so many experiences just in 5 months that it is nice to be able to open up here and know that others are going through similar things.

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Originally Posted by Werewolf Girl View Post
I feel like developing a thick skin and a lot of patience with people is a necessary part of being vegan. So many protein questions!
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#6 Old 10-04-2017, 05:59 PM
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I feel similarly as if each of us must be a poster child for veganism. I'm the opposite since I've been overweight most of my life and after being vegan over 5 months now I haven't lost much weight though I do feel my appearance has changed; maybe I've lost some fat but I'm not THAT much smaller that I was 5 months ago so I feel like that's a negative for me "representing" the vegans because we are all suppose to be ultra healthy and skinny I feel you there, it's a struggle indeed.

Also, not conforming to that stereotype that gives vegans a bad rap even though I totally get why there's angry vegans or extremists. Many of us care deeply about animals and our health as well as the earth and it can be upsetting when people truly don't care or don't want to know.

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Originally Posted by David3 View Post
I sometimes imagine that, because I am vegan, people are scrutinizing my appearance, personality, intelligence etc. For instance, if I am grumpy at work, I worry that people will form a generalized assumption that vegans are grumpy people. Similarly, I worry that, because I am skinny, I am reinforcing the stereotype of the "skinny vegan".
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#7 Old 10-07-2017, 01:21 PM
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I became vegan overnight more than two years ago when I found out about the awful animal conditions. I have never missed any non-vegan food yet. As for me, the hardest part of going vegan was to deal with people reaction about my diet. I did not expect all the negative reactions I received. When I told my mum I didn't feel like eating meat anymore (I just told her about meat first and told her I was vegan afterwards), she literally screamed at me, telling me how stupid I was. Being shy and having a good relationship with my parents, it was really tough for me.
As the months and years went by, I had been made fun of, being criticized by my friends, colleagues and family. My ex boyfriend called me 'an extremist' because I once told me I was uncomfortable with him buying foie gras.
In the end, I love my diet, I feel at peace with myself and my values and this experience helped me in many ways. Most of all, it reinforced my assertiveness and my self confidence. I am definitely not as shy as I used to be. It is all so worth it.
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#8 Old 10-17-2017, 11:23 AM
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Lightbulb Instagram account for sharing vegan stories

Hi! I agree it can at times be a struggle - that is why a friend and I started an Instagram account called "Underneath the Rock." Our idea is to share stories from vegans around the world - the good/bad - whatever they want to share, as well as their vegan favorites. Follow us at @underneaththerock ! We want to build a community of vegans sharing their experiences and we need you in order to do it.
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#9 Old 10-17-2017, 08:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David3 View Post
I sometimes imagine that, because I am vegan, people are scrutinizing my appearance, personality, intelligence etc. For instance, if I am grumpy at work, I worry that people will form a generalized assumption that vegans are grumpy people. Similarly, I worry that, because I am skinny, I am reinforcing the stereotype of the "skinny vegan".
.
I get this, for sure. Since I’ve gone vegan my coworkers tease me, which is normal, we all mess with each other. But underneath I feel like I need to be the beacon of veganism and every answer I give will be judged, etc.

But I use that as a positive reinforcement! (Most of the time). I AM thinner, healthier and better looking than 90% of the people around me. I AM more energetic, more driven, more motivated than most people around me. I DO see what others don’t. Or won’t. I have a PURPOSE now.

The reason we worry about what people think is because we have a PURPOSE. We want to make the world a better place, we want others to see how their actions have impact on the world, on their health, on US.

We are the evangelists of food; we didn’t care what anyone thought back when we ate meat and dairy. Now that we have the knowledge, we are compelled to share it.

You BE a skinny vegan. You BE grumpy if you want. There are reasons for all of it and they are GOOD reasons. Be the billboard for health, for sustainability, for mercy, for compassion, feel free to get frustrated when you have a bad day. We aren’t weirdos, we’re human.

Ignorance = not knowing
Stupidity = refusing to know
Intelligence = learning, applying knowledge, and knowing when to ask someone who knows more than you

2 outta 3 ain’t bad. 1 outta 3 is 2/3 of the US.
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#10 Old 10-17-2017, 10:25 PM
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Surprisingly my transition has been painless for the most part.

None of my co-workers thought me any strange for becoming vegan and they never judge me and I never judge them for their eating habits.

I quit meat and dairy cold turkey and have had no cravings really. The only time I 'strayed' was when I accidentally ate food that I thought was vegan but wasn't.

I was eating many forms of animal products, eggs, milk, cheese, for over 40 years. I think it helped that I liked many vegan foods even before I became vegan, staples such as rice, veggies, fruit, oats, etc.
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#11 Old 10-18-2017, 05:56 PM
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I miss two things:

1) being able to eat out in restaurants without scrutinizing the menu online and/or calling ahead
2) sour cream cheddar potato chips

On the other hand, I'm certainly healthier for not eating potato chips on a regular basis, but I'm a fairly new vegan, although I was vegetarian before. And I've been lucky, compared to some. Mostly the reactions from people around me have been pretty positive, even though I live in a really non-vegan part of the country.

Sometimes, though, small things bug me all out of proportion. Today I ordered a pizza delivered with vegan crust, vegan cheese, and a bunch of veggies. It arrived as ordered, but they put ranch dressing in with the salad it came with.

I'm trying to figure out who they thought the customer was that would pay 2 dollars extra for vegan cheese, but then eat ranch dressing?
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