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Discussion Starter #1
i am not sure if i am the only 1 who feels this way, cuz i think its rather weird to feel like this. when ppl ask y am i a veggie, a lot of times i juz didnt want to say.. its not only abt fear of having yet another argument, but i dun like to make others feel uncomfortable abt themselves.. its like, i don't say, " i dun eat animals becuz they r tortured and slaughtered for our dinner blah blah" im afraid tt this may may ppl feel uneasy and a bit of guilt and stuff... but of coz, its oni right to stand up for animals and i am tryin not to be such a loser and say out the the ppl ( juz like u how u ppl in the board handle tricky sitiuations) , tt how meat eating is destroyin our planet and the toture the animals have to endure.. how do u all feel when ppl gets guilty when u tell them the reason u do not eat meat? (but of coz, not guilty in a way tt they turn into vegans or vegetrains..only juz guilty but not going to give up meat..)
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I guess I would have to say that if what you say is said with confidence, and you answer their questions as simply as possible....and with a smile, that that would be a good thing. Maybe don't go into too much detail at first...like using the word "torture". Just say something like you have a lot of compassion for all creatures. The more they want to know, the more they'll ask. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I find that the majority of people that ask or want to make an issue over what I'm eating or not eating simply are looking for a confrontation. I'm all for giving folks information though, but I don't want to be dragged through something that is going to make me feel like **** somehow. So, I've been thinking that the next time this happens to me where people are asking about veg*n issues and such, I'll direct them to several websites that opened my eyes. Let them interpret it for themselves and make up their own minds without my 2 cents. I think that's the approach I'm going to take from now on.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
'Because I don't want to' seems to work well with most people. Often gets them asking why I don't want to - but also gives me chance to leave it at that with the die-hards that just want to wind me up.
 

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Yes, I do often just don't even want to talk about it. It is like I am bringing up some huge controversial thing I know people don't want to think about. So sometimes I avoid answering bc I don't want to spoil the mood.<br><br><br><br>
Often I just say, "Ethical reasons"<br><br><br><br>
But that just piques their interest more.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Ok, take note of this day. I very rarely get in a bad mood but I am today. Nobody at work is being nice. They all suck!<br><br><br><br>
Anyhow, in regards to flesh eaters attitude towards non-flesh eaters and how they've treated me..this message is for them!!<br><br><br><br><span style="font-size:large;"><span style="color:#FF0000;">You Suck!!!</span></span><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Whew! Now I feel a little better (not).<br><br><br><br><br><br>
Carry on...
 

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Ms R- do you have any stories you would like to share? I think you may need to get it off your chest. (Actually, I just like stories.) <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I don't think I've ever felt bad for being vegan. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/huh.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":confused:"> I mean, I made a choice that I love and I made that choice for myself, so instantly I have tons of confidence in being vegan.<br><br><br><br>
Yes, there are days where I don't really feel like explaining my choice to people, but there are ways to frame your reasoning without it sounding blaming and defensive.<br><br><br><br>
And why not make people a little uncomfortable about it? Why try to sugar-coat things to make their choice to continue to use animals less shocking and more comfortable? Don't get me wrong, I'm definitely not confrontational about veganism. Veganism is about non-violence, and I would never get hostile when talking to someone about it. *shrugs*<br><br><br><br>
Just give it to 'em simple. Straight up, but not mean or attacking.<br><br><br><br>
But don't ever back away because you don't want to make someone uncomfortable. I mean, wasn't that discomfort the impetus for your becoming veg*an?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I'm uncomfortable with the feeling of being attacked for my beliefs and choices. I could care less if other people are uncomfortable with it; it's not their life. I guess I'm in a phase and have to learn how to deal with others as well as myself on this issue. I'm severly frustrated right now with it though.
 

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i don't feel bad if someone feels guilty about eating meat. i felt guilty for years before i went veg, and i finally made the decision to stop when a friend gave me some info that made me feel like sh*t for eating it. sometimes people need a kick in the butt to realize what they're doing and that they can change it. i have no problem telling people about veganism, because i feel the more people are educated about it, the more likely they are to change, or to pass the info on to someone else who is interested in changing. we can't expect our lifestyle to help the world and the animals if we aren't willing to help other people understand why we do what we do. if we refuse to talk about it they'll continue to believe we're just fanatics or brainwashed or hippies or whatever else they want to think. if we spread the info around they just might stop and think about it. even if they don't stop eating meat, just the fact that they stopped and thought it over and maybe considered it is progress.<br><br><br><br>
i do however, get embarassed when my bf and friends introduce me to people as "this is Sandra, she's VEGAN!" and then everyone looks at me like i'm nuts and start ganging up on me though i just met them 2 seconds ago. i prefer to tell people my own way.<br><br><br><br>
in which case i'd say something like "well i don't eat anything from animal sources, because i believe it's unethical and is damaging to the environment". people usually say "oh, that's interesting" and then start asking questions. if you just say "i don't eat meat cause it's wrong" they get defensive, as if you're accusing them. it's all in how you word it.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
i have been veggie for a while and i dont feel bad at all why i tell people why i dont eat meat. i am not over dramatic about it i just say that it is for the animals. most people i meet are really curious about it. and if anyone ever seems uncomfortable about it then i really wouldnt talk to them that much anyway. only because if they cant be open to a vegetarian then there is no telling what people will have problems with!!!!!!!!!
 

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And it may also be useful to remember that few people go straight from being die-hard omnivores to vegans in one day. Most people take baby steps. I decided to become a vegetarian after months of research that already mostly lined up with my beliefs. You might want to try 'softer' messages at first since they are more likely to agree with those. Later you can lead them farther into veg*nism. If you would like to discuss it more, I can tell you about the "social judgment" theory that helps to explain how people's minds are changed.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
i find it really annoying when i suddenly become the topic of conversation as soon as any mention of food is brought up, grrrr.<br><br>
if people ask me why i'm vegan i say "because i believe it's wrong to exploit animals and cause unnessesary (spelling?) for out own needs". then it goes either of 2 ways: they either drop it or start trying to tell me how being a vegan's wrong!
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by LadyFaile</i><br><br><b>...i do however, get embarassed when my bf and friends introduce me to people as "this is Sandra, she's VEGAN!" and then everyone looks at me like i'm nuts and start ganging up on me though i just met them 2 seconds ago. i prefer to tell people my own way.</b></div>
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I hate that, too. what if someone's friends introduced someone, "Hey, this is George. He's GAY!"<br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><b>in which case i'd say something like "well i don't eat anything from animal sources, because i believe it's unethical and is damaging to the environment". people usually say "oh, that's interesting" and then start asking questions. if you just say "i don't eat meat cause it's wrong" they get defensive, as if you're accusing them. it's all in how you word it.</b></div>
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Yeah, that's true. Sometimes I say it's not consistent with my values. Using the world "my" takes some of the offense out.<br><br><br><br>
I also correct people if they say, I "can't" eat meat. I say, I "choose" not to eat meat.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by LadyFaile</i><br><br><b>we can't expect our lifestyle to help the world and the animals if we aren't willing to help other people understand why we do what we do. if we refuse to talk about it they'll continue to believe we're just fanatics or brainwashed or hippies or whatever else they want to think. if we spread the info around they just might stop and think about it. even if they don't stop eating meat, just the fact that they stopped and thought it over and maybe considered it is progress.</b></div>
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LF, that's a really great point. When I first became vegan, I almost felt as though I had to make a point to bring up the vegan lifestyle in conversation. I felt this obligation to educate people about it, you know, like it was my vegan duty. I think part of it was because I was so excited about being vegan, that I loved it and thought it really made a difference.<br><br><br><br>
But then I mellowed out about it, mostly because it wasn't so new to me any longer and had become second nature to me. I realized I was vegan for ME and not just for a political statement. And then when I'd reflect on how or if my veganism had been making any difference at all, I'd feel like, "Nah, I haven't really changed anyone's perspective on this, but at least I am really happy with myself."<br><br><br><br>
And later on, I started to see how I actually had been a little influential on other people, in those baby steps... My uncle, who was struggling with cholesterol problems, actually started buying soy cheese. My coworkers would actually ask me about recipes. They were always really impressed with my lunches (usually leftovers from the previous night's dinner). One even told me she and her husband had been eating less meat lately. My mother-in-law keeps rice milk in her fridge now. Those little things don't seem like much, but they really are. Especially when those people really hadn't had much of a clue about these alternatives before...<br><br><br><br>
Just setting a good example goes a really long way.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Yeah, my b/f never realized how much soy is in the things he eats. When I first went veggie and bought Silk Soy Milk he was like, ew how can you drink that stuff. I told him that almost everything he eats has soy in it in one form or another. Just this week he went to the store with me and I caught him checking out ingredients. He was surprised to say the least. So now he thinks so isn't so bad. Maybe I'll slowly convert him without my even trying.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by Beelzeboul</i><br><br><b>hey skylark, the "social judgment" theory sounds interesting.. care to eleborate?</b></div>
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Thanks for asking! Before I jump into this, let me say that I know about this because of my communication theory class last semester that I absolutely loved. This theory may not be interesting to everyone here, but I find it to be relevant.<br><br><br><br>
If I run out of time right now, I'll continue explaining later this evening.<br><br><br><br>
The social judgment theory suggests that opinions can be ranked on a continuum from one extreme to another. For example, "Meat is murder" on one end of the scale, and "People will die if they don't eat meat" on the other end. All other opinions on the topic fall somewhere in the middle. Now, obviously no person agrees equally with all views on the topic of the nature of meat. Each person has a "latitude of acceptance" (the scope of those opinions with which s/he agrees), a "latitude of rejection" (the scope of those opinions with which s/he disagrees), and a "latitude of noncomittal" (basically, neutral opinions, can't really agree or disagree).<br><br><br><br>
Let's chart my latitudes so we know what we're talking about.<br><br><br><br>
[_1__2__3__4__5__6__7__8__9__10_]<br><br><br><br>
1. Meat is murder.<br><br>
2. People were not designed to consume animal products.<br><br>
3. Factory farming destroys animals and the environment.<br><br>
4. Meat-eating can promote weight gain.<br><br>
5. Meat-eating is uneccessary.<br><br>
6. People have eaten meat for a long time.<br><br>
7. Meat tastes good.<br><br>
8. Factory farming might not be the best, but its what we have.<br><br>
9. Animals are here for us to eat.<br><br>
10. People will die if they don't eat meat.<br><br><br><br>
We may agree or disagree whether some of those views are more extreme than others, but for now we'll go with the list I made. My latitude of acceptance includes views 2, 3, 4, and 5. I agree with those, and the one with which I agree the most (say, #2) is my 'anchor-point'.<br><br><br><br>
I also have a latitude of rejection; this includes views 1, 7, 8, 9, and 10. Notice that 1 and 7 are much closer to my latitude of acceptance than the other views in my latitude of rejection.<br><br><br><br>
The left over view is 6, and on this point I have no real opinion either way. This is my latitude of noncomittal. (In reality I have a much larger 'gray area', but I had to think of something for an example.)<br><br><br><br>
Now, if someone tells me that people will die if they don't eat meat, what do you think I will do? I'll laugh. The view is so far away from my views that I cannot accept it at all. Hearing those kinds of opposite-extreme messages reinforces my beliefs because I view the other extreme as absurd. However, if someone tries to convince me that meat tastes good or that factory farming isn't great but its what we have and therefore we should use it, they have a better chance of swaying my opinion. If I adjust my views to accept a new concept that I barely disagreed with before, then my 'anchor point' moves just a little in that direction. Now my strongest belief (anchor point) might have changed to 3.<br><br><br><br>
It works in the opposite way, too. You can work to swing another person's anchor point a little bit at a time by sending messages that are right on the border of their latitude of acceptance or in their gray area.<br><br><br><br>
If you have questions, and I know I did the first time I heard about all of this, please ask. I am always ready to try to answer questions about my comm theory course! :)
 

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well i've been vegan about a year and a half now, it doesn't really feel new anymore, but then i was never really into the newness of it, right away i just felt like it was natural for me. i still learn new things about it all the time, but i like that aspect of it. i don't pressure people about it, but if someone asks me about it i'll give them as much info as i think they want to hear. one person at work was always trying to start debates on it, and that's fine, if someone wants to discuss it and share their viewpoint i'm more than willing. but sometimes my boss or others would overhear and jump in and start asking offtopic offensive questions. or one other coworker would get upset and leave the room because she thought the facts about meat and the treatment of animals was disgusting. to me that was more progress than the debates i had with the others, because it showed that she had a hard time dealing with the consequences of her eating meat. so now and then i'd try to sneak in a little info into our conversations and she'd always listen in amazement and really think it over. she still eats meat, but she has the attitude now that i had before i went veg, freaked out but not yet willing to give it up. i know people change at their own rates and i don't push, but if in a couple of years that one person decides she can't bare it anymore and quits eating meat, i'll consider it a personal victory.<br><br><br><br>
i do however, have a sense of humour about it. people joke with me all the time, i just laugh it off cause if you can't have a sense of humour about it they'll think you're uptight or trying to hide something or whatever. one guy used to always make fun of me and say things like "ooooooh better not eat that, it's made of cows, you don't want to hurt the cows do you?" and then follow me around mooing. i mean it's stupid childish behaviour but it's that sort of thing you just have to laugh along or ignore it or they'll just continue to bug you
 
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