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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so I've been wanting to become a vegetarian for a while now. I've always had a problem with meat, and decided it was time.<br><br><br><br>
The problem is my mom ((I'm only 16)). She thinks vegetarianism is unhealthy and stupid, and says she won't let me do it. Do you have any suggestions on how to work my mom around?<br><br><br><br>
Also, do you have any tips for a new vegetarian? Thanks!
 

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One thing to remember is that no one can force you to eat meat. If your mom serves meat, she can't beat you or force-feed you. Eat what you can and wait for 18.<br><br><br><br>
But that's unnecessarily hostile. If your mom is reasonable, try educating yourself. Ask her to discuss your research with you, and lay out what you've learned about what your body needs and how a vegetarian diet meets those requirements. Remain calm and mature and don't yell, argue, accuse, or cry. If she gets mad, say, "Perhaps we should discuss this later when you've calmed down." A letter might work better depending on your relationship.<br><br><br><br>
Above all, good luck!
 

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Here are some good tips for dealing with parents.<br><br><a href="http://www.vegsoc.org/youth/packs/student-parents.html" target="_blank">http://www.vegsoc.org/youth/packs/student-parents.html</a> And print this out and give it you your mom: <a href="http://www.vegsoc.org/youth/Parentteenager.pdf" target="_blank">http://www.vegsoc.org/youth/Parentteenager.pdf</a> and another good article is here: <a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/vegetarian_and_vegan/children.shtml" target="_blank">http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/vegetarian...children.shtml</a><br><br><br><br>
You should also volunteer to do the shopping and cooking using vegetarian recipes you find on the web and suggestions from others here. If you're doing the cooking your mom will be glad for the help and you can create vegetarian dishes for you and your family.
 

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Tell them about why you're doing it and why it's safe for you to be vegetarian, if you communicate it well, she should understand. But like Medesha said, she can't force you...
 

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Actually, have her talk to your doctors. All my doctors have said, done right, vegetarian is a great way to go; it is better for you. Also, consider purchasing a good book about going vegetarian. There are some books out there which tell you what you need to do in order to maintain a healthy diet.
 

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I had just turned 14 when I went. My one year vegetarianiversaty ((lol)) is coming up soon! Your mum doesnt have to agree or understand..She cant force meat in your mouth. Just dont eat meat.<br><br><br><br>
or follow the other tips here if you want her to understand.
 

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Tell her to shove off....<br><br><br><br>
No, no. I'm messing. I just get annoyed with parents who treat teens like they're still kids. Although you might feel like letting off steam and shouting your mother down, it won't help. So don't. Unless you are planning on moving out soon, it's best to keep things cordial. You do need, to some extent, your mother's 'support' (even if its reluctant).<br><br><br><br>
How important is vegetarianism to you? Why is it? Put those thought down on paper aer and perhaps write to your mother (if that's easier). Be careful to avoid coming across as preachy. Eg write "I do not feel comfortable eating meat" rather than "eating animals is barbaric" etc.<br><br><br><br>
What exactly is your mothers case against vegetarianism? To say that vegetarianism is 'stupid' isn't exactly an intelligent argument.<br><br><br><br>
You could counter her argument. If she is reasonable and open minded, and is genuinely concerned for the health implications, then try to allay her fears. Read up on vegetarian nutrition. There are countless books, essays, etc., by credible nutritionists, scientists, showing the benefits of vegetarianism (ask if you need recommendations - we're all happy to help).<br><br><br><br>
If she is being unfairly dismissive, then it'll be harder to get round her. but you are her daughter. She loves you (I assume!). It's important to you. It is a choice that she will have to live with. You should explain your thought and feelings. But ultimately, you do not have to justify yourself to her. You are a free thinking individual - not a receptacle of your mother's wishes.<br><br><br><br>
Not wanting to cause choas in your life, I recommend:<br><br>
1. Be reasonable, measured and persistent in making your case. Don't fall into the trap of knee jerk reactions (such as your mother's "it's stupid"). Inform yourself about animal cruelty and realise that you do not want a part of it.<br><br>
2. If that fails, you are entitled to lose your cool. You will have given your mother the chance of being open minded, of being receptive to your individuality, and she will have rebuffed that. As such you would be right to put your foot down "this is what I want to do mother, this is what I believe, you don't have to like it, but you DO have to accept it".<br><br><br><br>
etc.<br><br><br><br>
Probably not the best advice.<br><br>
Daniel.
 

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actually, Daniel, i thought it was very sound advice. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks everyone for the advice! I showed my mom some articles and explained why I want to be a vegetarian a bit better. I think she's actually been expecting this for a while, I've always made my dislike for meat clear.<br><br><br><br>
However, she called my doctor, and she told my mom I should eat meat at least twice a week. It's a lot better that the every night she was making me do before, but not great. I still have to work on her.<br><br><br><br>
She did let me take her to Whole Foods and I put a bunch of veggie and vegan stuff in the cart. She rolled her eyes but didn't say anything.<br><br><br><br>
I think her main concern is that it's unhealthy for me, expecially now that my wonderful doctor said it was. I could always outright refuse her during dinner, but I'd rather not get in a huge fight. The silly thing is both of her sisters have been vegetarian for at least 10 years, and they're in great health.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Lyra</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br><br>
However, she called my doctor, and she told my mom I should eat meat at least twice a week.</div>
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oh. my. god.<br><br>
can you persuade your mom to go with you to a nutritionist? or even a different doctor? That's terrible. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/no.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":no:">
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The funny thing is before this started, she wanted to switch doctors because mine always gives me the wrong diagnosis, hehe. Now she likes her because she is against vegetarianism.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Lyra</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
The funny thing is before this started, she wanted to switch doctors because mine always gives me the wrong diagnosis, hehe. Now she likes her because she is against vegetarianism.</div>
</div>
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Aww sweetie, I went through the same exact thing when I went vegetarian. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":hug:"><br><br><br><br>
It sucks so bad! I'd ask your parents to take you to a nutritionist, or even just to another doctor to get a second opinion. That's what I did. They made me keep track of everything I ate for a few weeks (plus the protein content), and bring in the lists. Additionally, they may want to do a blood test to see if all your levels are ok. It's all kind of irritating, but it is how I proved my diet was healthy. Luckily, I'll be 18 this summer and I won't have to deal with my uneducated pediatrician anymore. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/rolleyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":rolleyes:"><br><br><br><br>
Good luck!
 

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Most MDs in family practice get about 1 hour on nutrition in 4 years of medical school. Go talk to a nutritionist, someone with more training, or show her the position paper of the American Dietetic Association. That's a group made up of people who do nothing but study nutrition and are NOT pro-veg, so there's less chance of bias. Remind mom that not all "experts", including MDs, have the same training in everything. There's just too much that can go wrong with the human body to know everything.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Woo, my mom said I can go veggie! She talked to her boyfriend about it, and he conviced her that it was my choice. Go him!<br><br><br><br>
So, do you guys have any advice/recipes for a new vegetarian?
 

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Congratulations! And I think you should tell your mom's boyfriend that I think he's awesome <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/tongue3.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":p"> Or just that you think he's awesome.<br><br><br><br>
As for advice/recipies, just continue to read the boards, read books and educate yourself. The more you know, the easier it is.<br><br><br><br>
It does take awhile to get used to a vegetarian diet, but after awhile it becomes second nature.<br><br><br><br>
I would highly recommend reading this thread if you haven't already:<br><br><a href="http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/showthread.php?t=50249" target="_blank">http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/s...ad.php?t=50249</a><br><br>
It's called the tip of the day thread and it's stickied at the top of this forum.<br><br><br><br>
Keep trying new foods. I personally stayed away from meat subsitutes for awhile after going veg. I think they taste better once you have forgotten what meat really tastes like.<br><br>
Try to stay away from fast foods, heavily processed foods and also try not to replace all meat with cheese (which is a really easy thing to do, but definitely not the healthiest thing. Instead you want to focus on whole grains, beans, legumes, nuts, seeds, fruits, veggies and healthy fats like olive oil and avacados.<br><br><br><br>
Ask questions and good luck!
 

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I was reading along feeling bad for you and your situation... and was happy to see the problem was solved. Yay! Sometimes all a person needs is a person to make them stop and consider things.<br><br><br><br>
The best advice I ever got when I first went veggie was "don't kick yourself for the times you slip up because you've had 18 years practice at being an omni and very little practice at being an herbi." I took it slowly, eliminating beef first... then pork... then poultry... then fish... and then eggs across the span of a few weeks. I also made sure I tried out at least one new recipe a week. It made me a better cook and I discovered some great new foods.<br><br><br><br>
Good luck and welcome to a healthy new lifestyle!
 

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"A vegetarian diet confers a wide range of health benefits. Research has proven that vegetarians suffer less from many of the diseases linked to a modern Western diet: obesity, coronary heart disease, hypertension, type II diabetes, diet-related cancers, diverticular disease, constipation and gall stones." British Medical Association.<br><br><br><br><a href="http://globalphilosophy.blogspot.com/2006/06/health-benefits-of-vegetarian-diet.html" target="_blank">http://globalphilosophy.blogspot.com...rian-diet.html</a><br><br><br><br><br><br>
As for veggie recipes, my advice would be to experiment. Get a couple of veggie cookbooks - see other sections of this site for recomendations - and then go to your local supermarket, health store, etc, to see what you can play around with. One of the benefits of vegetarianism is that it forces you to be a bit more creative, a little more inspired, with your food choices. As a working class kid living in Britain, I had a pretty monotonous diet - pizza, chips, burgers, etc. Only as a vegan, looking back at that, do I realise how bloody limited it was.<br><br><br><br>
Vegetarianism isn't about 'restrained' eating. It, instead, opens up a world of food the average meat eater wouldn't even know of... our cultures are so meat obsessed that it can't imagine life without meat. Check out cookbooks for other cultures and look for meat freee options and/or 'vegetarianise' those that contain meat. These can be gotten from local libraries.<br><br><br><br>
1. What I recommend is that you are willing to experiment.<br><br><br><br>
2. What I would recommend against - although it's your choice to do this - is that you settle for an "american diet" absent the meat. "Meat free" sausages, etc, are fine but I would say should be eaten occasionally, not regularly. Eg at a family bbq, sometimes it's best to just opt for 'mock meat' than to request some obscure eastern dish that no one has heard of! With 'meat substitutes' be willing to experiment - some are forgettable, some are great. You need to find what works for you.<br><br><br><br>
3. Ask yourself, why do you want to be vegetarian? Health implcations? animal welfare? weight concerns? A mixture of these? Research your chosen topic. This is important because it will influence how you eat.<br><br><br><br>
4. It's important that you don't beat yourself up. No one is expecting that you make the decision and then, next day, you've mastered it all. Your first few attempts at cooking veggie style will probably be crap!! :-> Not a problem. It's okay to make mistakes. We all did. We all <i>do</i> . Vegetarianism is a learning curve - over time you just figure out what you like, what works for you, etc. As long as you are commited to vegetarianism, and your 'environment' (eg mother, etc) is not a problem, you'll work it all out.<br><br><br><br>
5. Go to a veggie restaurant. If you're comfortable, just ask about how your meal was put together, etc.<br><br><br><br>
6. check out the recipe section on this site. No doubt you'll soon be sharing your own !
 

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it's so much better to work with rather than around.<br><br><br><br>
"mom, i know you're concerned about my health, but i think a veg diet can be just as balanced as an omni diet..." take it from there.<br><br><br><br>
good luck!<br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Lyra</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
Ok, so I've been wanting to become a vegetarian for a while now. I've always had a problem with meat, and decided it was time.<br><br><br><br>
The problem is my mom ((I'm only 16)). She thinks vegetarianism is unhealthy and stupid, and says she won't let me do it. Do you have any suggestions on how to work my mom around?<br><br><br><br>
Also, do you have any tips for a new vegetarian? Thanks!</div>
</div>
<br>
 

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Here is what you do:<br><br><br><br>
1) Eat very healthy foods and maintain a good diet as a meat eater.<br><br><br><br>
2)Research the nutritional value of vegetarian or vegan foods.<br><br><br><br>
3)Once you have found out enough to make sure you can show her a nutritionally sound diet excluding meats, show her.<br><br><br><br>
4) If this doesn't work, do it anyway.
 
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