21-Day Vegan Kickstart

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Forums: Main Kickstart Forum: social support
Created on: 04/02/13 09:14 PM Views: 1219 Replies: 4
social support
Posted Tuesday, April 2, 2013 at 9:14 PM

I am an emotional mess. Not a physical response. My head is messed up. I've been following information related to a vegan diet since 1972. For 12 years I was a vegetarian, for one of those a vegan. I struggled socially, being asked more questions than I was equipped to answer. Then I got pregnant and gave into the social pressure to drink milk. Since then I gradually slipped to the point of being what Dr. Furhman calls a "philosophical nutriarian" What happens to me is that I can't deal with the social issues around the diet... trying to explain what I eat, keeping my mouth shut while all those I love poison themselves, ridicule, uncertainty. I do make meals for others, shop for others, share meals with others. I've phased out almost all animal products from my diet over the last 6 months, certainly less than 5%. I have no desire to eat animal products. I haven't yet lost belly fat so although I feel great physically, I get a lot of skepticism. I gave a very nearly (vegan main course with some cheese in the appetizer) vegan baby shower for my daughter and a vegan birthday party for my brother. I'm experimenting with all kinds of recipes... soups, desserts, bean dishes, salads, snacks... My food is good but I still get the where's-the-beef question. How do I cope emotionally?

RE: social support
Posted Tuesday, April 2, 2013 at 9:50 PM

espeaks, quite frankly, why do other's opinion about what you choose to eat matter so much? If they choose to eat a SAD diet, let them. That doesn't mean you have to. As long as you're not belittling their food choices, they have no right to say anything negative about yours. You are strong enough to do what you know is right for you, and don't let anyone get in your way!

Jennifer

RE: social support
Posted Wednesday, April 3, 2013 at 5:39 AM

I use exercise and meditation to cope with life's struggles. As far getting upset over what my love ones eat, I can only pray and set a good example. If they see me struggling with my diet then there would be no chance they will ever switch, but if they see me happy and healthy and enjoying life, then maybe I can make a difference.

RE: social support
Posted Wednesday, April 3, 2013 at 7:22 AM

This can be a common concern depending on a multitude of factors including geographical location (some places make it harder than others) and social/familial support. Dealing with social pressures is always difficult but certainly not impossible! If people didn't go against the grain then nothing would ever get better.

Easier said than done, but go with confidence knowing you are making a choice that benefits your health and well being. You should never feel bad about that. Even those who make it difficult for you will see that your decision is improving your life - that's a great message and will hopefully be contagious on some level.

Susan Levin, MS, RD
PCRM Director of Nutrition Education

RE: social support
Posted Sunday, April 7, 2013 at 3:52 PM

I completely understand what you mean; I've had people look at me like I had horns growing out of my head when they found out I didn't eat meat (and that was before I was a vegan!) I came across a book called "Living Among Meat Eaters", I don't have the book with me and don't remember the name of the author but it was a very helpful book. I think one of the hardest things is when someone starts a debate with you over your diet, when you didn't even bring it up! So frustrating! Check out "Living Among Meat Eaters", and just remember that if someone wants to argue with you about something that's none of their business in the first place, that's THEIR problem, not yours! Wink


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