I'm 21, but because of some bad circumstances I am forced to live with my parents. They have been emotionally and mentally abusive my whole life, and when I was younger it got physical too.
I recently became a vegetarian, but right at the start I would eat one meal per day that contained meat because mom had bought some food specifically for me, and I felt that wasting an animals life to be thrown away was worse that finishing it and not buying it again.
I cook several nights per week. On those nights for the past several weeks, we have eaten vegetarian. I've made food my mom describes as "delicious" (and it is), but last night she asked me "so what's up with this whole vegetarian vegan whatever it is diet plan you're doing?"
My mom is a hospice nurse, she doesn't care about animal cruelty, she doesn't believe in global warming, and she thinks that starving children in other countries aren't our problem.
I decided that the best point to make would be health related. I told her how I felt better in a vegetarian diet, how colesterol is only consumed through animal products, how a lot of it has been linked to cancer and heart disease. I talked about how our family has a huge history of those problems, as well as diabetes, and I wanted to reduce my chances of it, and be healthier.
"There's a food pyramid and a food chain for a reason. You NEED meat to be healthy. Eat less of it, fine, but if you're gonna get cancer you will regardless. I've seen just as many vegetarian people die of cancer and heart disease as carnivores like us."
First of all, she had said earlier that she had never actually known a vegetarian, so that obviously not true, and second only 1 in 5 vegetarians will get cancer whereas 1 in 3 meat eaters will.
I then said something about how I think it's a problem that the amount of grain we feed to animals we are just going to kill would feed all the people that are starving right now, and she answered it with "there's a lot more than that that is making them starve to death and it's not my fault so don't go saying that it is."
She told me that she was going to continue to serve meat every time she cooked and that she would continue to buy it for me, that she would not by tofu or fake meat because it wasn't healthy, and that I would come to my senses soon enough.
(If you have read this far, thanks)
What can I do? It makes me physically sick to my stomach to even see meat let alone eat it. I know I would literally be force fed if I refuse to eat.
If anyone has any suggestions I would be more than happy to hear them.
Posted by Mountainmystic at 09/30/17 15:47:16Alekina--Be strong in your beliefs and food choices. Sorry to hear about the family situation and the past. Seems like the control issues are continuing. However, your parents are looking at this, as My house. My rules. They are entitled to that way of thinking, since they are supporting you do financially. It would be nice if they respected and honored your choice to eat more healthy, and your choice to be a vegetarian. Unfortunately, meat eaters in general get defensive when you tell a meat eater that you don't eat meat. I think inherently, they know but can't change. Therefore, the debates begin. Your Mom means well and may come around but will take time for her to understand, this is not a phase you are going through. Be strong. Don't eat the meat. Just tell them you are not going to eat meat. You will eat vegetables, pasta, grains, and fruits. That's 80 percent of the meat eaters meal anyway, if they are eating.
Best,wishes. Try to get a plan to work toward financially supporting yourself. Then move out. You will be happier. Being different is being who you really are. We should all respect that in one another.
Posted by Alekina at 09/30/17 16:33:03Thank you for your reply, @Mountainmystic.
I should have clarified here that I am financially responsible in the sense I pay rent and put money toward the food budget even though I am living here against my will. The way they do groceries here is we each submit a list of food we would like to have, and then after mom buys the groceries we divide the cost evenly 5 ways.
I tried to shorten the entry but I guess it left out important things, sorry. I do not intend to go back to eating meat. They would have to literally force me to make that happen.
Posted by happah10 at 09/30/17 19:39:17It's hard to tell if you are on civil terms with them or not. Just how ugly has it become? Is the force-feeding really something they would try? Are you in danger of violence being used against you?
Is opting out of the grocery bill sharing program something you would consider? It's not fair that you should split that bill with them as meat is very expensive and pasta, grains, veggies, tofu and rice are about as inexpensive as it gets. It's not fair and you aren't getting your share of what you are contributing.
Also, if there is a conception that while living under "their roof," that you must adhere to their rules and eat their foot, please know that is utter nonsense. You're an adult. "Their roof" is very much your roof and any assertion that they must eat their food and chip in for the groceries or else you'll be immediately kicked to the curb must be met with complete confidence that you are not doing anything that you don't have the right to do.
Posted by Veggacha at 10/10/17 20:30:18Alekina I think you should stand up for yourself and your beliefs. Probably there are more control problems that your parents have, only now they can show their power over you regarding your diet. The more she'll see it is important for you, the more she'll try to make you eat meat. Could you maybe find some other "topic" that they can be munching on?
I also suggest that when they're cooking just don't eat the meat part of it. When you are cooking, try to cook more of those vegetables that contain protein like green peas, beans etc. They're cheap anyway, so then they can be happy that the bill is reduced too.
Oh, and try to move out as soon as you can.