Vegan Fail

So I’ve been vegan twice in the past – once a year ago, for a month, and once ending two months ago, for about five months. I’ve also spent about three or four cumulative months as a vegetarian.

But after a while of being a nice and civilized eater, I relapse into omnivorousness. I don’t eat that much meat, and very rarely consume dairy, but it’s hard to abstain completely when everyone I know looks at me like I have a third eye when they find out I’m vegan (and they always, always find out, even though I make a point not to tell them – they end up interrogating me, as if I had just come home at four in the morning from a night of partying, smelling like marijuana smoke). The result is that it’s very hard to stay motivated.

I’m trying to go vegan again. Can anyone offer some words of encouragement? Some internet peer pressure would be really helpful.

In my case it was essentially the more you read, listen, watch and hence learn the more earnest and passionate I became. There is zero doubt in my mind that vegan is the best for me, and the best for the majority of the world. In the long run - the entire world. Most of the people that know me respect my opinion on many things. They most certainly respect my vegan choice. They will only hassle me at a surface level. My usual answer to people questioning why I am vegan revolves around the idea that they should also “read, listen, watch and hence learn” if they are interested. It is easy to learn quick and simple answers to the usual questions.

I agree, confidence and the ability to hold your ground in an argument comes with time, knowledge, and experience. You are taking a good step by joining an online community. I personally joined 3 different forums about a month ago, and I already feel more secure and confident just knowing that I have online people that agree with me who I can talk with when I need help. It helps to be reminded often that you aren’t alone in your opinions, and to get the advise of others who have been vegan for longer. I would suggest doing some research and figuring out what your best answer is to any questions or arguments you hear from meat-eaters, that way you are well-informed of the issues and prepared with a good response when the situation arises.

Maybe one of the reasons why they interrogate is because you’re trying hard to keep it secret and dislike explaining yourself? Some people pick up on that stuff subconsciously. If you were open about it, it would become less of a big deal to the people around you. The more you hate explaining yourself the more people feel like probing, either because they’re curious or just malicious.

If someone asks or needs to know because they’re cooking for me, I just tell them straight up. If they’re asking because they’re curious I answer any questions as long as they’re being respectful and not taking the piss. When they take the piss I just tell them, “it’s no big deal” and act like it’s no big deal myself. Don’t say anything like “what’s your problem?” or “why can’t you just leave me alone?” or “stop being a dick” because it just makes it all the more tempting for them to keep at you, you may not realise it but it’s an invitation to keep going.
With a person like that I try not to invite further conversation about it, I either ignore them or shut the conversation down. And if I have the choice I don’t have anything to do with them again, especially if they’re a malicious wanker.
Never try to put them in their place with questions or statements that imply they’re mean, ignorant, stupid or an @rsehole, because all questions invite an answer and you want the person to shut up, you don’t want their ego to feel the need to defend itself. Make a closing statement that they can’t come back on or add to and then change the subject, or just ignore them and change the subject, whatever is socially acceptable at the time. Sometimes leaving the situation makes the bullying worse. Unfortunately when you look like an easy target, you become more tempting to torment. Ego’s love easy satisfaction. Ultimately this all comes down to you being secure in yourself, secure that you can handle anything thrown your way.

If they’re a friend and curious and a few jokes come out but they’re a genuine friendly person, not malicious (I trust my instincts here) then I just laugh with them and let the joke breeze over, then go on with what I was saying or change the subject. No big deal.

The secret is being secure in yourself and don’t make out like being vegan ( or having to explain yourself or being interrogated about it) is a big deal.

Good luck :slight_smile:

This is good advice, though I already know how to not start a real argument. The main problem, I guess, is just that I’m not secure at all, and everyone around me seems to know exactly how to exploit insecurities (this also applies for me – not to get too personal – to being an atheist, being liberal, being bisexual, and just in general the opposite of the people I know). I suppose the whole reason I stopped being vegan in the first place was because I was trying to fit in.

i agree with this whole-heartedly. there are so many reasons to be vegan and everyone does it for a different combination of those reasons. people look at me like i have a third eye too. my italian family thinks i am nuts. but after learning from articles, studies, books, and documentaries i know that i am doing the right thing. i cant possibly educate everyone that doubts me. i just encourage them to research the same information that i did. if they dont feel passionate about it like i do then that’s on them.