View Full Version : lesson learned: don't take someone else's word for it!

made of sequins
Jan 28th, 2012, 05:36 PM
cookout yesterday...my friend knows i'm vegan, and i've explained to her what that means (i.e. no eggs or dairy or fish sauce or chicken broth or anything like that, so she doesn't think it's just "not eating meat"). so she was like "i made you homemade veggie burgers!" and i was like "yay awesome, they're vegan, right?" and she was like "yeah, no worries, i remembered" .:)

turns out they were made with both eggs and cheese. :undecided: i ate half of it before i noticed that something tasted 'off'. then i realized what i had done and i felt sick. i can't believe i ate cheese. i can't believe i didn't notice it before i ate freaking half a burger! i suck. :(:(

now i'm paying for it this morning...all of last night i felt like my intestines were being tied in knots and poked with flaming spears, nausea, migraine...ugh. how did i ever eat this stuff on a daily basis? i feel horrible physically, but i feel like i deserve it for being such a greedy pig that i ate half a stupid burger without even noticing the veggies and beans were bound up with cheese (and eggs, as i found out when i asked her "i thought you said this was vegan?" :undecided:

so yeah. don't take someone else's word for it when they say "it's vegan!" double-check that whatever it is doesn't contain specific ingredients. who knows what people are thinking is "vegan".

of course, you all probably already know that and i'm the only moron who is stupid enough to do something like this.

Jan 28th, 2012, 06:18 PM
You're not stupid and you don't suck. I think stuff like this has happened to most vegans at one point or another actually. I know when I was still vegetarian I ate some stuff with dead animals after my parents had told me it was fine. That's when I learned to double-check. But it's still not stupid to think you can trust someone to know what's vegan or not after you've explained it to them. And honestly, I don't even see how someone could ever think cheese and eggs are vegan, that makes no sense.
I hope your insides feel better soon though, and try not to feel too bad about it, stuff like this happens, even though it sucks. I'm pretty sure there's a whole topic devoted to mistakes people have made around here somewhere, you're not the only one.

made of sequins
Jan 28th, 2012, 07:53 PM
thanks for the kind words; you are right. :) it was a mistake and now i've learned from it and will make sure to ask specifically what is in things when i don't know.

apparently my friend thought that eggs and cheese were okay because they didn't literally contain animals. she was like "i know you can't eat things like fish sauce because that stuff is like the juiced version of an animal, but i thought eggs and cheese were okay because they're just from animals". meh.

the worst part is that i'm actually allergic to eggs, so a) i should know better; even before going vegan i couldn't eat eggs and would always have to ask "does this have eggs in it?" ugh, that was totally my fault; idk what i was thinking yesterday. and b) now i feel like i'm in a groggy medicine fog and my throat still feels thick and itchy.

Jan 28th, 2012, 08:02 PM
You should blame yourself less and your friend more. If they didn't know then they should have asked.

Jan 28th, 2012, 10:50 PM
As everyone has said, don't blame yourself, you explained veganism to your friend, its their fault for not listening to you! Especially if you're really allergic to eggs, surely your friend would know that at least!

Explain to your friend that you appreciate the effort to make you burgers but that they got vegetarian and vegan mixed up, and that next time if its easier you'll make something yourself to bring.

Jan 29th, 2012, 05:09 PM
Hopefully your friend will learn form this and do better next time (perhaps with a little supervision). It's nice that they tried though, a shame for the mistake and that you feel ill because of it.
People can learn from mistakes and hopefully because of this you'll be able to get your friend to fully understand what vegan means and so you will be able to take their word in future.

made of sequins
Jan 30th, 2012, 03:30 AM
^^ yeah i wasn't mad at her; only at myself. i appreciate that she tried to make something for me. :) (she felt bad enough when i had an allergic reaction to the eggs and i kept saying 'no, it's entirely my fault! you shouldn't feel bad because i did something dumb!" :p )

i feel better now, thanks. :) live and learn, yeah?

Jan 30th, 2012, 09:23 AM
When someone is offering me something they made I always ask what ingredients they've used. People are clueless about things like D3, E120... You simply can't trust non-vegans to get it right, they might mean well but they are often completely clueless. It also makes them think about how widespread animal exploitation is.


Jan 30th, 2012, 04:10 PM
Yes, that sucks!

I also just had the experience that we had visited friends, and my wife had not told them that I am vegan.
I was given "boiled vegetables only" for lunch, while the others also put fish balls etc. into their vegetable soup.
Only when I went to the kitchen to get a second helping of the "vegetables only" did I notice that the soup in which the vegetables had been cooked already contained some of these fish balls. Yuk. No matter that I had not tasted anything when eating it, it nevertheless revolted me.

Next time I'll check better, friends to be insulted or not...

Best regards,

Jan 30th, 2012, 05:07 PM
Experiences such as those are likely to occur at some point or another...unfortunately. I think most of us have been through stuff like that. The safest bet is to cook yourself, but that isn't always possible (e.g. dinner parties). But Andy is right, check better next time!

And I am so sorry you had to eat half a burger to realize it wasn't vegan. I think plenty of people have the misconception of veganism. My parents bought some veggie burgers at the local grocery store while I visited my hometown and they assumed most "veggie" meat-analogues were vegan...but I showed them the ingredients and sure enough this is what was listed on there: Contains eggs and milk. Wow.

Jan 31st, 2012, 01:30 AM
When people know/see you eat product A from Brand B they will just assume that a similar product from Brand C is just the same. People are stupid morons that don't get it. Just never trust them. Don't worry about their feelings, the ones that died or are exploited for the product have feelings too and have it far worse.

Jan 31st, 2012, 05:37 PM
People are v dense about these things - half the time they haven't even thought about where various food (ETA or rather "food") items come from.

Incidentally my lunchtime "vegan" salad in a local restaurant had been made without the usual dressing - but with slivers of parmesan which I spotted before I'd eaten any :rolleyes: We heard the people in the restaurant yelling at one another afterwards so maybe they'll do better next time.

Jan 31st, 2012, 11:21 PM
CoolCat, I think that's pretty unfair. I don't think people are morons for not getting something that it's taken a lot of us a while to fully get our heads round, and we have more motivation to check. At least the OPs friend was sorry, and as other people have said hopefully this will be a learning experience for the friend.

I have a friend who has some kind of mental block about actually reading ingredients. Unfortunately she has another "vegan" friend who seems to have a similar block and if my omni friend sees something the "vegan" friend has bought she has been assuming it's okay. I now tend to check everything because she's done it a few different times, but she's an exception. Most people are pretty good about checking once they've made a mistake once.

Jan 31st, 2012, 11:33 PM
"Most people are pretty good about checking once they've made a mistake once. " <- LOL what? If they made a mistake it's already too late.

vegan: "I eat whole wheat bread of theawesomecompany, that bread is vegan"
then later...
others: "I got you vegan bread."
vegan: "this bread isn't vegan."
others: "It's whole wheat bread like you had before."
vegan: "It's from another company."
others: "It says whole wheat, so you can eat it."
vegan: "It's from a fucking different company, not all bread is the same, every bakery uses its own recipe."
others: "So you can't eat it? After I went through the trouble of getting you vegan bread?"
vegan: "It's not fucking vegan."

(I don't swear as much in public, but I wish I just would heh)

pat sommer
Feb 1st, 2012, 02:55 AM
yup, just like my kosher friends, gluten-free friends etc, the general public just doesn't comprehend. I feel badly for people who try and fail to be accommodating. Maybe they asked and got misinformed at the supermarket, for example.

More (painful) opportunities to show how gracious and compassionate vegans can be; certainly you are, Made of Sequins.

Feb 1st, 2012, 09:59 AM
I feel more badly for the animals they exploited in their halfassed attempt. Some people will even insist in making something for you after you explicitly said that they shouldn't bother. Sometimes making it behind your back and then going "ta-daa I made you this" and then the first question you ask it's clear that it isn't vegan and they've just killed someone on your behalf. And then the whining starts "it's already made, can't you just taste it?" or "it wouldn't hurt this once would it" or "I made it especially for you and now you don't want to eat it". I have plenty of compassion, but not for abusers.

Feb 3rd, 2012, 05:32 PM
Sadly what I did notice around me (and you can call me horrible for even trying) is that people take me more seriously when I tell them I am allergic to eggs, milk and all things animal derived! They believed in my so called allergies as well. The term 'vegan' is one that not everyone around me could compherend or understand because meateating is considered the only 'normal and healthy' way of living. I almost always explain people what 'vegan' means and my reasons behind my vegan lifestyle but with some people, it just seemed impossible.

So I tested the 'allergy test' on a few people (people I don't know very well) and it worked! They would actually go through their ingredients over and over again so that they knew themselves that the food would be 'suitable' for me.

Sad that people can relate to your health problems, but not to the wellbeing of all the animals that they are eating.

Feb 3rd, 2012, 06:57 PM
"Animal are allergic to me using them" :p

Feb 3rd, 2012, 07:25 PM
I was explaining to the people at a book group I used to go to what a Vegan was. I said I don't eat anything that comes from an animal, and gave them some examples - cheese, milk etc. One woman straight away said "do you eat nuts" I had to say "do nuts come from animals?" It made me laugh to be honest, I just realised that people probably weren't really listening to what I was saying.

Sometimes I think it is difficult, things like olive oil spread make out they are all olive oil, then when you read the ingredients they are still mainly dairy. Dairy is just in everything nowadays. Why is there milk in bread it's crazy?

Feb 4th, 2012, 12:35 AM
"do nuts come from animals?" Heheh. You'd think people at a book group might be thinking types too.

Someone I know was amazed to hear that peanut butter was generally vegan, but then seemed even more amazed that vegans would avoid honey :rolleyes:

It used to be that when I saw these surveys showing that children thought yogurt came from a plant or whatever I assumed that someone was winding someone up, but now I'm not so sure.

Feb 4th, 2012, 09:46 AM
It reads as if your friend meant well, be sure to calmly explain how you feel towards 'X situation' and how 'X Situation' has effected you, and if your are appreciative of their effort, offer to maybe make some vegan burgers with them? Turn it into a learning experience! For your self? compassion and acceptance, these things happen and it reads as if you are doing really well!
And for her? She can learn about veganism! what a great lesson, maybe through a spiel about non-violence! She can learn how to make a vegan dish! AND she can learn how to make you another meal, with just as much love and a little more informed!


Apr 24th, 2012, 06:35 AM
Its always awkward when friends or family go to the trouble of making something specifically for you which isn't right after all.
This has happened to me twice. One of my best mates made a lovely stir fry once, and i found out that she'd put oyster sauce in it - She was soooo apologetic about it that I couldn't be mad.
And my MIL made some lovely stuffed mushrooms once and when i said they were lovely i want to make some whats in them - she mentioned worcestor sauce! D'oh!
She's been really great since tho and always prints out the recipe for me to see now :D

Apr 25th, 2012, 03:02 AM
It's a terrible feeling, for both parties involved. =/
My boyfriend made this packaged soup one night, and I thought my Norwegian was good enough at that point to understand all the ingredients when I skimmed through them, but as I was eating it, I noticed these little chunks of something. He re-read the pack, and we realized it had actual chunks of beef. I was horrified. Started gagging almost immediately. He felt terrible, too, for not noticing it.
I felt like a failure for days until I realized it wasn't really anyone's fault, and stuff happens.
You shouldn't feel bad. You really didn't mean for it to happen.