View Full Version : Your personal vegan story

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Jun 27th, 2005, 05:56 AM
"Mikey" sounds like a perky little guy. :D... Pigs are such smart creatures.

Jun 27th, 2005, 05:56 AM
As a child, I never really cared for meat. My dad used to hunt and would proudly bring home the deer that he had killed and would trick us into eating it. I have had cats, dogs, mice, etc., all of my life and somewhere in the back of my mind, I knew that there really wasn't a difference between eating a cow and/or eating my dog. I tried to be a vegetarian a few times but ended up eating a ton of pasta and cheese based products and gained weight so I gave it up.
Six months ago I started volunteering at a shelter where there are lots of vegans and animal activists. This got me thinking again about becoming a vegetarian. I have three dogs and a cat and love all animals. In hindsight, I see that volunteering there was the start of it.
My youngest daughter became a vegetarian two years ago after learning how they kill the cows. I was very proud of her but it didn't "click" for me quite yet. About 6 weeks ago, we were driving somewhere and she asked me if I had seen the "Meet Your Meat" video. I hadn't but told her that I was interested and needed the motivation. We got home and I logged onto to PETA's site. I watched it as well as some lab testing videos and fur videos. I cried the entire time, and that's when it "clicked". What if those dogs being tested were my dogs? What if that cow being slaughtered was my dog? You get it. It finally clicked!!!
My husband is very supportive and will eat anything that I cook for him but he likes his steak and LOVES his milk. I hope that one day very soon I can change that about him.
I found this forum shortly after I became vegan and I'm so glad I did. The information that you all provide is invaluable!
May 21, 2005 was my day! Now, how can we change the rest of the world??

Jun 27th, 2005, 07:20 PM
I started reading some pamplets and flyer type stuff from PETA and various animal rights groups. After that I decided that I would have to be a vegetarian, but then I read more. The more I learned the more I realized that I had to just be vegan. The odd thing is that I'm not an all or none kind of person. This just was that important. Vegetarianism didn't make sense after reading about all of the torture and misery and suffering. It just was so unecessary to be consuming animal products when I didn't need to. Why should they suffer for me? That's what kept running through my head. I cleaned out the house, with a few exceptions, of all animal products. That's it. It was suprisingly easy for me.

Jun 28th, 2005, 12:14 AM
When I was very young...I remember not wanting to eat meat but my mum wouldn't let me be veggie cos she said it was 'unhealthy'.
So I was an omni right up until about a year ago:

It began with my biology class when they told us to dissect rats and i couldnt help thinking 'this is wrong---what purpose were these killed for? Isn't that purpose futile? Isn't htis barbarically unjust?'

Thus I became veggie, but i ate fish cos i thought fish didnt suffer cruelty and that they didnt really have much of a conciousness. I called myself a pesca-vegetarian.

Not long ago I went on a trip to germany. I met a punk guy called Andre, who believed you should act on what you believe in and stick to it strongly.
That's why he called himself 'punk'. He wasn't in it for the image...he was in it for the actual punk ethos and hated punks who dressed like that simply because it was 'fashion'. He tried to start up his own political group in the city to try stop all teh fascism that still goes in in germany etc...and I admire him so much for that....

He was also the only one who respected my 'vegetarianism' and if he hadn't been able to translate to the waiters for me, I wouldn't have got any veggie meals (the germans are big meat eaters).

After this I began questionaing all my beliefs on why I was vegetarian and realised i was a hypocrite for eating fish and that i still didnt really know what i believed in. So I figured the only way to not be hypocritical and to cause least damage to animals would be to go vegan.

Veganism seemed so alien to me so i decided i would make the transition very slowly. But I didn't. It's all happened so quickly and I love it....although I think I stil have a long way to go.....(with knowledge, making mistakes etc)
but we are always learning.

Jun 28th, 2005, 01:54 AM
Well, I gave up on red meats back in 02, when I was 14.

Acctually I was nagged into it more or less by a friend, and it seemed like a 'cool' thing to do, so yah I did that for all the wrong reasons :o
I did my reading though so I knew the facts, it just didn't affect me as deeply as it does today.

It hadn't clicked for me though, and it didn't until a couple of months ago, I made a new friend who was very passionate about the enviroment, so I said to him "if you really mean buisness then you should go veggie" He didn't know anything, so I began telling him what I knew, and looked up some pages for him, and this re-kindled my old knowledge (which at this point had gone rather vauge) and gave me a lot of new.

I remember reading at Viva! About milk cows and after that the smell of cow's milk made me feel physically ill.

Currently I'm in the process of eliminating all animal products from my diet. I don't drink milk anymore, and I have a vegan friendly butter, so I'm in the process of cutting milk completely out and when I have my birthday I'm quitting fish (there's a thing to celebrate!).

What makes me happy about my own story is that I can litterally see how helping someone else truly helped myself, I've benefited so much from it, and even though I still eat a lot of animal products I've started to feel slightly different.

It just feels great to be going vegan :D

by the way, question!

why do people write v*gan? Really not following here. :confused:

Jun 28th, 2005, 05:08 AM
by the way, question!

why do people write v*gan? Really not following here. :confused:

Veg*n means Vegan and/or Vegetarian

Jul 4th, 2005, 06:51 PM
People find my story a little funny.

My husband and I went to a local farm/zoo a few years ago. They have all kinds of "farm" animals and exotics, like tigers, camels, etc.

We were in the barn and I saw a little sign hanging over a large stall that said "Mikey the pig". I stood at the entrance of the stall and began calling out, "Hey Mikey, where are you...Come here Mikey," sort of joking around. Well, all of a sudden, this pig barreled around the corner, kicking hay in every direction, and stopped in front of me, lifting his head up to see me. I began petting him and he flopped over on his back, wanting me to pet his belly.

I stayed and played with him for at least a half an hour before visiting the ther animals, then returned to see Mikey once again before leaving.

The next morning, I was running late for work, so my hubby made me a bacon and egg sandwich to go. I took a bite while driving and all I could picture was Mikey.

I haven't touched meat since that morning.

OMG I love this story!! :)

Jul 4th, 2005, 08:36 PM
tasha's story sounds like it could be the inspriation for Lisa Simpsons story.

Jul 5th, 2005, 11:00 AM
Tasha's story is a melta! I might try and convert a friend with it - she watched 'Slaughterhouse' last night too! ;)

Pigs are just adorable.

Jul 5th, 2005, 11:53 AM
My tale is a somewhat convoluted one, but here goes...

I was first attracted to veganism in my teens when I saw it as a convenient way to cope with my eating disorder as it offered me an apparently limited range of "safe" foods that I could eat without being paralysed by guilt and without developing the desire to purge after every meal. The "vegan" tag also fulfilled my desires to be as awkward and unusual as possible... and having my parents scan the back of every packet for non-vegan ingredients when doing the grocery shopping certainly fulfilled the first criteria!

Eventually, when I moved out of the family home and into my own place I lapsed back into eating meat and dairy... but veganism crept back into my life after a time; partly on grounds of health, but also because I was (and am) appalled at the mindless wrecking of the planet to make way for the Western world's fondness for meat and dairy.

That said, I do not entirely disapprove of people eating meat... but my motto is "If you can't raise it and kill it yourself, you shouldn't eat it either". The modern squeamishness about the origins of food annoys the hell out of me. If one cannot bear the thought that the one's lamb chop comes from a cute, fluffy little lamb, then you have no damn right to be consuming it!!

Feeding animals up for human consumption when the food would be better used to feed starving millions is also another huge bug-bear... and indeed it would probably be correct to say that I am vegan more on account of my notions of human rights, rather than any sympathies I might have with animal rights. However, I do believe that dignity should be accorded to all creatures, and humans - as the Earth's custodians - should be the ones to accord it.

Jul 5th, 2005, 12:30 PM
humans - as the Earth's custodians

Outlaw speciesism! :mad:

Jul 5th, 2005, 12:45 PM
Outlaw speciesism! :mad:
Lol, sorry. I'm Christian and so I am resigned to the human custodian idea. :D

Jul 5th, 2005, 02:09 PM
Start a revolution! :D

Jul 8th, 2005, 03:59 AM
Veganism was just an inevitable part of a total spiritual awakening, for myself and my gf.

We'd always been against mainstream ideals, since our early teens, and it just gradually progressed from there...
Skip ahead about 13 years of scatterbrainism....
and a traumatic break-up (which I think got me searching for answers)

Through 2 years of searching for the truth via hundreds of documentaries, audiobooks, and wayyyyyy too much Chomsky :) (is there ever enough?)...
All selfish acts began dropping off one at a time.
All useless addictions.... now gone.

All mainstream, Corporate, one-sided media (tv in general)... done with it.

Then one day I saw how they do it... I saw what meat really is...
and it felt like it was happening to someone I love... a feeling most of us can relate to.
And that's when spherical compassion came alive in me.
My gf was first to feel like something wasn't right with the world.... and I helped clarify her feeling with proof.

It took no time for her to see it too, because she already had it in her.

Now we're couple of tree huggin anarcho-buddhists.
weeeeeeeeeeee What a ride!

Jul 10th, 2005, 08:42 PM
Wow--this is quite the inspirational and motivational thread!

Here's my rather conventional, sometimes cruel background. I grew up in Oklahoma, the daughter of a Texan and a Filipino woman. There was always tons of meat in our house. I mean, I'd have a steak w/ rice for an after-school meal!!!! I'd tease and tease people who didn't eat a lot of red meat. Growing up in OK, you're kind of insulated in how you see the world, unless you are an enlightened person. I was for the environment, but I wouldn't stop eating animal flesh. I mean Outback and McDonalds were like my second home and I never thought that I was consuming something that supported abuse and cruelty against these living creatures.:(

Flash forward to moving to Boston in 2004. Although I was always liberal, I became even more so once I moved north. I took the bar examination up here, still ate really unhealthy, but with a greater awareness of the evils of fast food thanks to Fast Food Nation and Super Size Me. After I took the bar, I started purging my body of crap and rewatched SSM and re-read FFN. Suddenly, something connected in my tiny brain, and I wanted to get myself healthy and not support cruelty against animals. I started going to restaurants and ordering veggie/vegan dishes (Legal Sea Food has a smashing Vegetarian Box dinner labeled as vegan) and perusing online recipie sites for vegan/veggie dishes and reading about veganism in books and mags. That was in April.

Now, I am pretty much vegan, except for owning some leather and suede products that were gifts from people (I'm looking either to regift them or pack them away forever). My family--especially my sister has changed their diets too. Sis is vegan and we tease Mom b/c she'll have meat on "federal holidays" *sigh*. My friends are so supportive too, asking questions about veganism and recipies. Hubby is still adjusting. He was a bit angry at first, but once he saw that it was working for me, he calmed down alot. He's cut waaaay back on meat as well, so we'll see about him.

Jul 10th, 2005, 09:04 PM
Well, it's a weird one for me...
I have a twin sister and when we both reached the age of 10 we decided that eating meat was wrong, I mean, you wouldn't eat your friend would you? The decision had been brewing since we both got two pet rabbits between us - we saw the fear in their eyes when the smell of burning flesh spread from whatever murdered animal was being 'cooked up.' :eek:
Anyway, we've never looked back since. About two years ago I decided i'd take the next step and go vegan - none of my family approved of this because I had probs with anaemia and my dad thought i'd gone off my trolley! Initially I tried it for Lent but once i'd started I found I couldn't go back! I wouldn't change a thing now, it was a bit of a struggle at first but it's all paid off and my conscience is clear - my sister recently followed on from me by going vegan too so I don't feel so all alone now :)

Jul 10th, 2005, 11:49 PM
I went vegetarian in 1994 around the time of my 20th birthday after having seen a film on television about how animals were slaughtered - I was appalled. It just hadn't occurred to me how utterly cruel and barbaric it was, I must have bought into all the nonsense about it being done Ďhumanelyí and then never given it another thought, I donít know, I just donít remember questioning it. My mother always did the best for us, so I had no reason to doubt what she was putting on my plate. I couldnít believe how long Iíd been eating meat and not knowing there was an alternative. However, I didnít make a conscious decision there and then to become vegetarian, I just quite physically went off the idea of eating meat, and imagined that once the shock of seeing the film had worn off, Iíd drift back to being Ďnormalí again. But within a couple of days, my eyes just seemed to be open, and I was somehow stumbling upon article after article about animal cruelty and dodgy farming practices, and that was it, I decided Iíd become vegetarian, and I never looked back. It was pretty easy, I didnít miss meat in the slightest, and I felt great. I do often wonder where Iíd be now if I hadnít seen that film when I did, would it never have occurred to me without some prompting?
Five and a half years later, and I needed a New Yearís Resolution Ė actually, it was my New Millenniumís Resolution, and I thought Iíd test my will-power and go the whole hog (excuse the non-vegan expression!) and go vegan. People were always commenting about my self-discipline with regards my health (donít smoke, donít drink, then didnít eat meat) but for me, smoking, drinking and eating meat were simply things I just didnít want to do; no willpower required, it wasnít a question of trying. Giving up chocolate and cheese, now that DID require will-power. I was already off the idea of eating eggs, had been for the last year or so of my vegetarianism, and had already started substituting dairy milk for soya or rice alternatives, so maybe it wasnít all that much of a challenge. I also did not intend to stay vegan, I thought maybe Iíd just do it up Ďtil Lent or something, but soon enough in, I simply wasnít craving chocolate or cheese, I found I just didnít miss dairy at all. And the more I read, the more I knew it was the right choice for me, and Iíve never doubted my decision. I donít find it difficult, except occasionally when eating out, especially abroad, but I do know I am lucky to live where I do as there are good shops for me to buy special vegan treats from, and I find it easy to cook myself up a good feast too. Itís not just a diet though, I thought I would do it properly and stopped buying anything with wool or silk in it straight away, and I never liked leather anyway as it just stinks. I do have one old pair of leather sandals, and one woolly hat, but these were pre-veganism days and I donít see the point in just binning them, though maybe I will one day.

Jul 14th, 2005, 07:29 PM
A quick reply to Abfab before telling my own story - it is easy to get good vegan chocolate, and the best source of luxury boxes of vegan chocolates for those special occasions (birthdays, Christmas, because you want to etc) is the Dr Hadwen Trust (who are also an anti-vivisection charity so they get extra bonus points!). The vegan store (www.veganstore.co.uk (http://www.veganstore.co.uk)) also sell lots of yummy chocolately things.

Ok, my story. It starts with my brother, who is four years older than me. When he was at school he was told that 'cows give us milk and they give us meat'. Although only five, he had the brains to see through this one and realise that you would have to kill the cow to get meat from it. He began to nag my Mum about going vegetarian - bright, precocious kid - and she finally gave in when he was eight. Over the next couple of years my brother converted my parents, and I was the last in the family to turn vegetarian, when I was seven. I got picked on endlessly at school for being different, but also for being small, for being the youngest kid in the class, for being top of the class etc so I figured one more reason to bully me wouldn't make much difference!:rolleyes:
When I was eleven, I began to think more profoundly about eggs and milk. My parents were members of the Vegetarian Society (UK) and I would read their magazine with interest, and it began to open my eyes. I decided to try and cut down on eggs and dairy products, and occasionally made conscious attempts at being vegan. Then one evening, we went to my parents' friends' house and I was offered a biscuit, and as I ate it I told myself that it would be the last non-vegan food item I would ever eat. The next morning, 16 March 1991, I began my first day as a fully-fledged vegan, and I've never looked back. Two months later, my older brother joined me and has likewise remained vegan ever since.
It's not always been easy, but always for social reasons rather than dietary reasons. I have received more prejudice over my diet than over any and every other factor in my life. At school, kids would think it was funny to leave meat on my chair. One school trip to Italy, I lost half a stone in a week because they failed to make any provision whatsoever for my diet. Only two weeks ago, I attended the wedding of a dear childhood friend and was rather taken aback to be told, two days beforehand, that I would have to bring my own food as they had not catered for vegans, even though I was travelling from overseas to attend the wedding.
Having said that, I have never once regretted my decision to go vegan. Now aged 26, I have the following responses to all the criticisms hurled at me when I decided to go vegan as a child:

Your growth will be stunted. Wrong! I am several inches taller than my mother or either of her sisters. My younger brother, a life-long vegetarian, is 6ft tall.
Your mental development will be retarded. I don't think so. I graduated top of my class in both my bachelors and masters degrees and am pursuing a career as an academic. Which is more than I can say for the people who came up with these criticisms!
You'll get ill/ be malnourished. Again, wrong! I am blessed with excellent health. I have never been hospitalised, never had an operation, never suffered from any nutritional deficiencies and live a full and active life.
To all those just starting out, it gets easier and easier as you along, and I hope you are encouraged by this and the many inspirational stories on this thread. :)

Jul 14th, 2005, 09:27 PM
Thank you, Rainbow. I have discovered vegan chocolate, I was just saying that really, my cravings just completely subsided for the stuff, so finding alternatives was not a real issue. I do occasionally have vegan chocolate, but I do not really crave it. It's also overpriced, I think, and the only thing I miss is the convenience of just being able to buy a Mars Bar when I want one.
I have also got right into baking, and make the most delicious chocolate fudge cake (if I do say so myself), so if I do fancy some chocolate or sweet stuff, I can always rustle a cake up if I feel so inclined. It's just hard to do if I am on the road or on holiday, but hey, such is life, and I manage just fine. It would be nice if they brought out a vegan Mars Bar though!

I would also just like to add to Rainbow's comment that it gets easier, and say that yes, indeed it does. Not just from your perspective, and your personal development, but I feel there are more and more options for us, and a gradual understanding of veganism, which can only make things easier.

Jul 15th, 2005, 09:00 AM
Again, for Abfab: the one 'on-the-go' chocolate bar that is quite widely sold and vegan is Fry's Chocolate Cream. They're yummy and come in three flavours and are sold in many newsagents and the like. Plus you can economise by buying them in a multipack from a supermarket and then taking them with you for holidays/ snackattacks.

Raspberry ruffles are also more widely sold now, eg at Woolworth's and newsagents, and they are gooooooooooood.

Spot the chocoholic on this forum! :D

Jul 15th, 2005, 01:31 PM
Don't forget Ritter bars - plain, mint or mar-zi-pan (mouthwater job!) Only about 70p for a 100g block. :)

Jul 15th, 2005, 02:39 PM
When I was 11 (10 yrs ago now) I was eating sunday roast and watching a David Attenborough program about chimps. The group of chimps chased, caught and ate another monkey while it was alive. The barbarism, and their likeness to humans, turned my stomach and I resolved to be veggie. The next day I got all the books in the library about vegetarianism out, researched my new diet choice, and that was that. Recently me and boyf read The Food Revolution and turned vegan (he had been veggie for about a year). I had always known milk&eggs were part of the meat indistry, but didn't know how healthy a vegan diet could be. Since reading that book I realised veganism is not only easy but really healthy, and I am now happy in the knowledge that I don't finance the meat industries in any way :D We're having a vegan wedding (eventually), a vegan household and I want to have beautiful vegan babies too!

Jul 16th, 2005, 12:03 PM
Absentmindedfan that sounds truely idyllic, may those dreams come true. ;) :)

Jul 19th, 2005, 12:23 AM
Again, for Abfab: the one 'on-the-go' chocolate bar that is quite widely sold and vegan is Fry's Chocolate Cream. They're yummy and come in three flavours and are sold in many newsagents and the like. Plus you can economise by buying them in a multipack from a supermarket and then taking them with you for holidays/ snackattacks.

Raspberry ruffles are also more widely sold now, eg at Woolworth's and newsagents, and they are gooooooooooood.

Spot the chocoholic on this forum! :D

Thank you Rainbow, you are kind! I never liked chocolate cream-type chocolates, but if I get a chocolate craving, I may give these Fry's things a go. Although like I said, I just don't get the chocolate urge anymore, well, hardly. I haven't tried Raspberry Ruffles either, as I never liked fruit-flavoured or fruit-flavour-filled chocolates (or chocolate mint - eeeuyuck!), but thanks anyway! :) I'd still like for them to just bring out a vegan Mars Bar. Mars, are you listening???!!!
As an aside, I have also given up crisps (America, read potato chips), purely as a challenge, and I have found that I don't crave them at all either now. I used to love them, but I have found that your body adjusts really easily, and your tastebuds just adapt. Well, mine do. It's been a couple of years now, and I do not miss them in the slightest.

Jul 19th, 2005, 08:33 AM
Giving up crisps? Hardcore! I am currently living in Paris where they sell crisps like Wotsits but peanut flavoured and they are so nice. I'm happily vegan but am no puritan! :p
I'm not aware of vegan 'Mars bars' as such but if you would consider a vegan 'Snickers' instead, try Peanut Chews. They are sold through the Vegan Store www.veganstore.co.uk (http://www.veganstore.co.uk) and are irresistibly moreish. Basically, they are peanut pieces enrobed in caramel and then covered in chocolate. Gorgeous.
Raspberry ruffles are not actually a cream filling, rather a raspberry-flavoured coconut. Imagine a raspberry 'Bounty'.
Right, that's it, I'm hungry - where's the chocolate? *munch* mmmmmmm.:D