I really didn't know shit about shit. I thought that cows made milk all the time and needed to be milked or they'd die. I don't remember how exactly it happened, but one day about 3 1/2 years ago I just woke up and realized how wrong I was.
I really didn't know shit about shit. I thought that cows made milk all the time and needed to be milked or they'd die. I don't remember how exactly it happened, but one day about 3 1/2 years ago I just woke up and realized how wrong I was.
Too be honest, I was put off the whole thing by my "role-model vegan" aka the only vegan among the people I knew who is a nice and devoted guy, but extremely a cliché hippy-selfknit-pullovers-AR-activist... made it look like one has to be perfect, ethically and otherwise, to be a vegan.
Born and raised meat eater. I'm ashamed to admit that I was a serious meat eater too... Ignorance.
No more - I'm a newbie vegan (10 months in) and healthier/happier.
1) I thought I needed dairy products for protein and calcium.
2) For most of my life, my parents supplied everything for me. My father believes that humans have a right to do anything they want to with animals.
3) I thought there were no practical alternatives to animal products.
I never ate much meat, because I disliked the way it tasted. During the last five years of my indiscriminate use of animal products, I ate meat only four times.
-When I was little kid my mom subscribed me to a "cute" animals magazine that was actually a graphic animal rights 'zine.
-I watched the channel "Animal Planet" when I was younger. I recall seeing many stories on animal abuse with very graphic pictures to accompany narration.
-When I was little, my parents forced me to eat the meat on my plate before going to bed. The taste, texture, knowledge of its origin, all made me want to gag.
-I tried to be vegetarian and wasn't very good at it (forgot to check lables, ask about food content, etc.)
-Online friend [vegan] posted a crazy amount of videos, pictures, articles, etc. about animal cruelty on her journal.
The last one sent me full force into veganism.
Because I never realised how animals suffer to produce food. I started off being vegetarian after getting a free 'go veggie' pack, then looked more into it and decided to become vegan. I also love chickens and turkeys as animals (I want to get my own when it's possible) and can't bear the thought of them suffering.
Because I had never ever met any vegetarians until I was 18 and moved to the Uk....
In Spain is almost heresy not to eat meat and fish... My parents and everyone around me in Spain think that you need meat to be healthy (my mum still thinks that I am not really a vegan but I have an eating disorder!!!)
After a year of living in the UK I decided that being a vegetarian was the best option (animal righs was my main concern)
But then it took me 5 years of vegetarianism before I became a vegan...
It is scary to think that i had never considered that cows do not give milk unless they have given birth... It is especially scary because I consider myself an intelligent and educated person (and until 3 days ago I used to be a Science teacher!!!)...
After i found out that animals are exploited, I forced myself to read and watch everything that I could... becoming a vegan was easy after that...
I am glad I opened that door and now I can never go back...
(I have also managed to turn my dad vegan too!!!!)
Wow Manzana, that's one big achievement! Your dad?!
Most of it's been said - ignorance, country upbringing and the machismo of being able to pluck a pheasant , skin a rabbit, gut a trout... I even visited veal calves and it must have affected me because I remember it, but it was like I had a steel wall to prevent me from making that connection - conditioning.
Then one day I was peeling the skin back from a leg of chicken and this really thick artery was attaching it so I had to really pull... and at last - connection made. Sh*t! This was an animal!!!! (doh but honestly, it was that way). I was 20 and started by giving up meat only, but was thinking desperately "what do I eat?" This was in 1985 and there weren't any role models or info really to help apart from Cranks cookbooks. I lapsed on and off then in 1990 went veggie. Then, wonder of wonders, I came across Viva!. In 1993 I gave up eggs, then got some stuff through about the dairy industry in 1995 and became vegan.
So ignorant. It's scary realising how slow we can be to connect. I'd never be anything else now.
I have been vegetarian since birth, along with the rest of my family.
Then, 3years ago, aged 13, whilst on holiday had time to do some thinking, and then when I realised how this was the best option for my concscience! Before this, I had not heard of veganism very much- and definately hadn't thought it through- so when I did it was obvious.
I turned vegan with no problems, and my family have been supportive- we now only have vegan margerine in the house, to allow less confusion! My father is mostly vegan- as he eats with me, and usually ends up eating vegan in other countries
I was vegetarian for many years before going vegan, and I had always said 'If I could afford it, I'd go vegan'. Looking through the supermarkets at all of the expensive vegan foods, I failed to realize that vegetables would make up a majority of my diet ..
I also disliked vegetables very much when I was younger and this continued until the later years of my vegetarianism. I originally went vegan for health reasons (I was extremely overweight as a vegetarian). The more I did it the more I liked it, and I knew after about a week or so I wouldn't go back.
- The Duck
Let's do something about it!
A very dear friend of mine was veggie from birth, I think it's one of the very few things that inspires any kind of vague envy in me - karma-envy The fact that meat, fish and eggs have never passed his lips is just wonderful. I think it brings home to me so strongly how ignorant I was.
But he says (because he is so very nice) that he has no idea how hard it is to have to find the strength it must take to change when in the midst of family, friends and even husband who still eat meat and believe bloodsports are a human right . I guess he has a point (although my ex-husband did become vegan )
Howdawg, you look pretty good now it has to be said - guess eating all those veggies has paid off
When I was really young, I always felt that eating meat was wrong, but I didn't stop. The only reasons I had to justify my meat eating were that it tasted good and that everyone else ate meat. Looking back on it now, I realize that those reasons certainly don't justify it. I was just scared of what my parents and friends would say about it.
I have to admit, I liked meat when I ate it. I liked cheese and other dairy products. What made me stop was realizing that it was having an adverse effect on my health (I read Fast Food Nation, AND watched Supersize Me). Like others, I believed it would be too hard to give up slaughterhouse products. What finally made me become vegan was the cost of organic, free-range eggs and organic dairy products. I buy them for my family, but I wasn't willing to eat them at the high price. Now, just feel healthier without them.
I could'nt have been Vegan before. I was brought up exactly the same way as the majority of children are brought up today, eating meat.
My family were always animal lovers but not veggie. My introduction to animal rights was through a scool teacher who wore a badge saying 'STOP ANIMAL EXPERIMENTS'. I asked what that meant and boy did that take me on a journey!
I think the jump from veggie to vegan is vast for some people and unimaginable to others. It's a case of being with the right people at the right time in your life that guides you to veganism and hopefully keeps you there!
My husband and I went Veg since Sept. I tried to be Vegan during this time and found myself eating products with milk and eggs from time to time. I never realized all of the toxins in these products. For my job, I work with kids on feeding ( I am a speech therapist). My partner explained to me that kids with milk allergies were put on Pediasure formula instead of regular formula as recommended by doctors and professionals in the area. However, my partner was telling me that kids were vomiting and getting sick from the casein in the milk products. That it actually curdled in their stomachs. So I came home and told my husband (then fiance') and he stumbled upon the Dr. T. Colin Campbell study online. After seeing that as well as Earthlings and other important films, we have been strictly Vegan since after Christmas. I know we are newbies at this but in my heart I know that we will always be Vegan!
For years I have been trying to eat healthily with plenty of vegetables, pulses and occasional 'organic' meat which was usually chicken or fish and occasionally red meat. There are a lot of people around me who are in to environmental issues (no vegans) and they talk about 'humane' methods of producing meat. As I heard more about people I knew involved in killing animals that they had known, I knew that I was a massive hypocrit to buy meat that others had killed because I knew that I would never have been able to kill it myself.
In 2005 my Gma died of a massive heart-attack and and a good friend, an older lady, suffered a serious stroke. Both represented the values my family had always had, that a little bit of everything, meat, cream, cheese etc..does you good. And there were two people I loved who had not benefited from this philosophy.....I am lucky to be part of a very loving family who always did what they thought was the very best for me and the emotional link that there was for us between food and love was difficult to break. As I read more about the production of milk and the suffering connected with it I just wanted to stop eating anything that caused harm. It was the most important thing to me and now the most important thing is to try and convince the maximum number of people that I can that they don't need to rely on animal protein as so many people firmly believe they do...
I feel sorry that I needed so much time to get to this point but I agree with the others that it is best to just concentrate on moving on and not waste time looking back. I take my hat off to all those dedicated vegans decades younger than me and those older who have been at it longer!!!
i was brought up eating flesh, eggs, dairy etc. so i didn't think there was anything wrong with it.
then i started to find it revolting to be eating dead animals and realised we DON'T need it and we shouldn't be eating them. after all, if we truly were meant to be carnivores we would have shorter digestive tracts and would actually like the smell of road kill etc.
so i was vegetarian for about a year before i became vegan, simply because i liked everything with eggs and dairy in it, and i saw nothing wrong with eating them. but now i find it absolutely gross to be eating chicken periods and something that is meant for a calf and only a calf. =]
About 16 years ago I realised that the hypocricy of lacto-ovo-vegetarianism was baaad, m'kay.
My daughter (previously a life long l-o-veggie) worked it out for herself at 14, which makes me look pretty slow.
Because I was a sheep.
I have been vegan for about 13 or 14 years now. For about 5 years before that I was a fairly lax 'vegetarian' (I even ate tuna at first but eventually dropped that - however I didn't know much about by products, gelatine etc).
While I was veggie I actively avoided finding out about veganism - because in my heart I knew it was the same arguement followed to its logical conclusion.
I didn't want to be a vegan because I thought all vegan food was bland and boring and I didn't to change my life / make my life difficult. In particluar I didn't want to give up chocolate, ice cream and cheese.
Then I accidentally started reading the bit at the front of the Animal Free Shopper where it talks about the reasons for being vegan. That was it.
I gave myself 2 week binge of eating all the things I would never eat again, gave away all my leather shoes and ordered a pair of hugely expensive made-to-measure vegan shoes and became a super strict vegan (more strict than than some of my friends who had been calling themselves vegan at that time!)
I was totally obsessed at one point but eventually got things into what I feel is a realistic perspective and now just do my best.
I wasn't really conscious of veganism until I was about 18/19 (I was ovo lacto vegetarian since I was nine) then it took me awhile to make the changeover.(I've been totally vegan with no slip ups for about 2 years)
I started not to eat meat or fish (or dead animal byproducts) when I was very young but didn't have the information/awareness about the dairy and egg industries.
"Do what you can with what you have where you are."
- Theodore Roosevelt
I became Vegetarian in September 2005 and wasn't even thinking about veganism at that point...
Once I started learning more about it, I wanted to become vegan by lprobably December or so.
What was holding me back, was the fact that the vegan food selection on campus was very limited and since I don't have much money, I was kinda "stuck".
I finally decided that even though it would be very hard at college, I just had to do it. I was tired of being a hypocrite and making excuses.
Not all choices in life are supposed to be easy!
So, I became vegan in March 2006, which was much sooner than I would have ever dreamed imaginable! There's no turning back now!
The cafe has been somewhat more vegan-friendly this year, so that's a plus...
I was vegetarian for many years before becomming vegan. In all honesty, I really had no idea about the dairy industry, which now seems unbelieveable. I really think it has everything to do with your upbringing. Many people probably don't realise how deep rooted the ideas they are fed as children are.
Tell someone something often enough and there's a good chance they will come to believe it? My initial interest in veganism came about when I read an article in the Observer magazine last January with Heather Mills. Much of what she said struck a chord with me and I decided to investigate further...
That same day I could no longer bear the thought of drinking milk, and now the rest is history.
I went vegetarian on June 23, 2006(This is just an estimate...). I wasn't really thinking about veganism until, like...3 or 4 weeks after that? I thought that if I was vegan, then my life would be completely(Well...for the most part...we live in a cruel world...)cruelty-free. So, I went vegan on August 2, 2006. I was only vegetarian for about 40 days of my life. But, anyway...deciding to go vegan was pretty much the best decision I have ever made.
it has been a journey for me. since very young i questioned what i was eating, so much, in fact my mother tells me she and my father had to be "very careful" how they answered my questions...i mean, what would they do with a vegatarian on their hands? (shudder the thought). i didn't like the taste for one thing, but it went way farther than that. even now i can't believe how parents lie to their children about where meat comes from...i was veggie on and off. loved cheese. since i have educated myself about the opiates in cheese because, well, newsflash, it ensures the nursing connection between mother and baby. i still nurse my son and that connection is so strong it is impossible for me to not think of and comprehend the suffering involved in the dairy industry. so, i read a lot. i tried vegan and felt very self conscous because i wasn't ready. i was also convince somehow i was going to do irreversible harm to myself nutitionally. then i found out i was lactose intolerant. my entire life i have hurt after i ate dairy. i was so ignorant of my body and what it was trying to tell me. that finally brought me to a very real place of evaluating my choices. now i am vegan, a month new but i know now for life.
That was a great post, vmomma
I am sure I have answered this thread before. I made excuses sometimes, and thougth about convinience. I also beleived vegan was an extreme choice, I knew nothing about the alternatives available and knew nothing about the dairy industry.
Since educating myself, I know I will never return to being none-vegan, as much as i possibly can.
when i was a meat-eating child i was one of those disgusting people who said "we've been eating meat FOREVER - it's NATURAL!" i hate those people now - it may be natural, we may be at the top of the food chain but the POINT is that that means we have a RESPONSIBILITY to look after those under us, not a RIGHT to abuse that power....grrrr...it makes me SO angry. so i think it's just ignorance that people do what they do. and my mum, for example, knows that it's wrong but she just likes the taste and doesn't like the think about what she's eating - it's easy and she knows what to do with it and that's good enough for her. i LOVE being a vegan - i think i have a WONDERFULLY interesting and varied diet and i don't feel like i miss out on anything.
I was like everyone else until I started campaigning in Norway. I didn't think about the suffering until a Norwegian animal rights group gave me a video. I gradually cut out meat and dairy products. When i met my Swedish wife I became vegan. I am English by the way.
Stan Johnson (England)
The food chain theory is based on the assumption the because humans are capable of making tools, we're 'meant' to make weapons. Without those weapons (which are man-made, and therefore not 'natural' anyway), or the idea that since we should make weapons because we're capable of making them, we'd be under lions, crocodiles, sharks and tigers in that imaginary food chain!we may be at the top of the food chain
I will not eat anything that walks, swims, flies, runs, skips, hops or crawls.
Why weren't you vegan before you became vegan?
I wasn't a vegan because I wasn't raised this way, and in fact had never heard of anything like this. (like most meat-eaters today) How could one not eat the rotting flesh of another sentient being... oh wait, the question answered itself...
I first quit eating meat (at the age when people start to develop a "personality" and think abstract etc.) because it seemed totally inacceptable. And going vegan from there was a logical progression.
I wasn't vegan before because I thought I "needed" to have the protein from meat, dairy and eggs.
I think it was just easier living in the meatrix, pretending it didn't matter. BTW http://www.meatrix.com/ hilariously awesome website to check out if you haven't yet.
I was vegetarian for 2 years but not vegan because I thought soy milk was gross and I liked cheese too much. I figured I was doing "enough" by being vegetarian. Now I'm like f*&# it, soy milk doesn't really taste any different and I can live without cheese. I'm really happy with my choice so far
I became a vegetarian when I was 11. I never managed to switch to the vegan diet until I was 21. The main reason I wasn't a vegan was because I assumed my parents would not be willing to pay for the unique foods they were going to have to buy me to keep me healthy. I also thought being a vegan was very hard and was intimidated.
I actually thought it would be so hard to give up not so much meat but the dairy from life that I kept stopping and starting. I so wish I had became vegan sooner because it has really not been difficult at all.
Vegan marg tastes the same, soya milk is actually nicer than cows milk and I never ate honey etc before anyway.
when i became veggie, i wasn't really aware of the cruelty of the dairy and egg industries. but i slowly became aware, and realised that i did want to get rid of them in my diet. it took me longer though. i'm not really sure why - i suppose because milk doesn't 'look' as bad as half a sheep on your plate.
i really don't think non-vegans are ignorant. they wouldn't be so adverse to comments about where their food comes from and the suffering involved if they hadn't heard it before, or didn't want to 'spoil their meal' etc. this is probably more with the meat, rather than dairy, but that's probably because the terrors of the dairy industry aren't talked about as much (more veggies than vegans talking perhaps? i don't know).
don't get me wrong, i still don't think highly of them, but as someone already mentioned, only they can choose what they do, it can't be forced upon them. it's annoying though!
i only learnt what vegetarianism was when i was about 14. and that was in 1998, which is worrying - you'd think i'd have learnt. i was brought up on meat and dairy. i developed anorexia when i was 10 though, so i actually only ate fruit and veg for 5 years or so. i wouldn't touch dairy, and the only meat i did have was when i was forced to eat a family meal or some such. at 15 i was admitted into hospital, and put on a high calorie high meat high dairy diet. had i said i was vegetarian i would have been corrected to "no you're not, you're anorexic". vegetarian anorexics are accused of choosing that diet because it is a more acceptable 'excuse' to cutting out a food group. it's a shame that a lot of anorexics have turned vegetarian for this reason alone, because now doctors are very cynical about it. i spent from age 15 to 21 in and out of hospitals, including general wards, psych units and specialist eating disorder units. in a general ward i was lucky if i got fed (i can't begin to count the number of times i've heard "oh, she's anorexic, she won't want any breakfast" uttered by a nurse down the corridor - ha!), in a psych ward the last thing you really want to do is eat (too busy plotting escape! ) and in an eating disorder unit you have no say over what you eat. in the last place i was in you could choose between a veggie or meat menu, but it was still full of dairy. for a lot of the time i couldn't either physically handle or emotionally face solid food, so i was 'fed' on dairy-based nutritional drinks instead (really creamy, milky...ugh). you're talking about 2 and a half quite large cups of the stuff 3 times a day, plus half a cup 3 times a day in between those. looking back, it's no wonder i struggled to heal with all that crap inside me.
i think a large part of the problem, especially in this case, is that the dieticians are taught in college that meat and dairy are healthy. i've never come across a veggie/vegan one, that's for sure, and i've seen a fair few in my time! i once was in an emergency ward after my heart had failed - i remember it so well - it was my 16th birthday and my dad had brought me some cards - and then this dietician walked in who must have been about 10 stone overweight, telling me what i was going to be eating the following day. i obviously had a look of sheer terror on my face at the size of HER (i don't have anything against large people, but as a terrified anorexic faced with the prospect of eating a diet that she recommends, it's not all that comforting!), because my dad took some of the food away for me. colluding, probably, but i'm not sure someone as blatantly unhealthy as her should be a practising nutritionist! anyway, the upshot of all that is that, when doctors and esp dieticians see meat and dairy as fine, this will be the message that keeps spreading in the "health" world. people have a strange amount of trust for medical people, i still haven't worked out why!
i instantly turned vegetarian when i left hospital last year. the last meat meal i ate was christmas dinner in hospital. i wanted to go vegan straight away, but since i'd just spent 5 months in hospital for a major episode, i didn't want to rock the boat too much. i was always thinking and reading about it though and i was gradually cutting down my dairy intake.
it was last july when i finally turned completely vegan. i met my now boyfriend, a veggie of 20 years and vegan of 6 years, and he helped me make the change. i asked him questions and when i knew the details, i immediately switched my diet. no gradual process, just bang. i wouldn't change that decision for anything. i am much calmer....i feel like a whole person now.
and the ironic thing is, that since i turned vegan i have only had one very minor slip up with my anorexia! take that, dieticians!!
sorry for the ramble
wow, emmy, well done for coming through all that you've been through, I can't begin to imagine how tough it must have been.
I'm so glad to hear you feel much better, and it sounds like you have a wonderful boyfriend
I remember the weekend I became vegan. I went to a health seminar for 3 days. If I had known it was vegan (I didn't even know what that meant) I never would have went. I felt sorry for myself as soon as I found out and I wondered how I would make it through the weekend. I was sure I would be starving. These people were such extremists! Well they wined me and dined me and taught me. I have never been the same! I relized this was the way I really wanted to live I just had no idea it could be done, I had thought there would be soooooo little to eat. But I had never liked meat and I have always loved the healthy food. They showed me this was the ultimate healthy life style. I had actully thought I needed animal produts to be healthy. I try to remember the way I saw it when I talk to people about my lifestyle now.
There are several reasons why I was not previously a vegan: (in no particular order)
-I was not aware of all of the problems with dairy products.
-I wanted to eat junk food that contained animal products.
-I did not know that there were vegan alternatives to some types of animal-based foodstuffs and cosmetics.
-My father is strongly in favor of using animal products, as a member of the conventional medical industry. He pays for almost everything I buy. He thinks veganism is unhealthy and too extreme. I hope he dies soon (for many reasons, including some that are not related to this)
Because its easier to just shut the compassionate part of your brain up and just eat dairy. Well at least it seemed so, I'm a very shy person I hate the idea of making a fuss and having negative attention drawn to me . Being a vegan can be socially difficult hence I ignored the voice saying 'This is wrong' for as long as I could!
Then a dairy intolerance meant I was suddenly having to make a fuss anyway and I just thought what the hell lets give it a try. And I feel much better so there's no going back now is there?
Its a process isn't it - I'm really glad I'm now letting the nicer side of me talk a little louder and standing up for what I believe a little more rather then bending to the beliefs of those around me, for the sake of trying to be liked and accepted.
This probably makes very little sense I'm very sleepy!
it probably took me so long because id been a vegetarian for so long (since i was 10) that i probably had gotten lazy and not found out the information... i felt that i was doing "enough" and that veganism would be "too hard".
plus my mum had always said it was too extreme and she was happy for me to be veggie but if i wanted to be vegan i would have to cook and buy all my own meals.
On my year out aged 18-19 was when i started to take more of an interest in being against cruelty and began boycotting cruel companies- stopped using makeup that was tested on animals etc. i wanted to go vegan but was badly addicted to cheese- funnily enough the idea of milk and eggs sickened me, but i would eat them in "disguised" forms.
It was only when i went to uni last year and was buying and cooking all my own meals that i thought instead of being a hypocrite and avoiding some products and not others i should do it properly. Funnily enough simple things triggered this- when reading the ingrediants on the back of a pizza or something from the co-op it mentioned "Eggs (from caged hens)". I knew all about battery hens and i was sickened. I knew i couldnt eat it, and i had to stop burying my head in the sand. So i got on the net, did a bit of research and here i am . Been vegan for most of this year now, and now im back home my mum is happy to cook me vegan foods although she does moan about it sometimes lol saying she never knows what to buy. I just wish i'd gone vegan sooner!
well veganism always seemed like such an abstract concept before i attempted it and honestly thought that it was something that only people with intense self-discipline could even achieve... i've still a newbie at it (only been 14 days ^^) and honestly i think it's one of the best thing that has ever happend to me and i can honestly say it hasn't even been that hard...
i wasn't a vegan because i didn't know vegans existed til i met one and then i became one!
A lot of vegetarians I know are fish-chickatarians who wear leather and eat cheese; if they don't see a conflict in what they do, then who am I to tell them they're wrong? My sister is very successful and has lots of friends, any one of whom will back her up.
steven1222 that's a fine and mature attitude to you have toward your father who pays you way for you
before i became a vegetarian, i wasn't exposed to it, i was raised in the mindset that "this is just how it is..." and then later discovered on my own that there is no "just how it is..." I now feel an urgent need to become vegan and am pretty nervous about the adjustment...That's another reason that i feel many people who agree that killing to eat when it is no longer necessary is wrong, but still don't make the change...it's just inconvenient...convenience holds alot of weight today...