Monday, November 4, 2013

He Is A Carnivore - She Is A Vegan … Uh Oh!

A few years ago, I was in grad school.  It was a transpersonal (or spiritually based) perspective on psychology.  Therefore, the students had a wide variety of backgrounds from across the globe.  In this brief article I am only going to mention the eating habits vs. all of the other differences, but that was a big one in of itself.  

For most of my life, I have said I could do without meat - I could be a vegetarian.  But, growing up in the midwest in a small town I wasn't around people who had a plant based diet.  We were taught that we had to eat meat to get our protein.  Well, after growing deep and meaningful relationships with new people who were serious vegetarians, vegans, and raw vegans I easily made the decision to go vegetarian.  That means I no longer ate meat - no red meat, no chicken, no turkey, no fish.  It was pretty easy for me, but since my sons and husband were still carnivorous it made preparing meals a bit more challenging.  I made it for about a year, then I gave in and reverted back.  

About a month ago I finally got around to watching Forks Over Knives.  Well, that was that.  I immediately decided to go back to being vegetarian.  Then I did a little more research and come to understand the unhealthy properties of dairy including the addictive properties in cheese.  Within a couple of days, my son (a senior in high school), my youngest son and I all decided to go vegan.  Time to watch Vegucated :) 

Now, hubby hasn't gone vegan.  He doesn't mind eating vegan meals with us, but also wants meat a couple of times a week.  And, I will admit that at this point we are not vigilant with our veganism.  Though we are adamantly vegetarian, we still give in and allow a bit of eggs or milk or cheese into our diets.  But, for the most part my sons and I are vegan.  

What does this have to do with relationships?  Well, we need to support our partners even when their choices are very different from our own.  Just because I am convinced that animal protein is exceptionally bad for our health I am not going to condemn my husband (or my friends for that matter) because he chooses to still eat it.  And, he supports me and the boys even when that means the food choices in the house are A LOT different than he has been used to.  

Doesn't matter if your differences are about your diet or about your taste in music or whether you like the house hot or cold - you need to find ways to compromise and honor and respect each other. 

Looking forward to yummy bean burritos tonight (nope - no cheese),
Janelle Alex, Ph.D.

Photo credit: © Liddy Hansdottir -  

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