How to deal with plant-based hate

Q:

Hi you cool, inspirational and awesome human! I've been following you for quite some time now and the way you eat and exercise has made a huge impact on me, I love it!! On the tumblr you had before this one I remember reading about how to approach people that are negative and foolish to the way you eat, but I never saved the answer - which I should've, because my parents are being, basically rude, about me wanting to transfer into the plant based way of eating. So what should I tell them? xxx

A:

You can't engage with someone on the level they are speaking from. Never forget that! So in this case do not stoop to rudeness or negativity. A lot of people react negatively to a plant based lifestyle out of fear of the unknown, so offer to watch a documentary like cowspiracy with them, and present them with the reasons why you are making this shift. If after that they are still being rude, then you need to politely but firmly ask them to stop and to show you the respect you deserve. Never ever make them feel bad about their dietary choices, if they choose to eat meat then do not give them a hard time about it. You should show them the respect that they deserve as a human; and surely they will notice and reciprocate.

Make a point to include them in any cooking that you do, and whenever you have an amazing vegan dessert, bring them some. I had vegan wedding cake at my wedding and everyone loved it – nobody could believe it was vegan, simply because they had never had vegan dessert before. Show them that you will not be deprived and give them a modern perspective on something that in their generation, only hippies and weirdo’s did.

A key point for me is, I would advise you to work hard to maintain your dietary choices as a choice you make, but NOT a defining part of your personality. I hate militant vegan’s, they do more harm to plant-based nutrition than good. I shudder to think of the amount of people who have been turned off to this way of eating and missed out on the subsequent health and environmental benefits, because a vegan got in their face and scared them off. Choose love over blood (or red paint…).

At the end of the day, your parents love you. Never forget that! No matter how baffling they can be, they care so deeply about you and only want what is best for you (and are products of their generation) – so treat them gently and guide, not force!

 

Peace and love,

Bridget