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<p>My 8yo son has recently expressed interest in following a vegan diet. I am suppotive, but my DH is not. As it is, I don't cook with animal products and since I do nearly all the cooking and grocery store shopping it really isn't a problem. I am shocked my DH isn't down with DS being a vegan. He thinks it's not healthy for children to grow up without dairy and meat. Ridiculous. I reiterated to him why exactly I follow a vegan diet and DS is on the same boat. DS actually said to me this morning, people who eat animals are like aliens who eat people. Eating animals doesn't make any sense to me! HA!</p>
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<p>Anyone else in this sticky situation? How can I make DH change his mind? I'm at a loss.</p>
 

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<p>Ask him what nutrients is he concerned about, and then show him how a vegan diet can meet those needs.</p>
 

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<p>I'm not in this situation, but I have some encouragement for you. I chose to become a vegetarian when I was 7yo, after finding a book at my grandma's about the cruelty of the meat industry. It made a huge impact on the person I am today. My family ate meat but when I chose not to, they immediately accommodated me by either cooking veg meals or leaving the meat out of mine. I encountered a lot of negative feedback from my parents' friends and other adults who told me that I was putting my parents out, being selfish, etc. I explained my reasons to them and never once backed down. Defending my choices taught me how to peacefully stand up for myself and to hold to and explain my convictions without being self-righteous or overbearing about it. I was otherwise an extremely shy kid, even through high school. I wish the same empowering experience for your son, even if he is not a shy kid! In fact, has your awesome son explained his reasons to his dad? Maybe it would be a good exercise for both of them. If your son is successful in convincing him, what an achievement for a little boy. Good luck. <span><img alt="hug.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/hug.gif"></span></p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>catnip</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1279680/butting-heads-with-dh-about-veg-son#post_16050092"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>Ask him what nutrients is he concerned about, and then show him how a vegan diet can meet those needs.</p>
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<p>Yeah, that- plus:</p>
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<p>What does your husband plan to do, force your son to eat animal products? If he doesn't agree with your son's choice, it seems to me like he's just going to have to come to terms and deal with it. Maybe this is an emotional issue for him? He feels outnumbered in his own home now or something? Not trying to gender stereotype but IME men do get like that about home life sometimes...</p>
 

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<p>For us, we are having this issue with my mom (I realize it is minor compared to going through it with your DH but I wanted to at least empathize).  My mother had a HUGE issue with us raising our children vegan. We haven't made that step yet but we do eat vegan at home. My mother (who is 55 and seems to share the exact same belief as her parents- eat what you are given and you need  meat for protein or you will wither away to nothing) has no interest in learning about nutrition, protein needs, etc.  It makes me nuts.  I know, as I think we all do, what we are eating.  We read labels.  We make sure we are getting enough iron, protein, etc.  She just wants to say "you need meat, the end" with no science to back it up.</p>
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<p>Would your DH do some reading?  I feel like he owes it to you to educate himself on the benefits of a vegan diet before he decides it is unhealthy.  We debated trying to get my mom to watch Earthlings but I know she would say it was biased and all lies. *sigh*  I hope your DH comes around. </p>
 

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<p>What everyone else said.</p>
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<p>Seeing as you buy and prepare most meals - I would simply continue to do the same and serve DS vegan.  I would not make a big deal out of it.  Hopefully as time goes by and sees that his son is not withering away he will come to accept it.  I know my own DH was somewhat against DD being vegan when she first brought it up - but he does not like confrontation so he did not instigate anything, and he has slowly grown to accept it.</p>
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<p>Does your DS like many vegan sources of protein - beans, nuts, tofu, seeds......?  If so, you might have an easier time with things than if he does not.  It is easier to support a vegan child who is easily getting their nutritional requirements than one who is trying to live on potatoes.</p>
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<p>Kathy</p>
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Your DH does have a valid fear. And thankfully he was able to articulate it so it can be addressed. If your DS is a picky eater, by all means, it needs to be discussed amongst the 3 of you how he will be maintaining complete nutrition without animal products. Even if he's not a picky eater, its a good conversation to have, since your DS will have to learn how to achieve balance when away from home.<br><br>
But at the same time, another conversation needs to happen, the one about being in tune with our bodies, and listening to their messages. Symptoms like fatigue and lethargy can tell us clearly that something is missing from our diet, and less apparent things like constipation, unusual muscle aches, etc, are things he needs to tell you so that you can help him to get the proper nutrition for his body.<br><br>
At 8, he's plenty old enough to make that decision, IMO. And if the 2 of you can demonstrate to your DH that you're both mindful about it, hopefully he'll drop his objections.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
<p>Thanks for all the positive feedback, Mamas!! Dh has done his own research and has come to the conclusion that done well a vegan diet is the best diet there is out there. He is just concerned about DS being a picky eater..which he is, unfortunately. We are making strides as a family on a daily basis. A lot of label reading, trial and error, but we're getting there! Trying to get DS to see beyond chic patties.<span><img alt="biggrinbounce.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/biggrinbounce.gif" style="width:19px;height:24px;"></span></p>
 

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<p>ah, yes the picky eater.....</p>
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<p>My vegan daughter is one.  She was one before becoming vegan, though, so not much has changed.  </p>
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<p>I do think she is occasionally missing nutrients, but I thought so before she went vegan.</p>
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