I am trying to understand veganism, as a whole, and my partner.

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Tailend
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I am trying to understand veganism, as a whole, and my partner.

Post by Tailend » Thu Jul 26, 2018 5:05 pm

Hello everyone,

I am an omnivore and a vegan curious and going through a relationship with a vegan.I totally support him on his quest;however, he is insisting to change my belief system and diet choice. He is holding the relationship hostage and indicating that if I don't change to his way of thinking, he is going to withhold any future plannings with me. There is no "live and let live." Only my way or the highway. Interestingly enough, we broke up - took the highway several times and reconciled due to this very reason.

I love him and have been trying hard to find a common ground (compromise,) he has said, there is no long term if I am not totally converted over to veganism. I am at my wits end and feel very tired. I have nothing else to give and ready to break up with him. My question is, are all vegans this adamant about changing other people who are no a practice vegan or just him?

Please do not take offense by my question. I don't mean any disrespect, just very confused and tired. My family and friends, of course, has told me to drop him and move on, but I can't because I do love him. I know that he loves me too. Otherwise, we would not be breaking up and making up three times now without any resolution in sight. Is anyone from this forum experiencing something similar to mine? If so, how do you deal with it? I would be interested to know as I try to understand my partner and where is he coming from. Any advise or feedback would be greatly appreciated!

Thank you very much in advance and have a blessed day!
Last edited by Tailend on Fri Jul 27, 2018 9:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Red » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:04 pm

Hey Tailend, you should make an intro post.
Anyways, it's good that you're considering vegan, and once even dated a vegan. Don't be afraid to ask us any questions.

The relationship you were in was toxic, and it's good you broke it off, but if the way he acts is typical, it's best to give up your love interests in him and find a better (vegan) partner. This guy is a bad representation of vegans, and we appreciate you asking actual vegans instead of just assuming that all of them are nutjobs and leaving them at that. We have an entire thread about relationships (we have a few others, but this one is the most discussed) that you may want to read:
viewtopic.php?t=1557

Of course, most vegans want to spread the vegan message, but we tend to be more rational and civil when discussing the subject, even with meat eaters. Have you had any debates about veganism with him? If so, tell us about them, they might give us some insight about this person's motivations. Hell, if possible, maybe you can invite them here? We'd love to discuss with him too, even if he is a bad representation of us.
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sykkelmannen
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Post by sykkelmannen » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:27 pm

Tailend,
I'll give you two analogies here:

1. You live in the 19th century and your boyfriend is an abolitionist (against slavery) and your family own a few slaves. He loves you as a person but hates your guts for your inability to take a stance on the issue. He can't stand the idea to just give in and shrug it off.

2. Imagine Nazi Germany, 1944. You work in a death camp gassing the Jews, about a thousand of them a day. Your boyfriend loves you but he can't accept the idea that Jews deserve to be wiped out. He is alone tho, completely alone against a whole nation of people who believe the world would be better off without Jews and the ends justify the means. He wants you to see what he sees, but he fails miserably.

Sometimes we must make a choice. I would have chosen what your boyfriend chose. What you choose - is up to you. Your boyfriend holds you responsible for your actions. The establishment won't.

@Red I believe Tailend still IS in the relationship and to call it toxic and good she broke it off... are you like really stoned right now, good Sir?

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Post by Red » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:37 pm

sykkelmannen wrote:
Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:27 pm
@Red I believe Tailend still IS in the relationship and to call it toxic and good she broke it off... are you like really stoned right now, good Sir?
I'm not sure, but I'm definitely not as stoned as you, since you are the one who believes the moon landings were faked. Whatever you're smoking, I suggest you get off of it now, it'll cause long term damage (though in your case, it may be a bit too late for that).
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Post by Tailend » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:41 pm

Red: Thank you for your thoughtful response. I will reread and respond momentarily.
sykkelmannen: Thank you for your response as well. Now, your analogies! In order to not compare oranges to apples, you cannot compare what been harm to HUMANS with ANIMALS. They are not the same, therefore, those analogies are irrelevant. Use the wrong and not to well-thought-out analogies will only discredit your intention. However, I do appreciate your feedback.












sykkelmannen
Last edited by Tailend on Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by sykkelmannen » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:50 pm

Tailend wrote:
Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:41 pm
sykkelmannen: Thank you for your response as well. Now, your analogies! In order to not compare oranges to apples, you cannot compare what been harm to HUMANS with ANIMALS. They are not the same, therefore, that analogies are irrelevant. Use the wrong and not to well-thought-out analogies will only discredit your intention. However, I do appreciate your feedback.
I'm sorry you failed to see the point. See, in both instances, both the Blacks and the Jews weren't considered as humans at that time. They had no human rights. Just like animals today have no right to life. The situalion is exactly the same. There are people who see the wrongdoing ALREADY, and there are people who don't see it YET.

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Post by Red » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:53 pm

Tailend wrote:
Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:41 pm

sykkelmannen: Thank you for your response as well. Now, your analogies! In order to not compare oranges to apples, you cannot compare what been harm to HUMANS with ANIMALS. They are not the same, therefore, that analogies are irrelevant. Use the wrong and not to well-thought-out analogies will only discredit your intention. However, I do appreciate your feedback.
You'd be wrong to dismiss what Chico Man said. He wasn't equating the two, only comparing them (I think, he's kinda nuts).
The reason why vegans often use slavery in debates are mainly due to the fact that the institution of slavery once being an obviously immoral practice that was widely (and legally) practiced, and that most people today would agree that slavery was bad and needed to be outlawed (but wouldn't apply that standard today to meat eating), and secondly, both meat eating and slavery have the crucial similarity of both being exploiting sentient beings against their wills for your own benefit.

Of course, (rational) vegans don't value an animal's life as an equal to humans, but both beings have moral value, which, when exploited against their interests for no real benefit for anyone, would violate that moral value, thus making it immoral.
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Post by Tailend » Thu Jul 26, 2018 9:17 pm

Red:
I am still in a relationship with him. I am so glad to have found this forum. I am sure there are other people like me, who got caught in a relationship with someone who has a total different view points on issues. I am ok with us being different and respect it. The respect only goes one way is why I am so tired and feeling alone when being pressured to change. I came from South East Asia, so veganism is not a new concept to me. It is merely a choice. Just like politic or religion. Of course, when you meet a fanatic then it would be another story.

I kind of want to bring him to this page, but he is very stubborn and likely won't. I am just not sure what to do anymore. The more he pushes, the deeper I dig my heels. I am having a feeling, not sure how I got it, but if there is a situation where he can only save one, either a stranger child or his dog. He might save his dog. That feeling just bothers me to no end. And you are right, that would give vegans out there a bad reputation. I am glad that not all vegans are like that. That does give me hope.

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Post by Red » Thu Jul 26, 2018 9:27 pm

Tailend wrote:
Thu Jul 26, 2018 9:17 pm
Red:
I am still in a relationship with him. I am so glad to have found this forum. I am sure there are other people like me, who got caught in a relationship with someone who has a total different view points on issues. I am ok with us being different and respect it. The respect only goes one way is why I am so tired and feeling alone when being pressured to change. I came from South East Asia, so veganism is not a new concept to me. It is merely a choice. Just like politic or religion. Of course, when you meet a fanatic then it would be another story.
I understand that you have feelings for him, but this person doesn't seem like someone you would want to have a long term relationship with. Again, if they are extremely critical of people and are willing to shun them who don't share their viewpoint, I highly suggest staying away. If you want to still be just friends with him, that's probably okay though.
Tailend wrote:
Thu Jul 26, 2018 9:17 pm
I kind of want to bring him to this page, but he is very stubborn and likely won't. I am just not sure what to do anymore. The more he pushes, the deeper I dig my heels.
Don't worry, just stay on the forum and we'll help you out.
Tailend wrote:
Thu Jul 26, 2018 9:17 pm
I am having a feeling, not sure how I got it, but if there is a situation where he can only save one, either a stranger child or his dog. He might save his dog. That feeling just bothers me to no end. And you are right, that would give vegans out there a bad reputation. I am glad that not all vegans are like that. That does give me hope.
Most pet owners would likely save their dogs over a stranger, being vegan doesn't have much to do with it. It's usually morally wrong to do that (though I understand how difficult it would be).

Did you mean to say that if both the dog and person were strangers, he would save the dog? A yes answer to that is typical of crazy vegans. Or, if he would save a dog he doesn't know to a friend, well... that'd be disturbing.

Thankfully, your friend isn't most vegans. But seriously, try to get him here. Tell him we're also vegans and we want to have a discussion about their views. Can they speak English as good as you?
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esquizofrenico
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Post by esquizofrenico » Thu Jul 26, 2018 10:47 pm

Hi Tailend:

Maybe the abolitionist comparison is not the most adequate because how difficult it is for us to understand how normalized has been slavery during most human history, with many of the most important philosophers of the Ancient world seeing it as a moral obligation for some races to be enslaved. So I want to give you this other example.

Imagine that your boyfriend was a committed Christian that believed in human souls and because of that thought that abortion is not only immoral, but a horrible crime, and that you worked in a clinic in which abortions are practised. I completely understand if that person broke the relationship, not being able to accept as a long term partner someone he sees as doing a huge evil.

Even if you apply that "I respect what you think so you should respect what I think" rule (which I don't agree with), there are some problems that the relationship could have out of pure practicality. This topic will be a constant fuel for discussions between the two of you, and I imagine your boyfriend is not eager to start a relationship with that kind of baggage. Also, if you have children some day, this could be a HUUUUUUGE problem. What diet are you going to give them? Even if you promise you will educate them according to a vegan philosophy, you can bet your ass that your parents will have a lot to say about that. When Thanks Giving comes and your boyfriend forbids your son to eat turkey (something absolutely permissible, just as jews are allowed to forbid their children to eat pork), you can be sure a war is about to start. And not only that, but you won't be on your boyfriend's team.

So I'm sorry if this is not what you want to hear, but I think that your boyfriend is right about wanting his long term partner to share his opinion in this fundamental moral issue, that has a radical effect in the way a couple lives their life. I will most certainly do the same, due to the practicality reasons I explained to you.

However, that doesn't mean that your boyfriend is acting correctly. You have clearly stated that you are not interested in adopting a vegan life and that in fact you won't. Your boyfriend has to either leave you or to take you under your conditions. That continuous emotional blackmail he is doing to you it's just proof that he is not as committed and prone to sacrifice for the cause has he says he is. He wants to have it both ways by forcing you to agree with him using the power he has over you.

That is why I think you should tell him: "I am not vegan and I don't plan to be vegan in the future. If you start a long term relationship with me is under the condition that you acknowledge and accept this. Otherwise, we're done".

Still, this doesn't mean you're guiltless. You MUST do this, even if you know that you are not going to like the answer. Everyone has the responsibility of taking charge of their own existence. It takes two to tango. By refusing to accept that you cannot have a long term relationship with your boyfriend you are giving him the power he needs to blackmail you. Even more, you are implicitly blackmailing your boyfriend into changing his mind about this topic due to the way he feels about you.

So if you don't put an end to this situation yourself, I say you are as responsible as him of all the pain that for sure will come out of your relationship.

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