- Wedding: November 2011 - Florida Aquarium
I’ve been vegan since I was 12 and I was vegetarian for four years before that (I’m 26) for ethical reasons. Growing up, my dad was vegetarian but my mom ate dead animal (not using the term to be offensive, it is honestly how I refer to dead animal). My brother became vegetarian, and I followed suit.
The story goes, I was about 7 and my mom’s friend had gifted me a fur bunny coat. I didn’t really understand. It was pretty, warm and soft. Well, I wore said coat with my dad to a Hindu temple. On the way to the temple, my dad turned to me and said, “Gee, Stephie, I wonder how many Bugs Bunnies it took to make that coat?” I was absolutely inconsolable once he, then, explained that I was wearing real dead rabbits. Soon thereafter, he had two vegetarian kids.
Once I understood what I was eating, I didn’t want to eat it anymore.
When I was 12, I read an article about chickens being bred with no beaks or feet because they go crazy in the coups and kill each other. So I researched further and found veganism. It made total sense to me- and zero to my parents. I tried it out for three weeks before telling them to make sure I could do it. I could and I did.
In terms of my husband, I do the cooking and I don’t cook dead animal. He’s more than welcome to eat it when we’re out, and I don’t force anything on him. He loves my cooking and is very satisfied by it. In the beginning, (7 year relationship) it was difficult for us, but now, it’s just how we live. He finds recipes (he has his own account on vegweb.com), and I cook them– we cook together, too.
In fact, after visiting a petting zoo, he stopped eating cows. The next time, he stopped eating pigs. He says chicken and turkey will always be fair game, and if that’s how he remains, that’s fine with me. I don’t pressure him.
To be honest, I don’t justify it to other people anymore. When I was young, I would get so defensive and try to explain everything. Now, it is how I am, and that’s the end of the story. Of course, if anyone has questions, I’m happy to answer, but I won’t debate my choices any longer. I respect the choice to eat dead animal, and I hope others respect my choice not to.
Sorry… that ended up being a novel.