Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Dealing with Invitations, Family Reunions, Meals, etc.

Pao (aka porolita22) talks about the ins and outs of dealing with social gatherings with friends and family where food is being served.


Angela said...

Hi Myléne,
I live in France and have been vegan for little over a year now, and the only problem I've experienced is the social side; eating out, family gatherings, being envited to friends for dinner etc.. Although some friends and family make an effort, which I really appreciate, others don't. Either I have to bring my own food which can be insulting to the host/hostess and embarrassing for me, or I don't eat at all. I've even found myself considering eating non vegan to make others happy or feel more at ease, how backwards is that!! Why does our way of eating bother some and not others? I believe it has to do with there own insecurities and ignorence about vegan cooking. "No milk or eggs or even butter? What about fish? No?! What do I cook?" For me, this is a real problem in our society today; people don't know how to cook fresh foods anymore. Everything revolves around meat and animal products. Cooking a vegan meal shouldn't be so foreign to people. It just shows us how far out of balance our society's eating habits have become. I love to cook, in fact I used to be a professional chef(before I moved to France!), and I do cook meat for my friends if that's what they like, but I always make a similar vegan meal for myself. I'm always looking for a balance to bring these two worlds together! I think the most important thing to remember is the reason we gather around a table in the first place; to spend time with friends and family. So rather than looking in each others plates and pointing fingers, let's come together with understanding and an open mind! Wishful thinking, I know, but a girl's got to hope!!

M said...

Hi Angela,

Thanks for your thoughtful comment. I think that the social side of veganism is invariably what trips most people up. It's not that hard to change your life so that you may refrain from consuming animals and animal products, but it's our interactions with others while doing this that can make things tricky.

I'm not sure that I could or would cook animal products for other people, myself. I don't regard them as food and figure that there are so many delicious vegan concoctions I can offer guests. I walk around in a world surrounded by people who consume animals and every single meal I share with others in public places invariably ends up with some sort of flesh or animal secretion on the table; my own home's become a bit of a haven so that I neither have to subject myself to watching others consume nonhumans, nor do I have to enable this habit. Surely it can't be that excruciating for someone to refrain from consuming animal products for the brief period he or she is my (otherwise very well-fed) guest.