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LOOKING for: mixed families :-)

Posted by
Carol Ann
( on
Sat, Nov 11, 00 at 9:31


Are any of you in families where you are the main cook and also a vegetarian but some of your family isn't? Are you a vegetarian for ethical reasons? Do you cook meat for your carnivores?

My mom doesn't care much about meat but my dad does and I'm wondering how to cook for them (or if I can). I quit eating meat because I don't want to be part of the suffering (I liked the comment in an earlier post about "animals as food crops.") However, my parents are elderly, I live in the same area, and it may well fall to me to take care of one of them when the other one is gone, and even now, I'm stumped on having them over for a meal. Dad was rasied a farmer in the midwest and loves his meat (love of a good steak was something we used to share....). I'm trying to reconcile wanting to make my parents happy with my own values. Do any of you not eat meat for the same reason I don't eat meat, and still cook meat for others? How do you feel about that?

I know some people don't eat meat for health reasons and so they won't have the same dilemma.

I appreciate your answers - thanks!!


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: LOOKING for: mixed families :-)

Hi Carol,
I am a vegetarian for just the same reason as you. I don't want to take part in the suffering and deaths of all those animals. I do the cooking at my house, and I only cook vegetarian. My husband eats meat, but also loves my cooking. He just eats meat out or if we order take out. My father also eats a lot of meat, but not when he comes over to eat dinner at my house. I like oily, salty, spicy food, so I tend to add those sorts of things when I am cooking. I add olive oil when I am cooking beans to replace some of the greasyness you would have had if you had cooked it with meat. i also use some meat substites like those ground meat substitutes when I make pasta and tomato "meat" sauce. I think if you can fill in what sort of quality is missing people are much more able to accept meatless food. I had not considered having to do all of the cooking for my father, but I don't believe I would cook with meat. Cooking is a creative, loving outlet as well as utilitarian. Fooling with meat just can't be a part of that for me. I would get him something from out, because that seems more removed. Like you are running him an erend. I wouldn't want to be taking control just because maybe he can't do things for himself anymore.
I think maybe you should try having your parents over meals regularly, so they can see how good vegetarian meals can be, and so maybe they will get used to the idea that this is how you cook. If you are really unsure of meals to plan look at some cook books that don't place so much emphasis healthy low fat vegetarian food.
well, that's what I think. Good Luck.

RE: LOOKING for: mixed families :-)

Hi Carol Anne, it can be really tough to sort out these types of issues for yourself. Like you, I also choose not eat meat/animal products for ethical reasons, and my husband remains an omnivore. For myself, I have decided that I am not comfortable purchasing or cooking meat. I have discussed my reasons for this with him, and he knows that if he wants meat he needs to cook it himself, and clean up too! It's not easy, but I think it's really important that once you reach a decision you are consistent. I have found that once I resolved these types of questions for myself, it has become easier for all around me - they know what my boundaries are, and are able to respect them.
Good luck and happy veggin'!


RE: LOOKING for: mixed families :-)

I have recently returned to a vegetarian diet after gaining a lot of weight and "re-discovering" the reasons I became vegetarian in the first place. My husband is a lovely person but doesn't mind eating meat. He works through the dinner hour 4 to 5 nights a week, so when he is home, if he wants to eat meat that night, he cooks for himself and the children and I cook for myself. The rest of the time, I cook for myself and the children (and him when he's in a "veggie mood"). We have found many meals that we all like that do not contain meat. Having two or three good recipes for bean or nut loaves, potato based patties or other foods that have textures similar to meat seem to go over pretty well. Over all we are eating a much more varied diet and a lot more fruit and green leafy vegetables so I don't worry too much that the rest of the family is not getting adequate nutrition...

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