1. I LOVE food.
Although many vegetarian and vegan recipes are delicious, there are many more meals containing meat and animal products that are just as delicious (and if I’m being completely honest, much better than their vegan/veggie versions). I would say this is the main reason I didn’t make the change earlier, I struggle to resist good food and when you’re in a restaurant with a fantastic menu and the V option is a paltry offering somewhere down the bottom of the list of mains, it is soul destroying. Many of my former favourite restaurants are now just disappointing to me. This was a difficult learning curve for me and I hold out hope that vegan options continue to grow and improve in our shops, pubs and restaurants.
2. I am busy.
I am a complete busybody, my career has always been my first priority and I am used to working 12 hours shifts (occasionally 13 or 14 hours depending on how my day is going), which means that my days off work are precious to me. As such, I don’t want to worry about what I can/can’t eat, can/can’t buy, can/can’t do. I want life outside of work to be easy, because life inside my work is anything but that.
3. I didn’t know where my food was coming from.
There are still so many people who haven’t the faintest idea where their food comes from and the horrors of factory farming. I understand it, ignorance is bliss and life is easier when you can buy some chicken breasts or a pint of milk from a supermarket shelf without knowing where it came from and how it reached that shelf. I tried to avoid this information myself for many years, having some idea that there was cruelty involved and that it was bad for the environment, but not wanting to know the full truth so that I didn’t have to alter my lifestyle.
4. Being vegan can be expensive.
This is actually more of a myth. Being vegan doesn’t have to be expensive in terms of monetary value, there are plenty of ways to sustain yourself on a very cheap vegan diet. The problem is that it is expensive in other ways. It is expensive in terms of money if you buy lots of substitutes (e.g. fake meats/cheeses/ready made meals/recipe kits), but if you choose the cheaper options and make every meal from scratch it takes up more time. And what are we all told? “Time is money”.
5. My friends aren’t vegan.
In fact, some are openly anti-vegan. I wish I didn’t care what other people think, but sadly I do.
6. Veganism, and other actions showing that you care about something, can be attributed to weakness.
This deserves its own blog post. In terms of it being a reason as to why I arrived late to the party, it’s because I am fiercely independent person and I want to portray strength all of the time. To show that you care about something is to be vulnerable, and vulnerability is not my strong suit.
So there you go, these were my honest reasons. I made the leap into veganism at the start of 2021, and although this is only recent I have been trying to be “as vegan as possible” for years and this feels like a permanent change. Although I would say vegan is the best way to describe me now, I am all too aware of the negative associations that some people have with the word, and I acknowledge that I’m likely to make mistakes. I see this as something to continue to work at, not something that is achieved and the work stops there.