How to Talk to Your Spouse About Going Vegan & Keep the Peace
March 26, 2021
I hear again and again from new vegans that their husband, boyfriend, wife or girlfriend won’t go vegan.
These people are asking how they can talk to their spouses about going vegan.
Many people come from a hunting and fishing background, or maybe their family is into farming.
It could be something as simple as knowing your spouse “loves their meat” and would never entertain the idea of going vegan.
This makes us second guess our decision and causes stress and anxiety.
Today I’m going to break down how you can talk to your spouse about going vegan successfully and give you some tips on how to be vegan when your spouse is not.
How to convince your family to go vegan
First things first,
This article is not about How to convince your family to go vegan.
If there were some sort of magic phrase or meal to make, I’d share it-trust me!
I know that once you’ve made the decision to live vegan or eat plant-based it can be so difficult if your boyfriend, girlfriend, spouse, or partner won’t see things the way you do and go vegan with you.
Being a vegan married to a meat eater has it’s challenges!
But, we need to remember that everyone has a right to make their own decisions.
And for my fellow ethical vegans….you’re right, it shouldn’t be a personal choice when there is a victim involved, but for the sake of speaking to our closest family and friends, in my experience, this stance only causes more problems.
Everyone is on their path at a different place, and I recommend practicing street activism or outreach online rather than with your immediate family.
I’ll get into more detail in a future post about why this is so important, but for now, let’s just stick with how to be vegan when your spouse is not.
How do I get my partner to go vegan?
If you are really wanting to know how you can get your partner to go vegan then here are a few tips:
Lead by example. The more they see you thriving and enjoying your food, the more they may want to try it too.
Watch a documentary or two. Game changers is really popular for people who are into sports and bodybuilding. What the Health is eye-opening and shows how plant-based eating can prevent and reverse disease. And for the ethics, you just can’t go wrong with Dominion. Just bring the Kleenex.
Prepare delicious meals. Good food is good food. Doesn’t matter if it’s plant-based or not. I’ve had terrible animal-based meals in the past and terrible vegan meals too. Once you find a few awesome recipes you both love that are vegan, it’ll be WAY easier to eat together! More on this down below!
Living with non vegans can be difficult
I read a really well-done article from the Guardian while researching for this post.
A woman wrote in terribly upset that her husband had gone vegan.
She stated he felt amazing and actually lost 50 pounds, but she just didn’t believe that veganism was healthy (preferring keto and low carb), and she was upset that he kept reading vegan “propaganda” and refused to eat traditional family meals.
She was hurt, angry and saddened that he may never cook the same meals she used to love.
Very eye opening…
…and the counselor who answered the concern laid out such a great (and surprising) response explaining that it is likely they have underlying issues in the relationship, as going vegan shouldn’t be the thing that breaks a solid foundation.
It’s interesting to see how deeply a change like this can affect our spouses and partners….especially if certain aspects of the relationship are already challenged.
How do you talk to someone about being vegan?
Watch the video here:
So then, how do you actually talk to someone about being vegan-especially if you’re concerned you may hurt their feelings, rock the boat, or start a fight?
Here are my best tips on how you can have your first conversation.
Notice here that I say first.
Because there will be many!
How to Talk to Your Spouse About Going Vegan:
Get your reasons crystal clear. When you are firm in your decision and you explain what your real motivations are for making the change, this can really hit home for your spouse. To help you lay it all out and bring those deep motivations to the surface, be sure to grab a free copy of my signature resource, the Finding Your Why Workbook. This workbook takes you through a series of exercises that will make it very easy for you to articulate your feelings about veganism or plant-based eating and make the conversation ultra-smooth.
Make it about you-not them. You’re not trying to convince them of anything. You both have autonomy, and it’s crucial to show respect to one another.
Offer reassurance. Many spouses are afraid that this change will mean an end to the relationship as it’s always been. Reassure your spouse that there will still be special times between you-even if it’s over a different plate of food
Tell them again. Remind them of all the things you can still share together, and why you chose to be with them in the first place. Did you get together because you both loved eating turkey? I bet there were deeper reasons than that.
How can I be vegan when my husband is not?
You still might be wondering like how to actually be vegan when your husband or wife is not, so here are a few BONUS quick cooking tips to keep the peace at the dinner table:
You can choose to cook meat for your partner or to let them do it themselves.
Have easy build your own style meals like buddha bowls, tacos, and DIY plates of pasta or pizzas.
Make meals the same way using plant-based swaps like beyond meat crumble and vegan cheese. Use my Vegan Swaps Checklist to find your favorites
Many vegan bloggers have created incredibly meaty recipes using only whole plants.
Here are just a few of my favorites from the blog:
Megan Kerry is a Vegan Lifestyle Educator and Licensed Practical Nurse. Her content focuses on vegan recipes and ethical living. She is a mom of four children, a long time vegan, and an even longer time foodie. She loves veganizing any and all dishes and sharing her recipes and lifestyle tips with all of you!