Becoming vegan is the most gratifying and meaningful life decision I have ever made. With that being said, it can be a real pain in the ass sometimes. Here are a few of the things that make me feel like I just can’t even deal.
1. There is milk in everything.
You think soy is the most ubiquitous ingredient out there? Explain to me how milk ends up in a bag of BBQ chips, egg whites in a Payday peanut bar, and animal cartilage (gelatin) in Frosted Mini Wheats! Whenever vegans feel confident or safe picking up an innocuous-looking treat without scrutinizing the label, that is when we discover the stomach-churning truth that animal products are sneaked into so many products, unnecessarily. Save your receipts, veg-heads, and brush up on your mad nutrition label-reading skills.
2. The Protein Question.
Seriously. SERIOUSLY. The general public has been so saturated by commercials and product packaging that you would think we each needed 90 percent of our dietary nutrients to be protein. This couldn’t be farther from the truth, nor could the accusation that plant-based foods are low or devoid in protein. A balanced vegan diet gives people all the protein they need. Annoyingly, however, the general public does not want to face how the Standard American Diet’s reliance on animal protein is killing us. But we’re the crazy, unhealthy ones.
3. Not having enough space for 30 rescue chickens, 5 rescue goats, 3 rescue calves, and 100 rescue piglets.
I mean, come on. Every time I watch a video of a pig frolicking through a farm sanctuary, there’s my bank account mocking me with its lack of funds to afford multiple sprawling acres of farmland to house my new friends. It’s just cruel. My dream of being a mama to rescued animals must wait.
4. Being served animal products after ordering a vegan dish.
This is a pain on many levels. Firstly, vegans are held to a different standard than omnivores when it comes to handling an incorrect food order. If a meat-eater is brought the wrong sandwich by his server and he throws a tantrum, no one is going to generalize all omnivores as foolish, loudmouthed crybabies, but there’s a chance they could paint a broad brush across all vegans if we act this way.
Secondly, the inconvenience of sending our food back, and even creating unnecessary food waste, is at the bottom of our list of concerns if we are unexpectedly served animal flesh or their secretions. Ethical vegans choose plant-based foods because paying for, eating, or otherwise creating a demand for products of cruelty is something we fiercely oppose. Every time our Chipotle staffer throws out an entire burrito because she didn’t hear us say “no” to sour cream we feel pangs of the bottomless despair that cow went through so humans could exploit her – all for the product of her suffering to end up in the trash.
5. Most of your vegan friends living super-far away.
One of the most incredible benefits of living a vegan lifestyle is connecting with other, like-minded individuals – sometimes from all over the world! Social media has allowed friends and acquaintances on opposite sides of the globe stay connected, yet only feeling the camaraderie and validation from your vegan friends when you sign onto Facebook can be a drag. Until more of the population goes cruelty-free, our veggie pals may continue to be spaced far apart. We’ll get there, though. We’ll get there.
What are some of your biggest eye-rolling parts of being vegan?