How to stay happy when you’re vegan and your partner is not

Hello Friends!

This post will have to be written time and time again as my husband and I gain more experience, face more challenges, and live with this lifestyle a little bit longer. I’m excited about the growth that will happen! But for now, let me share what I have learned.

Before you read on, I have to insert a disclaimer here. I am passionate about the ethical reasons I am a vegan. However, my dearest and closest loved ones do not share many of my convictions at this point, and they are the dearest and most important in the world to me. So that being said, I still keep some animal products on hand in my home, ones that have been sustainably produced, and the animals treated humanely during their lifetime.

Now I shall continue. Just had to get that off my chest, and put that out there for my fellow vegans. My husband is such a good sport… He not only puts up with every new trend I try but he strives to show genuine interest. I love him. And not just for that. 🙂 He’s on board when I try new recipes, and has an open palette and will try just about anything. I am so grateful. This awesome quality of his has made the transition experience more enjoyable. And he will also admit he feels better on his “mostly plant-based” lifestyle.

We have been married five years and have known each other nine. That’s a lot of drive through and late night snacks on the couch. How would that look different now, we wondered? While it does change things, those changes don’t have to be complicated. And the key for us has been making sure that when snack attacks come, there are enough options in the kitchen that each of us can feel good about. We can both enjoy cheesy nachos together! Mine just look a little different than his do. 🙂

Here are some thoughts we have to share with those of you who might be wondering how to make it work.

  • We both like adventure. It’s been fun trying new things together. Maybe hit up some new restaurants and try some new foods! Expand your horizons! The world of real whole foods is incredibly diverse and beautiful!
  • Be the ones to bring the food to the party. When we get together with friends, we are finding that we have to be the ones to bring a big dish to pass. We love it! It ensures I will be able to enjoy myself there as much as he will and no one has to spend time worrying about whether they’ll go home hungry.
  • Learn to enjoy time together that doesn’t involve food. Go to events and do things that don’t fall over meal times.
  • Occasionally he puts some organic free range chicken in the crock pot at the beginning of the week and he has that available for the week to pack in his lunches or snack on if he feels he needs to. I also have been keeping eggs and tuna on hand, and a bit of cheese and yogurt. But we don’t go through it very fast, I’ll tell you that! It’s kind of nice.
  • He has his eating out budget and he can make his own decisions about how he spends that and I don’t judge. It just doesn’t come into the house.
  • Beloved Pizza night? Still have it. It’s easy to make pizza vegan, and it’s so fun to top it with garden fresh vegetables. Our son absolutely loves to help us top the pizzas with sauce and veggies. It becomes more of a salad on a crust, but it’s a delightful treat for the family or when guests come over.

Have this scenario in your life? Do you have any practical tips for how to share mealtimes with your partner or close friends if your diets are vastly different? Leave a comment!

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