It's Not A Phase.

I have been a vegetarian for 2 and a half years. My mother and my friends were and still are supportive. On the other hand my father and my stepmother have never been. Due to an iron deficiency and the fact I'm a teen and not finished growing, my doctor advised I eat fish (tuna, oysters, etc.). I agreed, and my mother also thought it was best. So about six months after becoming a vegetarian, I began eating fish. I will continue to eat fish until I am an adult and my doctor says he thinks it's healthy.
My father and stepmother insisted when I began "It's just a phase". Then, when I began eating fish, it gave my father the perfect opportunity to "prove" his point. He constantly says rude things, such as "Well if you're going to eat fish, you might as well eat this (insert meat/meat product here) also." or "Fish are animals too.". He says I'm not a "real" vegetarian. Yes, eating fish does make me a pescetarian, but I am following this because it is the healthiest choice, as I need more iron in my diet and I'm not full grown. He is constantly putting me down for it, and making fun of me in front of friends and other family.
I've had enough harassment at school for being a vegetarian. I don't want it at home too.
Is there something I can do to stop this? Should I just ignore him? Is there something I can say, without sounding rude?
It's not a phase.
electryone electryone
18-21
4 Responses Jul 29, 2010

So wait, one of you parents (i assume due to yr age) took you to the doctor who asked you to eat fish...because you're a decent kid who wants to be healthy you agreed, then your pops gives you **** about it? Is that right? What an ***!<br />
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Yr dad is not on American Dietetic Association or NIH or he would know vegetarian living is not a phase for many people and properly planned it is completely healthy. And you know what else? Yr doctor an MD spent very little time on nutrition or he would know it too. <br />
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I suggest that to make this stop you get in the car with your supportive parent and go visit a good registered dietitian, not a nutritionist or health consultant which can be ridiculously easy to claim in some States--and make a real plan to cut the fish and replace it properly.<br />
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Cheers,<br />
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Jikai

Electryone, if you have some time on your hands, I would recommend reading "The China Study". A friend of mine recommended it to me and I am currently working on it myself. There are a plethora of reasons to go veg even beyond moral grounds. I won't get into specifics, but the book is illustrating to me that we humans were never intended to eat meat in the first place. Anyways, you should at least google it and see so many more reasons (and ammunition for any sort of debate) for going green.

He didn't say it was the only source of iron. He went on about some of the important reasons teens need fish or something, I don't quite remember them though, haha. When I'm an adult, I am planning on removing fish from my diet, and possibly going vegan. But being under 18, my mother still has some control over my dietary choices.<br />
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And yes, my reasons for being vegetarian are the moral reasons. <br />
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And thank you for your help, I'll try the telling him the facts thing :)

I've been veg since 7th grade; vegan since college; that gives me a sum total of At Least No Meat for around 7 years. I'm female and I know all about the constant taunting of family and friends. . . guys always think theyre being clever AND cute when they make fun of your convictions, the stupidity never fails<br />
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I actually have a few questions:<br />
1) why eat fish? You can get iron from a lot of sources, like spinach/broccoli+citrus. Spinach is the ****: it's a numba 1 superfood. Your doctor is dumb if s/he says that you can only get iron from fish. No, really: s/he is.<br />
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2) also, why are you vegetarian?<br />
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I ask these questions, because if your reasons are the same as mine, then..... HONEY, you TRULY have the moral high ground in this situation. What you need to do is tell this *******: do you like factory farms? do you want to support people who slice chickens' beaks off w/ no anesthesia? who shove cows together so that they can't move, and their muscles deteriorate? the UN (that is, the United Nations, hello!) declared MEAT INDUSTRIES as the NUMBER ONE HUMAN cause of global warming. Is he okay with that?<br />
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If he IS okay with those facts, which illustrate the Status Quo, then you can prove he's an ******* (as he should go veg in order to subvert the status quo.). . . . if he is not okay with the SQ and continues harrassing you, he's . . . . even more of an *******. Either way, you need to argue your way into calling him out. If you want any help on this, lemme know, I can support a fellow veg. And I'll keep the all caps at a minimum :)<br />
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also, PETA has great factsheets for the quick and dirty truth.