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DD has come out and has struggled with her conscience

(50 Posts)
marriedinwhite Thu 15-Nov-12 22:44:10

She told me very earnestly and quietly and said that as a member of this family it had been a very difficult decision and she was worried about her father's reaction especially. Her brother has already told her she is mad and unreasonable.

I have accepted the inevitable but how does one cope with a vegetarian who thinks it also right to eschew fish.

Tonight she has had rice with pesto, green beans and a fried egg. We had Chicken curry.

Will it be a phase that she will grow out of or do you think we must embrace her choice. What help for easy family meals where we can eat meat and she can have veg.

What about protein?

marriedinwhite Mon 19-Nov-12 20:36:51

Have been incredibly busy. With her dislike of sauces I think she will end up looking like an egg soon.

She seems to be eating enough. I'm struggling with the variety aspect. Have bought some quorn type stuff tonight - chicken slices and breaded chicken fillet. She's had a handful of the slices and wants to try the chick fillet even though her friends say it's "disgusting". DS has just ribbed her about how she can be a veggie because she doesn't like the taste of meat and then eat stuff described as "disgusting".

She seems to be eating plenty of non healthy stuff such as: crisps, smoothies, biscuits, cake so I don't think she's limiting food.

DS's view is that she'll soon get fed up and lapse. We'll see.

She has been very fussy for years though. No gravy, no sauce, no cooked carrot, for a long time only eating pizza crust (but that was the cooked tomato) - has always liked dry food but always been happy with a grilled lamb chop, new pots and a veg or a pan fried fillet of plaice and veg and spud, etc., whilst we have had it casseroled or fish pie, etc. And has always had a roast without the gravy.

The Vegetarian this is worrying though because she doesn't like pulses or nuts or sauce so am a bit "stuffed" thinking of good stuff that she will eat.

Merrow Mon 19-Nov-12 10:07:19

I had an eating disorder as a teenager, and was vegetarian. The two weren't explicitly linked, but it did reassure me to have certain limits on my food. When my life gets stressful now it still shows in my diet – I get a bit obsessive with getting the correct amount of fruit and vegetables, for instance. So, while it could be linked, I wouldn't necessarily worry that it's a sign that your DD is planning on cutting down her food intake again.

exexpat Mon 19-Nov-12 09:53:47

But if not 'cooperating' with it involves forcing her to eat meat when she doesn't want to, wouldn't that be rather counter-productive? I would have thought it would lead to more battles over food and refusal to eat.

I still can't eat some things I was forced to eat as a child: just the thought of rice pudding makes me feel ill, and it took me years to eat a boiled egg again after my mother made me eat one every morning (she was worried because I lost a bit of weight when I was 13 - wasn't anorexic, just lost interest in food for a bit after puberty growth spurt).

CMOTDibbler Mon 19-Nov-12 09:26:18

if she has previously had an eating disorder, then this can be a sign of further restrictions, so I'd be wary of cooperating with it tbh

Rollmops Mon 19-Nov-12 09:19:42

Apparently I was, in no particular order, an anti-potatoe'ist, anti breddist, anti chicken'ist (I remember, there was a most gruesome X-Files episode dealing with cannibalistic chickens, which was to blame), and a full-on veggie - which I actually don't remember, but dear family does. Vividly.
All the above during ones nutritionally turbulent teenage years.
It all passed and one is a happy omnivore again.
Have strength and patience.

ivykaty44 Sun 18-Nov-12 18:56:42

Bertie, it is a case of 'animal cruelty' to needlessly kill an animal. Free range good welfare actually means nothing at all. Just phrases to make meat-eaters feel good about their selfish actions.

OP, there is protein in every plant cell. Here's a useful chart for you, should you still be concerned. https://pinterest.com/pin/124130533450985032/. It is very difficult to be protein-deficient as a veg*n.

There is overwhelming evidence that meat (and dairy) are more detrimental to our health. Good on your daughter.

BertieBotts Sun 18-Nov-12 01:57:49

If you're worried about her eating perhaps it would be an idea to discuss why she feels she wants to be veggie? If it's a case of animal cruelty then you could make sure you seek out free range, good welfare meat etc (and maybe sneak some cheaper stuff in when she's not looking blush) or if it's concerns about health then maybe organic stuff?

It might be a case that if she's anxious in general about food it's just something that's manifesting about that. I get similar with everyday things, not food specifically, but things like I read that you shouldn't put a washing machine on when you're in bed/out because it's a fire risk, and consequently I didn't do any washing for ages because every time I thought about doing it I'd be about to go to bed or go out within the next hour or so and I became anxious about it. And once I read that you shouldn't brush your teeth within an hour of eating because it can brush the sugars, acids etc directly into your tooth enamel, and again, it led to me not brushing them at all because I was so worried about my tooth enamel - I was probably doing more damage by avoiding it! blush In both cases I had to realise eventually that by trying to do things perfectly to the letter I was failing at doing them at all and that it was better to just do it and not worry, than worry so much that I wasn't doing it.

It might be worth speaking to her about thought patterns like this and how sometimes we put pressure on ourselves to do everything "right" whereas sometimes it's more important to just do it and not worry about whether it's right or not. I get very anxious and if I listened to it I would drive myself insane so I've had to learn to tune it out to an extent.

exexpat Sun 18-Nov-12 01:32:55

I turned vegetarian at 16 and still am at 44, so don't count on it being a phase.

I learnt to cook for myself pretty quickly, though the rest of the family ate an increasing number of vegetarian meals, specially after my sister & her boyfriend also turned veggie.

I'd recommend getting a few vegetarian cookbooks - Sam Stern's Eat Vegetarian is a good one aimed at teenagers - and get her involved in choosing and cooking things. There are also a few recipe books around which have recipes easily adapted for a combination of veggie/non-veggie eaters.

And there are an awful lot more quick substitutes (veggie burgers, sausages, quorn etcetc) around now than there were when I was 16.

Ullena Sun 18-Nov-12 01:12:42

I think you should tell her brother not to call his sister mad and unreasonable sad

Potato and lentils, cooked with chilli, coriander and garlic
Mushroom and asparagus soup
Omelette with mixed vegetables (if she eats eggs)
Pan fried mashed potato cooked with shredded cabbage, peas and wensleydale cheese

All very tasty, imo.

Cynner Thu 15-Nov-12 23:53:46

Oh yes, I did forget to add DD snacks on a variety of nuts, and does peanut butter on toast often..

stargirl1701 Thu 15-Nov-12 23:47:47

I went through a phase like this as a teenager. Mum cooked bacon rolls. Phase over. grin

Startail Thu 15-Nov-12 23:42:10

At 14 she can get on the web and down the library and write a weeks menu.
If it looks sensible then fine she can try it.

DSIL and my best friend eat veggi food.
(DSIs is a strict ethical veggi, BF is Jewish, so will eat some fish and kosher. However, DD2 declares its ok to eat land animals, but fish must be left swimming freeconfused and kosher meat rules are complicated)

I find cooking for these two is fine, it's veggi cooking for fussy people that's difficult. BIL doesn't like *mushrooms, which means no mushroom nut roast and their DCs are fussier still.

* this is basicly mushroom white sauce, onions and crushed cashews, like posh stuffing.it's yummy and very acceptable to most meat eaters.

DMIL had to make way more than one DSILs worth at Xmas because we all stole it.
DMIL was mostly a veggie, but never quite gave up bacon.

So at 14, I don't see why the OPs DD shouldn't be a veggie so long as she eats most veg, nuts and pulses.

Alisvolatpropiis Thu 15-Nov-12 23:35:04

Whirlpool no you are not the only one!

OP - if she is serious about being a vegetarian encourage her to lean how to provide a varied diet for herself. I know a vegetarian who left to his own devices i.e if his long suffering wife doesn't cook for him (also vegetarian) is capable of making himself chips. That is all :/

MakeItALarge Thu 15-Nov-12 23:34:53

There is quite a wide range of veggie burgers, sausages, even bacon if you think she would eat those?

Do you think this is a moral issue though or a return of her food problems, being veggie may be a good excuse for her to get out of joining family meals

Cynner Thu 15-Nov-12 23:33:28

My 14 year old has been veggie for about a year. She is very sportive so I was concerned about her taking in enough protein. I had a chat with GP, he gave me list of vitamin supplements. I also checked out some very simple veggie recipes to make. DD relies heavily on soups, veggie burgers, eggs, and giant salads. She is very strong in her conviction not to eat meat, and I try to be as supportive as possible.

*TwitchY
x post

marriedinwhite Thu 15-Nov-12 23:31:46

Not sure.

Given her history of eating disorders I would be a bit concerned that she is making a new set of rules to restrict her eating but socially acceptable rules by picking vegetarianism.

The supermarkets do veggie burgers, sausages etc so perhaps use those as a direct meat substitute for now and ask your DD to start researching good veggie dishes that she would try.

TwitchyTail Thu 15-Nov-12 23:28:48

Hmm, just saw your most recent post. Are you worried about a recurrence of her borderline eating disorder? She most likely won't be a healthy vegetarian if she refuses all the things on that list. Do you think she might be looking for an excuse not to get out of eating the family dinner without suspicion? confused

VenusRising Thu 15-Nov-12 23:28:21

Send her on a vegetarian cookery course. It's important she balances her proteins - grains with pulses etc.
Relying on Linda McCarthy burgers isn't a healthy way to live.

TwitchyTail Thu 15-Nov-12 23:25:57

Yep, I did the vegetarian phase too - 10 years. (No offence to people for whom it's not a phase!) Pork chops got me in the end.

If she wants to be vegetarian, good on her - but if you happen to be the family cook, make it clear from the outset that she will have to put the effort in to facilitate her choice, not you. She can learn to make simple vegetarian meals, prepare extra dishes for days when the rest of you are having meat, and so on. It won't hurt your family to have meat-free dinners on some days of the week, but don't get into the habit of making two separate meals a day.

marriedinwhite Thu 15-Nov-12 23:25:56

Only problem is dd doesn't eat cooked tomato or any form of sauce or gravy (except for cheese sauce and then only with macaroni or cauliflower). Can't do quorn type spag bols and usually if we have chicken curry dd will have half a grilled chicken breast with rice and some veg.

DD eats eggs, toast, rice, pasta, cheese, bread, vegetables but not cooked tomatoes or carrots. Will eat tinned beans and spaghetti in sauce. DD has historically had a plain lamb chop when we have had lamb shanks, a fillet of plaice when we have had fish pie, a chicken breast when we have had chicken curry.

This really isn't going to be difficult and we have lifted dd once off the verge of anorexia. That was a couple of years ago but although my post was tongue in cheek I am genuinely quite worried about this. Oh, and she doesn't like nuts and won't eat quiches or flans.

apostropheuse Thu 15-Nov-12 23:24:13

My daughter became a vegetarian at 12. She was veggie for about six months. She lasted until the moment I put the Christmas dinner on the table.

I would look at quorn and soya products as a back up for convenience. A lot of the time it doesn't take too much thought to adapt. e.g. serve lentil dahl or mutter paneer with your chicken curry and your DD can eat that instead and the carnivores get to eat both.

I went through this phase when I was 15 and I still don't eat meat 28 years later although I did start eating fish about 5 years ago.

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