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To be annoyed with "vegetarians" that eat fish

(238 Posts)
exBrightonBell Thu 03-Jan-13 20:43:41

If you eat fish then you aren't a vegetarian - it's as simple as that! I'm a vegetarian and it pisses me off when I say so, and the next question is "do you eat fish?" Er, no, because I already said that I'm VEGETARIAN. It's just lazy and it causes confusion for actual vegetarians.

Now I appreciate that the term pescetarian is a bit of a clunky term that is unlikely to be used. But it IS the correct name for the fish eating brigade.

eachtigertires Thu 03-Jan-13 21:12:22

Well I am not a vegetarian but I refer to myself as such when asked about my dietary requirements. It is because I meet a lot of new people on a regular basis and I generally have to explain to them why I don't eat meat (medical reasons) and do not want to explain every single time what a pescetarian is as well.

However, if people are veggies for ethical reasons I really really do not understand how they can justify eating chicken (in particular) or fish.

puds11isNAUGHTYnotNAICE Thu 03-Jan-13 21:14:34

Because stoopid people don't know what pescatarian means so look at you like you've grown a second head when you say it.

pamish Thu 03-Jan-13 21:22:59

I just say I don't eat things that feel pain. Then wait for the desperate bleatings about screaming cabbages.

TicTacTopToe Thu 03-Jan-13 21:34:48

Where did the 'but I eat fish/chicken' thing come from though? How did that start off as a commonly accepted exception, particularly the chicken thing?

You never hear someone say 'well, I'm veggie but I eat duck' or 'I'm veggie but I eat lamb' do you?

MaryIngalls Thu 03-Jan-13 21:39:12

Agree with puds...moreover if we are going to split hairs, then we need a separate term for each of the categories - vegans, vegans who eat dairy (vegetarians), vegetarians who eat eggs, vegetarians who eat chicken, vegetarians who eat fish......and any combinations of the above or indeed any other food groups. Am sure proper terms exist to describe each of these and more. Unnecessarily complicating things. It's easy to understand what a person WILL eat if he says 'veggie but eat fish/ chicken'.
On a second issue raised by some posters, food choice is a personal choice - it may or may not have anything to do with 'ethics'. Don't judge others for their food choices, so long as they are not putting others out by it.

MamaChocoholic Thu 03-Jan-13 21:43:12

I'm an ex veggie. when pregnant with dts I couldn't manage much food due to severe reflux, so persuaded myself to eat some fish as a high nutritional density food. I am still eating it whilst bf them. so far, I can tolerate smoked salmon, Prawn cocktail, or haddock if I cook it myself (i gave up meat and fish as a child because they made me feel sick, and adopted the politics after). yet on my works Christmas do I listed my dietary requirements as veggie because it is very unlikely I'd be able to eat any fish they served. a Jewish friend of mine says she's veggie at such things to be sure the food will fit in her version of kosher.

so... yanbu. if someone eats fish they are not veggie, and saying they are makes life more complicated for the next veggie who'll come along. but some of us not-veggies may still have valid reasons for saying we want to eat veggie food when out.

ConfusedPixie Thu 03-Jan-13 21:43:50

YADNBU. I was 'kindly informing' my housemate of this yesterday when he mentioned a vegetarian eating fish. I hate it, drives me mad!

surfingbabies Thu 03-Jan-13 21:51:00

My DP calls them "fakeatarians" smile

oopsadaisymaisy Thu 03-Jan-13 21:51:22

Wow, I'm amazed it angers people so' surely life is too short. I'm a pescetarian but sometimes say I'm vegetarian because I can't be bothered explaining or I'm not given the option, for example when I'm attending a function. I all try to be more thoughtful in future smile

TidyDancer Thu 03-Jan-13 21:55:39

OP, YANBU. This is a bugbear of mine. I am vegetarian, I don't eat fish. If I ate fish, I wouldn't be vegetarian. That's really all there is to it.

MrsDimples Thu 03-Jan-13 22:02:05


Pisses me right off.
I am a vegetarian & it makes life very difficult. Even with friends you've know for years sad, "can't you just eat a bit of fish?" angry.

QuacksForDoughnuts Thu 03-Jan-13 22:22:35

I don't mind so much if people use 'vegetarian' out of convenience when I know they sometimes eat fish, if they're prepared to actually be vegetarian for that occasion. If they go on to order fish in a restaurant after asking loads of questions about what's suitable for vegetarians, it gives the impression that we will all eat fish.

Beamur Thu 03-Jan-13 22:28:45

This argument that 'veggies' who eat fish will somehow make it confusing for omnivores to understand what vegetarianism is is specious.
People eat/don't eat a vast range of things for a vast number of reasons, we don't fit into little boxes (which I reckon is a good thing)
Some friends of mine won't eat anything that has the capacity to feel pain - include eggs in this description, but not milk...

80sMum Thu 03-Jan-13 22:33:24

A vegetarian diet with a bit of fish thrown in must surely be the healthiest diet there is. So, a good choice. But I agree that anyone who eats fish is not a vegetarian. What they mean is that they don't eat meat.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Thu 03-Jan-13 22:35:54

I don't eat nuffink wiv a face grin

exBrightonBell Thu 03-Jan-13 22:53:26

How does an egg have the capacity to feel pain? Especially as mass produced egg are unfertilised.

ChippingInLovesChristmasLights Thu 03-Jan-13 23:02:54

It is not a difficult concept - if you eat chicken or fish you are not vegetarian. There is no 'but...' if you need the 'but' *you are NOT vegetarian'

Beamur - it is a big deal because now when I eat out and ask for the vegetarian option I get offered salmon/cod/whatever and it is NOT vegetarian, that is frustrating enough, but what worries me more is that if a restaurant/chef thinks it's OK to serve fish as a vegetarian option, what the hell else do they think it's OK to put in my food.

How would you like to keep refusing cat/dog and worry about it being in your food? Same thing.

foreverondiet Thu 03-Jan-13 23:03:17

YABU, who cares what they call it.

FWIW I don't understand why vegetarians eat dairy as so much cruelty in the dairy industry.....

ChippingInLovesChristmasLights Thu 03-Jan-13 23:05:30

Oh to those who choose the vegetarian option or tell the chef they are vegetarian (when they aren't) that's totally fine - so long as you don't then order fish or chicken!

Mary - there are already terms for each 'option' of food choice

wannabedreams Thu 03-Jan-13 23:05:33

Well I'm an ex pescatarian who called myself a vegetarian who now eats meat (rarely) but always state vegetarian on dietary requirements as I will only eat the odd bit of good quality traceable meat so wouldn't want to be served up something I haven't pre-approved....

ChippingInLovesChristmasLights Thu 03-Jan-13 23:06:16

foreveronadiet - WE do for the reasons outlined above.

Dairy - that's an entirely different thread.

BunFagFreddie Thu 03-Jan-13 23:07:42

YANBU, eating fish is just not vegetarianism. Fish eaters who call themselves vegetarians are almost as bad as people who know you're a vegetarian and think you'll be fine with eating a meal that just has a little bit of meat in it. Or chicken or even wafer thin ham.

It's Kurt Cobain's fault for telling everyone that it's ok to eat fish because they don't have any feelings.

RaspberryLemonPavlova Thu 03-Jan-13 23:09:45

DD (12) is pescatarian, but we often say she is vegetarian because it is easier. There is nothing veggie based that she won't eat (although she isn't really keen on quorn mince), but there is an awful lot of fish she wouldn't eat. In reality she only eats tuna (tinned and steaks), prawns and scampi.

She won't eat anything gelatine based at all, but we have agreed a compromise on cheese, until she is responsible for her own shopping!

ivykaty44 Thu 03-Jan-13 23:13:40

I heard the expression today

limited carnivore

by a person who eats fish but no other meat

surely that is a better way of labelling yourself than vegetarian

Ilovewaleswhenitrains Thu 03-Jan-13 23:19:34

Vegetarians who eat eggs and milk (and milk products) are called lacto- ovo vegetarians. You can eat only fruit = fruitarian.
Vegetarians definitely do not eat anything which once lived ie meat and fish/shellfish. When I first became vegetarian (32yrs ago) I ate fish, after receiving information from the Vegetarian Society, I stopped eating fish because it pointed out in the literature that VEGETARIANS DON'T EAT FISH.

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