“I would send her off to where she came from. I mean…of course, she shouldn’t go vegan JUST for me. But if she doesn’t make the connection after two, three months of dating me, with all the information I provide, then I will cut her loose without a second thought. Can’t handle that much indifference and ignorance.”
That was what I got from a guy, I met not so long ago at one of New York’s weekly meet ups for vegans, when I asked him curiously, if he would ever date a meat-eater. I was astonished by his blunt honesty and a tiny bit offended. In all the years of my plant-based journey, it had never occurred to me, that I should rule out a date because the person I wanted to sleep, eat and spend most of my days with, didn’t mind eating animals for lunch. In fact, all the men I have ever seriously dated were heavy meat-eaters. Dang… Now that I see it infront of my eyes like that, I can not but wonder, was that a mistake?
Let´s take a look at the pros and cons of dating vegans vs. dating omnivores.
Perks Of Being With Another Vegan
Ok. So dating another vegan is great, I get it. You can share meals and be sure, that there is always a vegan breakfast waiting for you after a long night 😉 There are no meat breath kisses, no worries and awkward: “You have dead pig in your teeth”. You share the same values on a substantial topic and you have each other’s back at stressful social events (BBQ’s, Christmas). You don’t have to argue wether leather couches are ok or a no-go, where to store the meat in the fridge and if your future children are going to be vegan or not (cause that question comes up eventually). And of course you use vegan condoms. Less stress for all.
On The Other Side …
Let´s face it. How likely is it really, that we meet the one, or even just the next sexpot (yes, this word really exists, I googled it :p) and he or her happens to be a plant-based foodie and animal-lover, just as we are? It is not impossible, as I know from my own circle of friends. But that shit still raaaarely happens. It is much more likely, that a chick or dude, meets her/his sweetheart, who is NOT vegan at all, and after a while, thanks to sweet seduction and a whole lot, but subtle persuasion, sees the light and gives up on meat, dairy and leather boots. Which brings us to the next question…
You are not vegan but met an awesome person, that happens to be a plant-based foodie? Don’t worry, here is what you need to know:
So What About Dating A Non-Vegan?
A recent study found that 56 percent of vegetarians and vegans would put off dating a meat eater.
– Why is that? What did we just talk about?! C´mon!
Well, besides having different beliefs about animals and how they should be treated, there are physical traits of meat-eaters that play a role. Many vegans would compare kissing a meat-eater to a devout non-smoker kissing a smoker, and then refer to “pashing an ashtray”. And I admit, I am not a fan of kissing a guy that just devoured a steak either.
But it goes a step further: A recent study in the Czech Republic explored the effect of red meat consumption on body odour attractiveness. The result? Those on a vegan diet were “judged as significantly more attractive, more pleasant and less intense”. There you go, vegans are hot, chill and smell great.
In Bed With A Meat-Eater: How To Make It Work
So what happens if you have gotten it all right except for one tiny detail—you’re a vegan, but your partner or crush loves hamburgers?!
This must not be the end of your love story. Sure, you have to make up your mind. Even if you said before, that you only date herbivores, you might end up falling for the exact opposite. Or the other way around, you might meet another herbivore and happily ever after be sharing your soy milk lattes.
Feelings are hard to control. But is it a deal-breaker that your sweetheart eats meat, eggs and dairy!? Or can you accept the fact and come up with compromises, like going to veggie-friendly restaurants and work out agreements that satisfy both of you?
If you have to cry every time your lover bites into a chicken nugget, then it might be a sign that it is time to cut him or her loose.
If you decide you are ok with this, then stick to your word. The very best kind of activism is positive activism, so if you do end up with a meat-eater, remember that nagging them for their eating habits isn’t going to help the animals; it will only piss off the person you’re sleeping with and eventually ruin your relationship. On the other hand, if your partner won’t shut up about how it annoys him that you are vegan, than you should most likely move on. Respect should be mutual.
Being With A Non-Vegan Can Have Advantages And Be Fun.
Imagen you are meeting your lovers family for the first time. Being with a meat-eater forces you to leave your comfort zone, but also gives you the chance to leave a good impression, not only on yourself as a person, but also as ambassador of the vegan club. Remember that you are awesome, and so is Veganism, so be prepared to answer questions in a fun and humorous way, know what foods you can choose from a menu when you go out for dinner or prepare your rocking veggie lasagna for family gatherings. It is your time to shine and proof that your diet doesn’t make you ”high maintenance” . If people do give you a hard time, just know in your mind that it’s them and not you who´s the problem and swiftly change the subject.
Your relationship is not defined by being vegan or not.
Just like you don’t want to be identified as “the vegan” at a dinner party full of strangers, because you are so much more than that. Relationships are supposed to be fun, they are about having great sex, adventures and sharing laughter and tears, possibly even about building a life and a family together. Don’t let your diet and ethics take up all your relationship.
The choice is yours!
There are many bits and pieces that make a relationship work and food is only one of them. If you are a passionate vegan, than it will be difficult not to interest your partner in the lifestyle. The key to success is as so often: Communication. No matter what your partner puts on his plate.
So, getting back to the question, wether I am ok with dating non-vegans. I am and I will most likely continue to do so in the future. But you never know, what the universe has planned for you.
I hope you enjoyed this post, although this is a very controversial topic. I am curious to learn about your opinion on the matter, so please, leave a comment bellow or email me!
Best, Jen May
Cover Photo by João Silas / Unsplash
And as we are already on the topic: Protections is important!!! Always, always use a condom my friends. Here is all you need to know on vegan birth control!