You are here

advice on how to handle a vegan-hating MIL

i'm vegan and my daughter is a strict vegetarian (she has the occasional ice cream cone,when someone else gives it to her)....from the time she was born i have said that i can cope with her having dairy every once in a while, but i absolutely will not tolerate her eating any meat. i said that when she is old enough i will explain where it comes from and then let her make an informed decision...

lately i get the sneaking suspicion that my mother in law has been giving her meat behind my back....this morning i heard her asking my MIL for some BACON....(also, we live with my in laws right now and my MIL keeps our daughter while hubs and i are at work,so it makes it very difficult to say anything to her because if she stops watching our daughter,we are screwed as far as daycare goes)....i asked my daughter if she had bacon for breakfast this morning and she said, "yes. it was sooooo yummy". i am completely furious! i just dont know what to do. i know if i say anything at all it will turn into WWIII. we are already in such a bind right now, i dont want to make it worse...

it is just SO disrespectful of her to go behind my back and feed her the ONE thing i've been adamant about...i've let all of the candy slide and the ice cream and the junk food....she does buy her soy milk and tofu, which is nice but the other day she read a "book" by some "doctor" that said soy beans are poisonous and they contain the same chemicals as hot dogs and they are linked to accelerated brain aging and cancer and now she said that she isnt going to buy any more soy...even though we pointed out that there was not a SINGLE citation in the entire thing..

none of my friends are vegan and cant understand why i am so upset...i was hoping some of you might have some advice for me....i am at the end of my rope with this woman!  >:(

Advice?  That's tough, I mean I'd freak out on her.  Will she listen to your husband?  Does he support your wishes for your daughter.

I guess another tactic might be to work through your daughter.  I'd hate to see you drive a wedge between the two, but kindly explain to her where bacon comes from, and while some people eat it (ick), you and she do not.

And, if nothing else, you can explain to your MIL once again your wishes, point out this is YOUR daughter, and then gouge her eyeballs out.  Ok, not really, but I think I'd about lose it on her ass.

0 likes

Advice?  That's tough, I mean I'd freak out on her.  Will she listen to your husband?  Does he support your wishes for your daughter.

I guess another tactic might be to work through your daughter.  I'd hate to see you drive a wedge between the two, but kindly explain to her where bacon comes from, and while some people eat it (ick), you and she do not.

And, if nothing else, you can explain to your MIL once again your wishes, point out this is YOUR daughter, and then gouge her eyeballs out.  Ok, not really, but I think I'd about lose it on her ass.

i agree with this.

how old is your daughter, though? in terms of the "explain to her that you and she do not "... depends on the age. honestly, i'd give your daughter a little more say.. pretty much at any talking age. i don't think it's ever too early for a child to learn about why they are or should be vegan, but i do think that it should never be forced on a child to eat a certain way, unless your house is strictly vegan, then it's fine to say "i'm not feeding you anything else in this house".

0 likes

she is YOUR daughter and you have the right to choose what she eats... that is so horrible that she would go behind your back and do that... maybe you can make her meals ahead of time and tell your MIL these are her meals for the day... where is your husband? he needs to sit down and have a talk with her

0 likes

  Man I'm not nearly so polite. Sue her!  Charge her with child abuse. Report her to family services. She is abusing your child by not following the parents' wishes.  Do you pay her? Try that way.

0 likes

Ok, that is *not* about food... just like the way rape's about violence vs sex, your MIL is using food to manipulate her relationship with you into what she wants it to be. She is saying, 'I know more than you about raising children; and you're in my debt, so I have more power than you, within this family.'

I think you have to sit down with her-- just the two of you, not your husband or daughter... Try to not gouge her eyeballs out right away, but say something like, 'This is what it seems like has been happening-- do I have it right? I'm trying to understand where you're coming from.' Let her talk. Listen, don't react-- reflect back/ rephrase what she tells you, without adding anything else, until she's done presenting her views. (This is hard! But a solution here depends on this relationship. Let her feel like you're listening to her, and considering her input without judgment. Take calming breaths!)

Then ask if she understands that this issue is very important to you-- she doesn't have to understand why, or agree with your views-- but just have her acknowledge that she understands the *fact* that (for whatever reason) this is important to you. Emphasize that this is an ethics issue, like what church to raise your child in; for someone else to undermine the ethics you're trying to pass on to your child is deeply hurtful. If she knows how important this is to you, and chooses to do something that hurtful to you, and keeps doing it after you talk it over... make sure she understands that that *will* kill your relationship, & limit her relationship with her grand-daughter once you're not living there. Calmly insist on your right to parent your own child... but ask her to help you think of a solution to this problem. You might also consider saying something like, 'Since you disagree with me about this, why don't we see if we can agree on an age where you can talk with her about these things? Right now she's so young, it's like you're undermining my authority; can we agree that you can present these foods when she's 8 (or whatever), and let her choose for herself?' Make her see you as a partner, working on the same side, to solve a mutual problem... because it is! NO ONE benefits from a house full of tension, and ultimately she has more to lose than you: access to/ relationship with her grandchild.

If all that doesn't work... gouge her eyeballs out!

Or, as a last resort-- b/c it's always gonna be a longer-lasting solution if it comes from you-- have hubby talk to her, tell her to knock it off or risk alienating HIM, as well as you... this approach helped with my MIL's persistent efforts to secure my church attendance, when all other strategies failed to kill the topic.

Good luck... that is some RIDICULOUS behavior, on her part, and I have to wonder if just WANTS to be strangled or something... But stay calm! Don't let her goad you into fits, however justified...

0 likes

I am offended and its not even my situation.  Perhaps you should speak to your husband about the situation first and if he is on your side then maybe he should be the one to bring it up with your MIL first.  If this does not work than have a mother to mother conversation with her.  Do not go into the situation angry or upset, go into it calmly and open minded about her reasons but do be direct with your beliefs and the beliefs you would like your child to follow until she is ready of age.  Just like she made the decision to raise her family on animals you are making the best decision for your daughter and raising her without animals.  Tell her it is simply a matter of parenting choice.  It may take her a while to understand this but perhaps gradually you could nicely expose her to all the wonderful ways of veganism.  Tess, who is a member on this site has a vegan recipe book that looks wonderful.  She also has some kid friendly recipes (so i've heard) that could help as well.  I think if she sees why you are raising you daughter this way she may understand  more clearly...good luck.  Remember, your MIL may not understand that she is potentially causing such detrimental effects on your relationships, not all non-vegans "get" why we choose the lifestyle we do, its new to them and at times difficult to comprehend such a "radical" lifestyle.

0 likes

Wow that completely sucks. It must be a really difficult situation. Too bad you don't live in Kentucky, I'd offer to watch your daughter for free just to keep that from happening. Is there anyone else that could watch her? If it only happens while you guys are at work then maybe it would be worth it to find someone else... Oh and you're sure it was animal bacon right? Not veggie bacon? Just making sure.. But she sounds really manipulative :(

0 likes

Can you buy your daughter the book Why We Don't Eat Animals? If your daughter is old enough to understand, it might help her to choose to go veg on her own.

0 likes

guys! thanks so much for the advice!!  :)
i have not had access to the internet for a WHILE and completely forgot that i posted this!

it is SO nice to hear that others understand exactly where i am coming from!
i did finally attempt to have an adult conversation with her and she ended up SCREAMING at ME!
i was SO shocked....so i screamed back...haha....which (honestly) felt sooo good!

in the end my husband ended up talking to her and let her know that even though he still eats meat he knows that i really am doing what is best for our daughter and she (his mom) needs to stop undermining our authority as parents.

i also changed my work schedule so that i no longer depend on her to watch my daughter anymore...
and she now asks my permission before even giving my daughter a snack...
so maybe it helped....

my daughter will be 3 in april and i just saw the website for That's Why We Dont Eat Animals and i am definitely getting that for her birthday! i dont think she is really old enough to hold an opinion about it yet, but i think the book is a great place to start....

i think part of the problem is that she eats "fake meats" like boca burgers and smart bacon and smart dogs....
i thought these would be helpful so that she could kind of blend in when everyone else was eating the "regular" stuff...
now i dont think she can tell the difference....crap.

again though....thanks so much for the advice and encouragement!
now that we arent dependant on her, i will speak my mind when i really need to!

0 likes

yay for u! i am soooo happy everything is working out the way you want it to and i am soooo happy to hear your husband stood up for you! :) i want to get that book for my kid too (when i have one of course) <3

0 likes

I was worried about the same thing, as far as my daughter not knowing the difference between real and fake hotdogs and such. But at school she'll ask if something is a cow or if it is cow cheese. I know she has eaten non-vegan things(corn dog SOUNDS vegan, right? Corn. Dog.), but she definitely gets the concept. Yours probably will, too.

0 likes

thanks AML!
NM, how old is your daughter? and when did you start trying to explain the difference?

0 likes
Log in or register to post comments

More Posts Like This