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Young Children & Vegetarian Logic

AeryFairy

Anachronism
Location
Manchester, UK
This morning I remembered a little something from my childhood. I grew up around farms, because the majority of my mum's side of the family are farmers. I knew how it all worked (although I'd never actually seen an animal slaughter). I also knew, at that age, that you needed a boy and a girl to make babies. I was about six or seven when I had this conversation:

Me: I think we should round up all the men in the world and keep them in a big room. When we need to make more babies, we can just pick one. Then they can stay there when we don't need them.
Mum: We can't do that sweetie, it would be mean. You wouldn't like to be stuck in a room forever, would you?
Me: No... but we do it to the boy cows...

Thinking back on it, I must have been aware on some level that we should treat animals the same way that we treat other humans. Obviously, I was a little misguided in my application - we treat cows this way, so we should treat people this way (and not the other way around). But the basics were there.

So, I was wondering - were any of you already thinking this way as children? Were there any indications that you might later be a vegetarian? Do you know any children now that you think may be vegetarians in the future? Share your stories :)
 

Lord Snot

Parsley Provider
When I was around the same age we studied nutrition in school. Of course we were taught the normal food pyramid where meat had its own section, but we were also taught about vegetarian diets and how they could meet all your nutritional needs too. So I went home that night proudly armed with the facts and announced I was going to be a vegetarian. But my mum didn't want to have to deal with all that and two separate meals for everyone so I think I was vegetarian for about a day and then she bought home McDonalds and it was over. I always knew vegetarianism was 'right' but until I could cook for myself it just wasn't going to happen.
 

RabbitLuvr

I love rabbits.
Location
Rabbitville, USA
I never really thought it through like that. I did grow up in a family of hunters, and always knew where meat came from. I would not eat any of the wild game that was brought home. I thought it tasted gross, but I suspect my taste bias had something to do with seeing the animals before they were butchered. (Grandpa would bring the deer home, then take them to someone else to dress, and he would dress birds and clean fish himself on the back patio.) There were also family friends who raised and butchered their own cows, pigs, and chickens, and I would not eat those, either. It was too hard when I knew.

I was also also super picky about what cuts of meat I would eat. Anything with skin, visible fat, or bones was out for me. It reminded me of what meat really is, and I couldn't eat it.

So I think it was just a matter of time before I became vegetarian. I wish I'd come to it earlier in life, but the seeds for it were definitely there from a young age.
 

Pirate

Addicted Poster
Location
United Kingdom
I was also also super picky about what cuts of meat I would eat. Anything with skin, visible fat, or bones was out for me. It reminded me of what meat really is, and I couldn't eat it.
same! especially things like drumsticks, blaergh. funnily enough, my mum, a fully grown woman, is still the same. my last straw was ordering a chicken burger which had a stringy vein inside it which i had to pull out. that was it!

also whenever a family pet died i refused to eat meat for a while as the meat reminded me of their dead body (wtf). I wanted to be a vegetarian as soon as I realised other people ate that way (at school I became friends with someone who was bought up as a fish eating 'vegetarian') but was never allowed to. when i was 16 the above incident happened and i went on hunger strike. i think really it was only a matter of time haha.
 
My son led me to veganism, so I will talk about his journey, rather than mine. When he was really young, maybe 3, he said something about it being weird that we had the same name for the chicken we eat and the chicken that runs around on the farm. His sister, 7, told him what happens to the chicken on the farm. He walked up to me in the kitchen and asked, Mom, that is really a leg off a real chicken? He never ate chicken again, and he'd already decided he wasn't eating shrimp because he loved them. He was full out veg at 8.
 

AeryFairy

Anachronism
Location
Manchester, UK
My son led me to veganism, so I will talk about his journey, rather than mine. When he was really young, maybe 3, he said something about it being weird that we had the same name for the chicken we eat and the chicken that runs around on the farm. His sister, 7, told him what happens to the chicken on the farm. He walked up to me in the kitchen and asked, Mom, that is really a leg off a real chicken? He never ate chicken again, and he'd already decided he wasn't eating shrimp because he loved them. He was full out veg at 8.
Your son sounds awesome :)

One of boyfriend's young cousins came home from school when she was 5 and declared that she was never eating meat again. She's 14 now, and she's still veggie :)
 

RumblePurr

Star Member
same! especially things like drumsticks, blaergh. funnily enough, my mum, a fully grown woman, is still the same. my last straw was ordering a chicken burger which had a stringy vein inside it which i had to pull out. that was it!
I had the same experience with chicken from a fast food place,and this is when I decided to become vegetarian.I was 12. I don't remember a single meat dish from my childhood that I really miss...the stuff has always grossed me out,but I was expected to eat it.
 

CrazyCatLady

World Class Member
I first decided I wasn't eating any pig meat after watching Babe when I was about 7/8. A year or two later I decided this was unfair on the other farm yard animals and would only eat fish. Unfortunately, at about age 11 I had a chicken satay at a Chinese restaurant and returned to eating meat. When I was 18 I noticed that I would always choose processed food over joints of meat etc, I couldn't / didn't like meat that looked like meat.
Six years later and here I am xxx
 
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