Food Categories & Options!

We are a pure vegetarian family. However, there is an addition to this. My family, that is my parents (actually only father) and father’s side relatives are a mix. I’ve eaten non vegetarian food since my childhood and continued till a long time, until I met the man of my dreams, my Husby 😉 . The only condition he put forward me before committing was to ask me to convert myself into pure vegetarian, which technically, I should be being a Brahmin.

I considered this a major sacrifice,not. I instantly agreed since his value certainly was much more than eating flesh. And so I became a vegetarian, pure ! I never felt I was missing something in my life.

When we had Chirpy, sometimes in our random conversations it came up whether we want her to be a non-vegetarian or not. I was very clear from the start that I would never tell my daughter to be or not to be a non-vegetarian. My thought process says when you tell someone to not do something all the time, there comes a moment when that someone is tempted to at least try that thing once in his/her life.

Recently, while watching a cookery show with Chirpy, the cook on the screen annouced that he’ll be making a non-vegetarian dish next. On listening to this, Chirpy reacted in this manner, literally

Eww! This is dirty, we don’t eat all this and let’s change the channel

I was shell shocked. I felt bad for the kind of reaction she gave. I wondered why she reacted in this manner and when I dug out for information she told me the source. Apparently, my MIL had sometime back reacted in this manner and she caught that expression and words and repeated it. She being staunch vegetarian and carrying the age old norm of a Brahmin being pure vegetarian etc.

While I would always abide by the commitment that I made to Husby before getting married, I would still not prefer disrespecting someone else’s choice of food. So with the same thought, I made Chirpy understand this:

This is a category of food, called non-vegetarian. There are people who choose to eat it and there are people who don’t eat this category of food. Since this is someone’s food, if not yours, this is a choice that someone has made. And no food deserves to be reacted to as “ew” any given day. It is your choice whether you want to eat it or not, but never ever disregard anyone’s choice or that person for that matter.

Chirpy understood and promised me that she won’t react in the manner that she did earlier. No where in our conversation I told her not to opt for non-veg food. All I told her was our family has made a choice to not eat this category of food. I don’t want to delve in the discussion of being Brahmin  etc and casticising her thoughts right now. So I omitted this detail.

I feel she is very young to be directed and not very young to be directed. If you know what I mean! I want her to know all the options that she can have, what we as a family follow and what she as an individual wants to opt for. I want her to know, think and choose accordingly. Though, this is the only place where I and Husby don’t agree with each other. He is obviously not of the view to ‘allow’ her to eat non-veg but that’s okay. That’s his thought and choice to bring his daughter up 🙂

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4 thoughts on “Food Categories & Options!

  1. This is exactly what I try to teach our lil Bandar. Think she gets it now. But yes, when we go to India, she does hear relatives telling her non veg is yucky. Have told them now not to and that it’s all just food.

  2. very nice thoughts! food is food and must be respected…every one has their own preferences and to look down upon any type of food, is not a good thing to do….I am so glad you made Chirpy understand that without bringing in the religious sentiments 🙂

  3. Love this post… I have wondered many times what will my future kids do.. should I let them eat non-veg or not? S is a pure non-veg and I am a pure veg. We dont make any meat at home and whenever we go out, S hardly orders non veg food. Its only at his home, its regular. Given all this, what would I want my future child to do? I understand that he/she would have a choice of their own.. but then, the choice forms based on the choices available at home isnt it? I dont want to teach about my brahmin background etc.. but then, I do think if my parents had given me non-veg food, I wouldnt find it hard to taste it now.. if I dont even show my kid what are the options, how is that he/she going to choose?!

    Sorry for such a long comment.. you kind of touched on all the points in my mind 😀

  4. My family is vegetarian but my parents never stopped me from eating meat. We had Muslim neighbours while growing up who made the best chicken biryani ever and my parents were cool with me eating it. My mum even tried cooking chicken at home for my sister and me when younger and now, I eat all types of meat and fish and veggies. I had friends who would say eating meat was ‘dirty’ and refused to go to restaurants that served both meat and veg…I always thought this was extreme and that if they are not being judged for being pure veg why should those eating meat be judged?

    It’s a nice way to teach Chirpy lessons without judgement. 🙂

C'mon,out with it,right here :)

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