11 May 2012

ask alli: would you raise your children vegan?

This question is from Katie, who I've known since you were in diapers.*  Ironically, diapers are a perfect segue into chilluns, who sometimes wear diapers.

You may be thinking of that vegan couple who raised their newborn baby on soy milk and apple juice.  You may also be thinking about how that baby died of malnutrition, and the parents were thrown in jail because they're vegan.

Wait, WHAT?

No.  They were thrown in jail because they were cray cray.  They watched their boy shrink to 3.5 pounds and didn't realize he needed different nutrients than the ones they persisted in feeding him.  Just like Eddie Izzard insists that crazy transvestites make the public think ALL transvestites are crazy, this couple with the malnourished baby makes people think all vegans are crazy.  Really, the couple was crazy.  They also happened to be vegan.  I would like, once and for all, to distance myself from that couple.  I am not a crazy vegan.  I'm an Executive Vegan.

One Green Planet
Now, when and if Matt and I have kids (not that I have definite plans, but I'm thinking 17 girls and 1 gay boy), I may have to be what is known as "pregnant," at which point I will continue to be vegan.  I can say this with 100% certainty.  No matter what craving I get, there is something vegan to satisfy me, and I've been vegan for so long that it shouldn't be a problem anyway.  There have been plenty of vegan pregnancies that have gone off without a hitch.  I already know how to get every single vitamin and mineral the body needs without delving into animal products.  Easy peasy.

Once the babies start flying out, I will breast feed them.  Again, I know how to supply myself with the proper nutrition, so my milk will be perfectly healthy.  I will NOT do the cray cray soy milk diet for the babies.  They need breast milk.  Biological fact.  Done.

After the breast milk stage, we'll start all the babies on a vegan diet - full of essential nutrients - at home.  If the kids go to a birthday party where a cake full of eggs and dairy is being worshipped and consumed, the kids will be allowed to partake if they so choose.  Or say they go to school and want the beef tacos for lunch - fine by me.  If they get sick from it, that's a different story.  But we want them to make their own choices.  Forcing veganism kind of defeats the purpose for me.

At home all the food will be vegan because I'm in charge of the kitchen.  (Ask Matt to prepare a meal and see what happens.  You may or may not receive a bowl of rice with soy sauce an hour and a half later.)  If the chilluns get to the cooking age, I wouldn't mind if they used their own money to go out and buy animal products to prepare themselves.  But it'll be very clear that I refuse to get involved in the process.

Any offspring will be educated about food completely.  I won't suddenly spring up behind my 15-year-old at McDonald's as she's biting into a quarter-pounder and say, "Enjoy your dead cow and etc., as it rots in your gut and its soul wanders the Earth in misery for all eternity and stuff."  But I will tell them why I'm vegan, what happens to animals, and how much I care about them.  At a non-meal time.

I'm no magical dispenser of medical advice, nor am I Oprah.  All I'm offering are personal opinions, which I have carefully researched and thought about.  Thanks for the question, Katie!

Did I mention I've known Katie since before Tupac died?

* This is only true if you were born in or around 1996.  I could have also said, "Katie, who I've known since Hootie and the Blowfish were cool," but then my clever segue wouldn't have worked.


  1. Amazing segue! And great explanation, thanks much Allicat (wow, what a throwback to the days of Gavin Rossdale in that great band that we shall not start talking about cause I think we talked about them enough in jr. high to last a few lifetimes, no complaints though). I was totally curious as to how things like children and pregnancy work with special diets. I know I had to have my own special diet during pregnancy because of my gastric bypass.
    So if and when there are little Allis and Matts arriving into this silly world we live in (I think you will have 19 girls with varying sexual preferances and one gay boy), I will be first in line to make them blankies and tutus. =)

    Oh and just to make sure you feel old... It would be totally possible that someone reading this could have been in diapers back in '96. Ugh.

    1. Haha! I know, sometimes I think of Gavin and then I say, "I used to LOVE Bush." People unfailingly look at me like I'm from another planet, then I have to explain that I did not mean George W. Bush in any way.

      How did your pregnancy diet work? I'm so curious. How did you squeeze all the food in?