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  1. Wendy Murphy says:

    This is such a relief Clare. To have this label which describes many of the feeling .I have makes me feel less alone. Now almost 78, I became vegetarian ages 11 due to abhorrence of animal cruelty. 44 years ago .I became vegan. I have signed petitions, supported non- animal research etc . Gone on a demo if possible. I feel I have made no difference..I have been a Quaker for over 20 years and peace and the not taking of lives is pivotal. However , knowing I am vegan, has had no effect on my fellow ‘ Friends’.I have lived by example, am still a blood donor, donated a kidney in 2013, support animal- free research charities. I feel more and more upset at my inability to bring about change, to encourage nice people to look deeper at what is going on in their name.
    Thank you for highlighting this. My son and his family are strict vegetarians which is such a help to me. When very young , Tony asked me what happened to the male chicks – I became vegan from that moment.
    Wendy Murphy

  2. Nick Chidlow says:

    Wow… brilliantly puts a label on exactly how i feel and how i believe I’m perceived by others (nutter)
    Thank you this helps so much

  3. Thank you for this article. I have been ethical vegan for seven years now (2014). Especially since the last years, I suffer from severe depression, sadness, despair, and suicidal thoughts because of the non-vegan world we are living in and all the suffering of sentient beings. It’s so difficult that a lot of people and ‘mainstream society’ are holding on to ‘tradiotional ideas’ about food/diet/medicine.

    1. We’re glad you could connect with this article, Marthe. It’s incredibly sad at times to plug into the reality of our world. If you feel like you need some more support, we suggest reaching out the Clare.

    2. Geoffry White says:

      You’re doing very important work! I think all vegans could become political activists and meet with candidates who are running for ejection and invite them to support vegan policies. Vegans have unused political power. Use it!

  4. Glad you’ve brought up this problem and good to hear your own story towards veganism. Being vegan at work can be very tough, and alienating. Depends on the attitude of your colleagues, doesn’t it. In my city we have a completely vegan cafe, and one completely vegan burger place, am so joyful about those because if the psychological benefit. It’s so good to go sit in there and just feel like a valued customer, no explaining to do, no worry that a mistake will be made, and so nice to be thoroughly understood. Great to see this area of psychology growing.

    1. Hi Patricia, we’re stoked that you have a vegan cafe and a burger joint in your area. It does make the experience way more enjoyable. Thanks for sharing your experience.

  5. Allison,
    Thanks for your comment. The reference I make to the “Totalitarian Tiptoe” is a way of explaining a concept called “Gaslighting” ie. A form of manipulation that seeks to sow seeds of doubt in a targeted individual or in members of a targeted group, hoping to make them question their own memory, perception, and sanity. I may have equally referred to a comment a dictator or prime minister might have made. It wouldn’t mean that I agree or disagree with with what they are saying but using a concept they raise as a means to explain something else. I hope this explains the use of this.

  6. Maybe it’s my anxiety but I feel out of place in the vegan world too. I’ve had an eating disorder. Around meat eaters I hate being the odd one. Around vegans I fear not being the perfect one. I think we also have to remember that not everyone is capable of all around veganism. I think food is doable, but being able to afford other products is expensive, being able to buy organic. Etc etc is a priviledge And sometimes I feel like vegans need to keep that in mind. Steps towards the greater good are steps nonetheless. When we push too hard many people will go on the defensive. I recently joined a veg group of the city closes near me. I was immediately off put by people constantly judging one another. Be the example of that kindness. If someone’s using a product that isn’t vegan make a suggestion for what they can use instead. There are kinder ways. I’ve been vegetarian and vegan for almost 13 years now and I live in a more rural conservative community so I definitely feel it.

    1. Hi Rosie. I think you’re spot on. It’s all about progress. We can never be perfect.

      It’s a shame to hear about your experience after joining the veg group near your city. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  7. Hi, I posted a comment but it has vanished. Just wanted to say that this post was so powerful and resonated with me deeply. Many thanks. Fantastic to have a word that sums it all up.

    1. Hi Jenni, it looks like your comment came through in the end 🙂

      So glad you felt some kind of relief by defining how you feel as a vegan. Clare has really hit the nail on the head with the concept of vystopia and I hope it continues to pick up momentum.

  8. Oh my gosh, what a powerful article, I just kept nodding to myself saying yes, exactly that! I have only been vegan for a year (and vegetarian before that for thirty years, although I was ‘almost’ vegan I never made that final step until a year ago which of course I wish now that I had done years ago). It was wonderful to read this post and know that others share the exact feelings that I have, at last a word to describe it in a nutshell.