I’ve been a vegetarian for more than 20 years. In that time, I’ve rarely been challenged about this choice. Occasionally, I have been asked questions that come off as defensive arguments, but mostly people are respectful, sometimes curious, and occasionally admiring.

However, since transitioning to a vegan diet this year, I’m met more often with open hostility from friends and family. I find this odd, because all I’ve given up is dairy and eggs. I gave up eating animals years ago.

Sometimes the challenge is formed in the cloak of concern. That I can accept a little more, because even though we are thriving on a plant-based diet, they might be basing their concern on outdated dietary information. When we try to share information about how this is actually better for our health, the health (and possibly survival) of the planet, and ethical concerns for animals, we just get tuned out.

I’m finding that food choices are becoming the new politics with some people. If you talk about it, or even eat in front of them, it becomes an argument. I guess talking about the weather will have to become the norm until they get used to it.