The Pain of Being Vegan

"When you have the "rose coloured glasses" ripped off you can never go back to not seeing the suffering we as humans are responsible for. All of creation is crying out."

Jane Vaughan


Non-vegans can often be very anti-vegan. They see vegans as people that force their beliefs on others, they see vegans as angry and judgemental. What is often misunderstood as judgemental is actually a passion for veganism, the desire to do good in the world and to stop suffering. What often isn't seen by non-vegans is the pain of being vegan.



How is Being Vegan Painful?

The pain of being vegan doesn't come from missing out. It does not come from seeing things, food, clothes, whatever, that you want but can't have because of your "ethical stance". The pain of being vegan certainly doesn't come from having the take the moral high ground, as non-vegans like to believe. No, the pain of being vegan comes from being exposed to the level of exploitation, of the pain and suffering caused to animals and the planet.


"The slaughter tally (clock) continues to haunt me every second"

Marcus Ten Low


Films and documentaries like What The Health, Land Of Hope And Glory and Dominion peel back the lid on what happens behind the closed doors and the walls that have no windows. As Paul McCartney said, if slaughter houses had windows everyone would be vegan. The meat industry likes to use words and phrases like "free range" and "pasture raised", they show images of chickens pecking at the grassy ground while cows enjoy the sunshine in a lush field. While the truth is pigs give birth in metal crates so small that they can't turn around, they can stand or they can lay and often only in one position. Chickens are kept in warehouse-like sheds where the dead are not collected, they are left to rot on the ground while the live chickens walk over them. Cows have their babies taken away after having given birth only the day before and that's after being forcibly inseminated to make them produce milk. The truth is nothing like the stories that the people that make money from these practices will use to sell their products. Vegan will often have greater insight into these goings-on as it can be the reason for them going vegan in the first place. For others it's the reason to stay vegan.



How To Cope

It is true that you cannot "unsee" the truth of the meat industry, the fashion industry of how the planet and its resources are being exploited by humans. When I walk past meat and dairy products in the supermarket I feel physical pain, I can hear the cries of the animals, I sense their fear. I deal with this by looking up at the ceiling and purposefully thinking of other things, when I can't avoid that section. I hate that supermarkets are putting vegan products next to non-vegan products to get people to see the options available and try them. But, as someone that wholly disagrees with the idea of animals as commodities I don't want to be anywhere near sausages made from dead pigs when I'm buying meat-free slices for a sandwich.


If you know that the images, photos, films, books, will cause you mental pain stay away from them. You don't need to have seen these things to know that they are wrong. Having nightmares about cattle sheds doesn't make you a better vegan or a better person. If you have seen these things and are disturbed by them talk to someone, someone that will understand. Don't keep the pain inside, it will do nothing but harm. The main premise of veganism is positivity and the future, ours and the animals. You can be an advocate for animals without vilifying people for being murderers and not everyone is cut out to be an activist . We still need people to come up with the vegan muffin recipes, people to create vegan fashion and those that have figured out sustainable living so that they can educate the rest of us. We all have skills and knowledge that we can bring and we need all of it. Don't feel bad about avoiding terrible truths, channel your energy into the positive and keep moving forward knowing that you are making a definite change. Even if you get just one person to go dairy-free just think about all of the cows, mums and babies, that you've helped.


"I help at a vegan sanctuary, I can help alleviate the suffering they have been through before coming to the sanctuary and then seek to stop the suffering and show people the truth. I think if I looked at more videos and thought of all of those we never saved... it would drag me down, but I try to balance it out now xxx"

Sarah Phillips


#Vegan #VeganForTheAnimals #VeganForThePlanet

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