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Thread: Living near other veg families

  1. #1

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    Dec 2009
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    Default Living near other veg families

    Hi folks!

    I'm getting way ahead of myself with this question, but I've been wondering, do you consider how 'normal' your veg lifestyle and choices are within your neighbourhood when working out where to live and raise your family?

    For example, I live in an area with few veg restaurants and generally a consumer-driven culture. I work in an area with the most veg restaurants in Melbourne and where there is a lot of alternative culture and lifestyle. I feel like when I have a family, I'll need to be more connected to my local community - eg. for mothers groups and activities with other families (whereas now as a single couple, we travel to the city to socialise, meeting friends in bars, etc). I imagine my disconnect with my local community re vegetarianism and environmentalism and anti-consumerism will matter more once we have a family and want to fit in to local structures and actually socialise with people in our suburb.

    I just wondered if people would like to comment on whether their veg lifestyle influenced where they chose to live? or how they deal with different views of people in their local area.

    Thanks!


  2. #2

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    Hey Tronica,
    How are you going?
    We live kind of in the sticks and really dont have anywhere to eat out within about 15-20 mins drive let alone a vego place to eat at! I would say we dont really think about our eating habits when we look at somewhere to live... I would definately love to have some good places to eat at nearby but on the other hand I really dont like the idea of moving back to the city especially if it was just so I could eat out if that makes sense? As for having like minded people I dont have any vego friends apart from you girls I chat to in the vego thread! It does get tiresome sometimes, I would like to meet other people who have the same lifestyle choices...

    Does that answer your q a little? Ive been staring at the screen so long I cant really read it properly now

  3. #3

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    Hi Tronica,

    I can relate to your comments.

    We used to live in Sydney where we knew many vegos, but we were all young and child-free then! Where we live now is quite a diverse area, with lots of vegos. Certainly, no body looks at us strangley when we say we are vegan. There are vego cafes and a vegan restaurant in our town. Having said all that though, we do not have any vegan friends who have children. We know plenty of childless vegans or vegans with adult children, but none with young families. I know that there are some out there but we just haven't connected. However, my DD has a couple of vegetarian friends.

    But, really, we are very lucky. Our friends are very supportive of our veganism. Most of our friends are quite health conscious, so they don't eat a lot of meat anyway, and if we have a gatheirng with friends there is always a lot of vegan food on offer. I have found our friends to be very respectful about it. And really, that is the most important thing. There are multiple reasons why we connect with people, and although my veganism is integral to my life, it is not All of me, if that makes sense. I know I mentioned to you that I wanted to connect with other parents practicing gentle parenting methods when my DD was a baby. That was very important to me. If I had met like-minded mums who were also vegan or vegetarian, that would have been FABULOUS. But, as it turned out, the mums I met weren't vego or vegan, however, they were respectful of my veganism and that has been sufficient.

    I also feel that I am linked in with a broader network of vegans online, so that helps. I don't feel isolated. We are lucky to live in a veg-friendly town, but if we didn't, I may consider moving to somewhere more in line with our values. I certainly would consider this issue if we were ever considering moving for some other reason (ie. a job).

  4. #4

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    Hi Peach!

    Yes, I can't imagine being veg factors into living decisions when there are so many other factors determining where people choose to live. eg. we are where we are because the in-laws bought an investment flat and were looking in a particular area between their house and the city. So, here we are, renting from them!

    But, since we've been here ages and are thinking of moving in next year or two, it's something I'm wondering about.

    I'm lucky that a lot of my friends in Melbourne are veg friendly (though most aren't veg). I only have to cope with questions about my diet when I visit my family in Perth. They are a little backward in the west

  5. #5

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    You're right, Aliash, there is more to us than veganism and concentrating just on that would not really help. Kind people, who are respectful even if they don't share the same views, would be great - and in a way, children need to be around diverse people otherwise they will get a shock in later life when they discover everyone isn't the same as them

    As a single couple with various friends with infants and toddlers, socialising does tend to change so that the friends with kids spend more time with other families than with us singles. In fact, thinking about it, all my veg friends are childless like us - although we are married, most of our friends aren't married and many are single, yet they are all in their 30s. Quite a few woman who've told me they aren't interested in being mothers or having children or settling down too. So, in all likelihood, our friendship group will change a bit when we have kids.... yet my friends with kids are more mainstream in their values, including vegetarianism, but also politically. I do have friends with kids who are eco-conscious (eg. cloth nappies and other things) and friends who've breastfed for longer than standard - and who have used gentle parenting methods. I'm sure i'd be able to bond on those levels regardless of the veg factor.

    It's all very exciting anyway!

  6. #6

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    Tron- You put a smile on my face
    And Aliash- You totally rock! Your a great poster girl for all the veg Mums out here

  7. #7

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    Glad to make you smile!

    All I can think of is babies when what I need to do is finish my PhD...

  8. #8

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    Aaah shucks! You are so kind Peach. I feel like a poster girl for zombies this morning.....


    Quote Originally Posted by tronica View Post

    All I can think of is babies when what I need to do is finish my PhD...
    Ah, yes, that is one of the hazards of deciding to have a baby...you can become obsessed with baby thoughts at all times of the day and night! Even after having my first baby, I was already thinking about when I was going to have the next one! How long until you finish your PhD?

    Our friendship group changed when we had our first baby. I just wanted to be with other new mums. Some of the most amazing, intelligent and compassionate women (and men) that I know have told me that they are never going to have kids (for various reasons, eg. some are adamant that they don't want kids, others 'missed the boat' so to speak), and I feel that they are people who should be having kids because thay have so much to offer....

    We have friends who share our politics and most of our values (minus the veganism!) but do not have kids; or we have friends who are vegan and don't have kids; or friends who have kids but aren't vegan and don't give a brass razoo about politics...or friends who are vegetarian, have kids and share our politics but are moving to Melbourne.... But thankfully, it is possible to find some common ground with most people! I just fragment myself. I guess you all know what it is like - there are some people that you would never raise particular topics with, and you just 'quarantine' those pieces of yourself while you are with that person or you tone it down a bit. Sometimes that is hard, and I feel as though I am compromising myself in some way..
    Last edited by *Ash*; January 14th, 2010 at 10:01 AM. Reason: sp.

  9. #9

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    Hi ladies!

    I just thought i'd pop in and offer my two cents worth LOL.

    I live in an area where most of the restaurants around are steak houses or similar. Saying this however, I still take my DD out with me and have dinner out at some of these places, I just ring them before I go and arrange suitable food for us. In fact, most restaurants actually offer loads of vegan or vegetarian foods now. My DD is also allergic to gluten, dairy, citrus etc... so I learned to ring ahead very early on in the picture. I was very flustered and thought hard about moving away early on to live in a more environmentally friendly and vegetarian area. But i realised that any area is what you make of it. We eat a lot of meals at home, and that's great for us. But I don't drink, so for birthdays and special occasions we always go out for dinner. Most people arent judgemental about it.. and the few that have passed judgement on us for being vegetarian have been very quickly put in their place. Overall, it's what makes us happy - that's all we need to worry about.

    That said - there's a gorgeous place called the three monkeys, at West End (Brisbane)... vegan and vegetarian food all the way... organic food etc... Mmmmm.. it's a wonderful treat and worth the half hour drive when I do go.

    xx

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by ciara.e View Post
    Hi ladies!

    But i realised that any area is what you make of it.
    xx
    Yes, I totally agree!


    And I will definately try out three monkeys next time I am in Brisbane....

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