View Full Version : Argument Over Kids Diets
05-12-2008, 01:25 PM
I finally sat down with my partner/fiance about the baby we're planning to conceive in late summer. I was mentioning that if I had a ton of money I would love to live in Jinjee and Storm's raw village but I wouldn't do it because I'd rather be with him and he's not a raw foodist and has absolutely no interest.
We then started talking about how I feel like I just can't continue to cook foods for my daughter who is four b/c I burn things every time I try and I told my partner I feel like that's a sign and that I'm going to just give her raw food and if he wants to make cooked food for her then he can (he hates cooking). I mentioned that I also intend for our baby to be fully raw. I had no question about it b/c to me it IS the healthiest thing and why would I want any less for my child? My partner got really upset and said it's not fair and then the baby will want cooked food later and get sicker. I suggested this was like saying that we should give our kids marijuana when they're young so that when they try it later it won't effect them as much. Cooked food is such a drug. And after a completely raw pregnancy I don't understand switching the baby to cooked. Apparently my partner is very upset about it. What can I do here? Any advice? I'm stubborn in general so I don't compromise well which I know is a flaw, but I'm really upset too. Just b/c my fiance doesn't have the willpower to go raw or want to try it doesn't mean our baby should eat cooked foods. Arg. I hate arguments but this could be a dealbreaker for me.
I've got to tell you -- it's a wonder my husband and I are still together after all of the nonsense we went through over his kids' diets. I did not make scenes or try to push the raw food in general...
But one of the kids constantly had trouble in school, always had a sniffle from allergies and had teachers fussing about him needing Ritalin or some other medication for ADD.
Made me angry. We didn't put him on any drugs.
We did have him eating raw food for a time to see if it would help. Teachers were amazed, the sniffle went away, and suddenly he was doing much better in school.
But my husband eventually made a big deal out of it and was sneaking fried food with the kids and lying about it. Ick. I would know EVERY time because he would have trouble with concentrating on his homework.
Now, we relinquished custody of the kids, and they're with their mom in Brazil. The same young man is having the same types of trouble in school, misses us. Etc.
It's just very strange -- Why not give your kids the best opportunities, right?
But people are so darn sensitive about their food choices.
And ya know? I love him (well -- all of the "him"s -- kids and husband! -- but I'm talking about the husband here)...
But if I had been raw before we got married, and seen all of this... I wouldn't have even dated him much less picked him for a life partner.
I'm not saying I regret it. Because gracious, I'm so in love with him... And he has a big heart. And I've thought about it... but this is trouble that is frustrating but can be worked through so divorce will not happen. Guaranteed. Well 99 and 3/4 percent. You know.
But seriously -- you're a smart woman anyways, we know that from your posts -- just dig deep before you go making a lifetime commitment.
Not that you weren't already going to dig deep. :)
05-12-2008, 05:33 PM
I'm so worried now. I'm one of those people who usually doesn't believe in marriage anyway, but we're so happy for the most part, but yes, sooo different. I have always been concerned about my health, thin, etc. He's overweight and used to eat at Chilis and at fast food restaurants maybe 5 times per week. Refused any type of greens. Since being with me he now is vegetarian and several health problems are better, and is even eating tiny salads at dinner without crappy dressing. He's still 100 lbs overweight though and eats dairy with every meal. He understands wanting kids to be vegan and he said that he could live with that, but not raw. Sometimes he comes around but it takes him a while to understand my valid points.
But he's been sick with bronchitis all winter, has been on antibiotics 4 times, and has asthma already, and the antibiotics and steroids haven't been working. I convinced him they're bad news but also talked to him about what he should be doing instead in my opinion (lots of wheatgrass, cutting out dairy, more greens, etc) but instead he's just refusing to go to the doctor like I said to do but isn't changing his diet...so he's VERY sick and coughing and won't go to the doctor. Then today he left work early for the umpteenth time and I told him he needs to go to the doctor. He said no, that I'd convinced him not to go there, but yet he doesn't see the diet part...well, he sees it but isn't willing to change it b/c he'll "gag and puke if he eats those things." I'm so annoyed. But aside from diet, we get along well. I've never been so happy with someone. But diet is SO important to me. Secretly I wish I was with a raw foodist partner, but that doesn't mean I don't love him dearly. I just don't know what to do. I feel badly even writing that, but I can't change him...
And we have a huge wedding planned for June and I'm too afraid to change plans at this point. Plus, I really do love him. Arg.
05-12-2008, 05:41 PM
Tough spot! It sounds like he's made some positive changes and that's great! I guess it boils down to whether or not you can spend the rest of your life w/ the differences. If I was a raw foodist before I had kids it would have been a must for my kids as well. My kids were 11, 9 and 9 when I started raw so I've got a different situation on my hands. Many times I have wished I'd known and done this before children so they'd start life all raw. If you're the only one preparing food for the kids, what will he do about it? You know him better than I do, when it really comes down to it and the baby is old enough to eat and you start them all raw, what will he REALLY do about it?
05-12-2008, 06:10 PM
You know, that's the funny thing. He makes his own cooked SAD dinners but if I expect him to make my daughter's too, he feels frustrated, even if they're eating the same things. But he just wants not to feel like the odd one out maybe. He goes out to eat and I sit with him and watch him eat b/c he likes Indian food and even their salad is not something I would eat. He just doesn't like that feeling of being left out. Who knows.
I know I shared a lot of personal details on my situation -- and I said that I would likely not have even dated him if I had known.
But my gracious -- I look at my husband and smile. We've been through so much because of this lifestyle I jumped into. And wore thin. But I'm so glad I was lucky enough to meet him before when I wasn't into this.
But that's because he's still so big hearted and funny and just looks at me like I'm the queen of the world... when I'm eating raw, or when I randomly decide to stray and get myself bloated as all heck. He looked at me that way right before I went raw and was a pimply lady.
Why am I sharing more?
I guess I just realize there are so many details that go into why we love another person.
You're not going to find The Answer here. If you love him and can't dream of living without him -- then his diet will just be something you work out. And hopefully you would work out your kid(s') diets too.
You've just got to dig deep! We don't know. You know...
And big wedding schmedding. Weddings are small peas when it comes to forever decisions!
05-12-2008, 06:24 PM
I wonder why he is so resistant to diet changes for his own health. If he would just let go of dairy his breathing problems would probably improve. Is he an emotional eater? Is he stubborn and doesn't want to be told what to do? Is it low self esteem and he secretly doesn't think he is worthy of health? Is he simply unable to control his own eating? I'm not asking you to answer these questions here, just to think about them. Food and eating are so emotional and symbolic. What does it mean to him? If food is a symbol of pleasure and nurturing to him, he might feel very sad to not be able to offer the foods that make him feel good to his kids. I understand your point and i would want to feed my children like you do, i just know how complex this is. He might come around after some time, but if you have ongoing strife over how to raise the kids it will be very hard. Can you agree on a compromise diet for the kids? Perhaps no dairy and sugar, but allowing rice, soups, beans, or whatever you both come up with? This situation may be a blessing in that it is a time to delve deeply into your values and hopes and dreams for your marriage and your family. Talk to each other with open hearts and you still may reach a middle ground on this! Best wishes!!
05-12-2008, 06:33 PM
I wonder why he is so resistant to diet changes for his own health. If he would just let go of dairy his breathing problems would probably improve. Is he an emotional eater? Is he stubborn and doesn't want to be told what to do? Is it low self esteem and he secretly doesn't think he is worthy of health? Is he simply unable to control his own eating? I'm not asking you to answer these questions here, just to think about them. Food and eating are so emotional and symbolic. What does it mean to him? If food is a symbol of pleasure and nurturing to him, he might feel very sad to not be able to offer the foods that make him feel good to his kids. I understand your point and i would want to feed my children like you do, i just know how complex this is. He might come around after some time, but if you have ongoing strife over how to raise the kids it will be very hard. Can you agree on a compromise diet for the kids? Perhaps no dairy and sugar, but allowing rice, soups, beans, or whatever you both come up with? Or does he just want to feed the child whatever may be around? Is he vegetarian? Does he respect your food choices? This situation may be a blessing in that it is a time to delve deeply into your values and hopes and dreams for your marriage and your family. Talk to each other with open hearts and you still may reach a middle ground on this! Best wishes!!
It is interesting to think about. He's definitely into the attitude that "I've always been fat and even if I lose weight I'll never be thin...I'm just a fat person." and he loves dairy and realizes that it's not good for his health and he's cut down, or so he says, but I don't really see it. It's like he doesn't see all the dairy he eats...he thinks he's had a good day without much dairy (b/c he understands it's mucous forming) and then all I can think is...but you just ate broccoli cheese soup, had a cheese burrito for lunch, and are now eating frozen yogurt. But to him it's "but I didn't get cheese in my breakfast burrito or put feta on my salad." He is vegetarian and said having the kids be vegan is okay (though said unhappily) but raw is just unrealistic. He also thinks they'll hate us for it later b/c they won't be able to handle cooked foods and they'll not have friends or something. Who knows. We talk openly but I get upset and shut down. Right now we haven't talked in the last hour. I'm not very good at communicating when I am feeling upset.
05-12-2008, 11:48 PM
Have you read Victoria Boutenko's first book the 12 step program? She probably discusses it in Green for Life and interviews and that sort of thing, but her description of how she was the example in her family and that it finally converted Igor is so classic.
My child's father is a raw foodist, so I can't relate to what you are going through. It must be really hard. However, there are a lot of things we don't agree on. My partners sleeps in a separate room right now b/c he can't deal with co-sleeping. He also thinks I'm nuts to want to homeschool! Good luck having a raw kid whose in public school, right? We fight a lot. But we have each other and he makes it possible for me to be the best mother I can be, even when he is learning from me as we go and I learn from him.
But, don't lose your perspective, either. Is it really such a dealbreaker? Think of all the things that break up families and separate children from their parents -- drinking, gambling, adultery, abuse....cooked rice and steamed veggies? Is it really a dealbreaker? Will your man be a loving father to your son or daughter, a good partner and love and care for you?
When I saw the births that were featured in Birth as We Know It, I decided I would watch that video over and over and over until it was so ingrained in me that I would have that kind of birth. And, when you watch the video of my birth, it actually looks like that and the whole thing was almost totally silent. But, I will tell you what - it didn't FEEL anything like what I thought it would feel like from watching those women, but it looked the same. What a trip!
So, I would see what stories you can find of people who have been the beacon and the example in their family. And model their behavior and their mindset as much as you can. Read their stories over and over. You are going to be such a wonderful mother! I hope the father of your child can be there to share that with you...it has been such a blessing for me.
05-13-2008, 01:01 AM
Just wanted to chime in. I have to say my husband is a die hard meat eater and I might of gone a different way if I was a vegan raw foodist before I met him as well, or maybe not. We are perfect for each other in other ways and now I wouldn't change it for the world. Plus I am convinced I was meant to have his children. And who knows, maybe one day he will surprise me with the raw food thing.
But anyway, I just had a baby and I feel that I shouldn't give her meat or anything that I wouldn't eat either. I also have a 5 year old. Basically we decided when it comes to piercing her ears etc etc that when she is old enough she can decide. So I suggested doing the same thing for meat and other foods. She is to young to decide for herself at the moment, and your baby is to. So give her/him the best foods and once they are old enough to understand what they are doing, then they can make up there own minds. After all these are little people with there own personalities and brains! I just thought it would be so wrong to get someone addicted to meat before they even knew it was from a living animal!
Maybe that would be a good compromise?
05-13-2008, 04:25 AM
I don't have anything constructive to say, but I wanted to wish you all the best, and that, whichever way, it gets sorted out well.
Only you know what to do, and as others have said, love is more than one dimensional and there are many reasons we are with the people we are with.
05-13-2008, 08:06 AM
Thanks, everyone. I really really appreciate all of the comments and ideas.
We had a long talk last night and I feel better about things now, but in general, I do wish that he was a raw foodist. But I realize that's not my choice. The hard part is, he's doing great with my daughter who is four but he's so sensitive that he feels that if I feed the kids like I eat then he'll be the odd one out and will be left out of things. He's SO sensitive to the point of being annoying sometimes. It's like...better feed the kids junk so they fit in with me...
I know he knows better but he can't help but feel that way, and a large part of it is that he feels like I brainwash my daughter b/c I say the truth. When she asks why we don't eat cheese I tell her it's bad for our bodies. Then she repeats it and it hurts my partner's feelings and he says we're putting negative energy into his food. He doesn't seem to care that it's the truth, just that we're being rude in his opinion about his food choices. But if I don't tell that to my daughter then she just wants it...I don't know. I don't feel like I'm lying. I also tell her how they hurt the cows b/c they do, and I want her to know what dairy farms are like. My partner feels that I should keep her in the dark or something...arg.
I feel better after our long talk last night, but also still worried. Deep inside I feel like no one's ever good enough for me. I guess I feel that way b/c I watched my mom go through 2 marriages/divorces and she had that attitude herself and was never willing to compromise. I hope that I can overcome that and realize it's a fault of mine. But sometimes I just don't see a middle ground.
05-17-2008, 02:28 PM
I've been having the same problems with my husband and our daughter (she's 18 months old now). Even before she was born, I told my husband that I wasn't going to give her sweets and junk food. Boy oh boy, he got so mad at me I was stunned and shocked! I had to look at him to see if he was serious. He said I shouldn't keep our child away from the good things and that I wasn't being fair. I said to him, so rotting our child's teeth and causing her to have obesity problems in life is "keeping her from the good things"! (A little dramatic, but you get my point!) He didn't speak to me for a few hours. I didn't know why it caused the argument, but I'm insisting that candy and junk food is not beneficial to her growth and development. Now that I've decided to go 100% Raw vegan, I don't really relish the "conversations" we'll be having about our daughter.
I do all of the cooking in the house, so I'll cook his food (huge meat eater) and I'll make something for us to eat. But believe me, he's going to be feeding her his food when I'm not there or trying to sneak it to her. Hence, another blow out. I don't know exactly what to tell you to avoid the tension, because I haven't found that out as yet. I'm content knowing that my daughter will at least be 80-90% raw, which is better for now. Until my husband and I come to a compromise, things will always be a struggle.
That doesn't help, but as long as you do your part, the rest will be up to the child when they get older (I can't see my husband forcing our daughter when she's older to eat something if she doesn't want it. If she makes the decision herself, then he'll have to get used to it. The same principle may go to me also, but at least I got her introduced to the lifestyle).
05-17-2008, 04:32 PM
When kids get to be about 4 or five, the social pressures around eating begin. That's a whole other ball game. Before that, we have much more control over what goes into their little bodies. We are setting up their eating preferences for life. I would avoid highly processed grains, refined sugar, most dairy and combinations of those foods (ice cream, cake, white breads,....), and meat. There are so many wonderful foods that don't fall into those groups. It isn't punishment! There are treats that are good for kids. That would be my bottom line. Then see where you both are when the kids are older. You and your partner must find your own bottom lines and then meet in the middle.
I had to adjust my thinking a bit to allow my daughter to have a social life when she was young. She was always vegetarian, but I did allow her to have birthday cake at parties. It just isn't black and white out in the world. Human connections are important,too. The main issue is that you and your partner can communicate about these decisions and not create a battle ground with the kids in the middle. That can be worse than the foods in question. Eating disorders are not just born of food choices, but also from the emotional atmosphere and attitudes around eating. My stepmother was a so called "healthy" eater, but she was so controlling about it that I became a "secret" eater at about the age of 8. I talked to my daughter about why I made the food choices that I made when she was young. I think it's important not to overwhelm small children with information that they are not developmentally ready to understand. I would say it's okay to say "I decide what is good for us to eat right now and I don't believe that (meat, dairy, sugar...) is good for your body. Other people make different choices. When you get big, you can decide for yourself." I wouldn't get into the whole moral thing about others are wrong, cruel, or bad. I would tread lightly around death and suffering. It can be scary to kids and they don't really get it yet. When my daughter was about 14 she experimented with eating chicken when she was with her dad. I hated it, but I feel it was better just to live by example and not introduce guilt into her choices. She is 21 now and a vegetarian by her own choice.
How is the conversation progressing? Are you feeling any better about it?
05-17-2008, 06:44 PM
That is helpful, thanks for sharing.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.1.4 Copyright © 2013 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.