I salute your courage for making this video. As a fellow ex-vegan, I understand deeply the process you have gone through to come to this moment. I am happy that you have made a decision to value your own mental and physical health, over an ideology that would have never supported you or your family’s health.
You make some very valuable points in your video. You mention the issue of ‘cheating’ on a vegan diet; that there are vegans that promote a vegan diet and yet behind closed doors they eat animal products. This is rife within the vegan movement and a hidden secret. This is a serious issue and one that needs to be brought to light. Not only because of the hypocrisy, but also because of the damage that is done when people are too trusting of the words people speak, not realising that in fact, the person is lying.
You mention the issue of being shunned once you leave the vegan ‘religion’. Again this is a serious issue and one that can be shocking for people once they leave. When I was vegan, fully immersed within the cult, all of my friends were also vegan. Once I left I lost a significant percentage of my ‘friends’. There were, however, some friends that stayed friends with me. There were also a number of friends, including breastfeeding mothers, that shared with me secretly, their intense cravings for animal products. This is horrific. Mothers that felt they could not meet their health needs because of ideology and fear. Shunning is a classic cult technique and a very powerful one at that. We are social beings and need a ‘clan’ to feel emotionally and relationally healthy. If we know that leaving the vegan ‘religion’ will mean we lose our friendship group and become vilified, as well as possibly subject to death threats, it can be a scary process for many. Death threats post-veganism are very real, I encountered them and many others have also.
With vegans gaining a louder voice on-line, I believe more people will be recruited into this dietary/lifestyle cult. There will also be more people leaving. As this happens, the voice of ex-vegans will also get louder. We understand the process. We understand the process of entering and we understand the process of exiting.
Joe, you are not alone in having some kind of breakdown that in part can be related to the cult of veganism. There are many reasons for this, of which I will be exploring on this blog.
You have been very brave in coming out and I don’t doubt you will receive a backlash of fury from vegans still in the cult. Know you are supported by people that understand what you have gone through. Take care of yourself and your family. Trust in your decision.