Vegan Parents Impose Their Beliefs on Their Children

Hi Everyone. It’s Colleen Patrick-Goudreau from Welcome to Vegan POV. Today, I am going to address something I’ve heard
a number of people say. It goes something like “Aren’t you imposing your values on your
children by raising them vegan?’ That’s one Point of View. Here’s my Point of View. Parents impose their values on their children all the time. It’s called parenting. So, if this
is a choice that you’ve made or a choice that you are contemplating please take heart in
the fact that it is not an anomaly to raise your children according to your belief system.
It’s called parenting. If transitioning your children from a animal-based to a plant-based
diet is what you feel is best for yourself and your family be confident in your decision.
There’s nothing wrong with raising your children in such a way that reflects your values and
most likely the values you already teaching them; values of compassion and kindness and
empathy and wellness.I believe we come in to this world fully compassionate and the
best and most consistent gift we can give our children is to honour that compassion
and honour that empathy they have for animals by encouraging them to make choices that are
aligned with these values. After all, we try and keep images of animal cruelty and suffering
from children for a reason. So, why would we go behind their backs and support the very
things they would and we do find so offensive. Why should we pay other people to do things
to animals that we never could do ourselves, things that children and adults are traumatised
by when they witness them. And don’t underestimate the compassion in your children and when they
begin to understand that this new way of eating means that animals will be helped, they get
it, they internalise the lessons you are teaching them, those values become their own. In terms
of health, I think the most compelling research coming out about what we eat and how we live,
is that which tells us that food habits instilled in us as children dictate how we eat as adults
and the food choices we make as children, are a strong predictors of disease in later
life. In other words, what children eat during their formative years has a profound impact
on their future health and since so few children are eating plant sources, really good fruits
and vegetables there are so much room for improvement. As you discuss the benefits of
eating vegetables with your children benefits for everyone involved you can start changing
up your meals and this is where vegan versions of their familiar foods will be helpful. Now
of course, I always advocating making whole foods the foundation of our diet as much as
possible of course that’s the fact, but I also know that we are feeding our kids hotdogs
and hamburgers and frankly vegan versions of hotdogs and hamburgers are much healthier
than animal-based ones, so you can give them vegan hotdogs and vegan hamburgers. If they
already have a taste for cow’s milk in their cereal you can gradually reduce it by a quarter
and then a half, then eventually give them 100% plant-based milk and you can do the same
thing with yogurts, ice cream, sour cream, cream cheese. You can make and buy other vegan
versions of their favourite foods, but when you do give them a veggie dog don’t make a
big deal about it, don’t say “So, here is a new food for you and it’s vegan and its
new and I know you’ve never tried it before but please try it, you are going to like it.”
Most of us don’t try new things so don’t make such a big deal about it when you are giving
them something new just feed them whatever is you’re feeding them and eventually they’ll
understand that they are eating the compassionate versions and you can have that conversation
with them casually as you are transitioning them. It might seem difficult at first when
you are transitioning but honestly I think that that has more to do with the fact that
we are fierce creatures of habit and we are resistant to change but I assure you in time it
gets easier. I promise you that. In other videos and certainly in my books and in my
Food for Thought podcast I talk about vegan children in social situations, nutrition for
children, children and holidays such as Halloween, so you can check out those sources as well.
Thanks for watching everyone. If you like what you’ve heard please share it with others,
give it a thumbs up and of course you can subscribe to this channel and you can support
the production of these videos by clicking in the support link below. And of course,
as always, you can visit for more and you can find more content like this
in the 30 Day Vegan Challenge either the online program or the book at
for the animals, this is Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, Thanks for watching.

Comments 21

  • Thank you.

  • Isn't it wrong for vegan parents to impose their values on their children? Check out my #vegan  point of view. 

    #animals   #veganpov   #vegetarian   #children   #animals   #animalrights   #health   #cooking  

  • Great talk. Thank you! Your talks and advise are much needed in this world 🙂

  • thanks colleen. i'm a nanny and the kids i watch are not vegan, i've had to cook chicken for the first time in 8 years. when they don't eat it…i don't blame them. thankfully i've gotten them to enjoy a great plant based simple meal of rice and lentils! and carrots and hummus. 

  • Great video, thank you! my parents never gave me a choice to not be raissd on meat and dairy…
    A friend of mine recently suggested that my daughter is vegan only because she wants to please me and would be scared to go against me. Uhm… I was quite puzzled as my daughter about questions everything I ever say. But it was a no brainer for her to make the connection for the animals.

  • Thanks for this video Colleen! Lots of chatter on FB about this right now. I'm going to share this on Veganuary now 🙂

  • Ah, great video! Thank you! 

  • Then aren't meat eaters imposing their beliefs on their children? If parents take their child to church aren't they imposing their beliefs? I thought that's what parents do until children are older and make decisions for themselves.

  • I always find it funny when people say that vegans shove their beliefs on people, seems to me it's society and the brainwashing we've received since day one shoving it's beliefs. Well said Colleen!

  • isnt it wrong to have kids when youre a vegan, knowing there is NO guarantee they will still vegan, and may well go on to be responsible for more animals deaths?

  • This is funny it is the opposite that is imposed, I hated meat as a baby but i loved fruits

  • The people most ardently against having "beliefs shoved on them" are the ones doing the vast majority of belief shoving in the way of "animals are here for us to use" and other cruel lies. Nothing's wrong with parents teaching their kids to be honest and kind…everything's right with that, actually. Thank you!

  • Yeah, this is a silly argument. I was raised in Puerto Rico and ate only what my parents told me to and thought was the best for me. Only when I because an adult and had the opportunity to learn other options, did I change my diet. Now that we are all a lot more educated, most of my immediate family eat a plant-based diet.  

  • Funny how when a father takes his son out with a gun to kill animals it's called teaching him to be a man, bonding, or some other acceptable thing. But when you decide you'd like your children to eat healthier, by removing excess sugar, salt, saturated fats etc…oh & meat, wow! You're a weird bent parent who is "forcing your values on your children."

  • By imposing your beliefs on children, you're not giving them the ability to make choices themselves.

    This goes for all beliefs.

  • I loved steamed vegetables as a small child but had lambs fry (liver), brains and tripe forced on me. Later on it was roast beef and lamb. Always knew it was awful.

  • Awesome video! 🙌🏻

  • This argument is so stupid it makes me laugh. Not making your child grow up thinking that he/she owns the world and everything is for them to keep, not feeding you child discrimination, rape, torture and murder, and not making them unhealthy and disease prone with these disqusting and nutrient deficient foods, are much more responsible parenting than the other way around. Are people even thinking these arguments through? Also, we are all parenting each other all the time, whenever we like it or not. Humans…

  • love this! thank you, have a few people I would like to share this with…those who say children can't be vegan

  • I think kids should be given a choice/ food options. Integrate meatless items in slowly. Do not just rip their meat based diet away…………. If they have not been raised Vegetarian/ Vegan. Vegan is too extreme for me. Vegetarian I can do. Also Vegan/Vegetarian foods can be VERY expensive. This type of diet
    can be hard for some families to maintain and stick with.

  • Great video. Thanks for saying the things that need to be said.

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