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My Vegetarian Son Was Served Hot Dogs

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And I'm mad as hell!

boy getting hot dog

Guest blogger Gina: Even though I am always very clear that my son does not eat red meat, he was served a beef hot dog on a play date.

When his friend's mom made him the hot dog, my 6-year-old said, "I'm not allowed to eat meat. I only eat veggie dogs."

What was the mom's response? "Just try it ... you'll like it!"

I am thankful he didn't have a reaction ... after all, he's never eaten meat in his life and his little stomach is not used to digesting it.

I haven't said anything to the parents yet and don't know if I should or not. After all, I can't turn back time. But, to me, this is almost as bad as serving a kid with a peanut allergy a PB & J. I always ask parents before a play date if their kids have any dietary restrictions or allergies and am very mindful of that. Why can't other parents show me the same courtesy? Maybe this wasn't a big deal to my son's friend's parents, but it's a VERY big deal to me.

What would you do in my shoes?


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92 comments so far | Post a comment now
P.richael December 8, 2008, 4:00 AM

anon, are you a pediatrician? Didn’t think so and this is not an issue of how valid her point of veiw is- imagine how you would feel if a parent on a playdate let your kid get a tattoo of their choice and your kid comes home with a Dora tattoo? Pretty mad. If you think your kids deserved to make their own choices then have your own kids and teach them in your own “Big Daddy”, liberal way. Your not this boys mother neither is the woman of whom offered her kid a hotdog. The custodian pays for the kids food and is under no obligation to buy food if it is against their own belief/ lifestyle to associate with that type of food product. It is also an annoyance to have a kid saying “MOMMY! I WANT A HOTDOG LIKE THE ONE AT JIMMY’S HOUSE… (no) mom…mom… (WHAT!) PLEEEAAASSSEE!!!

P.richael December 8, 2008, 4:01 AM

anon, are you a pediatrician? Didn’t think so and this is not an issue of how valid her point of veiw is- imagine how you would feel if a parent on a playdate let your kid get a tattoo of their choice and your kid comes home with a Dora tattoo? Pretty mad. If you think your kids deserved to make their own choices then have your own kids and teach them in your own “Big Daddy”, liberal way. Your not this boys mother neither is the woman of whom offered her kid a hotdog. The custodian pays for the kids food and is under no obligation to buy food if it is against their own belief/ lifestyle to associate with that type of food product. It is also an annoyance to have a kid saying “MOMMY! I WANT A HOTDOG LIKE THE ONE AT JIMMY’S HOUSE… (no) mom…mom… (WHAT!) PLEEEAAASSSEE!!!

B. Johnson December 12, 2008, 12:54 PM

I had a vegetarian friend who at his own wedding, didn’t know that some of the blintzes had meat in them. He threw up all over the place.
Lucky the little guy didn’t “return” the hot dog!!!! :-)

Deborah R December 12, 2008, 1:17 PM

That’s just wrong on so many levels. If it were me, my son wouldn’t be going on unsupervised (by me) play dates to that house again.

Cyndie December 13, 2008, 11:40 AM

I guess I’m with Julie D. and momof3 it’s not a life-threatening situation…it’s not like they let him play in traffic or offered him Vicodin. Overreacting may make your son afraid to tell you about future situations concerning offers of “forbidden food” for fear that’s he’d lose his friends over it. I’d say chill a little and save the freaking out for something really serious like narcotics and underage drinking…they’ll be along soon enough.

Cyndie December 13, 2008, 11:41 AM

I guess I’m with Julie D. and momof3 it’s not a life-threatening situation…it’s not like they let him play in traffic or offered him Vicodin. Overreacting may make your son afraid to tell you about future situations concerning offers of “forbidden food” for fear that’s he’d lose his friends over it. I’d say chill a little and save the freaking out for something really serious like narcotics and underage drinking…they’ll be along soon enough.

Anonymous December 13, 2008, 5:40 PM

You should have sent another food alternative with him if you really care about his diet that much.You really should not be projecting your anger on the woman who fed him the hot dog. You should be angry at yourself for not taking preventative measures because we live in a meat eating society. You son will be exposed to meat quite often in his life, and it is ultimately up to him to decide when he is old enough to choose for himself, whether or not he wants to eat meat. I am a vegetarian however I do not push my values off on my daughters. I let them decide if they want to eat meat. They are not exposed to meat too much anyway. I think you are over reacting. You remind me of a friend of mine who is a strict vegetarian. Her kids were completely scrawny due to the fact that organic, vegetarian food did not sit well with them. I do not think she realizes how she could be inadvertantly harming her kids by restricting them to a strict diet.

Caring Mom January 8, 2009, 5:20 PM

wow i would have raised some hell because my gosh the other mom actually fed your son a hot dog(sarcasm)……………honestly what do you want…? you would have probably been even more pissed had the other mom not feed your son anything because it seems that just about every food is off limits. why dont you pack some food for your son next time so you know exactly what he is eating.honestly though you cant hope to protect your son from these kinds of situations all his life unless of course you just make him stay at home because ALL the time because some “RUDE” mom fed him a hot dog.

Tracy Ivy January 8, 2009, 5:33 PM

I would have called the police, swat, army, navy, airforce, FBI, CIA, secret service and any other authority possible to have this mom hunted down because oh my gawd she fed your son a hot dog. I mean a hot dog omg… what kind of inconsiderate mom feeds a child a hot dog…?She should be put to solitary confinement and never see the light of day for this atrocity. This is a crime against humanity and should be punished above and beyond the fullest extent of the law. If you have such strong beliefs you should just pack your son lunch……………………………………………………………………………………..

Anonymous January 8, 2009, 6:05 PM

What if your son had a play date and had a couple of friends over, and all you had to offer was your vegetarian type food which non of them liked but were forced to eat because no meat is allowed at your household? Then after that the other kids’ moms come over and goes berserk because its against THEIR beliefs that their son should not eat vegetarian food. You would probably say oh tough luck maybe they(the other moms) should pack their son’s food and stop complaining because at the very least you offered them food. You never thought about it this way because you are a selfish b*tch that only thinks about what you want. I feel bad for anyone that your son invites over.

Meat Lover January 12, 2009, 12:13 PM

To the parents arguing there’s nothing wrong with choosing a vegetarian life for your child, saying “Children don’t make all their own choices”, yadda yadda yadda… That’s a stupid argument. When you steer your child towards a vegetarian life, they are essentially locked in.

It’s not like you are choosing to not let them watch TV, because they could watch TV when they are older…You are choosing that they can’t digest meat, as such, are very likely to avoid it for their entire life because it will be difficult to eat meat in the future.

You ARE choosing for them. Most people eat meat, animals eat animals, let the kid eat meat and if they want to “choose” to be a vegetarian they’ll have that choice when they are older.

My niece “chose” to be a vegetarian at the age of 7, after being raised with her parents telling her that eating meat is bad for her. Give me a break..or some steak, for that matter. Har.

Meat Lover January 12, 2009, 12:27 PM

Another thing. If what the original poster says is true, I’ll be fair here and say I do agree it’s inappropriate for the other mother to say “just try it you’ll like it” to the kid. Since the kid himself said “i only eat veggie dogs” ….I would have said “fine kid just eat chips and cookies” or whatever you want.

It’s understandable to get mad that the mother said “eat it you’ll like it” …but to expect anything else from her, ie - a special meal of Tofu for the kid, is absurd. Like others have said, pack the kid a lunch.

Regardless, it’s only going to get worse.

When your child is at school and surrounded by those crazy carnivores, teasing him about his vegetarian “choice”, he’s going to have to be strong and tolerate that without you there to defend him.

Lisa Belanga January 17, 2009, 8:17 PM

I think you are being downright ridiculous: Don’t bring your son to someone else’s house and expect them to cook him a “vegetarian” meal. You are in the minority, not the friend’s family. Next time provide a meal for your son so there won’t be an issue. And good luck trying to keep him a vegetarian. Don’t we live in a free society? Let the kid pick what he wants to eat. Parents like you drive me crazy. Just because you want to live on tofu and veggies doesn’t mean your kid should have to as well. Get over it.

Joe January 22, 2009, 12:03 AM

Get over it and eat some meat. If we weren’t meant to eat animals then why were they made out of MEAT!!!

leah March 5, 2009, 10:22 AM

The page i was on prior to this had a bunch of women that had no idea what they were talking about when it comes to being a vegetarian and respecting someones wishes. they were rude in saying you were wrong for being angry. this site has completely different comments from women that make much more sense. i know this is old now but i just became vegetarian and i dont know whether to make my son stop eating meat or not but if i had my son a vegetarian since he was born and someone did that to me i would be irrate!! after i told them not to. i imagine this person was not very bright or all there. i’m sure she had some bread and cheese and could have made a grilled cheese or planned to make something vegetarian since she knew your child was coming and was vegetarian or asked you to bring something. i hope you did say something she needs to learn that is not right!! i tell everyone in my family not to give my son candy and they do of course when my back is turned. or soda or regular milk versus organic. for one my son can not drink a milk shake without jumping off of the walls litterly and its a health issue. there’s nothing good about eating meat or candy soda and regular milk why don’t other people realize this?

smarter than leah May 1, 2009, 12:31 AM

Nothing good about eating meat? How about the high quality proteins found in some meats which if you did not know is one thing that a single vegetarian food is unable to do, as well as amino acids in which are very essential to the body. Also red meat contains high quantities of iron. While yes I realize there are repercussions from eating meat, but if it is done in moderation I do not see any problems there. Too much of anything can be detrimental, that is why it is recommended to have a well balanced diet. There are definitely some advantages of eating meat and why doesn’t a person like you realize this? I imagine you are not very bright yourself with a comment such as your last one.

Erik Linard May 25, 2009, 10:59 PM

Ha ha. You’re a kook. Your mother fed you 100 hot dogs, but somehow you survived. Go sulk in your tofu.

GPC May 25, 2009, 11:23 PM

Out of curiousity, when he gets old enough to choose…are you going to try and ban him from eating meat? You can’t supervise the kid 24 hours to make sure he’s making your choice. Because at the end of the day, it’s your choice not his.

Paul May 29, 2009, 4:58 PM

Did he like the hot dog? If so, maybe you should reconsider restricting his diet.

Amy  September 29, 2009, 10:27 AM

Sorry, but I agree with what some have said so far - it was not a life-threatening situation like peanut allergies.

And seriously? It was a hot dog.

And as others have said, if it was THAT important to you, you would have told her prior.

I bet he really liked that hot dog.


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