Thousands of languages and dialects float around the globe, and somehow, we communicate anything, ever.
The system isn’t perfect, but it functions.
Sometimes a breakdown in communication can occur even when the same language is used, and someone uses a word in the wrong context.
That was the issue facing Redditor and Original Poster (OP) Background_Egg7703 when she came to the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for judgment.
“AITA for saying I don’t want to eat body parts?”
“I (23 f) am with my boyfriend (24 m) for over three years now.”
“His parents (mom and stepdad) and I have had our issues in the beginning, but after about two years, they seemed to accept me, and even though I won’t forget certain things they have said about or towards me, I felt like it went uphill.”
“Five months ago, I decided to go vegan.”
“My bf has been very supportive all the time (he even eats a lot of vegan food now, too), and when we visited his parents, his mom would also prepare something for me to eat.”
“I told her thank you and how much I appreciate that.”
“I’ve never commented on their food or started a discussion about being vegan because I know it’s neither the time nor the place to do that.”
“I realize they are not interested in it, and I’m just glad that we get along, tbh.”
Birthday food is delicious.
“A couple of weeks ago, my bf turned 24, and we had a bday-brunch at his parent’s house (with his sister and BIL).”
“My bf provided the food, and his mom, him, and I prepared it together at their house.”
“My bf wanted to have everything on the table available in vegan, too.”
“He wanted it not just for me but also for his family to try some if they wanted to.”
“Now, this happened:”
“My bf also put bacon and ‘vegan bacon’ on the table.”
“At this moment, it’s his stepdad, his sister, and me at the table when his stepdad loudly comments something about how stupid the idea of ‘vegan bacon’ is and who even needed that nonsense.”
“I didn’t think much of it and responded to him, in the nicest voice I had, that vegan bacon was a great alternative if you like the taste of bacon but don’t like eating body parts.”
Why so serious?
“Now he’s furious, complaining he hasn’t ever heard such nonsense as meat being called body parts and how stupid that was. Bf’s sister asked if he was fine and why he was so angry.”
“When we finally ate, I asked bf’s BIL for the egg salad (which was vegan too).”
“So stepdad asked me if I’m now going to eat dead baby animals.”
“I respond that technically there’s no baby unless the egg was fertilized, but it wasn’t real eggs anyway.”
“This is when his mom steps in and says everyone should just eat their own food now and leave others alone.”
“A few days after this, his parents talked to my bf about it.”
“Stepdad says he’s not happy with how things went and that I was being disrespectful towards him by: calling meat ‘body parts’. He argues that, if anything, it’s a cadaver not a body (because it’s an animal and not human).”
“Honestly, I think this is ridiculous.”
“I admit I could’ve just ignored him, maybe but I don’t really see why I would sit there and let him talk like that (which, in my opinion, was disrespectful in the first place).”
“My bf wants me to ‘fix’ the situation.”
“I am ready to do that for his sake, but I honestly don’t think I am the one who owes an apology, and I don’t want his parents to think it’s fine.”
“All I think about this, and especially his stepdad rn, is like…play stupid games, win stupid prices… but maybe there are different opinions on this.”
OP was left to wonder,
“So, Reddit, AITA?”
Having explained the situation, OP turned to Reddit for judgment.
Redditors weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Redditors decided: NTA
But… that’s what it is?
“I’m an avid meat-eater, half my family is in the butcher business, and I dislike preachy vegans as much as anyone.”
“OP was not being preachy.”
“FIL instigated this entire thing.”
“His comments were unnecessary and rude, especially considering his son’s gf of 3 years is a vegan.”
“And I see very little failing on OP’s part here.”
“Meat literally is body parts. That’s not some kind of insult. That is the reality of meat.”
“It’s no more an insult than saying someone having a salad is eating plants.”
“Anyone getting so bent out of shape over that just doesn’t like to confront the reality of what they’re eating.” ~ dilqncho
“Also an avid meat eater.”
“Eating a sausage sandwich right this minute. So much butthurt in this thread over not wanting to admit meat is animal body parts.”
“The cognitive dissonance is amazing.” ~ 4got10_son
Our community had stories.
“My daughter went vegetarian for a while after realizing what meat actually is.”
“We didn’t hide it.”
“She came back to meat eating on her own – although there is still some meat she won’t touch.”
“It’s best not to lie.”
“Eating an animal is eating body parts and flesh.”
“There is no getting around that fact, no matter how many fancy words us meat eaters use to pretty it up. NTA.” ~ universechild9
“You’d be surprised how some kids just roll with it.”
“We never hide the fact meat is from animals. My son had a ‘beef is from cow?’ moment. But he quickly moved on.” ~ Dealingwithdragons
“My parents had a friend raise a calf up for them to be butchered.”
“Occasionally, we’d go and see the calf (had a name to differentiate it from the other calves).”
“One night, one of my brothers (pre-teen) made a comment about wanting to go see ‘Stripe’ again.”
“Without seeming to think, Dad muttered, ‘look at your plate then’. Cue the chaos as several children realized they were eating the calf they had seen.”
“BTW, we were a small-farming-town family, so we all knew where meat came from.”
“When Mum told everyone that if they didn’t want to eat the meat on their plates, they didn’t need to, another (teen) brother looked at his plate and groaned, ‘but Stripe tastes so good’ before digging back in.”
“All but one of the younger kids followed his lead. It took about a week for them to get over the fact they knew what/who the animal was.” ~ Aesient
Not everyone was on OP’s side.
“You knew exactly what you were doing by calling them body parts. Classic passive-aggressive and then playing innocent victim when you get called on it.” ~ Solid_Ad_8626
“I started out reading this post thinking, finally, a non-sanctimonious vegan!”
“Then I kept reading, and OP’s true colors came out. Eat or don’t eat what you want, but nobody wants or needs you preaching at them about their choices.”
“ETA: YTA” ~ TTHS_Ed
“My problem with Big Vegan is their need to make meat substitutes of things and call them the same name.”
“Just eat your fruits and vegetables and other foods. Bacon is a specific thing, as are eggs. Call them soy strips or pea strips.”
“Soft YTA for calling it body parts. You were both petty and immature.” ~ Erythronne
“You seem upset that he called out your fake bacon and fake eggs, but you don’t see why he would be upset that you basically said he eats body parts.”
“That was easily the most offensive way you could have referred to it.”
“You could have just said, it’s for people that like the taste but don’t eat meat.”
“Calling meat ‘body parts’ is a tactic to make meat-eaters feel bad.”
“And you absolutely can do that if you like and try and shame people into not eating meat, but you should not be surprised if you get a reaction like that.” ~ inFinEgan
OP did return with clarity…
“Because it came up multiple times- the egg salad was fake! Like the bacon. It did NOT contain real eggs”
And a language lesson!!!
“Native language is German. This happened in German.”
“The original word I used was ‘Leichenteile’: Leiche = (dead) body; Teile = parts.”
“He said ‘Kadaver’ which is the more popular word when speaking of an animal body, but also describes a human body – typically used when it comes to a body (human or animal) that started to rot.”
‘“Leiche’ and ‘Kadaver’ are both per definition words to describe either a dead human or dead animal.”
“They are synonyms.”
Lastly, a bit of resolution.
“Thank you all for your (constructive) feedback.”
“I am going to apologize for my wording since it seems to mean that much to him and for the sake of peace.”
“I will also be clear about him disrespecting me (too) because my apologizing for my response doesn’t excuse him at all.”
“Depending on his response, I’ll see what’s next.”
Context can make or break a conversation.
Remember to be clear in what you’re saying, but also to be direct in how you say it.