There are some people in the world who cannot deal with other’s dietary choices. Maybe they see it as a rejection of their lifestyle. Or maybe they just have no tolerance. But it’s never okay to mock someone for what they choose to eat or not eat.
One Redditor who is vegan regularly has to deal with a coworker who mocks their lifestyle. The OP doesn’t make a fuss about food and pretty much is easy to accommodate. But their coworker constantly makes fun of them and “jokes” about their diet—to the point where it’s become uncomfortable at work.
“I (29f) am working in an office and I have a colleague Bea, who routinely makes fun of vegans. I am vegan and I never make a fuss about food, I go to the same restaurants as my coworkers during lunch hour and I can always find myself something to eat without announcing my dietary choices.”
Apparently, Bea can’t get over it, though. She calls out the OP on her food choices in a condescending way and tells the OP she’s going through a phase.
“She keeps offering me bites of her lunch that contain cheese and meat, and when I refuse she just goes ‘oh come on, it’s vegan I promise!’ winkwink. It’s very childish and annoying, and even other people asked her to tone it down, but she insists she’s just joking.”
Last week, the OP says that Bea brought in a homemade cake for her birthday party at the office. When Bea gave the OP a slice, the OP politely declined. Bea said the cake is vegan and she specifically made it for the OP.
“Knowing her very loose definition of vegan I asked a few questions about the ingredients and she didn’t check any of them for milk or eggs, so I thanked her again but refused the slice. She made a big scene out of it, she started crying and saying she just wanted to do something nice for me and now I ruined her birthday.”
“Some colleagues told me not to mind her dramatics, but my boss told me that it was her birthday and I could have given her cooking the benefit of the doubt. I sort of see his point, but I also feel like i don’t need to justify my food choices to anyone, and I never asked her to make the cake vegan for me.”
What did Redditors think?
“NTA, OP. No one has to eat anything they don’t want to. And milk and eggs are the minimum she should be checking for. Sugar is also problematic for vegans as well as many other ingredients that she probably has no idea about. I’m not a vegan but I’m a baker and working at a very upscale resort in the bake shop taught me how many things aren’t acceptable when baking vegan recipes,” said geckotatgirl.
“Your boss is also out of place. What if you are having problems and need to restrict your sugar intake? What if you ate something bad the night before and your stomach hurts and you are taking a day to feel better? What if you’re dealing with a ED? No one should ever feel forced to eat something just to please somebody else. These people,” noted HopefulEuphemia.
“NTA – she’s clearly and repeatedly shown that she doesn’t respect your dietary choices. Her cake was probably as vegan as a bacon cheeseburger. You politely refused. Your boss needs to take several seats as it’s completely inappropriate for him to comment on what you eat or don’t eat. He needs to talk to Bea about her bullying and harassing you over food,” said Radiant_Cat618.
“NTA. Given her attitude towards you being vegan I’d say you’re perfectly justified in never eating anything she offers you. I see this as a lower stakes version of those people who refuse to believe when someone has an allergy and try to sneakily feed them the food they’re allergic to. If someone tells you that they can’t or won’t eat something, whether for health reasons, religion, ethical reasons or just plain personal preference, you should respect that and not try to feed them that thing,” stated RebelScientist.
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