Boyfriend Demands An Apology From Girlfriend For ‘Tricking’ Him Into Eating Vegan Food

Now that you can get plant-based meats like beyond burgers, impossible burgers, etc. there’s been some pretty ridiculous debate about whether or not it should be called “meat.” For example, Texas Republicans are trying to ban plant-based meats from using “meat” and “beef” on their labels because they’re afraid it might “mislead” consumers.

At least one guy apparently feels the same way.

A woman posted in Reddit’s Am I The Assh*le? subreddit saying her boyfriend felt “betrayed” after learning she had been feeding him vegan food without telling him it was vegan.

The OP said she told her boyfriend she was vegan on their first date but wasn’t sure if it registered. She’s been cooking him vegan food like impossible burgers but never specifically mentioned they were vegan.

I (f21) am vegan and have been so for several years. I started dating “John” (m22) about three and a half months. We’ve gotten along wonderfully except for this past issue. When we went out to dinner for the first time I told him I was vegan when ordering my dish and he just kind of went “oh, cool” and started talking about something else. It never really came up ever again as a point of discussion, though when he’s come over and I’ve made lunch/dinner it’s always been vegan dishes. I’ve never tried to actively hide this from him. When he asked what we were having I’d say things like “burgers” and I assumed that he knew it would naturally be something like impossible burgers.

Things came to head when the two were watching a cooking show featuring plant-based meat and he said he’d never eat something gross like that. (Whoops!)

For Christmas neither of us could afford to travel home and neither are very close to our families so we had Christmas at my apartment and I cooked dinner, vegan lasagna. After dinner we were watching some cooking show and a contestant was making something with fake meat. John commented how he hated when dishes pretended to be meat when it was plant-based and it was deceptive and gross and he would never eat that. I was naturally very confused and pointed out that he’s eaten that several times. When he questioned me I explained that dinner had been entirely vegan with fake meat and every time he’s eaten at my place it’s been a vegan dish.

She told him that he had, in fact, eaten that “gross” stuff and he got mad, accused her of tricking him, and said the situation was the same as if he tricked her into eating meat.

He got really mad. I’m trying to keep this post concise but he accused me of tricking him into eating something he found disgusting and “forcing” my diet on him. I said he was stupid for being mad at this and he said it would be the same as if he had tricked me into eating meat. I said it wasn’t the same because I was morally opposed to eating meat but nobody was morally opposed to eating plants. We argued some more and he left and went home. He hasn’t been over since.

He’s been avoiding her and told her he felt “betrayed” that she would “tamper” with his food and now he’s demanding an apology.

Yesterday I texted him trying to smooth things over and hoping he’s cooled down. He wrote a few paragraphs about how betrayed he felt. He said that he hoped I understood how disappointed he felt that I would tamper with his food like that, and that something like this was a serious betrayal of his trust. He said I should have disclosed that none of the food I ever made contained meat. He finished it by saying he would come over for New Year’s only if I apologized for lying to him. I got frustrated and said that I didn’t lie, that this wasn’t something I should apologize for, and he was being stupid and childish. He hasn’t replied.

The OP updated the post to answer some questions. She said her boyfriend doesn’t help her cook and she would never lie if he asked what was in the dishes she’s serving.

Thank you for the responses! I didn’t expect so many comments and it would be overwhelming to respond to them individually so I’m just going to make an edit here.

No, he’s never helped me cook dinner. He usually waits in the living room and sets up a music playlist and sets the table and stuff. I don’t mind that much, since my apartment is small and the kitchen might get kind of cramped. I find cooking really relaxing too and tend to zone out. He doesn’t ask about it other than “what are we having?” and it’s not discussed that much while we eat. If he had asked where I bought the ingredients or how I’ve prepared it it’s not like I would lie and say it was real meat.

She also said this is their first fight and his overreaction is making her feel like she’s going crazy.

This is the first major fight we’ve had and I don’t want to end such a great relationship over it, I just feel like no matter how much I try to explain my point of view he keeps trying to make me sound like a villain. I felt like I was going crazy because this is the first time he’s made me feel like this. I don’t think I’m going to cave and apologize for this though. If he wants to act like a baby then I think I just won’t spend New Year’s with him. I’ll just invite some of my other friends over and we’ll watch Succession or something together.

Which makes sense. It’s just vegetables, my guy, you eat vegetables so don’t get all bent outta shape because the vegetables were dressed up like meat.

What do Redditors think?

So… the boyfriend knew OP was vegan, ate burgers with her at her house while she was cooking and didn’t ask anything? I almost feel sorry for him for being that stupid.

NTA. –linniepoes

He got caught being wrong and rather than admit it he chooses to deflect and blame you. –Maskydoo

NTA. The bigger issue is that he didn’t pay attention to you telling him you are vegan.

He is showing signs of not caring about your beliefs and that his needs should come first. –FussyBritchesMama

Oh good lord. I hate this kind of thing. He ate and enjoyed the food… UNTIL he learned there was no meat in. Give me a break. NTA. Time for a new boyfriend who shows just a bit more maturity than a 10-year-old. –SonuvaGunderson


The fact that he didn’t notice is a huge compliment to the producers of vegan and vegetarian products and to you as a cook. He’s probably healing from his bruised ego as he, and so many other men, consider eating vegan a direct assault on their masculinity. I am flexitarian myself but if I am on a date with a guy who says he would NEVER even try it, there will be no second date. You don’t have to be vegan or vegetarian but you should be open to trying new things. –ConsciousCranberry99

A pretty unanimous verdict of “Not The Assh*le” here with a dash of “dump that man” and “compliments to the chef.”

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