Editors’ Note: This is a guest post written by Kwa Ganjapanne, a Thai university student in Chiang Mai, who has made the uncommon and often unpopular decision to become vegan. While one can find support in many other countries, vegans in Thailand are rare and often find themselves alone. In her post, Kwa shares with us her personal reasons for going vegan and some of the struggles she’s encountered and overcome along the way.
Why I Stopped Eating Animals
I did not stop consuming animal products because I believe it is a sin or I was afraid of Karma but it was because it hurt my heart so much to know that I made someone die in order to be alive. I strongly believe that animals feel pain and have feelings in the same way that humans do. I am so happy right now. I don’t cause anyone death and I am healthy.
My name is Kwa and I am now 20 years old. I became a vegan in December 2012. I honestly did not know that animals were caused so much pain just to become my food. After my friend showed me a video about what it’s like in the slaughter houses, I burst into tears. The first thing that came to my mind is that I can no longer eat these lovely innocent animals and I have been a vegan ever since!
Making the Transition
The very first months were not so easy. It was a little bit hard to adjust myself to the new way of life. I began to have a hard time remembering things and sometimes I became exhausted after only walking a short distance.
Then, I learned that I had not been eating in the right way. After adjusting my food, ensuring that I was getting everything I needed, both my mental and physical energy returned to normal.
Explaining to My Family
Everything was fine until I went back home over New Year’s in April. My family was really worried about my health and well-being. They were afraid that I would not get enough nutrients and would become unhealthy.
I spent almost a month explaining to them about how veganism works and I am happy to say that they now understand me. Now, when I go home my Mom makes vegan food for me. They eat healthier now too. They eat less meat. My little sister loves veggies and she gets very sad when I tell her about how animal are slaughtered but she can’t seem to quit eating meat yet. I hope one day she will.
My parents, perhaps since they’re older, still are not convinced that we can get enough nutrients if we are vegans but they have given up trying to stop me from being one.
I think it’s really important that we teach kids in schools that we can also get protein from plants, not only from meat, and explain the process of how animals become their food. Most kids do not know about this. 🙁
Furthermore, if you say you are an animal lover, please make sure you love every kind of animal, not just the cute ones. If you say you are an animal lover, please make sure you don’t do them harm.