However, he also says that not having them over is detrimental to his business. I know you've said that good food is good food, whether or not it contains animal products, so that's what I told him. But he insists that he simply cannot have his associates over and expect them to eat a vegan meal. My home is my haven. It’s the only place where I don’t have to endure people eating chunks of animals. I refuse to defile it by serving meat. Both my husband and I are vegan, but I’m afraid he’s doing it only to appease me. He seems ashamed of it and embarrassed to stand up for it. Any help you can give us would be greatly appreciated.
It's sad to hear that your relationship is fraying because of veganism, which is intended to be the practical application of compassion, even though it's currently having opposite effect in your household. Your situation demonstrates that in order for us to be committed to a particular behavior or way of life, we must choose it willingly and without coercion. Only then can we accept our choice, be proud of it, feel confident, and not be concerned whether others approve of it.
You're right that your home should be your haven. Our homes are one of the few places where we can shed our social facades and be ourselves without pretense. Both you and your husband need to feel safe in your home, without any concerns about being judged. At the same time, you should not be required to compromise your values or do something that is repugnant to you.
Most people don’t care, and often aren't aware, that they're eating plant-based foods when the dishes are prepared well and taste delicious. In fact, many signature recipes from various cuisines are naturally vegan, but we wouldn’t know or think about that fact unless someone pointed it out to us. Your husband is making assumptions about how his colleagues will respond based on his own projections rather than their actual feedback. This speculation likely stems from your husband’s fears or insecurities about what others think of him, and that's a problem he needs to work on independent of you. It has nothing to do with veganism.
There is no reason at all that dinner guests even need to be told they will be dining on a vegan meal. Why point out what's "missing" when they can focus on the bounty you've provided? If the meal is tasty, nobody will notice one whit that animal products aren't on the table.
It's unfair and disrespectful of your husband to pressure you into serving meat in your home. If he is worried about what others think of him, he needs to reevaluate his reasons for being vegan, as well as take a hard look at his commitment to you, your marriage, and your shared values and home. Jobs and business associates will come and go over the years, but a marriage is a life-long relationship. If your husband honestly believes that his colleagues will have a poor opinion of him because there isn’t a hunk of flesh on their plates when they have dinner at your house, he can invite them to your home for drinks and then take them out to a restaurant. Marriage requires compromise, and eating out with business associates may be the best middle ground for both of you. However, a sound marriage based on love and respect should never demand a compromise of values.