There are also some vegetarians who are distressed by the sight of meat. Now normally when going out my opinion would be "that is their cross to bear" but if it is a dinner for their birthday I would be a bit cautious about bringing them to the Kingdom of Meat. OTOH, if they loved meat but had to give it up for medical reasons I probably wouldn't suggest that either.
(Bolding above is mine.) That's what I was responding to. The OP said she loves meat, but can't have it. Under the circumstances, the best salad bar in the world might not cushion the blow of seeing (and smelling) all those skewers and platters dancing around the table -- as a birthday treat.
I have several ethical/philosophical vegetarian friends. One of them actually recommended a certain old-timey steakhouse for a get-together, because it has a good selection of vegetarian entrees and full dinners.
But some of my other vegetarian friends really don't like seeing meat at the same table, and that's the last place I'd suggest to them. In fact, I try to eat veggie too when I'm with them, unless there's truly no way my diet and any of the available vegetarian foods can get along (almost never a problem). And then, I don't flaunt it.