Some of my closest friends have very conservative views. I, on the other hand, have very liberal views. When I was thirteen, this would have been a problem. At that age, I did my best to not associate with anyone who considered themselves conservative, because conservative people are "wrong."
Not only am I liberal, but I am also a loudmouth. I have tasted my own feet many, many, MANY times because I say whatever comes to my mind. This isn't always a bad thing, but it isn't always a good thing. Sometimes it can be disrespectful and hurtful towards other people. People who do no harm to me.
One of the most controversial topics of our time is abortion. It always has been and probably always will be. One side argues that every woman has the right to make a choice about her body, while the other side argues that the baby has the right to make its own choice and live its own life. I cannot tell you how many times I have argued over this topic until I became red in the face. Trying so desperately to get through to the other person that I AM RIGHT.
But after years and years of arguing, being called a baby killer, and crying in utter frustration, I let it go. Who am I to change somebody else's beliefs? Is it really my place to convert other people to the "right" side of the debate? I'm not happy when they try to sway me, so why should I do the same thing to them?
Conversion is not how we will get things done, but rather through conversation.
Nowadays, I have conversations about abortion on a regular basis. I talk about pregnancy, rape, family planning, sexual activity, and everything in between almost daily. When we talk, we already know that we aren't going to change anyone's views. We merely talk to get our feelings out; say it how we think it is. Nobody gets huffy or pissy. Nobody screams or throws things. We sit and talk like humans instead of fighting like animals. It feels incredible to be able to have a true conversation about a difficult topic. There's something about it all that's liberating. At the end of it, we all say, "I wish I could have had these conversations in high school!"
If I were to ever get pregnant, I would get an abortion. Without a doubt. No matter the circumstances. I know that having a child would not be the best thing for me, and I do not want to contribute to the increasing rates in orphanages. I also don't want to put my body through the struggle of having a child. That simply is not the path I wish to go down. If it's for you, awesome! Go you! You've got the strength to have kids, be a parent, and put forth that effort. That's insanely hard, and it's certainly not for everyone. I know it's not for me.
We are all entitled to our own opinions when it comes to abortion, and any other topic. If you don't want to support it, then don't. That's your choice. Just like it's my choice to support a woman's right to get an abortion. But before you kick and scream and turn red in the face trying to convert the other person, take the time to hear them out. Nobody said you need to change your mind. Just extend them the same courtesy you'd like them to extend you. We are all people and we all deserve the right to make our own choices. Do yourself a favor: make your own choice and let everyone else do the same.