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I am a 7th grade student, and I have recently become aware of feminism. After a long time thinking, I have come to the conclusion that I am a feminist. This is very new and exciting for me, but I am very confused about it all, and I was hoping that you could clarify some things:

1. My best friend doesn't believe in this and although she "supports" me she disagrees with my decision. We got into a huge fight and she hung up the phone on me. How can I deal with this? It would be hard for me to stop being her friend, because I have known her for 11 years.

2. I am against abortion, but I am for everything else that feminism stands for. Can I still be a feminist if I don't believe in that? Thank you so much for all of your help!



Dear Caitlin,
t hanks so much for reaching out to Feminist.com! In terms of your friend's response, I'm sure that has mostly to do with her misunderstanding about what feminism is and perhaps even her assumption that because you are embracing feminism she must, too. Having friends choose different things can be threatening to some friends — rather than viewing these differences as strengths, as in, we can learn from each other, some people are threatened by them, as in, your choices are a threat to her own.

I think that you should simply tell her what you mean by feminism — what makes you connected and why you think it's important to identify yourself as such. Also, she might be resistant to it for very silly reasons — for instance, maybe her mother is a feminist and that's what drives her nuts about her mom or maybe someone once called her a feminist in a negative way and that stayed with her.

On the second point, you can certainly be a feminist and not actively support abortion rights. I think the important thing is for you not to stand in the way of those who are trying to access abortion — to take away their access and rights.