Is It OK That My Co-Worker Keeps Her Anti-Abortion Views on the Down Low?

I cannot decide if this is lying.

Nearly nine years ago, I befriended a woman at work who, as I learned over the years of our now strong friendship, is staunchly pro-life. For her, the argument is both scientific and religious: Life starts at conception, and abortion is murder (no exceptions). She is morally consistent, though, in also being against the death penalty and in seeking out stronger social programs for families, like paid parental leave. We no longer work together, but we remain close friends and frequently discuss our views on abortion (I am pro-choice). Having a stronger understanding of one pro-life ideology has, I feel, expanded my thinking. I believe she is a good person who cares about the world immensely.

Especially after the overturning of Roe v. Wade, though, I struggle with having a friend who supports what I think is a restriction of my rights to make my own choices about my body. I struggle, too, with what I think of as duplicitousness: She actively restricts who she tells about her pro-life views, because she fears it will hurt her advancement prospects and could end friendships. She hopes people will see her as a good person and not judge her first on her anti-abortion views. I cannot decide if this is lying. And while I disagree with her views, it is the potential lying that is most questionable to me.


Maybe it's like being queer and choosing to stay in the closet, but there's the issue of what is a choice and what is inherent. Is it right for her to withhold the truth, or even lie, to protect herself, for the sake of her reputation and friendships? Is it OK if people do not want to be friends with or work with someone who has views like hers? I struggle with the idea that she is able to protect herself from the fallout of people knowing she is anti-abortion when implementing her views would take away rights that many people see as vital to living a life with dignity.

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