Finding Your Balance: Dealing with Conflicting Opinions on Social Justice

February 17, 2018

No matter what your views surrounding the issues of social justice may be, you’re going to come across people who challenge your opinions and disagree with you completely. It’s hard to not get emotionally involved in these matters, and I know this because a few of my good friends have completely opposite views than me. Sometimes I get really heated and upset when a friend says something that I don’t agree with. It’s hard to not let it get to you on a really personal level. It can ruin friendships and relationships.


 Photo: Joshua Hoehne on Unsplash 



For me, I’ve never decided to avoid a friendship based on their own personal views. I like being surrounded by people who want to argue and challenge my views. It makes me think harder about what I believe in and it makes me support each side a little more. I grow stronger in my opinions every day, and that’s just how I work. I definitely don’t choose my friends based on what they believe, as I have never felt uncomfortable about someone’s opposite viewpoints.


My advice is that it’s okay to disagree with someone and it’s okay to get upset and emotional. Don’t let anyone tell you that you have to change what you believe in. However, it’s important to never force your views on anyone else because I wouldn’t want anyone to do that to me. Respect is one of the most important things to remember in this type of situation. You must be able to respect everyone’s opinions. You don’t have to agree with everyone, but you have to respect the fact that we all have different views.


Social justice issues tend to be one of the most delicate topics for people to talk about. In this day in age, people tend to get very emotional and sensitive about certain topics. I take women’s rights pretty seriously, and I can get really upset when someone challenges my views on equal rights. It’s hard for me to wrap my head around why people wouldn’t want everyone to have the same rights. Why can’t I be paid as much as a man? How come I feel as though I’m not taken as seriously as the men in the room? I don’t understand because, in my eyes, I see such a simple solution, but others don’t see things the way I do. It’s hard to accept that, but I have to try and respect it. Respecting different opinions can take a toll on you emotionally, especially if you are unable to step back and respect the fact that not everyone is going to share the same beliefs as you. Just remember to be mindful of other people and make an effort to respect our differences.


My name is Emma Berry, I'm 20 years old and I am a junior at the College of the Holy Cross. I'm an English major with a concentration in Creative Writing. I also joined the Pre-Business program, as I hope to get a job in the publishing field after I graduate. I basically run on iced coffee and when I have free time I love to just read or watch Netflix (and Game of Thrones). ​

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