Political Identity Crisis


My political views have changed recently. I have views different than the way I used to and it’s come out in the last year after a lot of critical thought and I find myself on a different side politically this year than I have been pretty much my whole life based on issues I never felt I had to consider before. I’m more conservative than I used to be, though I don’t consider myself far right by any means. I have hidden this from my friends. They have threatened to cut off anyone who doesn’t vote the way they do. I want to keep my beliefs, but I’m lying about them. I even voted against how I felt because I was so terrified of losing my friends and didn’t want to slip up one day and tell them who I voted for. I don’t want to do that again. I don’t feel in integrity. I find myself obsessively consuming election news and hoping the other candidate wins and that I didn’t spoil it with my vote. (Silly, I know). I’m also upset with my friends because they’ve said some violent things about conservatives like “they should die” or “deserve to have their businesses ruined”. I’m in a space with a lot of people I need and want to keep working with and collaborating with, but feel like if they knew I was even remotely conservative, they’d trash my platform and never speak to me again. So I keep lying and feel like an imposter. Meanwhile I’m getting disgusted with myself for giving away my mind (and my vote) to people who would throw me under a bus if they learned these things about me. I’m also wondering if something is wrong with me that I changed my mind and my friends know better. Especially since I’ve leaned more left in the past. But even if there is something wrong with me, I’m uncomfortable associating with people who think others should die for disagreeing with them and I never want to vote against my ideals again. I also hate lying. But I have seen people “cancelled”, censored and banned in my circle so I feel that I’m not just making up the need to do so to protect myself from backlash. It’s gotten so bad I feel paranoid even writing this, even though I’m pretty sure it is actually anonymous. Right?