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Baal Teshuva seeking advice

Hello Jews of Reddit, Let me start by saying that I am sorry, and I know this is not a help column, but I don’t have anywhere else to ask for help, let me explain.

I am a 16 year old Baal Teshuva in Norcal. Not a Jewish heavy area either. I started my teshuva journey at age 14 after struggling with a depressive condition for a long part of my childhood, I find the observance gives my life so much meaning, and I have found a lot of comfort in it. I only have 2 frum friends or really people at all my age. One of them has moved to Israel a year ago and the other I have never met in person. I have some level of contact with Chabad shluchim near me, but not really. I try to keep all the Mitzvot I can in this setting, (I keep tznuit, I study texts, pray 3 times a day, as good of an attempt to full kosher and shabbat as I can here) My parents do not like that I am religious, they are both very very liberal and reform Jews that feel orthodoxy is close minded and oppressive, even though it is not and makes my quality of life (at least on an emotional level) much better. I am facing a good bit of antisemitism now with the Oct. 7 aftermath. On top of this I am already facing massive backlash from my parents and even some of my Reform childhood friends. (The non Jews don’t ask really and I don’t bother to explain except when necessary, so other than antisemitic ones it’s ok there.) At least were I am, there are very few orthodox jews, and a lot of Reform ones who seem to despise the frum community. Despise all this I love the teachings and traditions, and plan to go to an orthodox community as an adult. Recently a best friend of mine who is a reform/secular israeli who hates frum has told me kind of horrible things, like how i’m brainwashed or joining a cult where as a woman I am “nothing”. She also has told me the orthodox are responsible for a lot of bad things between communities in israel, and if that’s who I am becoming she would not be friends with me as an adult because she sees it as disgusting. I’m also getting a lot of this at home, but I asked my dad what to do because it was very upsetting. He told my mom who got really mad saying that my friend is trying to help me, to listen, and that if I loose my friends because of this it’s my fault. This has been going on for a long time and because I don’t have an orthodox support system it’s getting worse every day. I feel like I don’t belong in my own home, and every day i’m pretending to be someone i’m not.

I am wondering what do to about the friendship, I really don’t want to lose her and have it be my fault.

Also if anyone has advice on how to survive the next 2 years in this house or has experienced this growing up, it’d be nice to know i’m not alone.

Thank you, Lorraine Esther

Edit: If you are wondering why this was posted on Shabbat, I feel absolutely awful. My parents decided I was being lazy and made me clean and do homework, and I don’t know what the rule is about if someone forces you to break can you resume after or not. My apologies.

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