If you’re like me and you live in a small conservative town then being out in the open is not the best idea. Here are three ways to deal with locals when you’re a small town witch.
Stay In The Shadows
The most obvious way is to remain hidden. To practice in secret and not let the locals know you’re a Witch. Sometimes, in a small town this is the best way. It is how witches kept safe throughout the centuries and what has enabled us to flourish as a religion (if you consider yourself a witch and as part of a religion, whether it be Paganism or a practitioner of Wicca, Shamanism, etc).
Half-In and Half-Out
The next option and this is probably the one that I would recommend the most is to be selective in who you tell and what you share. For example, around Samhain putting out “the witch is in” sign is fine. Pentagram? Keep that inside your house. Grow lavender and rosemary and have a garden to grow all the herbs you use in your practice in a window box or have a full fledged greenhouse. No one would bat an eyelash at that. I will always encourage being a proactive member of the town and helping with celebrations that also align with your practice. Convincing people that you’re a nature loving hippie is only one stones throw away from being out of the broom closet. Once you’ve told an inner circle of friends and family (all being local) you can branch out to a few others slowly. Maybe make a point to let 5 people a year know. Depending on how big of a town or community it’ll take awhile to get to everyone.
Another option for how a small town witch can cope with locals is that you could try to educate those who are wary. This may be a lot harder than the others because this requires them wanting to be different. This requires them to correct their ignorance and in small towns that can be hard to fight. I would recommend having outreach and educational seminars at the local library. Be involved in town events and help with fundraisers is also always a good idea, witch or not. In the Midwest where I am from, Arbor Day is a big deal. So I choose to participate in Arbor Day and Earth Day celebrations because it aligns with my personal values and my practice of the craft.
If you have other suggestions then I would highly recommend commenting and sharing them with others. We can all benefit from sharing how we deal with the negative aspects of being a Witch. Please try to keep the comments solution based. If you do not have anything positive to contribute then refrain from commenting.