His comment hit me like a brick because I was sexually assaulted several times… For me, having differences in politics is not a red flag. The red flag for me is when differences on political issues show either a person`s understanding of fundamental human rights or misunderstanding. If there is a lack of knowledge or understanding, and you refuse to educate yourself or hear stories of survivors, I have a problem with that, and I will put you on the side. How could I imagine having a child with someone who didn`t want to understand? To overcome the problems caused by these disagreements, here are some practical tips: When Nicole Moore, the CEO and owner of Love Works near San Diego, started her relationship coaching business nearly a decade ago, the topic of politics rarely, if ever, came with her clients. Then came 2016, the election year that changed everything. Today, political affiliation is certainly addressed – passionately. Maryanne Comaroto: Do your best not to fall into the game of all or nothing – « I could never be with someone who doesn`t think the way I do. » Unless that`s true, then you have to ask yourself, « Why am I with this person again? » These are not political differences. We`re in a whole different story. There are signs that this political divide has begun to have a negative impact on family and friendly relationships and even on romantic relationships. A Wakefield study in 2017 found that more than 11% of American couples ended a romantic relationship because of political differences.
In the Millennium Survey, this figure rose to 22%. It`s no surprise that many people are aware of couples whose marriage or partnership has been influenced by politics, especially after the 2016 election. Try to listen and accept what your partner has to say without digging in your heels. In every political debate, do your best to resist the typical reflex reaction of the jump, to defend your position without really listening to what your partner says. If they present real and documented facts, don`t refute them without doing your own research. Instead, be an active listener and take a deep breath before reacting or refuting. Rachel White: When we deal with and discuss our political beliefs with our partners, we need to be sure to leave when we are emotionally responsive. Emotional response is what creates the defensive and critical arguments that are beginning to fuel so many relationships today.
If we are able to admit and respect others for their beliefs – and also our own capacity for emotional reaction – we are more likely to retain curiosity for the experiences and beliefs of others. We asked therapists how you can save your relationships amidst political divisions.