With the election right around the corner, you can't go anywhere without seeing or hearing something about a candidate. While some of the political comments, discussions or debates are easy to avoid, what happens when you actually date your political opposite? Handling it isn't as easy as blocking an annoying political post on Facebook or changing the channel during a news segment; you actually have to interact with this person on a daily basis. Before you get into a heated debate with your guy over your respective political beliefs, there are several tips to consider if you want to avoid butting heads.
Put your political beliefs out there
Before you commit to being in an exclusive relationship with anyone and preferably before feelings get involved, it's important to discuss your political beliefs with each other. Just put it all out there without fear of what the guy is going to say to you. He's going to find out eventually, so the sooner you lay them out, the more you'll know where each of you stand.
Look at things from his perspective
You may be completely set in your political beliefs and opinions, but that doesn't mean you can't at least attempt to see things from his point of view. A major way to start the process is to ask him why he has the opinions and beliefs that he does. You may be surprised what you could learn.
When a guy tells you his political affiliation, don't automatically assume you know what he's all about. Let him give you a chance to explain himself before you attach all the stereotypes to him and/or kick him to the curb.
Avoid political discussions
If the two of you often get into heated political debates, a very easy solution is to just stop having them. It sounds simple enough, but you'd be surprised how many insist on continuing with political debates knowing how much it irritates their partner. Should he start up a political conversation with you, explain that you'd rather not get into it so you can avoid arguments, then drop the subject.
Don't watch political debates together
Whenever I watch political debates, I make comments out loud and can't hide the emotion on my face. This makes it slightly difficult for me to watch the debates with those who don't share many of my political opinions and beliefs. If you're dating a political opposite, watch debates in separate rooms if you have to just so you can avoid hearing the comments and getting into disagreements.
Agree to disagree
You're not always going to agree with your guy on everything, especially if the two of you are political opposites. There are likely going to be quite a few topics on which you're going to have to agree to disagree and politics is just going to have to be one of them. This doesn't mean you're settling or giving in, it just means you'd rather put your differences aside for the sake of the relationship.
Focus on his positive traits
Rather than concentrate on what the two of you don't agree on, focus on his positive traits instead. Does he treat you well? Does he make you feel loved? Can you see a future with him? Does he share the same views on your primary concerns and dealbreakers? Depending on how hard the two of you clash on political aspects, you can likely push your differences aside and concentrate on the two of you as a couple.
Break it off
I dated a Conservative for a few months who had a big mouth and loved to voice his opinions regardless of how I felt or who was around. For example, he believed that gay people shouldn't get married and said so in front of a lesbian friend after also tossing in a few other unappreciated comments. After a few too many beers, he also made crude and nasty comments about abortion in front of a friend who had one a year earlier. While I fully believe everyone is entitled to their own opinions and personal beliefs, there comes a point where sometimes they just clash way too much with others to the point of no return. The guy and I didn't last very long. If it gets to the point where the two of you just can't respect each other's views and it's causing problems within your relationship that you just can't get past regardless of how much you try, it could be time to break up.
Having different political opinions and beliefs doesn't mean that your relationship is going to crash and burn. If the two of you can work together to compromise on ways to not let it interfere, you can move forward as a couple and have a successful relationship with each other.
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