I’ve come to understand the reason for the old adage, "You don’t talk about religion or politics." People are very passionate about these subjects, so political discussions even among loving family members can become heated. Some people align so much with their religious beliefs or political values that they feel like it’s a personal attack when others have differing views from them. But what do you do when your own politics differ greatly from your family’s views?
Here are a few tips to help temper heated arguments:
Choose to understand their perspective. Discover how their own life experiences contribute to their current political beliefs.
Do not become defensive. It may feel like it’s a personal attack on your character but it’s not. Remember that the basis for your relationship is love and support for one another.
Do not shoot insults. Telling them they are wrong is not helpful, especially if it is wrapped in expletives and criticisms.
Be respectful and kind. Everyone wants to feel that their opinion matters, so don’t dismiss their point of view just because it doesn’t match your own. Show them respect even if they are not showing it to you.
Understand that you are not going to convince them to think your way. This is the most likely reason arguments begin, and they could be ended quickly if you accept this notion.
Choose to not engage in political conversations with them. This is often the best option because sometimes silence is the most loving solution.
In essence, riveting political conversations can be ruined by ignoring these important practices. Don’t let political differences put a strain on your personal relationships because our family bonds should be about what brings us together, not what drives us apart.