Dear Christine, Ranting in Romulus

  • Posted on October 14, 2018 at 8:14 pm

Dear Christine I don’t know everybody’s talking about how divided the country is and I know we are all Americans and we should all we care about each other however my wife and I we are both very liberal Democrats we both hate Donald Trump but her parents are very right wing Republicans they love tromp they want to argue with us when we go over there and I don’t wanna go over there and it’s made my wife very upset with me and she says just put it aside for the day let’s try not to engage with them but I have purged my Facebook of all my Republican friends who spoke out and I didn’t used to hate Republicans but now I feel like I just don’t want anything to do with anyone who is a Republican How can I set my feelings aside It feels almost impossible signed ranting in Romulus

Dear Ranting,

I hear you loud and clear.  Your Republican Trump-loving in-laws arguing about politics when you visit feels like you’re getting “tromped.”  That is a situation that plays out in many families these days, and brace yourselves, readers, as the holidays are coming up sooner than you think!

It sounds like both of you going over to your wife’s parents’ house is important to her.  And it seems like it’s important to you that politics be off-limits while you are at their house.  Both are reasonable requirements.  First, decide if having to argue politics during a visit is something you cannot and will not do. If so, have a heart-to-heart with your wife to tell her that this is a non-negotiable.  It is as important to you as food, water or air.  Now, breathing has to be done every couple of minutes or you die.  You can live a couple of weeks without water and a month without food.  So, make sure to let your wife know how important a need this is for you.  Maybe she would be willing to set some limits with her parents to avoid politics when you both visit.

If such an agreement is made, be willing to walk out if politics comes up.  If your wife won’t leave over an infraction, then go in separate vehicles or take an Uber or Lyft home when the arguing begins.  If this is a non-negotiable, then you need to back it up.  Make sure your wife and her family know your boundary.  Your request to avoid politics is reasonable and probably should be heeded in many families these days.

The division we face as a nation is that people are unable to have much to do with others who disagree with them.  This is a troubling situation, as a democracy needs differing voices and as they say on the news “robust discussions.”  Over the last 2 years, intolerance has grown and that has even led to white people calling the cops on black people who are just living their lives, and in New York City on 10/13/17, a gang of white nationalists coming from a rally, decided to attack a man they perceived as gay and beat him up.  These are very dangerous situations.

Your first responsibility is to take care of yourself.  Your next responsibility is talk with your wife and negotiate with her.  If you can come to an agreement and can spend even an hour with her family peacefully, then everyone wins!  The next responsibility you have is to vote on November 6, 2018!!

Take care and good luck,

Christine C Cantrell, PhD

Licensed Psychologist

Christine C. Cantrell, PhD
1026 W. 11 Mile Rd,
Suite C
Royal Oak, MI 48067

Click here to email Christine.

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