Culture Wars/Current Controversies

Loathe Your Loved One’s Politics? Here’s Some Advice

The appropriate advice would be “Get a life!”

By Elizabeth Bernstein, Wall Street Journal

Want to throttle someone you know over politics?

You’re not alone.

Two weeks from an election that has fueled more bitter divisions than America has seen in decades, it feels harder than ever to interact with people who have vastly different views. And as much as we might want to avoid these folks, it’s not always possible—or desirable—especially if they are friends or family.

Many of us feel a responsibility to express our political opinions. But we want to coexist peacefully with our loved ones, as well, even if their politics drive us crazy. To get advice on how to keep our relationships healthy, I spoke with Jeanne Safer, a psychologist who has had a private psychotherapy practice in Manhattan for more than 45 years. For four decades, she’s been in a mixed political marriage—she is a Democrat and her husband is a Republican and a senior editor at the conservative magazine, “National Review.” Their marriage inspired her latest book: “I Love You, But I Hate Your Politics: How to Protect Your Intimate Relationships in a Poisonous Partisan World.”


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