Politics and Dating
Can’t imagine ever dating a Democrat or a Republican? Political leanings can often make finding Mr. or Ms. Right -- or Left -- tricky. So, how should singles discuss this delicate subject and when is dating someone on the other side of the aisle not a deal breaker?
Many of our clients often will have a “must-have” list and an “absolutely not” list, and political views often come up. While politics are often divisive and emotionally charged, some care about it more than others. We often encourage our clients who may say “I don’t want to date a staunch conservative” or “a staunch liberal” to be willing to meet halfway, at least in the beginning. If you get to know someone and fall in love with their other amazing qualities, politics may become less important.
So when should singles discuss politics? NEVER on the first date! First dates are supposed to be a time to look ahead to the future and are for new prospects. It’s a time when you should be positive and get to know the person to see if you have chemistry. We recommend that you hold off on that topic until you feel like you’re getting more invested in the relationship. However, if your political views are a big part of who you are and take up a lot of your time, then by all means, list it in your profile like you would any other passion.
When you do discuss politics, here are a few tips:
Don’t Try to Convert Each Other
When you do discuss politics, remember that it can be an emotional hot button, but don’t try to convert the other person altogether. You don’t want the discussion to turn into a personal attack. If the topic gets too heated, it's best to declare it off limits.
Respect Each Other’s Views
No matter how much you love someone, things get boring if you don't delve into something philosophical every now and then. Spark a challenging discussion around politics can be fun, but it does require tact. Understanding the motivations for an opposing view will help you respect your partner more. Listen and respond to their point of view, do not talk over them or press your own opinion onto them.
Be Honest with Yourself
Not everyone will budge on an issue, and some may prioritize a particular view as a relationship deal-breaker. If you date for a while and realize that your belief systems are just too different, know when to say when. Being upfront about deal-breaker issues is the best way to avoid hurt feelings in the long run.
Ultimately, is it really possible for a staunch Republican and a Democrat to make a relationship work? Yes, if there’s mutual love, respect, and a great sense of humor!