Do you often times find yourself participating in fueled arguments with family? How about having to deal with obnoxious relatives constantly telling you that your views and beliefs are invalid? Do they ever try to sway your ideals to fit theirs? If the answer to any of the above is yes, this article is dedicated to you. Welcome to the club!
Growing up in a household which is politically inclined towards a party you do not identify with is, needless to say, quite difficult. Dinner discussions are harmless until it has evolved into a full blown war where even the idea of speaking up for yourself seems more like a death wish. I would know, since being belittled for my beliefs is something that I have continuously dealt for many years and still experience to this day.
My father raised me to be strictly conservative. As a matter a fact, I remember being told when I was younger that Journalism was a beautiful career and one he believed I could truly thrive in. He even went as far as to tell me that he would completely and wholeheartedly support me. But, only under one condition, of course – I have to work for FOX News. I didn’t know any better at the time, so I just simply smiled and agreed, as any child would.
If he were to tell me the same thing today, my response would have been something along the lines of, “I don’t mean to burst your bubble, Dad, but I do not intend on becoming the next Tomi Lahren.”
What he, and many other parents, do not seem to understand is that the beauty of growing up is being allowed the opportunity to discover your own beliefs, form your own opinions, and draw your own conclusions on all topics, especially politics. Yes, I’m sure many parents have good intentions when raising their children to have specific views. (Unless you’re raising your kids to be racist, sexist or homophobic, in which case, what are you doing?) However, it is imperative that parents learn to eventually break away from constantly influencing their personal beliefs onto their children and instead let them find things out for themselves.
Nevertheless, when times get rough and you suddenly find yourself in an episode of Game of Thrones brought upon by political disagreements, here are some tips I’ve picked up along the way to help you overcome it:
1. Act Unbothered: When you act unbothered or like you can care less about their opinion, it only frustrates them more. Do not give them the satisfaction of knowing they have gotten under your skin!
2. Don’t Stay Quiet: Always, always, always speak up for yourself and defend your beliefs at all times. Make it known that you will stand your ground.
3. Fight or Discuss: If you find that the conversation has developed into an extremely heated argument, just walk away. Learn how to decipher the difference between which battles to truly argue about and which aren’t even worth your breath.
Here’s to everyone who has felt personally targeted during political arguments around the dinner table. What are families for, right?