Editor’s Note: This article was originally posted in September 2016.
As a writer, I’ll try to make this as unbiased as possible. But as the human left-wing Democrat that lived out this scenario, my opinions will likely leak into it.
I was dating a guy who was very sweet, and we got along great. I had butterflies that hadn’t stopped by in a long time, and I was really attracted to him. It was all very exciting!
But that love boat quickly revealed a few holes when, during a sort of joking, sort of serious discussion that I thought would be really simple since pretty much every person I knew at the time had these beliefs, this happened:
Me: What’s your opinion on gay marriage?
Him: I’m against it.
There are not enough gifs on the internet to express all the thoughts and feelings that went through me in 0.5 seconds.
At first, I thought he was kidding.
I had never gotten along with someone that had that belief, so how the heck was I happily dating one?
He continued to give me his reasoning, but to me, there were so many holes in it that I convinced myself that 1) he hadn’t really, seriously thought about it 2) he was a product of his environment, and 3) after we got to know each other for a little longer, I would lay down (what I perceive as) the facts.
On the drive home after that conversation (which was the very same date we first kissed and decided to try being exclusive), my mind kept coming up with excuses and reasons as to WHY this wasn’t bad.
He’s not a bad guy. He’s nice! He’s got a lot to learn! I’ll teach him! And subconsciously, the oh-so-tempting-and-dangerous … I can change him… with logic!
Throughout our relationship, we got into a lot of interesting debates. We very rarely had silly arguments about things that were happening in the moment or things that didn’t matter.
Oh no, most of our “disagreements” were actual arguments, with evidence from studies and current events.
And while this might sound biased, I “won” most of them since I often had more evidence to supply.
But in the end, we mostly agreed to disagree.
One of the good things about this relationship was that I at least started to understand why some people supported opposite ideals than me.
Like gun control. I’m still a supporter of gun control, but at least now I can understand why others would disagree, and, it’s fairly logical … if proper laws and limitations are applied.
But that’s not what this article is about.
When we first realized that we were pretty much polar opposites in terms of politics, we shared a brief look of concern and surprise, but we were so goo-goo eyed over each other, we brushed it off.
At the time, I didn’t think I actually cared that much about politics, at least not enough to end a relationship over.
Anything we disagreed on, we could just brush off, agree to disagree, and respect each other’s opinions.
What we didn’t consider was just how often politics would come up during an election year.
We got along when it came to little things, like pop culture, hobbies, and even parts of our spiritual beliefs.
But as much as we tried to avoid bringing up politics, it was all over the place, and sometimes it would just sneak into the most regular of conversations.
Sometimes we could shrug it off and move on just like that, but other times, one or both of us would get so passionate about the topic that we couldn’t stop, and it wasn’t something we could ignore.
We would remind each other that we weren’t the decision-makers in these things, so our opinions shouldn’t affect each other so much … but we were SO on different wavelengths!
I won’t say that this was the reason we broke up, but it was definitely a big part of it, at least for me. We had definitely been getting somewhere in understanding each other’s logic and ethics, but ultimately, I didn’t have the patience for it.
Sure, relationships like this could work. But you’ve got to have an open mind, open heart, open ears, patience, a sense of humor, and most of all, a lot of love.
And I mean A LOT of love.