How to Handle Friends with Different Political Views

How to Handle Friends with Different Political Views

How to Handle Friends with Different Political Views

Do you and your friends have differing political views that find their way into conversations?  Has there been conflict surrounding the different political opinions in your social circle?  With a bipartisan government, many people take their stance on opposing sides, which can cause rifts in friendships.  When you work on your acceptance and tolerance with a counselor in Winter Garden, you will be able to learn how to handle these situations.  There are a few ways that you can handle staying friends with those who have different political views.

Change the Subject

If discussions about politics always lead to heated debates, it may actually just be best to avoid them.  Anytime political discussions come up, leave the room or change the topic.  If you find yourself getting angry about their stance, take a deep breath and understand that everyone is entitled to their beliefs.  Try to focus on topics that appease both sides, or keep things civil when you do discuss political topics.  Having face-to-face conversations is critical for maintaining a relationship, but you also require a sensitivity to one another's feelings during those conversations.

Find Common Ground

Focusing on conversations that interest both of you is essential for having beneficial chats with your friends.  Your friends because you enjoy spending time with one another, so take time to recognize what binds your friendship.  Then, you can find common ground.  Agreeing to disagree is a great mentality to have when it comes to having friends with different political opinions.  No matter how strong their opinions may be, you will want to find what keeps you friends and focus your attention on that to keep the peace.

Ask Questions about Their Stance

In order to fully understand their perspective, it is beneficial to ask questions.  This will ultimately provide you with their reasons for feeling the way they do or having the political beliefs they have.  Before you rush towards judgment for their differing beliefs, you will want to understand the reasons behind them.  Perhaps they have personal experience with something that points them towards a particular belief over another.  Asking questions is a way to show that you are interested simply because it is your friend's belief.   This doesn't mean that you too need to adopt the same beliefs.

By following these few tips, you can compromise with friends that have opposing political views.  When you engage in social interactions with them, you will find yourself enjoying the conversations and avoiding conflict much more.  Working with a counselor in Winter Garden will provide you with the tools to become more accepting and tolerant of those who carry different beliefs.  Contact us to schedule an appointment with our counselors today.

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Heather Oller

Heather Oller is a licensed Orlando therapist at Orlando Thrive Therapy, Coaching & Counseling who specializes in counseling Orlando couples, individuals, and families who are seeking changes in their lives. She has been a mental health professional for over 17 years and is a practicing Orlando counselor that specializes in conflict resolution for couples. You can contact her for an appointment or call 407-592-8997 for more information.