Repairing the Relationships Destroyed by the Election

Heated Discussions

Politics can be a polarizing topic of conversation among friends, family members and coworkers—so much so that it’s one of the things most etiquette experts will warn you not to bring up over holiday dinners. But this election has no doubt been difficult to avoid when you’re talking with loved ones and acquaintances alike. Whether you’re pro-Clinton or on the Trump bandwagon—or supporting neither, for that matter—you surely have formed at least some opinions about what’s gone down over the past months of campaigning.

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And more than likely, you don’t share the same views as everyone around you—meaning that you may need to make amends with some people in your life after all of the votes have been cast. Here’s how to do it.

Decide Which Relationships are Worth Repairing

As with any significant event in life, this election may have opened your eyes to who people you surround yourself with truly are. You may have discovered that your coworker is really sexist or that your cousin is a borderline racist based on the views they have shared with you and others over the last year or so. You may have also realized that not every relationship ruined by the election is worth saving. Some people may have shown their true colors and it’s okay not to associate with them if that ends up being the case.

“Hide” Friends You Clash With on Social Media

For the time being, it may be a good idea to “hide” certain people on your social accounts, like Facebook, so you can avoid their posts. Depending on who they support and who wins the election, you may not want to subject yourself to rants and opinions that will only just make you angry, or even resentful. Doing this will allow you to separate these people from their viewpoints, helping you keep your relationships with them untainted by your differing political views. Once the dust settles, you can unhide them and bring them back to your feed.

Apologize if You’ve Lost Your Temper

You may have said some things that were a little too direct or even hostile when debating politics with friends, family and others. Be sure to reach out to these people and make amends if you offended them, shamed them for their opinions or resorted to name-calling. While you may still believe in your point of view, you can at least acknowledge that the way you went about expressing it went a little too far. It’s easy to get hotheaded about issues we’re passionate about, so a gesture like showing your genuine remorse for the way things went down will more than likely be met with appreciation and acceptance.

Agree to Disagree

In some cases, it may be necessary to agree to simply not talk about politics, or the person who is elected president, with certain people. Maybe both of you simply get too heated when you talk about the issues. Or perhaps you really, really dislike a candidate the other wholeheartedly supports. If you truly want to keep your friendship or professional relationship intact, you should make a pact to just avoid that topic of conversation, at least for now or maybe even forever.

One thought on “Repairing the Relationships Destroyed by the Election

  1. LJ

    In this age of instant everything and where putting your feelings out in social media for the world to see is commonplace, I’m not surprised that relationships have suffered over this election. I grew up being told and believing that religion and politics were two topics to avoid in a discussion and no one ever said who they were voting for especially in a presidential election. I’m sure this kept many friendships from falling apart. It’s sad really, especially when it’s a time when we all should come together.


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