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Do you avoid potentially controversial topics w/friends & family?


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Whether in real life or blogging?

 

For example, my family constantly sends me military jokes, political and anti-Iraqi jokes and it grates. I usually just ditch them. I've never told my parents or family or friends that I practice nonresistance due to my religious beliefs. And actually it is feeling pretty vulnerable to say that on here. Now if I were to tell my Pentecostal minister, true blue, good old American Republican father I was a pacifist he would probably freak. But I get tired of never saying anything.

 

So do you ever speak up or do you just not go there??

 

Same with friends and homeschooling. I pass the bean dip all the time and more bean dip and more and.... When are you allowed, if ever, to say enough? Stop introducing me to every single person we meet as, "Oh yeh and SHE homeschools," like it is a dirty word.

 

I'm much more vocal about what I believe and feel about things on this board than I am IRL. I guess sometimes I just feel like getting on a roof top and shouting out, "Hi, my name is Daisy and you've never really met me. So here I am with all my warts. Like me or don't, but I'm tired of putting up!"

 

Am I nuts?? BTW, my real name isn't even Daisy.

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My family loves nothing more than a rip-roaring argument, debate, controversy, what have you. Dh's family is more polite about it, but they like to talk about stuff, too. Whenever we have people over, we end up talking religion, politics, and religious politics, and nothing but. I love, love, love arguments like that--the free (sometimes wild, occasionally even heated) exchange of ideas. It gets me giddy.

 

But I do try to avoid being deliberately hurtful, or boorish, or snide. There are certain things I avoid totally around certain people not because it's controversial but because it would hurt the relationship. Other things where I'll be very, very careful--honest, but careful--about how I phrase things, or the tone I use. But there, it's more about the history of the relationship than the "controversial" part.

 

Middle child that I am (:D), I've learned how to present my position in a non-threatening manner, so I feel able to handle most controversial topics. Ten years ago, not so much. I felt like I made a lot of mistakes, a lot of the time--made things personal when they didn't need to be. But I think I'm learning. :cool:

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It depends on who it is and what the topic is. With some people, I definitely walk on eggshells. But I will speak out (now--didn't in the past) if they are treating me badly.

 

I know what you mean. I do avoid lots of topics with a lot of different people. It's just not worth the fight sometimes. I prefer to live in a more quiet manner regarding my ways of doing things as opposed to shouting it out. And my family does read my blog now. My dh suggested I do a secret one where I let it all out! LOL! He totally understands!

 

I do have good friends with whom I differ on things. We can have mature conversations, disagree about the topic, and still respect each other in the end. That is why they are my dear friends. It is unconditional. However, with others (ahem, some family) NO WAY! That would be just really stupid on my part. I don't respect their opinions on a lot of things anyway, so why go there? Only if it affects me and my family directly, would I go there. (I have before and it wasn't pretty --but entirely necessary)

 

And also, my dh's heritage is Mennonite -- he has carried his pacifism with him into our family. We do not bash those who fight for our country at all! They have the utmost respect and deserve it. We just dislike the power struggles and how the poor, innocent people get destroyed in the midst of it all.

 

I really do understand what you are saying. (btw: Daisy is adorable! It has a connotation of pure, sweet, lovely for me!)

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Since we've lived across the country from family for 13 years, this hasn't been "much" of an issue. BUT, since we are moving near to them this year, I plan on avoiding certain topics that I just have NO interest "discussing" with them- certain HSing issues, politics, etc. I'm planning on asking for bean dip when I need to change the subject, LOL- really? that's interesting. Hey, do you have any bean dip? I'm just DYING for some bean dip right now." :D

With "friends" it depends on how friendly we are, I find most other people to be more reasonably able to discuss things we disagree about than family members. And if a "friend" can't handle my beliefs being different than theirs, I'm not obligated to see them at family functions each year ;)

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I will talk about controversial things with most friends and family members. They all know that people have different opinions. We also know that a well-thought out response can cause us to reconsider our opinion.

 

Now, My DH's DS (and her DH) is another story...I just avoid it at all costs because they are so difficult! I know discussing controversial things with them will just cause a big blow up, so we just don't do it.

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I am Jewish, DH is a fairly mainstream, liberal Christian. His siblings, however, are mostly very Fundamentalist, conservative Christians. I am already NOT the most popular person in his family, as you can imagine.

 

His siblings are always making racist remarks and jokes, badmouthing other cultures and religions, and laughing and joking about how terrible everyone is who has a different point of view than their own. It astonishes me that they don't appear to have any problem in being so contrary to the religion they hold.

 

I am disgusted by their conversations, and generally try to leave the room. Actually, my preference is to not be around them, but I can't avoid them all the time! At holidays, we usually spend several days with them, and it spoils my holiday enjoyment every year.

 

There are times when I am tempted to confront them, but I don't want to be more of a bad guy than I already am, in their eyes anyway. DH doesn't ever say anything, because he just is blind to that sort of thing, and if I spoke up, he would be angry at me for "spoiling" our time with them.

 

It is so bad, I've actually regretted marrying into this family.

 

I have friends who are also Fundamentalist, conservative Christians, and they are just a joy to be around. But I would never argue religion or politics with them either, I just prefer not to do that. We simply don't discuss those topics, but neither do my friends spend their time in bashing other people.

Michelle T

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With my birth/growing up family (same thing, but as opposed to my dh and kids) I avoid them as much as I can. While I have a wonderful family in many ways (not every person, but overall) sometimes I wonder if I was born into the wrong family:) With my kids, all the time if it's age appropriate. As for friends, it really depends on the friend.

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Melissa,

 

We do not bash those who fight for our country at all! They have the utmost respect and deserve it.

 

I totally agree!! I guess I just get tired of swallowing my tongue sometimes. And sometimes, I think maybe if I state how I feel, it will give the other person something to think about.

 

I'm an oldest child and pretty good at playing by the rules. Never rock the boat.

 

Real name is Daphyne, BTW. LOL. Geez, I think you guys know me better than anyone and don't even know my name. I think I'm just in a downer mood. I don't want to cause a rift in relationships with my friends and family but it would be nice if they knew who I was.

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My family, meaning, my mom, stepdad, and grandfather (who raised me) all belong to the same political group. Of which I am not a member. So...there's a bit of a divide, there, about some ideological things, but that doesn't mean we *never* discuss stuff, it just means we tread carefully. (Or, at least I feel like *I* do, lol. My grandfather? Not so much.)

 

I love to discuss issues, and ideas, but I don't love politically-charged discussions. Meaning, many times, when someone self-identifies as a 'conservative' or a 'liberal', they've already decided what they believe, and the 'discussion' is simply them trying to convince you of their position. There's not very much, "Hmm, I wonder...", or "Hey, you know, that might be right, but what about...?"

 

It's like a calmer version of one of those shows you see on TV, with each side waiting for their turn to talk, lol.

 

I do have some folks (both similar to me in viewpoint, and different) that I can have good, deep, honest discussions with, and so I just focus on those, and try to limit the other kind of interaction.

 

Blog-wise, I don't generally talk politics.

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With my birth/growing up family (same thing, but as opposed to my dh and kids) I avoid them as much as I can. While I have a wonderful family in many ways (not every person, but overall) sometimes I wonder if I was born into the wrong family:) With my kids, all the time if it's age appropriate. As for friends, it really depends on the friend.

 

I could have just said, "Yeah, what she said."

 

:o)

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Oh, Daphyne, it will be okay. You could step out a little bit and see what happens. For example, you could tell your family that you prefer not to receive any forwarded mail (I'm assuming a lot of the stuff they are sending you is forwarded from another email they got). I've had to do this with my dad (he sends me very detailed articles about military affairs, lol, but I often don't have the time or inclination to read about things like China's nuclear capability in relation to the US ballistic missile defense system, KWIM? LOL!) Anyway, my dad wasn't upset at all.

 

As for your friends and the way they talk about your homeschooling, first I would try to see it for what I think it is - a compliment. These woman are impressed by what you do, because they don't feel they could do it themselves. I'm sure they don't mean to put you down. You could talk to them, though, and gently let them know that sometimes you feel as though people see the homeschooler, not the woman.

 

Hang in there.

 

Ria

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I choose which family members or friends I discuss certain topics with. For example, my niece, who is 40 and not married, decided to have a baby on her own and underwent...in vitro? artificial insemination? I don't even know. I'm so totally opposed to what she did, but we are not close, she didn't ask my advice or seek my approval in any way, and now there's a sweet little baby who was not responsible for how he came into the world. Now, I can discuss with one of my dds the reasons that I am opposed, but not with the other. I have a cousin whose wife and I are close, and I might say what I think about it, but we wouldn't *argue* about it, even if we disagreed.

 

I try to choose my battles, because I want to continue to have relationships with my friends and family members; I would rather get up and leave the room (after I've given my opinion, of course!) than to have an actual argument about it.

 

Of course, I have never had relationships as adversarial as yours, you poor thang. I guess it just isn't in my family genes to be that argumentative, and I'm thinking that's why I choose friends who aren't that way, either (or do we attract each other??).

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I think the trick to this, at least for me, has been learning how to keep it from being personal--learning how to make it crystal clear to the person I'm talking to that my evaluation of her, my love for her, as a person is not dependent on us agreeing about this topic.

 

And where I end up avoiding an issue, it's almost always because I know the reverse is not true (that is, she cannot separate her evaluation of me from our agreement on the topic) or because I've screwed it up badly enough in the past that we can't talk that way together any more.

 

I have a harder time when it's really a matter of conviction--where I feel called to speak prophetically about something to someone. Because that's a case where my evaluation of him as a person (although not necessarily my love for him) is on the line. We have a dear friend who was . . . well, he had lots of problems, but we really and truly loved his wife. So, we used to have grand arguments about controversial topics without them ever really being personal. We just kept saying to ourselves, "Well, we gotta keep loving him, poor guy."

 

And then one day he made a racist comment about my ds's best friends, right in front of them. I immediately spoke to him about it, very sharply--sharply enough that it did put a dent in our relationship for awhile. By God's grace, and completely unrelated to my "prophesying" to him, he became a changed man, and we have a completely altered relationship now. But it was a hard choice to have to make at the time.

 

Similarly, I have another relative (my beloved BCR) who has race issues that BCR assumes I share. I've had to answer questions like, "So, have any more white people moved into your neighborhood yet? You know, ds really needs to play with kids that are like him." When they put it out there like that, you can't avoid it. Or you could, but not without implying that what they're saying is fine with you. Again, it's a hard choice to have to make, but I've had to figure out ways to say, "BCR, I just don't agree," without saying, "BCR, I just don't love you."

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Frankly, it depends on if I'm in a feisty mood or not. :D I guess that it also depends on whether I feel the battle is worth the effort. If it something that defines me, than sure I will stand up for myself.

 

Most of the time, I do remember the verse in the Bible that reminds me that I want to lead a quiet life, so I will bite my tongue.

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My father just called me the other night. Every time he does, he starts with weather, then politics. I don't bring it up, and I usually just let him have his say and keep my thoughts to myself. Not this time, though. I just told him, "If that's what you want to talk about -- let's get it on!" Didn't last long.

 

My family disagrees with me on pretty much everything. I don't know if he is baiting me or what -- but I was tired of it.

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I'm an oldest child and pretty good at playing by the rules. Never rock the boat.

 

You could start thinking like a middle child--start asking yourself, "What do we have in common? Where do we agree?"

 

With your df, the Bible is a great point of agreement. There's hope there. Yes, you're interpreting it differently, and he probably has a lot of resistance to hearing it anew from, for gosh sakes, his daughter. ("I taught you how to read, girl--you think you're gonna teach me how to read?")

 

But that's definitely a starting place.

 

I do the same thing with my feminist friends on . What do we agree on? We agree that society is structured in a way that makes women have to deal with all the crap, while men get off scot free. So, can I present my [censored] views in a way that plays off of how [censored] is one more way that the woman is left making an impossible choice? That maybe feminists have been too quick to accept [censored] without looking at how women are affected by it? I don't start by saying how all [censored] are [censored], because that doesn't give them credit for their good intentions.

 

See what I mean?

 

My oldest-child hubby is confrontation-averse, too. So he gets a little antsy when I do this. :o

 

(Just for clarity's sake, the [censored] bit above is a joke. The moderators are not censoring us.)

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I'm an oldest child and pretty good at playing by the rules. Never rock the boat.

 

Real name is Daphyne, BTW. LOL. Geez, I think you guys know me better than anyone and don't even know my name. I think I'm just in a downer mood. I don't want to cause a rift in relationships with my friends and family but it would be nice if they knew who I was.

 

Wow, I'm an oldest child and spent most of my childhood rocking the boat! But not at school until I was 9. Guess I didn't fit in with the oldest child role, either:D.

 

My parental/sibling family, as great as they are in many respects, didn't know who I was/am even when I tried to tell them. We're just on different planets/wavelengths or have different brain dominance or something. I even have a rather annoying habit of saying, "I'm just kidding" after almost every joke to everyone now because my parents don't get my humour. I do have one set of cousins who have the same humour as me. But I get along with my family as long as we stick to nothing very controversial.

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You mean no one shouts, "WRONG" et al? :D

 

 

I was known to do this in my younger years, but have mellowed a little :cool:

 

I will discuss issues with friends, but often bite my tounge when it's family. That would specifically be dh's family. They are conservative Christians, and as such assume that all other CCs hold to the same political and social beliefs. Dh and I consider ourselves to be CCs, but God forbid if we simply speak nicely about a Democrat, or speak respectfully about an issue that the Republicans oppose, then in his family's eyes we have somehow committed our souls to the pit of he**.

 

 

Sil sends me lots of emails that are downright disrespectful and intolerant of any other belief system. I just delete them and keep my mouth shut.

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...a loud buzzer noise?

 

"EEHHH!!! WRONG!!"

 

;o)

 

I thought of you the other night, when I had to traipse out to the small town grocery store, past nine o' clock at night, in search of Benadryl. (Drug store was already closed. Before ten o'clock on a Saturday night. Please remind me that I love living in a small town, lol.)

 

This little grocery has a "Health/Beauty" aisle, and right there, in front of me, was...

 

Aziza makeup.

 

I'm not kidding.

 

Oldest ds was with me, and I was trying to explain..."You see, this makeup was all the rage back in the 80s..."

 

He looked around, dubiously, at our humble little grocery and said, "Do you think this makeup is from the 80s?!" (It could very well be.)

 

I mean, liquid eyeliner and everything.

 

(I'm not crazy, am I? I've not seen Aziza makeup ANYWHERE that I can think of, since I graduated from high school.)

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If there is mutual respect in a relationship, I love to discuss topics or at least ask questions. I work with a young Christian woman who is very different than I am in many ways, and I lvoe to hear her opinions and ideas. But I so rarely find respect towards people or ideas that are different. I guess I've done so many about-faces and mindset changes in my life, that I now have an inkling that perhaps I don't have all the answers and may change my mind yet again at some point in the future.

 

So much of it is attitude for me. I dislike discussing politics with my father even though we vote pretty much the same, because he is SO caustic and nasty. My mil is the same, though on the opposite end of the spectrum. We've toyed with locking them in a room together!!

 

As far as the rest? If someone continues to be offensive or disrespectful, I just avoid them/conversations, etc... unless I am forced as in Parisarah's example of someone saying something in front of her children. When I have "friends" that totally disrespect me and my choices, I pretty much just let the relationship die a casual death. It's not worth my energy.

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My family loves nothing more than a rip-roaring argument, debate, controversy, what have you. Dh's family is more polite about it, but they like to talk about stuff, too. Whenever we have people over, we end up talking religion, politics, and religious politics, and nothing but. I love, love, love arguments like that--the free (sometimes wild, occasionally even heated) exchange of ideas. It gets me giddy.

 

But I do try to avoid being deliberately hurtful, or boorish, or snide. There are certain things I avoid totally around certain people not because it's controversial but because it would hurt the relationship. Other things where I'll be very, very careful--honest, but careful--about how I phrase things, or the tone I use. But there, it's more about the history of the relationship than the "controversial" part.

 

 

I think the trick to this, at least for me, has been learning how to keep it from being personal--learning how to make it crystal clear to the person I'm talking to that my evaluation of her, my love for her, as a person is not dependent on us agreeing about this topic.

 

And where I end up avoiding an issue, it's almost always because I know the reverse is not true (that is, she cannot separate her evaluation of me from our agreement on the topic) or because I've screwed it up badly enough in the past that we can't talk that way together any more.

 

I actually chose to discuss more controversial topics on my blog (mixed in with the typical family update stuff and random fun posts). Doing so has actually opened doors with some friends and family members to discuss those topics in person where neither of us would have felt comfortable bringing them up in person... usually because one of us, okay me, took an argument on a related topic into the personal realm in the past.

 

My family tends to be more subdued when discussing controversial topics and are quick to say, "Let's agree to disagree and move on." My dh's family, however, has very heated conversations that they all thrive on and love to have. Often, when we have company we will gently introduce politics or religion (usually through a discussion of books or movies) because it allows us to get to know our guests on a more intimate level by rapidly pushing us past the fifth discussion on the weather. :)

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Growing up in a house with nothing but a "hatfield/mccoy" mentality (my mom's side vs my father's side), I am very used to speaking up and have absolutely zero problem going "whoa wait a minute" especially when *I* am the topic of conversation.

 

My mom's favorite lines to me where "we are speaking about you not to you" and that just royally ticked me off and made me want to fight even harder. Do not tell me my opinion does not matter, especially if you are talking about me. I AM going to speak up, so just expect it.

 

Just as well, I do enjoy a good conversation. Not even really a debate, because those exhaust me, but a good, deep, heartfelt conversation--even if the conversation is a bunch of "we agree to disagree"'s.

 

If it is something I am passionate about--watch out.

If it is something I KNOW is a blatant lie or untruth or urban legend--I WILL call you on it

 

If it's just a matter of "this is how I believe" and there's no racism, bigotry or hatred in your voice, I'm just going to smile sweetly and "agree to disagree". But if you add even a hint of those things in your tone, my fangs come out completely sharpened. ;)

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I think I can't be civil. Yes, that happens to ol' Judolops sometimes...I get feisty and lose self-control :o. In those cases the lips are zipped.

 

This did remind me of something that happened with my Grandma (who is a stubborn lady :rolleyes:) soon after I became a Christian. My mom, who was tired of getting all of Grandma's opinions directed at her, decided to tell Grandma I didn't believe in [a doctrinal issue] (which wasn't exactly true; it's more that I didn't believe in their take on this issue). I debated, civilly, for a bit. For the next year I got various pamphlets and newsletters mailed to me with parts highlighted. I'm still not sure she thinks I'm saved :p.

 

My mom cracks me up because her take on things when I disagree with her is to insist we agree, we're just saying things differently. Which leads to her forwarding emails that irritate me, but I just delete because it would be useless to discuss them with her.

 

But I'll discuss most anything with anyone, if I can keep the emotions out of it. This is getting easier as I get older, because I'm no longer convinced I actually do know everything :eek:.

 

And I love your name, Daphyne!

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I haven't read any of the other responses, but yes, I do avoid certain topics with certain people.

 

I avoid in-depth religious discussions with my pagan and atheist friends, and, in some cases, with non-Catholic Christians. There are days when my dw and I can't discuss religion! I do post about my faith to my blog, but I try to avoid topics that I know will antagonize certain readers.

 

I avoid political discussions with almost everyone in my local area. The effect of admitting to being a principled conservative here is like announcing you have an STD on a crowded bus.

 

I don't go into detail about my educational philosophy with my wife's family. There is no way I could do so without my opinions being taken as a pointed critique of their choices and priorities. Likewise I remain mum about various "crunchy" topics with them.

 

I have had to make peace with the fact that most people consider me a total freak on any number of fronts. There just aren't that many people in my RL world I can have a good talk with. That's why I hang out here so much!

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As a very sensitive and non-confrontational person, unless the topic is a direct insult to me, my family, or my decisions, I usually stay away from hot topics with family. I often avoid them with friends too. I have found very few people who I can actually share my mind with and they don't get a bit weirded out about it. There is so much more floating around in my head than people realize, sometimes they are startled to find out! Most "friends" seem to want more of a surface relationship and don't really want me to share my heartfelt stirrings about controversial issues. My family seems to have come from another world (or at least species) and I don't fit in with them culturally at all except for one sister. I would never share my innermost thoughts with them so they could drag them down into the dirt before me. We have a certain kind of relationship. They are all very aggressive and loud and I just smile, nod, and laugh. I walk on egg shells concerning most topics around dh's family too. None of them are really interested in an "outsider's" opinion, they already have their own. Dh, unfortunately for him, hears the brunt of my views on controversial topics. He is very easy going and we share most viewpoints, so there isn't really any arguing. I cannot stand arguing. It gives me a migraine!

 

Daisy, I love your real name, by the way. It is so beautiful and matches the lovely person I suspect you are from reading your blog. It's too bad we don't live closer. It would be awesome to meet irl! I would love to meet many of you ladies.

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I avoid political discussions with almost everyone in my local area. The effect of admitting to being a principled conservative here is like announcing you have an STD on a crowded bus.

 

II have had to make peace with the fact that most people consider me a total freak on any number of fronts. There just aren't that many people in my RL world I can have a good talk with. That's why I hang out here so much!

 

Yes. I have the same political problem here. I'm not completely conservative politically, but have a strong streak of it. I also rarely mention that I'm a fan of the Montreal Canadiens because that causes about the same reaction:).

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Absolutely. Especially if I know the audience is not going to understand or respect the philosophy behind my POV. I don't discuss homeschooling, family size, my ds's medical condition/treatment, etc with the majority of my family. We don't discuss religion with any of them. I don't want to place myself in a position of having to justify my beliefs/choices with people who are so far removed from our value system to even begin to comprehend our decisions.

 

I also avoid certain threads on this board where I know that the energy to discuss a POV far exceeds my abilities to do it justice or will upset me. There have been a couple recently that I have avoided like the plague. :) I don't want to get sucked into a discussion that will not be resolved to anyone's satisfaction.

 

I think I have only ever posted once in anger since I joined these boards.....unfortunately it was today. :( Normally posts that get me emotionally involved I type and then delete before posting. That way I get to vent my feelings and it is enough. ;)

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It depends on the person, situation, level of offense, and how long I've put up with it.

 

I avoid one of dh's grandmothers all together because she can find an argument in anything and there is no winning with her. I'll stop there on that one.

 

I have an aunt who is very opinionated and especially likes to share her political opinions with me via email. I usually let it go even if I don't agree with her. If she is too pushy with me or expects me to agree with her too much, I let her know exactly what I think in the same manner she has let me know exactly what she thinks. She's got a temper and mine is slower but equally hot when fired. She lives in Texas and is very concerned about illegal immigration. A while back she sent me an email about it and I let her know that I completely disagreed. She didn't email me for a while and knowing her it was because she was pissed. It had come to the point that she was beginning to take my lack of response as agreement, and I couldn't bear to have her think that.

 

With friends and more casual acquaintances I tend to let a lot slide unless that person is pushy. I don't like having anyone push their beliefs on me. People often seem to think I will be easy to push around. When I've had enough or it is something that I think matters, they are always surprised. I'm usually pretty meek and mild, but don't tick me off because I can get mean:p

 

For the most part I try to speak my mind and be honest with people about what I think. Usually it's possible to do that without getting into a huge controversy. I like discussing differences of opinion and I think I'm pretty tolerant of others. I don't try to start fights, but if you want to pick one with me, I'm up for it. I'm not usually one to avoid certain topics because I think they may be controversial.

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I say what's on my mind...call an ace an ace! DH's family dislikes me. They also tell it like it is, but I'm supposed to tacitly agree with them and admit my flaws. LOL

Once told FIL DD's name was NOT "Fran" (it's Francesca). If he EVER called her that again, it would be the last time he saw his grandchild. He let me know he is the patriarch and call his kids whatever he wants. LOL But he hasn't :)

 

We enjoy political, religious, and controversial topics. The key is to know your audience and know your own limitations. When you're on the verge of losing your cool, it's time to talk about the weather...or pass the bean dip!

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Having grown up in a family with lots of conflict, I go out of my way to avoid conflict (unless it is a direct attact on my lifestyle, dh or kids.) We are "sweep it under the rug" people and we are proud of it;) Seriously, I am very conflict averse and there are certain members of my family who love a good controversy so that they can spew their vitriol. I avoid anything controversial there.

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I don't touch on politics with my in-laws. They are much more conservative than I am and we see them little, so I just keep the peace while we are there - this took me a long time to learn to do, but I'm glad I managed it in the end. My mother-in-law is intimidated by me (or so DH says) and I'd rather not throw my weight around.

 

With friends I am open. With acquaintances I choose my topics until I get closer to them.

 

Laura

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He is so set in his ways that I didn't bother telling him to stop sending them to me. One time I did email back to him a rather curt response but he never commented on it.

 

I finally changed my email without telling him (he just thinks I don't have email anymore lol). And no, I don't argue with him...he's 72 and there's just no changin' his mind.

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I don't like the mean political/war jokes and will say so.

I love to have a completely different opinion than someone else and still be able to discuss the subject. My best friend ever in the world is a true Christian and votes for Bush. There really is no category for my religion or my politics - but they both tend toward what is considered radical. We talk religion and politics all the time. I have even changed my mind on a few things.

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Wow! I leave for a dentist appointment and come back to all of your great replies. Thank you so much!

 

BTW, I'm in a much better mood now that the dental appt. is over with.

 

Ultimately, I guess I need to ask myself what my motives are behind each conversation. If I'm bringing up an issue because I need some boundaires respected (e-mail thing??) then maybe it's worth it. But bringing it up simply b/c I'm sick and tired of their thinking and I'm pmsing is probably not the best idea. LOL.

 

My Dad is very unapproachable and I learned to kinda fly under the radar a bit with him. He feels threatened by having his opinions challenged.

 

I always thought I could talk to my friends but ever since we started homeschooling, I've noticed a significant shift in their tolerance to my "differentness" (is that even a word). KWIM? Like I stepped over some imaginary line and now they suspect everything I say.

 

Well, thanks ladies for being cyber-friends. :p

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My Dad is very unapproachable and I learned to kinda fly under the radar a bit with him. He feels threatened by having his opinions challenged.

 

My dad used to tell me when he wanted us to have an opinion, he'd tell us what it is :) LOL

 

Being different is a blessing! Imagine how dull life would be if we were clones of each other. No worthy discussions on life. We'd all agree. boring...!

Glad your dentist appointment is finished.

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My family has a loose rule that during family get togethers we DO NOT talk politics or Religion. However, That rule seems to only apply if they are talking with me...it seems that if they are talking to each other they bash Christians right and left and do not seem to even notice. Same thing with republicans. This rule may apply because I am the only Christian and the only conservative in the entire family! Oh well....They aren't people I'd want to discuss morals with anyway...

In non relative company I will discuss any topic with just about anyone. I love hearing other views, just not hate filled ones.

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I live 2000 miles from my parents, so whenever I see them (which isn't often) we rarely talk about anything controversial.

 

With EX's family, there was no debate or discussion. Everyone had to be nice-nice and agree. If you disagreed, one of my exBIL's would make some proclamation of how he's right, everyone else is a *insert appropriate slur here* and is stupid, "ignernt" or sinister.

 

So, there was never any really intelligent discussion or debate over anything. There either wasn't enough time to have one, or I was with crazy psycho people and it wasn't worth the effort.

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The furthest into this my family goes is pointing out amusingly stupid moves on either side of the fence.

 

To us "controversial" subjects include proper pronunciation of a word, and say, whether Somerset Maugham was the greatest writer of the short story in the English language or just a hack that pandered to the masses.

 

When politics comes up with the IL's (I sure don't bring it up) I generally go find the kids and play with them. Someone gets snippy and says something so dumb I have to clamp my teeth together to stop from pointing out what an EEEEEEEdiot they are. E.g. One person is opposed to having gone into Iraq, and the "retort" is that "We have gone into countries before and will go into countries again" to which I want to say "People have had babies before and will again, but it doesn't mean it isn't good to think about it before you go at it like rabbits". They would, of course, jump to the conclusion I was opposed to going into Iraq, but what I am mostly opposed to is sloppy fallacies and poor logic. The post hoc ergo propter hocs, the slippery slopes, the straw men....aaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrgh.

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