Thursday, September 04, 2008

ster-olitics

i don't like discussing politics. i really don't. i think part of the reason is that i'm never as informed as whoever is going batshit about it is. i can't have an intelligent discussion about things i don't know about. or things i only kind of know about- especially when the other person has read every single piece of literature, and heard every single bit on talk radio, in regards to their side of things. i truly think that a lot of people just regurgitate other people's opinions and try to sell them as their own unique, original thought. like whatever they hear on talk radio, or on a news channel, suddenly becomes their opinion as well. they even word it the same way. same argument. same points. same thoughts. just a different voice.

politics isn't fun to me. it's so personal. i mean, your beliefs are a part of who you are. what you think. what you feel. what you value. what you want. and i don't think that i should have to defend what i think, feel, value, or want. i shouldn't have to discuss it if i don't want too. i shouldn't have to "debate" it or give reasons for why i think it, etc. but i know lots of people feel differently. and i know a lot of people like to debate and discuss politics. although i kind of don't know why. it's not like you'll ever change someone's mind or opinion. so to me, it's kind of pointless. and in the end, people just end up super frustrated. the worst part? when people think their side is "right" and the other side is "wrong." that's how it always seems to go. each side can't understand why and how the other side can see things the way they do. it just gets ugly. i mean, i'm registered as a specific party, but i don't necessarily agree with EVERY SINGLE THING that party agrees with. sometimes i consider myself more middle of the road with certain issues. sometimes i think that there's a balance to be found in combining each sides views of certain things. but it's the personal issues that i'm not middle of the road on. it's those issues that really have me leaning the way i do.

i think this post stems from the fact that my household is divided politically. and it's hard. because boyfriend is really into politics. and he wants to talk about it. and he wants to defend his views and he wants to hear reasons for why i think certain things. he questions me. and i immediately get defensive. i shut down. i don't want to talk about it. i don't need to give him reasons for why i want to vote for someone. see, this all goes deeper. it goes back to the last election. to when i broke down in the fucking voting booth because i was so rattled and so involved in heavy political discussions with him for months (every.single.night) that i just couldn't take it. i questioned myself. i questioned everything. and i got so angry. i felt like he made me feel like i couldn't vote for whoever i wanted too, because i didn't have a good enough reason. so i remember calling him and yelling at him when i walked out of the voting station. telling him through my hysterical tears that if he ever made me feel like that again i'd break up with him. and it wasn't his fault. i mean, he didn't even realize what he was doing to me. what our conversations were doing to me. he just thought we were having simple, rational discussions. apparently, i was losing my mind. i'm not built to have political discussions every single night. or probably ever. but did i ever tell him that? i don't think i did. i just continued to engage him in debate.. or discussion.. or whatever the hell we were talking about.. and that is so not me to go all political sally on someone. i must have been trying to get him into bed or something.

so yeah. here we are again. 4 years later. and i can't take having a repeat of 4 years ago so i totally shut down. i feel like i cannot talk to him about this stuff. or more accurately, i don't want to talk to him about this stuff. i don't want to debate. i don't want to defend. i don't want to come up with a litany of reasons for things. i just want to say i'm voting for so and so cause i like that he's this and that and have that be the end of it. but with boyfriend, he'll want to go into the "this" and the "that" reasons. and that's really not who i am. i never have been and i'm wondering if i totally false advertised to him when we were dating- and i wonder if that was part of the appeal. i wonder if he still loves me after this post. or respects me.

20 comments:

SUEB0B said...

It's a guy thing, I think. Listen to sports talk - it is the same thing. They can beat theories and stuff to a long boring death (what if Player A was traded to the Yankees and the batting coach became the head coach and Player B was out all season with an injury? What do you think would happen THEN?"). I'm not so much for the arguing myself.

Becky said...

of course he still loves you because he doesn't love you BECAUSE of politics. he loves in inspite of your political differences! i told matt about the bickering in the forum and he stated plain and clear to me that he's glad we agree on most things or else he could never talk to me about it. we barely talk politics but we agree on most of it. me and morgan are on totally different ends..she's WAY into politics though and i'm not so she is kind enough to not even try to engage me in conversation. hopefully you and dot will get past that and put politics aside...let it be your own personal thing and not a relationship thing.

Daddy Dan said...

Luckily my wife and I see most things the same way, so we rarely ever get into political discussions. I'm sure your husband will understand, and I can't see why he'd lose respect for you because of your feelings about it.

I'm glad you don't talk politics here, by the way.

Although I'm dying to know who you plan on voting for! =)

Heinous said...

Be honest. Tell him you just don't care. There's no need to defend that. My wife and I never talk religion for a similar reason.

If he wants to talk politics, tell him to go find a nice blog to read and comment on.

Karen Sugarpants said...

I can't talk to Daren about my vote either. We are in opposite corners of the political arena and though I have never questioned his decision to vote for his party, he continues to pry my voting choice out of me and I refuse to walk that road again too. The first time he tried to convince me why I was completely wrong and I had a lump in my throat the whole time because a) I can't articulate verbally very well in an argument, and b) I didn't like him telling me I didn't know enough about the issues or the parties. I did. I just don't like the arguing over it like you, and I shut down.
Good luck hun - I'm in your corner!

Alison said...

Vote for yourself. (I don't mean Jennster for president, I mean vote for who you want to vote for, although Jennster 08 has a nice ring to it.) Anyway, I know who's voting for who in your household and I'll be voting with you. :)

Issas Crazy World said...

I am sure he will love you no matter what. if not, I'll come and beat his ass.

Here's the thing, politics and religion ARE personal things. They also, unfortunately are the two things that can break up marriages, friendships and cause wars. These two things, people rarely change their minds on...at least not as adults.

You shouldn't feel like you need to defend yourself to your husband (or anyone else) on this...because he'll never fully understand, just like you may never fully understand his views on it. Agree to disagree, it will make it so much easier. I'm more into it than I ever have been...but not like most people are. I know who I'm voting for and why and I really just wish it was November and all over with.

Stephanie A. said...

I am really glad you posted this because I am someone who LOVES to debate politics. I love talking to someone with a different opinion and often just figure that most people are like me in this way. However, reading about your anxiety will make me a little more sensitive to others if they start to zone out or pull away.

Btw, Adam just found out last night that I feel a particular way about an issue and we both were like, "I married YOU?" However, it was kind of hot, too :)

Chris said...

OMG...you are seriously too funny.
Go on over to Suburban Turmoil's blog and you can get yourself educated or uneducated in like 5 minutes. Some of those bitches over there are HEATED! Too much.
Most of them actually posted anonymously. They can't take the heat. I love it!
Aw, he'll love you forever! ;)

Ellie said...

Politics isn't fun, it's painful. But it's all we got, election-wise.

nancy said...

oh my god this sounds my boyfriend and i. last saturday i finally had to tell him that my brain was full and i cound not listen to any more. it made him laugh and let him know he had talked politics enough for one day.

eoin said...

stop the drama, vote obama!

i'll talk to boyfriend about politics. i'll make him see the light. and my arguments fail, i'll make out with him, because i know he wants to.

eoin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jill said...

LOL I think he had that figured out before he married you Jenn and he is not going to divorce or think less of you for it.....geeez!

Chickenbells said...

Lord. You sound like my long lost twin...seriously. You worded this post so well, that I felt like you picked the words right out of my brain! (only, I haven't been able to get a handle on them) My Boyfriend is so very educated and intelligent and passionate about politics, and I just stutter stammer and try to remain upright. I've heard arguments like, "well...people who are not educated about issues and candidates shouldn't vote" and "I thought you seemed intelligent and interested in what is going on...why wouldn't you want to KNOW about politics?" WELL...threatening me and trying to guilt me into knowing about this isn't the best strategy to get me all interested...very good at making me shut down however.

Maybe we should have my boy and your boy trade email addresses...seriously.

Smug said...

My husband and I did not speak most of yesterday because he wants me to have the same political view point as he does and I don't. I totally feel like you, I don't know that much, but I know how I feel. It pisses him off to no end, that I will not either 1) accept his views as the correct views, or 2) defend my own views with reseach. I hate that about him sometimes!!

point45 said...

i dont want her to have the same political view. i just wished she paid more attention to what her side wants and how it affects our lives.

i hate voting for the sake of voting

Grim Reality Girl said...

If he didn't love and respect you he would not have married you :-)

I am battling with myself this election... my husband cracks up as I try to stay on one team but can't seem to have the confidence and gusto I usually do when it comes to elections. I feel like putting both signs in my front yard!

I love talking politics because I love hearing other people's opinions... maybe that is why I'm still officially undecided despite wild leanings?

ThatGirl said...

My husband wants McC and I want O, so our votes will cancel each other out ::sigh::

CAT said...

"i kind of don't know why. it's not like you'll ever change someone's mind or opinion"

exactly............