Post # 1
After the most recent Israel-Gaza conflict, i’m officially fed up of all the tension between my friends and family about political beliefs. Outside the Jewish community (for whom the issue is a sore-spot), most of the people I know side with Palestine. I like to stay neutral as I don’t 100% agree with either side, but DH is staunchly pro-Israel. I’m tired of verbal clashes between people I know (including my own family) and all the unbearable tension that ensues. Anyone else experiencing this? How do you deal with it?
Post # 3
Oy. Yeah, holiday meals get a little testy… in my family we’ve learned not to talk about it too much! I’m probably a little left of the J Street camp, but some in my family are very “pro-Israel” in the traditional sense that mostly manifests itself as Islamophobia.
Anyway, we talk about the latest in Israel, I bash Netanyahu, they defend BiBi, and after a few minutes we move onto friendlier conversational terrain. =) The tension’s there, neither of us seem to be changing our opinions, but I feel like we’re mostly able to put our love above it.
Post # 4
Eek, that sounds frustrating! I’m not personally Jewish but some of my family is, and the topic does come up. My Jewish relatives lived in Jerusalem for years, though now they live in DC, but they are very liberal and very active in the pro-peace movement. Luckily there is not much argument among my family members, though the topic for sure came up at our Thanksgiving dinner. I totally understand that with the holidays coming up and lots of family/friend time you must be concerned about the arguing! How does the topic come up? Would it be possible to avoid it? Unfortunately, I think as long as people have differing opinions, that’s the only way to avoid arguments — avoiding the topic altogether. :-/ sorry you’re dealing with this, but i hope everyone can at least be civil about it!
Post # 5
@Scc6a: Indeed, I’m the queen of avoiding political conversations. This year is going to be a tough one since I attend Christmas dinner with my catholic family (I’m a convert) and my brother’s wife is Syrian and will be there. We’ve been good at “leaving politics at the the door” thus far, but there has been a recent explosion of facebook opinions (damn you facebook!) this year that will make it particularily tense between her and my DH…
Post # 6
@Petite_Fraise: I am totally the same way, because I hate confrontation! And I am with you on the Facebook thing — I’ve been seeing certain people’s opinions plastered all over Facebook that really bother me and sometimes it’s hard not to say anything, but I generally think it’s best not to engage. Your family dinner sounds like it will be very complicated with people from all different walks. Good luck, I hope everyone can at least remain civil! Could you talk to DH and ask him to try not to respond to any provocations, if only for the sake of maintaining peace over dinner? I’m sure your family are aware of his opinions as he is of theirs. It might feel less stressfull if you can be confident that he will at least try not to get into any political arguments.