Seattle Dating Scene features readers’ thoughts and stories about what it’s like to date in Seattle. For our next feature, follow this prompt: Describe the best, worst or most interesting date you’ve ever been on.
By Thursday, Oct. 15, please email your submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org or submit them via Instagram direct message to @dating_in_seattle, and they may be published in a future edition of The Mix.
Dating Question of the Month
We asked readers to tell us: “Is it possible to have a healthy relationship with someone who has opposing political views? Do politics factor into your relationship?“
Here’s what people said.
Answers have been edited for spelling and clarity.
“Yes, it’s possible! I’m a first-generation American who grew up in a family that has always voted blue, who instilled progressive ideas in me. My husband on the other hand is a conservative, who sought political asylum here due to his right-wing activities in his country of origin. We took the political compass test and we were unsurprisingly on opposite ends of the spectrum. I have much respect for him for being able to back his ideas, and not just pledging allegiance to some politician.
Neither of us are active on social media nor attend political marches and rallies. … We occasionally have heated discussions, it’s even become a way to tease the other one in a friendly way. … I know we will set a good example to our kids who will witness that two loving parents can have opposing views. It’s our common interests, spiritual life and what we want to accomplish together that have brought us together, and of course the physical attraction, can’t leave that one out!”
“Not anymore. Our country has become such an ‘us vs. them’ mentality, that I don’t think anyone can happily date one of ‘them.’ Since many political issues boil down to values and human rights, it makes sense that you’d want your partner to align.”
“Yes. I’m liberal and politically active. I regularly campaign for progressive candidates, but often end up in relationships with men who have more conservative viewpoints. These men have always identified with being ‘socially progressive’ but have given a higher priority to their economic views, which were conservative.
While I disagree that social issues can be separated from finances, I think with these men it gave us a place of understanding where we could start a conversation. I don’t think I could date a person who was socially conservative though. … Any disbelief in Black Lives Matter, women’s rights or gay rights is a big deal-breaker for me.”
“On social issues, I don’t think there’s much wiggle room — either you care about human equality or you don’t. On fiscal issues I think it’s fine to differ. I mean, does anyone in a relationship always agree on how money should be spent?”
“Neutrality can be maintained on mundane subjects, but when you’re talking politics, there is no compromise on fundamental beliefs. If your girlfriend needs an abortion, and you don’t believe in that, it pretty much ends the relationship. If your boyfriend has an unregistered semiautomatic gun and you don’t believe in unregulated access to guns, your relationship will never get off the ground. … Any conscious person needs to be yoked with someone of similar sensibilities. Where would we be if homes were built on internal disagreement and social discord?”
“There are certain positions that are indefensible, and would make it hard for me to date someone. However, I know many people who are more vehement online than off. So that has to be taken into account. How much do their views impact their lifestyle? On the religious side, I could not date a woman who was much more religious than I am. Nor could I date a woman who truly believed religion was terrible. The most helpful model for me is to think about how a partner would impact a household. Or: Is her view compatible with how I would want to raise children?”
“Can they date? Sure. For a while. But those are philosophically opposing views, and I will add that, in today’s world, they are morally opposing. So, it will be fun to argue some points, and debate a topic or two, but … it’s probably not going to end in marriage.”
“I don’t think so … not in this political climate. Maybe in the ‘04 election era, but not this one.”
“My friend is a Republican military veteran and his wife is an Obama Democrat. They make fun of each other but in a cute, mild way. Also, my parents have the same split. Although my dad didn’t vote for Trump, as a lifelong Republican he still votes GOP for other offices. My mom thinks he’s ridiculous, but they don’t really argue politics much. I think it’s healthy and great.”
Here’s the monthly “Seattle Dating Scene” lineup:
- First week: “Dating Question of the Month” — Readers respond to a dating-related question we’ve posed.
- Second week: “Happy Anniversary, Tell Us Your Story” — Have an anniversary coming up this month? In under 500 words, tell us how you met your significant other, and send in your story and a photo.
- Third week: “Best Date/Worst Date” — In under 250 words, tell us an anecdote from the best or worst date you’ve been on.
- Fourth week: “Ask Marina” — Marina Resto, who runs the lively @Dating_in_Seattle Instagram account, answers reader questions about dating — or finds a special guest to answer the ones she can’t!