6 Relationship Tips for Liberals and Conservatives in Love

As a liberal girlfriend, how do you love a politically conservative boyfriend? Or perhaps you’re a politically liberal wife married to husband with conservative leanings. These tips on how to love someone who has different political views won’t be quick or easy to implement, but they can save your relationship.

Whether you’re a “bleeding-heart liberal” or a “hard-hearted conservative”, in these polarized political times it’s easy for conversations to disintegrate into name-calling sessions. Those sessions are should be reserved for political debates or arguments between party consultants — or even around the family dinner table during holiday get-togethers. But they’re affecting our marriages and relationships more often than we want to admit.

The good news is that if you’re talking to your conservative boyfriend, your relationship is still alive. The danger is silent treatment in relationships or boyfriends who don’t talk to their girlfriends.

Loving and living with a conservative boyfriend or husband may be easier than you think. The six tips for liberal girls were written by freelance blogger Je’ Czaja. But before she gives her relationship advice — which also applies to long-married couples who have different political views — I want to share a happily married couple’s perspective. They have very public, very different political beliefs.

Marriage Advice From a Republican Wife and Democratic Husband (Happily Married!)

The wife is a Republican party strategist; the husband is a Democratic party consultant. They offer their “how to win the political fight at home” advice here…

Marriage Advice From a Republican Wife and Democratic Husband
Mary Matalin and James Carville (Republican Wife & Democratic Husband)

“There are four mandatory rules for winning [fights about politics between husbands and wives or boyfriends and girlfriends], and all are easier said than done,” says Mary Matalin, Republican party strategist, editor in chief of conservative publisher Threshold Editions, married to James Carville. “First and foremost: Pick your fights carefully. I learned faster with my kids than my husband that some hills are just not worth trying to take. With kids, brushing teeth is a necessary battle; matching hair bows is not. With husbands, respect is requisite; shared politics is not.

Second: Understand your objective. What is your goal and why? Are you trying to make your husband like you or do what you need? Third: Know your enemy. Military leaders premise engagements on this concept, but spouses often walk blithely into the line of fire. Fourth: Prepare. If you are prepared, you will be in the right fight, with clear goals, so you can anticipate counterarguments.”

Here’s her Democratic husband’s perspective about winning political fights in marriage: “I’ve read all the marital advice — you know, confront your issues, discuss them. My advice is just leave ’em go. I know couples who’ve been having the same discussion for 35 years. It ain’t worth it. Women know how to fight better….These days the only fight my [Republican] wife and I have is when she’ll say, ‘You’re just agreeing with me to agree with me!’ And most of the time it’s true. But I’m a happily married man. It’ll be 13 years this month. What can I say?

I found their “how to talk about politics with someone you love” advice in an issue of Oprah magazine that is almost 15 years old. This would be a good time to follow up with that Republican wife and Democratic husband! Are they still happily married? Or perhaps he’s now a single conservative boyfriend looking for a conservative girlfriend because his “don’t talk about politics with someone you love” views didn’t work.

But the truth is it doesn’t matter. Their relationship advice is good regardless of the state of their marriage (or the union) today.

How to Love Someone With Different Political Views

Before you read Je’s relationship advice for couples with different political views, remember that “agreeing to disagree” is the healthiest way to balance politics and love. You may have found this article by because you’re looking for ideas on how to deal with a conservative boyfriend. Before you read these tips, consider Mary Matalin’s advice. Why are you looking for ways to “deal with” your conservative boyfriend or husband? You deal with problems…and you love the boyfriend or husband in front of you.

6 Relationship Tips for a Liberal Girl in Love With a Conservative Boy
Relationship Tips for a Liberals and Conservatives

Researchers now say that liberalism and conservatism are influenced by brain structure, and arguments will not change brains; in fact, arguments won’t even change minds. According to a study conducted at University College in London, conservatives have smaller anterior cingulates and larger amygdalas than liberals. The anterior cingualte is associated with judgments, optimism, and recognition of conflicts. By a complex feedback mechanism, the anterior cingualte checks conflicts against potential threats with the amygdala, which is a part of the brain associated with fear.

The implications of the study are that conservatives tend to see any given situation as more threatening than liberals do. While the liberal is motivated to act in optimism that change will be for the better, the conservative is motivated to circle the wagons and fight off the threat. When you’re in love with a conservative boyfriend, remember that he may see heated discussions about politics as a threat. His conservative perspective isn’t just about politics, and it doesn’t just affect how he votes. It affects your relationship…but that doesn’t mean conservatives and liberals can’t have successful relationships or be happily married! It just means you both need to be aware of how your beliefs affect how you interact.

1. Don’t argue with your boyfriend, or try to change his conservative beliefs

Conservatives and Liberals must accept that brains cannot be changed by slogans, arguments, or anger. In fact, according to several research studies, political arguments only harden positions. Logic and reason do not enter into the equation. What scientists call confirmation bias is simply the phenomenon we observe in those we disagree with, and fail to observe in our selves: “His mind is made up, don’t confuse him with the facts.”

2. Remember how political views affect your perspective – and your relationship

A Conservative boyfriend can try to remember that he tends to perceive threats more often than most. His Liberal girlfriend is not an existential threat. She’s his life partner, and a fellow American who is less cautious and quite optimistic about the possibility of change for the better. The Liberal girl can try to remember that fear is a powerful motivator, and the Conservative is seeking to protect something.

Are the roles of conservative and liberal pulling your relationship apart? Read 5 Ways to Stop Feeling Alone in Your Marriage.

3. Accept that “different political views” doesn’t mean “wrong political views”

People range on continuums from cowardice to courage to recklessness; from laziness to industriousness to workaholic, and the category into which we place other people depends on our own position on the continuum.

According to Moral Foundations Theory, both conservatives and liberals hold values of fairness, not harming others, respect for traditions, and respect for authority. It’s just that liberals tend to hold fairness and not harming others to be more important than respect for traditions and authority, and conservatives tend to hold the opposite. Knowing how to love someone who has different political views is about accepting that they’re different — not bad or wrong.

4. If possible, avoid hot buttons

This is a solid relationship tip for all issues, not just political views! Hot buttons are words or phrases that cause knee-jerk responses. These can change over time and are used by one party or the other to solidify support for their cause. Current hot buttons are “socialism,” “immigration,” and “health care.”

5. Find common ground, outside of your political beliefs

Liberals and Conservatives, boyfriends and girlfriends, husbands and wives, are all Americans. Both want the world to be a good, safe place to raise their families and pass on to their grandchildren. Liberals and Conservatives actually need each other for the country to function.

A marriage in which both partners have learned how to love each other despite their different political views can be stronger than a marriage between two Conservatives, or two Liberals.

6. Just be two people in love – not a Conservative or Liberal couple

In the end, we are humans — not Conservatives and Liberals. We want liberty and the opportunity to live, love, and find meaning in our lives. Arguments will not change minds, but people can change their own minds if they don’t feel threatened. Love, respect, listening, acknowledging another person’s concerns, and a little laughter will do far more to resolve conflicts than 500 pounds of “evidence.”

What do you think – how do you love a man who has radically different political views? Do love and politics – Liberal wives, Conservative boyfriends – clash? Comments welcome below, but advice on love and politics unavailable at this time.

If you’re a Liberal girlfriend in love with a Conservative boyfriend, read 10 Warning Signs of a Bad Relationship.

Written by Je’ Czaja, freelance writer/illustrator and standup philosopher.


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26 thoughts on “6 Relationship Tips for Liberals and Conservatives in Love”

  1. Trampas Clyde Graham

    I feel as if I have lost my voice regarding these issues and I must face that I have to keep my mouth shut from now on. I fell in love with someone who definitely has different viewpoints on politics. I am so upset right now, but thank you for the advice and the article.

  2. I don’t consider myself to be a liberal not a conservative. It bothers me that my husband is so brainwashed by the Catholic church. I grew up in a fairly conservative Missouri synod Lutheran church. He always has to attend church every Sunday, whether we are on vacation or not. He always wants to leave church right after the priest starts to go down the aisle. He seems bored and rarely pays attention to what the priest is saying. Last night we we my to a movie called The Clergy. It was about priests abusing young boys and the negatives of the Catholic church. We were supposed to go out for dinner after the movie, but he was so angry about the movie that he said he wasn’t hungry and couldn’t talk about it. I really don’t get much out of the homilies and am tired of going to church with my husband. What should I do? Any ideas?

  3. It’s not this black and white. I know democrats tjat i can chat with and those who are ridiculously stupid in how they try to debate.

    My wife is the worst fake news, non critical thinking, and parroting non fact finding fool with politics.

    Im neither republican nor Democrat.
    Im a nationalist patriot who supports the constitution. I know dems and Republicans who are.

    I don’t believe in the two party bull.

    Yet I get into heated fights with neocons and liberals. Liberals are by far the worst though.

    My wife is liberal light and parrots what her liberal friends feed her. No fact finding at all.

    We just argued about Trump again. Abput how the economy has tje lowest rate of unemployment in 5 decades. She claims she did fact find… Bull… I pulled business goc site… My facts are on mark.

    I care only about truth… Dem or republican, doesn’t matter.

    I hate dealing with illogical, emotional political people.

    Facts and truth.. All i care about.. And dealing with a moron is exhausting.

    Your tips don’t and won’t work on kool-aid drinking libs or neocons.

    1. Im with a liberal guy 3 yrs Im conservative. They try to bully you to accept their beliefs. I was even told by him I should not live in this city cause its liberal. I am catholic and believe what I believe. I cannot figure out how they claim to care about the poor but don’t help them and rents rose 20% in 4 yrs in Ottawa tks to liberals. Theyu claim to include all people but stick to their own race, don’t respect women, grew up in bad childhoods of drinking and neglect. They claim to hate war but drop bombs on drs without borders hospitals. They hate Christians and like muslims who are scheming to kill us. They don’t believe in balanced budgets.

  4. I am engaged to a Trump-hating liberal. I don’t like some of the things Trump does but I’m more conservative. In keeping with your advice, I’m choosing to just be a man in love. Thank you for your thoughts and sound advice.

  5. I’ve been married to my stubborn conservative husband for nearly five years and it seems only to be getting harder. When he wants to start a political debate I try to stop it by saying, “we already know where each other stands on this, let’s not argue”. But he persists and we end up getting upset with each other and calling each other names like crazy or stupid. How can I get him to stop before it starts. It’s just not working!

  6. The comments from conservatives are very disheartening, especially those written by Bill Cooper. I am dating a man who is polar opposite of me politically speaking. We avoid politics for the most part and when discussed try to find some common ground, although there is very little. In spite of this, he loves, adores, and respects me and I him. He would never call me names, tell me to “kiss his feet”, or insult me the way I often hear some conservatives do to liberals. He is always a gentleman, listens, and above all loves me for my interest in politics, and my empathetic and positive nature. I, in return listen and learn from him as well. Although we still disagree on most things political, we still RESPECT one another. I guess we are both mature and confident enough to realize you get a lot more with honey than you do vinegar and this includes respect. This was a great article, hopeful, pragmatic, and positive. Bill Cooper and my boyfriend may both be conservative, but they have NOTHING in common.

  7. No, I didn’t quite finish reading this piece but I was very offended by terms like “bleeding heart liberal” and “hard-hearted conservative”. Really!? Not all liberals are softy bleeding hearts especially with all this recent rioting and not all conservatives are cold hearted manikins. Majority of these conservatives are a bit too sensitive and dormant because unless they are really not happy will not go out and vote.

  8. Bill, why are you even on this site? Are you here to understand and learn? Or are you just another troll, calling names and pointing fingers. And Andrew, why do you assume it was written by a liberal and why does it matter? Again, why are you here? If you’re truly not looking for answers but for another way to bully and name call, please go elsewhere.

  9. Wow Bill, a huge amount of understanding and acceptance coming from you! For your information, Liberal is not a dirty word. Did you read this article?? It is this intolerance and absolute arrogance that is driving our country into the gutter! Twisted view? Liberals should “kiss the feet of every conservative you meet”? Seriously? I can only assume that you are either divorced or married to someone who is deaf and mute or someone who absolutely is in lock step with you and your views. UNREAL.

  10. Me and my wife have been married for almost six years. I met her when I was a Marine stationed in Hawaii. She was a college student and a very smart woman. I was never into politics till I began my college career. Growing up in a very strict Protestant household I naturally held biases of my own that I would later be able to acknowledge. My wife grew up in a liberal household. She was never really vocal about her opinions because I never talked about politics till I began my education. While I attended college the inlaws graciously allowed me to live with them till I graduated and could start a new career. During the election I was really vocal about my beliefs about Trump being a better candidate for president. My wife believes that I’m a racist, biggot, and a shovenist anytime I disagree with liberal beliefs. During the election we had multiple fights and I grew tired of it to the point where I made a rule where we wouldn’t discuss politics. The problem with that is that she constantly asks my opinion on certain issues that I completely honest about how I feel. I’ve always been raised to be vocal about my beliefs even if there unpopular. And my dad always told me that many men have died for me to have that right so I feel like I’m conflicted with being myself and not pissing off my wife. Even when “I watch how I say things” it’s never good enough. It’s created friction in our marriage where I’ve seriously considered divorcing her. If it my beautiful daughter wasn’t in the picture I probably would have. My daughter complicates things in the sense that I never want her growing up hypersensitive like one party’s people. Anyone’s advice would help me right now. I’m at the point where I’m afraid my daughter will grow up weak minded, void of logic and brainwashed by the extreme left.

    1. Hey Jon. I think you and I are in the same boat. My wife of 5 years is on the opposite end of the political spectrum. I tend to identify as more federalist libertarian, so hard right. If I voice my opinions anywhere she can see it, she gets upset, calls me a racist, and we don’t talk for a few days. the best advice I can give probably won’t help with how she sees your views, but it will help with how you see her. At all times keep it in your mind that you both want the same things, that on any issue you both want the same result. Then the disagreement becomes whats the best way to get there.

      1. Hi Soysos, the advise you have given to Jon can help, it’s a good way of looking at things, that they both want the same things in the end. Which can be for the country’s economy to flourish, for everyone to have healthcare, or have good education system, to stop discrimination, to take care of a environment etc. And I hope that helps them. But for me, I will have questions about that. For example, is that really true? Do we both really want the same things, perhaps we don’t. I say this because I have come to believe that most people’s political views develops or stem from their core beliefs and values. Those are very difficult things to ignore.or change. So, for a Liberal, such as myself, I ask myself, “how can I care about someone who voted for a man who is divisive and who encourages discrimination against others who are not of his own kind?” In order for me to do that I would have to dig very deep to find one good reason why my spouse would support such a person to lead this great country, our home. And my spouse may try to say that he support some of the agendas of trump, but not all. And I would reply,”so for your one agenda you support, all of the other horrific things we have to embrace?” So how do we handle that?

        1. It’s almost 3 years since the elections, i believe at this point it’s clear who is really the divisive one. I can point to all the fake news from Buzzfeed, CNN, MSNBC, HuffPost, Wapo, but this field won’t take them all.
          I mean anyone that can think straight can clearly see how they distort facts, use 10 secs from a 2 hour long video, release uncorroborated reports from anonymous sources which gets debunked always..

          Case in point, look at CNN’s initial coverage of the recent Native American’s interaction with the Covington kids just last week, now compare that to all their retractions.. Trump isn’t an angel or a priest, but the media and lots of people don’t like him simply because Hillary lost. So the media twists everything he says/ does like fact checking on high 1000 burgers can get, when Trump said he ordered 1000 burgers for the Clemson team that were “mile high” lol

          All the racial issues that came up under Obama admin, was that due to Trump or Obama flaming racial issues even further..

          Except you believe having a secure border is racist, or accepting that certain elements do come in thru the border, Trump isn’t divisive, but your main stream media and the powers they represent from both sides of the aisle.

      2. well Lil, a little self awareness goes a long way. you talk about division and discrimination coming from trump, but you don’t see what your doing. “how can I care about someone who voted for a man who is divisive and who encourages discrimination against others who are not of his own kind?” this line right here is exactly what you are doing. looking down on people you disagree with as evil. it all starts with respect. You need to respect his opinions as being equally valid, then listen, hear him out and learn why he feels the way he does. this may come across as harsh, but again we want the same things. we want to see an end to all the division. this is how it starts, talking to each other, with mutual respect.

      3. LIL, you are the EPITOME and example of why the solution is Divorce. Why should someone suffer marriage to someone as yourself that is a bitter wife/husband with contempt and sees their spouse as immoral? That’s a deal breaker by definition! it (IS) possible for a liberal and conservative to be together but only when they respect the other and do not equate their beliefs to morality. There is ZERO room in a marriage where one truly believes the other to be immoral. How would YOU feel if you believed in Woman’s Choice and your Husband called you a baby murderer? Would you “work it out” with him? (please)..Get real and GET OUT!!

  11. Politics and love don’t only make “strange bedfellows” – they actually rip couples apart and cause all sorts of problems. Some couples who have different political beliefs simply don’t talk about politics at all. They can’t, because their conversations deteriorate into arguments.

    You sound like such a smart woman, Patriotic Housewife…looking for lessons, praying to God, venting your thoughts and feelings in safe places without infringing on your or his privacy…I’m just so impressed by your comments :-)

    May peace descend on your home, and may your husband’s beliefs be tempered by reason and balance. I pray for your marriage, for unity and connection even if you disagree on specific political issues.

    Above all, may you and your husband remember that you’re on the same team, and that your souls will be forever united in love. That’s far more important than any political belief or voting decision!


  12. Patriotic Housewife

    I needed to read this and will put these in practice! With this election so heated, I’m seeing a very ugly side of my husband. I would never have even considered marrying someone like this if his views were these when we met 16 years ago. I’m very middle of the road politically, an issue voter rather than party voter. Whereas, he is turning into something nasty, hate filled, and closed minded to even hearing another point of view. Even now believing in things he has stood firmly against in the past. I’m disappointed to learn he is this weak minded and easily influenced. We hardly even talk anymore because when he is home he’s got the news channel on where all they do is argue about politics. We certainly can’t talk politics, or else he will yell at me the way the opposing views on CNN or Fox yell at each other! Honestly, his views are embarrassing to me, hes gone beyond extreme! I have been praying that God will unite this division between us, while i wait, i will look for the lessons in it. Ugh! I can’t wait for this election to end!! OK rant over. Thanks for the article.

    1. Did you ever stop to think that it’s you that’s has a twisted view of the world?
      Did you ever stop to think that it’s you that would not be able to survive in a world without the ultra-conservatives that have the testicular fortitude to keep the peace that Western Civilization has brought to this violent world?
      If you haven’t then you are a typical Liberal and you should kiss the feet of every conservative that you meet, because you would be at the mercy of anyone stronger than you without them to keep you alive.
      Liberals would never be alive in a world without order. Perhaps that is why you hate us so much/

      1. Make sure to vote. And get your friends to vote. Liberals come out in droves and conservatives for some reason always stay home and think others will make up the votes.

      2. Hi Bill I have to say as someone south of the Mason Dixon it maybe a quick lesson for those who mistake a peaceful nature to mean some do not know how to fight.