Tamra Judge's sons Ryan Vieth and Spencer Barney are at war over politics.
Unfortunately, it's not unusual for families to fall apart over their views on Donald Trump. On Tuesday's premiere of Season 14 of The Real Housewives of Orange County, Tamra asked the boys to sit down to "resolve their political differences."
"Ryan's a fanatic Trump supporter, and Spencer's the total opposite," she explained.
"I don't care," Ryan replied, "There's nothing wrong with loving America."
Tamra replied, "I don't mind loving America, but you said you were gonna punch him in the face."
Ryan said his brother had labeled him a "racist" and that Spencer "got offended because I said that I was building [Trump's] wall. And just because I said that, he thought I was racist."
Tamra wondered whether the boys being raised in different economic situations contributed to their fighting.
"Spencer and Ryan were raised differently," she said. "Ryan was in daycare half the time while I was working two jobs. The lights were turned off most of the time. Birthday parties were, 'Let's go to Chuck E. Cheese!' But now, Ryan sees all the fancy things in life that Spencer has, and I think there might be a little bit of jealousy between the two of them. And I think Ryan's the one that's gotta maybe come around."
Psychology Today says that "one reason political discord can be so damaging is because we are not simply engaging in an intellectual disagreement, but rather bumping up against differences at the level of brain chemistry."
"While it can be heart-breaking to sit down for another Thanksgiving dinner and feel the rise of tension that comes when grandpa slaps down his turkey leg and makes a declarative statement about his political views on abortion, ObamaCare or locker room talk, developing the capacity to stop, breathe and approach the conversation with kindness and respect is a valuable skill.
"The more you’re able to step back and remember that liberals and conservatives may be starting from different psychological foundations, the more patience you’ll have to address these differences with empathy. This practice — seeing the world through a variety of perspectives that are different from your own - will equip you with key skills navigate an ever-changing social, political, professional and cultural landscape."
Another report explains:
"Political subjects often trigger emotional responses, especially if there are other issues in a parties’ relationship. In these situations, rather than viewing a difference in opinion as an opportunity for mutual exploration, the parties interpret divergence as rejection, lack of respect, or an attempt at control. Disagreement degenerates into arguments and even estrangement if not managed properly.
"Before demonizing those who disagree with you politically, consider that they are influenced by factors beyond their control – as are you. While humans are physically and psychologically similar, they are not identical. As a consequence, each of us experiences and responds to our environment in a unique manner. Understanding the basis for another person’s opinions is the first step to reconciliation."
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