Your college student arrives home for fall break and announces at the dinner table that she’s voting for Hillary because she wants to see the first woman president elected. She has no idea what Hillary’s plans are or about her previous political resume. She wants Hillary because she can’t stand Donald Trump.
The two of you begin to argue and your daughter runs up to her room and slams the door calling you a bigot. What should you do?
Or, your eleventh grader comes home from school and tells you that you must absolutely not vote for Donald Trump because he hates Mexicans, women and refugees. If you do vote for him, your son says that he won’t speak to you for a week. What do you say to him?
Many parents find themselves in the midst of an election firestorm, particularly when it comes to speaking to their kids about the election. It appears that no one can win an argument because the truth is, the contest has so drastically veered from policy, economic or social issues that each of us has a really hard time talking to our kids, or anyone, about them. We too fall into the trap of repeating what the media outlets banter about—the candidate’s personalities and behavior. And that has become, well, gutter talk.
While we have no influence over what the media discusses, we can control the talk in our homes.
This has been the most volatile, disturbing election in my lifetime, and I am determined to bring a bit of sanity to the discussions I have surrounding the election. I encourage you to do the same, especially if you have teens or young adults in your home.